Each career has its pros and cons. In the pursuit of financial freedom, freelancing has been seen as a viable route to financial freedom. Here are the pros and cons a freelancer needs to know.
Financial freedom; the one phrase we all are familiar with. We crave, strive, and push all for self-reliance.
Here is my story. As an African boy from a working family.
Well, where I come from, at sixteen you are in form 2 the equivalent of grade 10. If you are from a working family, then all you ever hear is read hard, get good grades, and a good job. That’s the only way.
In grade 12 I did my final high school exams. Guess what? I did well. I was among the best in the country. Which earned me admission to one of the ‘prestigious’ courses in college.
In campus, I explored life in social circles. Dating and all – it all requires funds. To meet expenses and have a good life, funds need to flow in.
See the mess that I am in?
Now I have a choice to either look for money or look for money.
Twas then I made a choice. I started working as a remote contractor writer. 5 years on, here I am to share my views on the pros and cons learned in freelancing.
My Top Three Pros and Cons of Freelancing
1. Dictating your working time
8-5… we all know how that sucks the life out of a person. Then there are Mondays! We have all been there. You know that feeling.
In my case, I had classes 8-5 each day. Therefore, finding out that I could make money without having to sit from 8-5 is quite fulfilling.
I did not have to be broke. Also, I did not have to miss classes.
Provided you can have a plan on how to spend your 24 hours, you are good. This means you have to differentiate between working hours, social hours, and all the other responsibilities that may need your time.
You get to dictate your time but you have to be a hell of a time manager. A perfect one!
2. Unlocking Creativity – Let it flow
Remember the old saying: what does a caged bird want? Well, one word; FREEDOM.
The office environment is a robber. You are going to interact with the same people, doing the same things, and in the very same way.
Always boxed into doing things either you don’t want or don’t enjoy.
Being an independent contractor gives you an escape. You get to choose your niche and pick your assignments. That way you are sure that you are thinking of different creative solutions to problems you face in your line of work.
Besides, by doing what you love and the freedom you got to explore, you cannot help but become the best!
3, The BOSS – You got firing rights!
Being the boss is a dream. As a freelancer, you live the dream.
Newsflash! You are the boss, full of firing rights.
How is that for sweet news? Well, if you are a newbie in this field, chances are you are struggling to get all this in.
Who do you fire?
The client. There is a delicate balance to help you use the firing power.
However, like you are advised to run from toxic relationships, run from toxic clients. Clients who do not pay or pay late, clients who want to cage your creativity or any other toxic traits. Drop them.
Although, this comes with the responsibility of dealing with your own toxic traits and weaknesses.
1. Work benefits – Sorry, you are on your own!
Health benefits, housing benefits, commuter allowances… name them. You know them. Well, as a freelancer you are on your own.
Therefore, when your peers are enjoying these benefits by default, you have to be intentional. You have to plan yourself effectively so as not to be poor due to hospital bills
That reminds me; you got to plan for your retirement too. There are no retirement benefits for a full-time freelancer.
You made a decision to work for yourself; I guess a decision for your future is not up for a contest.
2. No pay, Delayed pay – Wicked clients (Those who need firing)
There is this client; we agreed that he would pay after 10 writing projects. I did great work and he always admitted it (of coz with some minor changes). After 10, he vanished, cut contact and everything not to be heard.
You can imagine the hit I took.
Anyway, it gave me a lesson, a worthwhile lesson. As a freelancer, you got to make sure you do not get into this situation. Have a percentage of the total amount paid up front – preferably 50%.
You want your client committing.
You need that money and you are working for it. So, it’s only fair that you get it.
3. You risk being FAT – This happened to me
You have your office with you by your bedside. You do not have to wake up to drive up to your office.
It is no secret; you are going to be detached from your friends and colleagues. The worst bit is even in social gathering you can be tempted to be working. Besides, there is work and secrets you need to get ahead of the game
In between 8-5 classes, I found myself being alienated from social interactions. I would always be either reading or working.
Then I feel sick. Everyone thought that is usual. It was not uncommon to stay alone for 2 days. By the time people noticed I was unwell I had had good pain.
What am I saying; you have to learn that every aspect of your life is important. Work to maintain the delicate balance that is needed. More importantly, use a work out to get yourself fit.
So, how did you find the story?
Was it interesting?
Did you learn?
Move on and comment. Also, if you have been in the game for a while, what are your top pros and cons of the game?