You’re working a 9-5 job for quite some time now. Because you wanted to earn more and make ends meet, you took up to a part-time remote job.
Through hard and smart work, you were able to make more than enough from your side hustle. In fact, you see the potential of making more money if you turn your part-time gig into a full blown business.
However, you are unsure of what to do. You have doubts on whether jumping into the freelance fire is the best thing for you. Doing so feels so right and wrong at the same time.
I’m sure a lot of full-timers dabbling in freelance work have felt the same way at one point or another. While some pulled the trigger by quitting their day jobs and become full-fledged freelancers, there’s still something that’s holding you back.
In this post, I will try my best to help you decide whether or not to become a full-time freelance once and for all.
Below are factors that you need to consider when making such a life-changing decision.
“I haven’t saved enough money to make the transition.”
Probably the most common reason why you haven’t made the jump to freelancing is not having enough saved in the bank.
However, there are solutions to counter this argument.
Before becoming a freelancer for good, secure a part-time gig with a client to complement your income from your full-time job. Save the money you got from your client to help you make a smooth transition.
This approach may take some time because the salary you’re getting from the client may not be as high. You can try finding more freelance clients to expedite building your savings, although working for multiple clients at the same time on top of your full-time job is overkill.
Another approach you can take is asking a personal loan from a bank. This works best if you have a friend working at a bank so he or she can oversee your loan application. If not the bank, then you can apply for an SSS loan to get you started. The loan will be paid in increments, so you can plan your budget and pay regularly to avoid incurring an interest.
Also, once you have left your company, you should receive your backpay after your papers have been cleared. You can put the money in your savings account so you have something you can spend on a rainy day.
“Full-time jobs are much stabler.”
You are acutely aware of the “feast and famine” lifestyle that freelancers lead. At one point in your freelancing life, you have lots of clients begging to work with you. In a moment’s notice, the same clients will bolt to find another freelancer for their needs.
It’s a cutthroat industry that requires you to consistently be on your toes so you can get the best jobs available and hope that your client sticks with you.
Therefore, freelancing is believed to provide a very erratic foundation for your professional growth.
However, I feel that the problem stems with complacency rather than stability.
It is possible to find clients who plan on doing business with you in the long run. The real challenge is by giving them a reason to stay with you every single day. This means that you need to be not only proficient at what you do for your clients but also provide extra value in what you do.
In my experience at working in an office, it is easy to phone in your job day in and out simply. You can even pull your weight around because you feel secure enough that you won’t be fired.
That may be true in some cases, but is this all there is to work? Are you happy with just doing enough that you don’t want to challenge yourself and do more?
Freelancing is an enormous undertaking, but the rewards are too lucrative to pass up. Reaping the benefits of freelancing requires you to put in the work to establish the foundation of a successful career. But it simply does not mean that freelancing is unstable.
“I’m still waiting for the right time.”
When is the right time, exactly?
Let’s say you have a good thing going for you at your full-time job. At the same time, your freelance gig is booming, and there’s potential for more professional growth. While the pull from the other side grows stronger by the day, you cannot leave your full-time job on a whim because you are happy with it.
Even if the forecast on your freelancing career points to a higher earning potential, it remains to be seen if the forecast is indeed accurate. Until then, you’re either stuck doing both or let go of your freelancing business to focus on a much more proven job.
This is a very common situation that most professionals encounter. Unfortunately, there is no simple solution to this.
Does the right time mean that you’ll wait before your full-time job goes under before you focus on your freelance career for good? But what if it’s too late? What if your office job goes wrong the same time your freelance career turns for the worst?
The way I see it, you need to commit to either one now. Make a decision and make it work. If you choose your office work, then see to it that you make the most out of your opportunity. The same goes if you decide to pursue your freelancing job on a full-time basis.
“I can do both at the same time.”
This is an excellent argument. If you can find the time to do your full-time job and freelancing gigs without compromising on quality and your health, then more power to you! Having your full-time job as a fallback if your freelancing career comes to a dry spell is a logical way to keep funds coming.
However, my main gripe with this reasoning is you are running the risk of spreading yourself thin.
Let’s say you’ve been taking lots of freelance gigs because your full-time job doesn’t have anything for you to do in the foreseeable future. However, while swamped with your side hustle, your full-time boss suddenly assigns projects for you to complete immediately.
At this point, you will be left scrambling for ways to deliver all the work at the same time. Even if you have systems in place to control situations like these, you are still torn between doing both jobs at optimum levels. You can’t fully concentrate on your full-time job because your freelancing gigs regularly rear their ugly heads at the back of your mind.
This brings me to my other point which I will share in the form of questions:
Why do both things at 50% when you can do one thing at 100%?
Why be a jack of all trades and a master of none?
Why earn enough working as a freelancer and a full-time employee at the same thing if you can make more give your 100% by doing just one job?
Greatness can be achieved if you put your mind on doing a single thing. Having thoughts that do not fit in your life’s goal only prevent from you being the person you ought to be.
You need to be in control of what will happen in your life, and the control starts once you decide to stay as a full-time or a freelancer. (Click Here to Tweet!)
Transitioning from a full-time job to a freelancing career may be the biggest decision you will ever make in your professional life. While I have successfully made the jump as a freelancer years ago, I tried my best to be as partial as possible in this post. My experiences may not apply to some of you, which is why I presented different scenarios to help illustrate the points I’ve made above.
However, if there’s one thing that you should pick up from this post, you should make a decision now. Often, delaying the inevitable only makes the entire process excruciating for you. Waiting for something to ultimately compel you to a decision is not the smartest way to approach your professional career. You need to be in control of what will happen in your life, and the control starts once you decide to stay as a full-time or a freelancer.