Let me admit something to you guys; I hate using the word ‘freelance’ to describe anything I do. I’m not even sure why! I think a tiny part of me think the word sounds pompous, and much more ‘professional’ than I ever feel. Maybe that’s impostor syndrome kicking in? Who knows!
However I needed a pithy title for this post, so I had to begrudgingly use the word ‘freelance’; but let’s be clear here guys okay? I’m just a hopeless sod who flounders along and sometimes gets lucky. That’s it. Okay. Glad we’ve sorted that.
Anyway, today I thought I’d chat about the highs and lows of this thing I call a job, to give you a sneak peek into the madness that is my daily life.
Those awesome best bits –
Being your own boss – Making your own rules sounds absolutely amazing doesn’t it? Hey, you can sleep in, turn up to work (aka the desk five foot away) in your pjs and never have to plaster a smile on when you’re having a bad day. Brilliant! And it is, it really is. I do appreciate being able to have a mandatory ‘Netflix hour’ and getting my Criminal Minds fix.
Chasing your dreams – There’s nothing quite like knowing you are carving your own path in the world, and trying something purely for the passion you have for it. Whether it’s successful or not is a whole other issue; but who cares? You’re trying! That’s pretty ace.
Feeling accomplished – I like being able to look back on each little success I have, and feeling proud of myself is something relatively new and wonderful for me to be honest. This is the girl who only did okay at school, then chose a college course that convinced my parents I’d be unemployed forever, then dropped out of Uni, and then bounced around retail jobs for a few years. So it’s absolutely amazing to be able to now show people I’m doing something that makes me happy, and it’s paying off! (Most of the time..)
Changes in routine – Working for myself means I don’t have to plan ahead, beg a boss for time off for events, try to schedule doctors appointments, I won’t clash with my friends schedules and I also won’t get bogged down in doing the same thing everyday. I can change my routine, take on new projects and I can grow in new ways. I think this is one of the greatest highlights, as I get bored easily!
Let’s get real; It’s DAMN HARD –
Having to budget constantly – No surprise here, but since I don’t have a guaranteed wage each month, I have to constantly plan ahead and budget for every little thing. I might have a fantastic week and make double what I usually would – but I can’t enjoy it, I have to save it and put it away. After all, next week might be the worst week yet. It’s kind of scary really, but you have to embrace the fear. I also have to use finance options for some things, like my laptop. I couldn’t afford to buy one outright so a finance option has helped me massively. I was discussing this when MotorFinance4U* got in touch; a car finance company who challenged me to create this list of pros and cons for crazy freelance life! I absolutely know that Gary and I will be getting a loan for a car this way when we move to Plymouth in a few months; and I think it can be incredibly helpful.
No social life – You might not particularly love your coworkers, and so you’ll probably think you wouldn’t miss them at all. I get it, I only ever had like ONE job where I loved my work mates and genuinely loved spending time with them. That can be rare! But the thing is, working at home is so lonely sometimes. I don’t get the bus to work, I don’t chat to colleagues, I won’t get any Christmas work night out this year! I have really noticed how I have to actively make an effort to see friends and family and make time specifically for social activities, or I get a bit stir crazy!
No perks – This whole ‘freelance’ thing means I don’t get any bonuses, I totally rely on the kindness of friends/family/stranger to support me, there’s no sick pay, no one else to take over for me if something important comes up, and no discounts at my place of work! Pfft.
Responsibility – You have no idea how much I miss slagging off the boss. But now the boss is me. I’m not about to do that am I? Having to take all responsibility and blame and not being able to rely on anyone else can be exhausting to be honest!
I hope any of you attending work Christmas events will think of me! Haha 🙂