Going freelance is a dream for many people, but you should stop it from being nothing more than a dream and actually go for it if you have a plan. There are plenty of ways in which you can do this, but you also need to be aware of the things that you might experience when you go through this career transition. Not all of these things will be easy or enjoyable for you, but it’s good to be aware of them before you take the plunge.
There are many ways in which you’ll need to prepare for your new career, and you can only do that when you understand some of the things that you’re likely to experience. Read on now to find out more about some of the things that inevitably come with becoming a freelancer and leaving the old office behind.
People Might Start Expecting You to Work for Free
This is one issue that so many freelancers face, and it’s certainly a strange one. Once you start working for yourself, some people seem to think that you’re working on a hobby rather than working for a living. You should take a zero tolerance approach to this sort of stuff because the moment you start working for free, it wastes your time and impacts your ability to earn the money you need.
Lots of Questions
You’re going to get a lot of questions about leaving your job and going freelance because people will see it as a strange decision. You’ll probably be tired of answering these questions before long. You’ll even have exit interview questions for managers that you’ll need to answer. It’s best to remain patient and answer all of the questions people want to ask, and don’t let people’s surprise make you uneasy about the decisions you’ve made regarding your career. If it’s the right decision for you, just go for it.
You Might Get Lonely
If you’re used to working in a busy office environment, you might enjoy the quiet and tranquility that comes with working from home by yourself. But there comes a time when you wish you had people to interact with throughout the day, and that can be a challenge. No one likes getting lonely during the day, so make an effort to improve your social life and meet people once your work has finished.
There’ll be Financial Challenges to Overcome
As far as money goes, it won’t all be plain sailing for you. You can expect to experience many challenges along the way because that’s just the nature of working for yourself. Money can be short one month and plentiful the next. That’s just the way it is, and you’ll need to find a way of managing your cash flow so that you’ve always got access to the cash you need when you need it. Money can seem like a near-constant worry when you’re working for yourself, so try to build a financial safety net as soon as possible.
People Expect You to Have Free Time and a Flexible Schedule
Working from home doesn’t necessarily mean that you end up with your free time on your hands, despite what some people might think. Yes, your schedule might be slightly more flexible, but you’ll still need the time each day to do the work that you need to do, so it’s probably not quite as flexible as lots of people seem to assume it is. And you definitely should let your schedule get too hectic because then your work-life balance begins to suffer badly.
Every Problem Has to be Dealt with by You
In the past when you had a problem at work, you probably turned to your boss or senior manager to help you sort it out. But you’re all alone when you’re a freelancer working from home. This might be a bit of a shock to the system at first, but you can push through it if you believe in yourself and get creative with finding solutions to the problems you experience each day. You are capable of much more than you give yourself credit for, so believe in yourself.
You Might Experience Some Pension Headaches
Pension matters are also in your hands for perhaps the first time because there will be no workplace pension scheme for you to fall back on. Instead, you’re going to be required to do the work yourself and start making plans for your pension, and if you don’t do this, no one will do it for you, unfortunately. So start thinking about how you can deal with this as soon as possible. Even if you feel you’re too young to be worrying about pensions, that’s the wrong attitude to take.
You’ll Find That Dealing With Interruptions is Tough
If you have a family, working from home might not be as hassle-free as expect. You could end up becoming the babysitter as well as a freelancer, and there will be all kinds of other interruptions even if you don’t have children to look after while you’re working. You need your own private space so that distractions become a problem from you and hold you back in any way. It can be tricky to deal with distractions, but it’s just part and parcel of being a freelance worker.
Getting Out and Exercising Will Become a Necessity
It’s very easy to sit and home and not leave the house all day long when you’re working from home. That’s why so many people put on weight and start to feel more lethargic when they’re working from home. You should make sure that you combat this as quickly as you can because your health is always important; you can’t afford to overlook it. It’s a lesson that many freelancers and home workers have learnt the hard way, so be warned before it’s too late.
Freelance life can be difficult and it can be a bit of a grind, but you shouldn’t let that put you off too much. It also provides you with the freedom to make your own career choices and the ability to take the directions you want to take, free from the restrictions a boss might place on you.