Freelancing: The glorious work life. You know the adage, “Do what you love, and you’ll never work another day in your life.”
It’s not all sunshine and rainbows, though. You still have to work diligently to find your core clients in the beginning – an entrepreneurial spirit is a must-have.
Once you’ve got a client-base and a steady source of business, freelancing is the ultimate employment channel with unlimited freedom potential.
How good is the freelancing life? Here’s a short list of the major advantages that come hand-in-hand with the decision to work for yourself.
1. You Earn Every Cent to The Dollar
One of the biggest rationales made in the decision to leave a job in favor of freelancing is the ability to actually earn every cent of value you provide.
In a company, when a bid is made to a client for your services, the bid includes overhead costs (management, technology, leasing value, etc.). So, you may be providing $ 2,000 worth in influencer marketing strategies or design services – but you’re only actually getting a third of that.
When you’re freelancing, you can still bid for overhead costs. The difference? You keep every cent of it. There’s no dividing funds among management, and no trickle down in capital. Every bit is yours. How great is that? It’s awesome.
2. You Make Your Own Hours
Sure, you’ll still have deadlines.
But, you can choose to meet those deadlines in whatever fashion you choose. Kids have a field day? No problem. You can simply start work at 6 p.m. You got invited to go on a camping trip in the middle of the workweek? Go! You can work from your laptop at night.
That’s the main allure of freelancing. You choose when you work, how you work, and where you work.
3. Work/Life Balance
Get this: Only 29% of freelancers work a full 40-hour workweek (crazy, considering #5).
That means more time for your spouse, more time for that novel you’ve been writing, more time for exercise…. More time for living.
4. Higher Earnings
As a freelancer, you’ve got to get real familiar the best pricing for your level of work. You’ll set your rates for certain projects and submit them to the clients. If you bid your projects too high, you might lose the gig. Or, you can simply say no. Then, clients who value your work will potentially pay you higher.
You’ve got to be careful here, though. Don’t get too zealous with setting your rates too high. You’ll risk not winning any new clients or business.
A good rule of thumb is: If you’re taking on too many clients at once, you might consider increasing your rates by 15-20%. If your client-base is new or non-existent yet, you should do the opposite. You’ll eventually find your sweet spot.
The average US freelancer earns 45% more than your average employee, too. Pretty phenomenal, considering all of the other perks that come with the job.
5. You Control the Project
This is the pinnacle of creative freedom. Sure, you still have to appease to the client, but typically, no creative director or higher-up will have a say in your work. This could potentially be perceived as negative – there isn’t anyone to correct the mistakes you may not be able to see.
However, yet again, an entrepreneurial mindset is needed to be a freelancer. With that comes a nearly obsessive need for perfection.
As a freelancer, you’re given the freedom to think outside of corporate barriers and office politics.
Also, you won’t be subject to some of the boring projects you would have to complete in a corporate setting – You choose which projects to take on.
6. Several Methods of Income
You can’t survive without a solid portfolio of clients to provide you with work. That’s the great thing about freelancing – You aren’t relying on one client, or worrying for that potential corporate layoff.
You’ll always have the added security of a plethora of clientele, so long as you keep your effort levels high and quality of work impeccable. One client decides to shrug you off? Forget about it. You’ve got plenty more to keep you busy, and another spot open for another client.
7. Paradise or Starbucks
Work where you want. You don’t need to check in with a boss, or clock into a time-sheet.
You’ll be a member of the laptop lifestyle. Free to travel where you want, work with clients across the globe, and live a life completely void of locational ties. Work in paradise, or use the Starbucks WIFI – It’s up to you how and where you work.
Here’s where the entrepreneurial mindset comes back into play. With that obsessive attention to detail and perfection comes a desirable, high quality of work. When you submit projects to first-time client’s, they’re likely to want to transition into a long-term work relationship.
This is especially true if you’re working with a web design agency or a startup. Sometimes agencies like to outsource their workload to qualified freelancers in order to balance their capabilities and meet deadlines. These types of clients tend to pursue longer relationships, and it would behoove you to do your best and give the highest quality of work you can provide.
9. A Foot in the Door
For some people that test the waters by freelancing, it turns out to be a sour lifestyle. For whatever reason it may be, it just isn’t right for them. They may need more structure, more oversight, etc.
That’s just fine – Because now they have a portfolio good enough to get their foot into the door of a physical job opening in a corporate office. Not only does freelancing put you into contact with hundreds of business owners, but that work you’ve done for them can now be used as leverage to land job positions.
But, that’s only in the unlikely event that you decide the luxuries of freelancing aren’t for you.
Cliché, but true.
Your overall levels of happiness will rise dramatically from the transition into a freelancing career. How could it not? All of the points made above are testaments to this. More freedom, more financial capabilities, more time for life.
Being a freelancer does have drawbacks. Things like self-employment taxes, healthcare, and the initial lull in work when you start are some factors that need to be taken into account.
But, once you accommodate those factors into the lifestyle, freelancing is a dream for entrepreneurial-minded individuals with the talent that business owners are looking for.
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