I’ve noticed a trend among people who work a 9-5 job, but desire to one-day own their own business:
Scared that if they take the leap into the freelance world, they’re going to end up scraping pennies from under their sofa and lose all the job security they took years to build at their current 9-5.
Today, I’m here to tell you why I think that mindset is a little twisted, and, in my experience, incorrect. Want to be a freelancer or business owner, but feel the heebie jeebies about quitting your “safe” career? Well, I think freelancing can actually be a heck of a lot more secure and profitable. Want to know why? Read on, friend.
Before we begin, I want to say two things:
- Freelancing probably won’t be easy at first. You might struggle for a few months. But who doesn’t struggle for a little while as they’re getting used to a new job? I don’t want to make it sound like becoming a successful freelancer is a piece of cake (Pineapple Upside-Down, if you’re taking orders), but you just have to get over the hump.
- If you have a 9-5 that you love, then this post isn’t designed for you. I’m not here to say that everyone should jump ship and start their own business. That…would be madness. But if you feel stuck or bored in your current line of work and yearn to start your own biz, then this post is totally for you, yo.
Cool, so now that we’re on the same page, let’s get crack-a-lackin’. Here’s why I think freelancing can bring you more job security and income than your current career.
1. You create your own ceiling.
This is one of my favorite aspects of freelancing. One of my Strengthsfinder strengths is “Maximizer,” meaning I’m always trying to push my own limits. As a freelancer, there are no limits. At other jobs I’ve worked at, I was glued to the positions I held, even if I felt like I had more potential or was bored with the work I was given. You have to climb up the ladder slowly, and by the time you get to higher positions, you may realize you don’t even like your job or company and have to start nearly from scratch.
With freelancing, you have the power and autonomy to change anything that doesn’t fit your vision. This also creates the potential to earn more money, since you’re in control of how you earn your income. Nowadays, I earn 3-4 times as much each month as I did at any of the other jobs I held previously.
2. What kind of security do you really have?
How do you measure your current job security? By the fact that you get a paycheck every month? Or perhaps because your employer can’t fire you willy nilly? Well, guess what? You’ll have those things as a freelancer, too! Yes, it will take hard work. But (hopefully) it will be work you freakin’ love, so you won’t feel burdened by putting in the extra time when you’re first starting out.
Another thing? I’ve found that being a freelancer has more job security than the other jobs I’ve held. Why? I have a constant flow of clients and I’m always getting new inquiries from other people who would like to work together. I’m not relying on another boss or business to keep me afloat. Many people seem to have the idea that being a freelancer means you’re scraping for work. Unless you’re in the early stages, I haven’t found that to be the case at all. Once you put in the time and build your clientele, it’s likely that you will create a sustainable business that will be around for the long haul.
3. Location independent.
Many freelance jobs are location independent, meaning you can work anywhere in the world — from as close as your local coffee shop to as far as another continent! In fact, I started my business while I was living in Japan. Let’s take a scenario: your partner needs to move for her or his job. At your current job, would that make you unemployed? Would it cause a strain in your relationship with your partner? With freelancing, you rarely have those worries, because location often isn’t very important. In this example, freelancing is much more secure because you’d never be out of a job if you needed to move.