What can you get out of freelancing that you can’t have with a ‘regular’ job? Is it really a viable alternative to a nine to five, or should you only do it for extra pay? We’ve got five answers to those questions, and some of them may surprise you. There’s no doubt that in the current job market, you should give freelancing a serious look.
With the ebb and flow of pandemic strains and the uncertainty of a disrupted workforce the freelance world appeals more and more to a new breed of workers. Being free of a nine-to-five, or simply augmenting your hours with extra work, makes sense to talented people looking for options. Freelancing holds an appeal to people looking for flexibility and opportunity. Let’s look at five solid reasons why you should give freelancing a try.
Having choices is ultimately what freedom is all about. If you’re firmly in the freelance world you have some control over your work hours, work place and work attire. Deciding when you want to wake up, when you eat and when you sleep is a luxury most workers never have. By definition, if you work for someone else and punch a clock, most of those decisions are taken from you. Few businesses can let their workers dictate pace, let alone the duration or intensity of the workday. Likewise the work place often decides when a worker eats. Since most work places are self-contained, and lunch times are relatively short, the employer also indirectly decides what foods the employee eats. A worker who wants or needs some control over their diet can certainly bring their food with them. Increasingly there are more strictures on bringing and storing food in the workplace, however. Employers don’t want the responsibility of allowing foreign organic matter onto the premises. They often provide lunchrooms and cafeterias, which means they control the menu as well as the feeding time.
2. Make More Money
Freelancing is all about adding money to your pocket. If you haven’t quit your traditional job, freelancing means a huge bump of income for you. Some people move up several tax brackets simply on the basis of freelance income. With creative deductions they often keep a great deal of their money for themselves.
When you freelance you’re able to charge what you think you’re worth. If the market agrees and employers meet your price, you often make substantially more than you do working traditionally. The better rate of pay delivers greater dividends if you freelance full time. Without overtime limits and basic employment salary caps, the more you work the more you can earn. Each job pays as well as the last. There’s no employer worrying about personnel budgets. The freelancer simply collects their pay and pockets what they earn.
3. Feed Your Creative Impulses
- Get Creative! – One of the best reasons for freelancing is to scratch your creative itch. Working in traditional jobs leaves little room for developing your skills. With freelancing you get to do the work you love. You’re free to choose projects you admire and enjoy. The only limitations are the number of jobs you find and the level of skill you possess. It’s not always easy, and sometimes you work very hard to find the right projects. The pay off is extraordinary, however, if you can find a steady flow of work.
- Gain New Skills And Meet New People – Becoming a freelancer is like living in an alternate universe. Things might look the same, but your experiences feel very different. You’ll gain new skills because you have the freedom to explore. Maybe you always wanted to see if a certain software package performs a task better than another. Perhaps you always wanted to visit a special destination and see what it’s like to work there. You can try these new things when your decisions are you own. Just as importantly, you’ll meet new people. A traditional job may have colleagues who work in your field, but with freelancing you might work beside people you’ve always wanted to meet.
- Experience New Challenges – In freelancing you can push your limits. Let’s face it; life is more exciting when you explore new horizons. Most traditional jobs give you the same work to do day in and day out. With freelancing you can try things you never tried before. Jobs that push the envelope or that make you part of cutting edge developments are there for the taking, if you have the talent and are willing to take the risks.
4. Freelancing Is Part Of The New Normal
Another reason to jump into the freelance world is it’s becoming more and more the way jobs are done. Contract employees are more prevalent than permanent workers in some industries. Businesses make a habit of hiring the people they need for a set of tasks, then letting them go when there’s no longer any work for them. If you’re already in the habit of juggling schedules and setting your own pace you can pick up more jobs in this newly structured market.
5. Freelancing Can Lead To Business Opportunities
Some entrepreneurs use freelancing as a springboard to start a new business. The contacts and networking they develop while freelancing become a structure for a brand new company. Entrepreneurship brings greater prosperity along with greater risks and responsibility. The freelance world often prepares you for that pressure, however. Making your own decisions and living with the consequences is how freelancers thrive. Starting a business may just be the next logical step.