Have you ever dreamed about your own business, a space where you do the work you love and call all the shots? Or are you someone currently at a job where you think your skills are not being utilized completely? Are you an editor who seems to be perpetually stuck writing lifestyle pieces or a consultant stuck in a sales job? Are you someone who likes your job and your company, but wishes you could do more, be more?
Then freelancing is for you.
In today’s economy, most people look at freelancing with a big dose of hesitation. People, for some reason, still cling to the dream of finding a recession-free job, only to realize that no matter how recession-free something is, it will always be affected by the economic market. People also prefer to have job security and a steady paycheck, not to mention benefits, and are unwilling to sacrifice those for a career that they are passionate about. However, recent trends have shown that freelancing, whether as a jumping point to your own business someday or an outlet for your passion, can be a good thing.
Freelancing online today has become relatively easy in terms of access. Most knowledge-based work only requires you and your client to have an internet connection to get a project started. Add to this the fact that more and more resources have become online for a variety of work, and freelancing online seems like a much easier proposition now than it was before.
So why not freelance online? Here are a couple of reasons why you should freelance online, even when you have a full-time job.
We all know that the economy is not stable. One of the downsides of having multiple powerful national players in the global economy is that it can tank at any time and leave a lot of people in a difficult position. The unpredictability of today’s current economic climate, in concurrence with the fact that it is getting harder and harder to come by jobs that actually fit one’s capabilities, makes freelancing an excellent option.
The biggest benefit to freelancing while working full-time is the fact that even if something happens to either one of the activities, the other provides a safety net. If you’ve been doing freelance work for a year and don’t see it paying too many dividends, you can quit because your full-time job will provide you with enough economic stability. On the flip side, if you get laid off for any reason, you have an established freelance project/s that you can turn your efforts to and trust it to get you through the hard times.
The job market today is not pretty. Every year, there are hundreds or thousands of graduates who emerge from college and usually find jobs where they are severely under-employed. It’s come to the point where people who hate their jobs often stick on because there are no other options available or the options available cannot fulfill their financial needs.
In such a climate, it can be daunting to give up job security to start a freelancing business that may or may not take off. Freelancing on the side gives you that security and the opportunity to figure out how best to make your freelancing business work. If you have a bad couple of months, it’s fine, because you have your full-time job. Your job will give you the space you need to thoroughly feel out your freelance projects and really see whether it will work for you, part-time or full-time, without exposing you to the dangers of today’s job market.
Learning New Skills
The old adage that you get better at things you practice is tried, tested and very true. Freelancing while having a full-time job allows you to practice the skills that you want to practice and at the same time allows you to follow your dreams and passion.
Freelance work essentially allows you to work on whatever your passion is, and start becoming an expert at it. Getting paid for your efforts adds a significant monetary incentive to all that you do and adds seriousness to the skills you develop. On the other hand, freelancing also helps you in developing new skills. As a freelancer, you may need to learn how to develop your own business plan or manage your books to keep your work running smoothly. These are great skills that always add value to your resume. Lastly, when you work as a freelancer while also working in a full-time job, you’re consistently developing or learning new skills. These skills may not be very interesting to you, but they will always come in handy somewhere along the line. Freelancing while working full-time thus allows you to learn a lot of new skills.
Earning Extra Money
Earning extra money is perhaps the first draw to any freelancing work while working full-time, as it should be. The fact that you can do an activity that satisfies your career aspirations or passions while helping you earn more is the best reason to do freelance work.
If you’re freelancing with the idea of eventually making it your full-time job, then the first couple of months or years freelancing on the side with a full-time job can make a big difference. With your full-time job taking care of your immediate living expenses, any money that you make from a freelance project can be saved and put aside, either as a nest egg or as starting capital for your business when you finally pursue it full-time. Freelancing may be hard work, but it is also good practice for your business a few years down the line, and the money that you make from it is better than any business loan you may need.
If you’re freelancing to channel your passions productively and not necessarily as a full-time job, then freelancing can be a great way to build a little nest egg for yourself and those you support. The money from freelancing can go into multiple avenues—investments, college funds, retirement funds, mortgage payments—that can help ease the financial responsibilities you have.
Freelancing while holding a full-time job is indisputably tough, but the payoffs in doing so are always going to reward all your efforts, and then some. Look into freelance opportunities today, and create a different and better future for yourself.