What Freelancers Can Learn from Danny Tanner

On Tuesday, I wrote about the recent trip I took to San Francisco. During that trip, I paid a visit to the famous “Full House Street” by Alamo Square Park and it got me thinking: working as a freelance writer today, there are many lessons that can be learned from that TV show.

More specifically, there are many small business lessons that can be learned from father figure Danny Tanner. Remember that we have to disassociate the character from the now foul-mouthed Bob Saget… though I’m sure there are some “aristocratic” lessons to be learned there too.

Gotta Keep It Clean

In stark contrast to the current comedy routine by Bob Saget, the character of Danny Tanner kept things clean. Very clean. Obsessively clean. And most freelancers should take that to heart.

We all have to remember that the Internet is forever. Especially since your personal name may also be your professional brand, it’s important to be mindful of what you post online. You don’t want your clients and colleagues to find something “unsavory” about you on the web, as this can significantly affect your professional image and your ongoing prospects. You can still speak your mind, but just recognize the long-term ramifications of being so outspoken.

You Can’t Do It Alone

In the show’s narrative, Danny’s wife passes away before some time before the first episode. Now a single father to three daughters, he calls upon brother-in-law Jesse and good friend Joey to help him get through this tough time. Of course, we now know that both Joey and Jesse stick around quite a bit longer in Full House.

But the big lesson here comes from that first call-out. Danny recognized that he needed help. As a freelancer, you may feel like you have to be a one-man (or one-woman) show, but that doesn’t have to be the case. You may all operate independently, but calling on the support of other freelancers can be helpful for all parties involved. You all grow, mature and evolve together. You can’t and shouldn’t do it alone.

Family Comes First

Everything that Danny did, he did for his daughters.

As a freelancer, you also need to keep things in perspective. Yes, you want to thrive professionally. You want to expand your contacts and grow your business, but you should never forget why you’re working so hard in the first place. For most of us, it’s about the betterment of our own lives and the lives of our family members. Putting things in perspective can really help with overcoming deficits in motivation too.

Remember to Smile

Running a small business is no small feat. You’re going to face what feels like an endless onslaught of frustrating challenges, but don’t forget to smile. Relish in those treasured moments that make it all worthwhile. Just as we learned from Ellen Degeneres, we all have to laugh more, dance more and play more. Remember to have fun; otherwise, you’ll wake up each morning like a curmudgeon, dreading another day at the (home) office.

What Did You Learn from Full House?

Full House depicted an unconventional family in an almost conventional way. Yes, “I bet no one has a Joey,” but nearly every family can relate to the Tanners on some level. We may be more than a decade removed from the TV show, but looking back, what do you remember learning from Full House?