Many people decide based on their emotions and not on what is logical or what is practical. And most of these decisions are done in haste which almost always ends in frustration. It's good to be enthusiastic but it's better to be wise. In freelancing, it's the same way. Take things with caution and decide when there is full understanding of the matter. And one of the best way of getting a good grasp at things alien to you is getting some advice from those “who've been there, done that”. As one bible passage says, “there is safety in the counsel of many”. So let me suggest these six people to talk to before you make your life-changing decision to be a full time freelancer.
Before somebody laughs at you when you tell them what you want to do, better have an introspection on where you're at, where you wanna be and what you want to achieve. I guess what I'm saying is simply, convince yourself that you are really up to the challenge. Are you ready to live an uncertain career that many would-be freelancers dread? Is your family ready for the ride? OK, before I scare you off from turning to what you'd like to be, think on these things. Don't just look at the good side. Open your eyes to the consequences as well, because there are also rough edges in this line of profession.
An Authority in Your Field
We all have people we look up to in terms of our standards of success. Most often, these are the people who actually inspired us, challenged us or made us feel that we can do even the impossible things! If you do have one in mind, it won't hurt if you will get his opinion or simply understand how he's done things which eventually made him successful. It well help you boost your confidence and at the same time, help you create a similar pattern of success if you will not waver. You may not be able to duplicate exactly the success that they've made, but the lessons you will learn from them will give you a positive perspective on how to move one day at a time.
Your Current Employer
Many people try to scape their frustrations at their 9-5 jobs and turn to freelancing. Will you leave because you did not get the promotion you expected, the raise was not high enough, or are you simply uncomfortable with your boss. All these frustrations add up. But if you think that shifting to a freelance job will solve your 9-5 woes, think again.
Sometimes it's really just a matter of asking, waiting and delivering. It's all about loving what you do. If you love your job right now but you can't seem to jibe with your employer's whims then it's a good thing to confront the issue. Give a shot on possible resolutions. And once all options have been exhausted, then make the final decision. Your employers may seem terrible but come to think of it, working with other people online doesn't spare you from virtual bullies, conflicts or misunderstandings.
Another issue that's a common reason why people jump ship to freelancing is the pay rates. Although you can literally dictate the price for your service, if you are still starting up, you may not be able to demand, compared to those who have already established their portfolio and have proven their worth and experience.
Before you totally leave your current employer and step into freelancing, make sure that you have a client or company to work with right away. It's like moving to a new house; make sure you have a house to move in before you actually take out all your things or you will end up on the streets. I know it's difficult to assess whether a project will be long term or short term, but it would be safe if you can also discuss the duration.
Your Financial Adviser
I don't think many of you have a financial adviser. But basically its worth discussing about your financial status with the people or person who have a stake if you turn into a millionaire (that's being positive okay!).
Before I started with my freelancing, I had to apply for a loan to purchase some equipments. I bought a new computer, applied for my high speed internet, got me a hosting account, bought my first domain. And I believe that's one of the best venture I've made in terms of using my credit. I said this because people use their credit for so many unnecessary things, but all tends to waste and things that easily depreciates in value. When I decided to apply for the loan, I kept in mind that this will not just be another cash out of my pocket but an investment that will pay me some returns.
In all these financial issues, I made sure that my wife is aware. We laid out our plans and options. We had a plan B in place. I also made sure that the institution where I loaned are aware of the risk I'm taking. But after those crunch times, I'm proud to say that we are debt free, all paid by my online freelance jobs.
Whatever happens to your plan, whether it prospers or fails, the only true people that you can turn to with confidence is your family. Well at least that's true for my situation.
My wife have been very supportive of this venture and has often given me not only the boost to keep on but has shared brilliant ideas that I could not have thought if I was only doing it on my own and just kept her in the backseat. All along she was beside me. I opened up the idea, we prayed for it, visualized it, wrote our goal on paper. And it's been an amazing experience that has truly strengthened us in many ways.
Whatever those other people said to you, the final decision still rest on what you will choose to do. It's your choice to make. The people you have talked to can only share their two cents of advice. They can offer you a different perspective on the matter, but you will have to look at it yourself and find out which one works and which doesn't. They will not coerce you into something. Whatever happens, the responsibility still hangs on your shoulder.