The Precarious Life of a Freelancer

I’ll tell you one thing about freelancers you may or may not know and that is the fact that these are some of the bravest individuals you’ll ever see, anywhere. There’s a lot of uncertainty which comes with the freedom of not having to adhere to a time and work schedule created by someone else, not to mention the difficulty laying down some roots which most freelancers cite as a serious challenge of this chosen lifestyle.

Income Uncertainty

True freelancers are those who bounce around from contract to contract, usually working on unique projects that run for a limited time with each client. This is not to say a steady flow of work from one or two clients disqualifies you as a true freelancer as this is in fact one of the ideals freelancers cite as something through which they could get some stability. So in essence, a freelancer would like to see themselves in a position where they can rather refer to themselves as a remote worker since that addresses the issue of income uncertainty freelancers constantly have to face.

Things however do tend to balance out a bit once you gain some momentum as a freelancer, especially with regards to referrals. Although the paying projects are generally erratic, at some point along this precarious journey you tend to reach a stage where you can predict with relative accuracy how much your earnings are going to be. For example, a web designer would be able to pick up on a general trend that they perhaps get two projects to work with per month from their pool of clients.

Pricing adjustments are then made accordingly so that the income you get is one which you can live on.

Living the freelancer lifestyle

Some freelancers are happy to work from a home office or from something like a shared office space they rent, while most freelancers rather prefer to dive fully into what has emerged as the quintessential freelancer lifestyle. Most freelancers want to experience the life of a freelancer with all that it has to offer, which would then naturally include the freedom of movement. To put it plainly, freelancers want to be able to jump on a plane and fly away to wherever it is they’ve always wanted to visit and when they get there they want to be able to whip out their laptops, connect to the free Wi-Fi and get to work.

The ability to work while traveling is the freelancer’s dream, with the bulk of those freelancers who go on to make this happen reporting it to be so addictive that they’ll exhaust all options before heading back home, typically after running out of money.

It is indeed a rather precarious life, that of a freelancer, but with the right amount of self-discipline and a clear lifestyle goal in one’s head, anyone can make it happen. The transition from a full-time job with a fixed income may pose the biggest challenge, but the rewards awaiting those who eventually make it happen are worth it.