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10 Things No One Tells You About Freelancing

In the world of freelancing, a lot goes on that people don’t know about. But let’s face it, working as a freelancer is very different from working as an employee in a 9-to-5.

It’s easy to get carried away by the wonderful opportunities and benefits freelancers get to enjoy for being self-employed.  But it’s good to see the other side of the coin. Here are 10 things no one tells you about going freelance.

 

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Freelancing is lonely

Unlike in a 9-to-5 where you get to work with colleagues or go to meetings, freelancing is lonely. It’s only you in front of your computer working on projects for your clients.

When you do want to go out or hang out with friends, they are either at work or they are busy with something else. You no longer have the same work schedule as they do. So most times you stay alone.

However, to combat the loneliness you can make friends with freelancers who live near you and spend time with them. It’s nice to spend time with those who understand the loneliness of freelancing.

 

You end up working more hours than you did in your 9-to-5

Many people think that freelancers have a lot of time on their hands since they don’t have to go to an office everyday. What people don’t know is that freelancers work around the clock.

Freelancers don’t have fixed work hours. They work everyday, including the weekends and often late into the night and start all over again early in the morning.

In a 9-to-5 your work hours are defined, that’s one luxury won’t have as a freelancer.

 

People expect you to work for free

Although there are more freelancers in the world, it’s not receiving the status it deserves. People still see freelancing more as a hobby than a real job.

When you get started as a freelancer, don’t be surprised when you get people coming to you to ask if you could work for them for free. Since they don’t consider freelancing as a real job, they don’t see the trade as something that should be paid for.

It now depends on you to educate such people that freelancing is as real a job as a 9-to-5 and as a freelancer you deserved to be paid like any other worker.

 

You have to deal with distractions

Freelancers spend most of their time working at home and are often distracted by the presence of the TV and internet. So when faced with these temptations everyday it can get difficult to finish projects on time.

To be an efficient freelancer, staying laser-focused is key. You may be working at home but you’re still running a business and that requires a lot of discipline and focus.

 

You need to ace up your productivity

Most freelancers run service-based businesses. That means that their income is in direct proportion with the number of clients or projects they have on their plate.

More projects means more money. Therefore, the faster you’re able to work within a day, the more projects you’ll be able to accommodate. And that means a higher income. That calls for you to learn to be more productive.

 

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You may have issues getting a loan

When you’re self-employed some lenders tend to refuse credit even if you earn as much as or even more than you used to earn as an employee.

Most banks and mortgage lenders ask for at least three years of accounts to prove income. Very few of them even consider one to two years. That has posed a serious challenge for freelancers.

 

You have to be in charge of your own pension

The perks of working in a 9-to-5 is that your pension is handled by your employer. Which means freelancers have to take care of their pensions themselves by allocating money for their retirement.

 

Cash flow isn’t always steady

It’s not all rosy when it comes to cash flow. There will be months when you’ll experience dry spells and months when you’re overwhelmed with projects.

That’s where the need to diversify your income comes in. When you create more income streams you can somewhat guarantee a steady flow every month.

 

You can be spontaneous

Freelancers have the freedom to work anywhere they want to. As a freelancer, you don’t have to wait until the summer to travel. You can book a flight or a train ride to anywhere at any time, without having to be answerable to anyone.

 

You have to do everything yourself

Unfortunately when you’re starting out as a freelancer you have to do everything yourself.

Before you have enough funds to outsource some of the operations of your freelancing business you have to do it on your own.

You have to do your taxes and accounting of your business. You write your own copy and edit your own content, post on social media and even negotiate with brands.

But remember that this is only temporary. Once you’re able to build an audience and raise your income you can start hiring extra hands to help you out.

 

Does anything on this list surprise you? How has your freelancing experience been?

 

 

 

 

 

 

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5 Signs that freelancing is not working for you and how to fix it

I must confess that I have experienced times during my freelancing journey where I felt like I was not cut out for freelancing. This may come as a surprise but I want to be 100 percent authentic and honest with you.

 

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But feeling like you’re not cut out for freelancing is completely different from actually not being cut out for freelancing. As I persisted through my dream to live a freedom-based laptop lifestyle, I learned the difference.

Life as a freelancer is attractive, flexible and you get to be your own boss, determine your rates and set your schedule. But what happens when it doesn’t turn out as planned. Should you quit? I have been freelancing for years and have been there. I know how you feel.

Here are 5 clear signs that freelancing is not working for you and how you can fix it.

 

You don’t enjoy what you’re doing

When you started freelancing you actually loved what you did. It wasn’t always about the money. New projects got you excited. You were always open for a challenge. But it’s been 6 months now and you start dreading another project. What ever happened?

The answer is simple. You grew comfortable with where you are. And the best way to shake the feeling of dread is to do something new. Try different styles, different approaches, and different methods. Sometimes changing where you work can make a huge difference. Take your laptop to a nearby café and get busy. Introduce something fresh in your work life.

 

You don’t have a good work-life balance

Have your weekends disappeared? Do you work late into the night every day? When was the last time you actually made time for yourself?

When working at your 9-to-5, it was easy to know when work ended. After work, all you had was free time to do whatever you wished. Weekends were off-limits. But as a freelancer, you may have the entire 24 hours dedicated to work and this can make you lose all sense of personal life.

Set clearly defined working hours and stick with them. If you want weekends off, then set your work schedule in a way that you can have weekends solely to yourself.

 

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You’re overwhelmed with changes in the industry

Establishing yourself as an expert in your industry takes work. But things change pretty quickly. It comes to a point where you start feeling left out on all the latest trends and innovations in the industry. It’s overwhelming and you end up on a plateau with your knowledge and skills.

I struggled with this feeling for a while but during one of my quiet moments it hit me – the reason I was overwhelmed was because I was busy going under in the industry instead of going deeper.

Start off where you’re at and dig deep to find more. Improve on what you know, rather than going after every new thing. Don’t rush it. Take it step-by-step and most of all enjoy the process.

 

You’re worn out

It’s great to have new clients but if your income depends on acquiring new clients everyday then it can get really stressful. Its’ a horrible feeling to be weighed down by a lot of work.

What helped me was to create passive income streams. Passive income streams help to boost your income while you spend your time doing things you enjoy.

Of course, as a freelancer, you define your income. But chasing after clients who will pay you a low rate can wear you out fast. What will help is for you to raise your rates and go after quality high paying clients who will value your work. You can raise your rates and work for fewer people and still make a comfortable income while you have better working hours.

 

The loneliness is getting to you

Being a freelancer is a lonely journey. Although you have the potential to earn more, have flexible hours and actually do what you love, you have to do most of it alone.

To beat the loneliness, go for meet ups and meet other freelancers. Collaborate with other freelancers on a project or course. Join a mastermind. Get connected with people in your industry and invite them over for coffee. You’ll be surprised at how many freelancers are in your area.

 

Are you freelancing? Is it working for you?

 

 

Why More Women are Quitting Their Jobs to Run Their Own Business

The journey to independence for women has been a very long one. If you go through history, women had to fight to have a place as members of the work force. It was a huge struggle as women were relegated to the background. According to societal norms, the only job women could do at that time was to be housewives.

Fast forward to the 21st century, women are taking up more roles in the work force. They are not only trained to practice their profession, they also head key positions. From the civil service to corporate institutions, women are no longer an unfamiliar sight.

 

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But now there is a new trend springing up. More women are transitioning from being employees to being business owners. I am privileged to be among them. I left my 9-to-5 to focus on my own business.

A lot of people wonder why there are more women quitting their jobs to run businesses of their own. I thought it will be a good idea to compile a list of key reasons why they do so.

 

Participating in the rat race doesn’t cut it anymore

Having a 9-to-5 jobs creates the illusion of stability and an avenue to practice your profession. You’re assured of a regular job with a good salary and a pension when you retire. But the truth is that working at a 9-to-5 job is anything BUT stable.

You could be fired at any time. Your salary may not be enough to pay all your bills and you could end up living on your credit card. The office politics causes both emotional and mental agony. Even if everything about working at a 9-to-5 were rosy, it doesn’t give you fulfillment.

Smart women know that in order to truly experience a good life, they need to take matters into their own hands and be their own bosses.

 

 

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You’re more in control

If there is anything working as an employee doesn’t offer, it would be living life on your own terms. As an employee, you are constantly taking orders from a superior. Unlike a 9-to-5, running your own business guarantees flexible working hours and you are able to work towards what you want to receive every month.

Female entrepreneurs know that taking care of a family comes with a lot of responsibilities and no matter how generous your employer is there are some things he or she will not be willing to waive for you.

 

Freedom to pursue your passion

Let’s face it. You can actually count the number of people who are happy with their cubicle lifestyle. I remember when I was working at my 9-to-5, more than half of my colleagues sulked to work. Starting from Monday, everyone was looking forward to Friday so that they could enjoy the weekend. I can never forget the days my work caused me so much strain and sadness.

When I finally called it quits and started my own business, I established a business that brought me fulfillment. I was able to do something that I am passionate about.

 

That is exactly what female entrepreneurs get to enjoy when they run their own businesses. They do what they love and business is never a drag because they are passionate about what they are doing.

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