Does a nine-to-five job seem too mundane and tiring? With The Great Resignation, several professionals are choosing to go the freelance way. There has been a lot of talk about how you can earn a living by freelancing. Social media does paint a rosy picture of working wherever you want, sleeping till noon, and having loads of free time. It seems as if you are living the life of your fantasies. But is all of it true?
Now, freelancing can be all that, but let’s get back to reality. Freelancing does have its pros and cons. The trick is to walk that tightrope and balance multiple responsibilities. So much of freelancing has to do with prioritizing and self-discipline. In this blog, we deconstruct the benefits and drawbacks of a freelance career.
Pros of Going Freelance
Here are a few points that compel more and more people to make the switch.
1. The freedom of choice
You can pick projects that spark your interest. It is also possible to carve out a niche for yourself and become a domain expert or thought leader, but ultimately, it all comes down to sustainability.
2. Following your biorhythm
A freelance career is for you if you are at your creative best at midnight or any time outside the conventional work hours. You have the freedom to set your schedule and work the hours you want to as long as you meet project deadlines. You have the option to fit in that mid-day yoga class, drop your kid to school, run errands, or just sit and recharge with a cup of coffee. Maintaining a healthy work-life balance is one of the perks of being a freelancer.
3. Choose projects that excite you
One of the best parts about the freelance way of life is that you have full autonomy over what projects you want to work on. However, remember that your bills still need to be paid, and, at times, you will have to accept a project you are not too fond of, because you need to keep the moolah coming in.
Points That Will Make You Reconsider
1. The episodic flow of projects
If you are used to a steady paycheck, be prepared for an erratic bank balance. Sometimes you will be swamped with work, and at other times, you will have slow days. Learn to ride the wave and balance your finances accordingly.
2. Being on the hunt always
A big part of the freelance life is to actively network for new leads, making communication a crucial skill to imbibe. You’ll need self-motivation to keep going through tough times. There will be days when work may trickle in slowly: these are the times when you will need to step up your game. Update your social media profiles, be an active member of freelancing communities, and keep expanding your network.
3. Owning up
Remember, this is a one-person show: you will be the CEO, salesperson, accountant, project manager, and the face of your brand. The glory will be yours alone, but also the failures. Owning up to—and learning from—your mistakes is a big part of any freelancing career.
In a nutshell, freelancing is thrilling and exciting, what with the possibility of new projects and clients. However, be aware of some harsh realities too.
Once you have decided to take the plunge, use tools that will help you keep track of your project, schedule, and money. Some of these include Google Calendar, Calendly, QuickBooks, and more.
Let this be your motto, and you will always succeed: “No matter how much experience you have, how many degrees you have, or how well known you have become—there is always something new to learn. Don’t rest on your past experiences. If you do nothing to improve your skills, you won’t stay where you are.”
- Laura Spencer
Swapna Goyal is a freelancer who has been nurturing her passion for writing for a while now. She has created content for social media, websites, pitch decks, PR articles, and email marketing, among others.