If you’ve read my About Me page you’ll know I indeed quit my job to become a freelance writer instead – and I’ve never regretted the decision.
Not even when the initial euphoria and smugness of not having to get up early and drag myself into the office wore off.
Not even when it suddenly dawned on me that my working day, my income, my tax bill, my financial future – and everything else – was all down to just one person:
Wow. That’s a lot of responsibility.
But I’ve always relished the fact it’s also given me lots of other things; a sense of purpose (finally), courage, confidence and – above all else – freedom.
I like freedom. I really, really like freedom.
So no, I’ve never regretted my decision to become a freelance writer. In fact, I think it’s the best decision I’ve ever made and actively encourage you to make the same one.
Here are some simple truths to help you do just that…
If you want to become a freelance writer you can
You don’t have to wait around for anybody to give you a break. You don’t have to get your first masterpiece published in the national press, or for the latest and greatest blog to pick up something you wrote and offer you paid work. You can quit your job and become a freelance writer by carving out your own path.
As I wrote in my post Can You Afford to go Freelancing Full-Time?, the world is different to how it used to be. How you can earn a living has irrevocably changed since before the turn of the new century. The traditional method of going to a designated place each and every day while being drip-fed a salary is no longer necessary.
Well that’s not strictly speaking true; it is necessary for the larger economy as a whole. If absolutely everybody quit their jobs tomorrow we might have a small problem on our hands as a global community – but it isn’t necessary for the intrepid individual who wants to pave their own way.
In other words, it isn’t necessary for you.
Don’t get too comfortable – you’ll need to support yourself while you become a freelance writer
I’m not saying it’s not hard work. I’m not saying you might need a bit of savings in the early days – of course it will take a while to build up enough to live on. It took a while to build up what you live on now didn’t it? And is it enough?
The surprising thing is, when you decide to become a freelance writer and work hard at it, you can build up a healthy living relatively quickly. You can get paid more than once a month – or more than once a week if you like – and if you need a bit of extra money you can just work a bit harder (or smarter – it’s up to you).
Making your own money to meet all your financial commitments isn’t easy, but making your own money on the side and then building it into something bigger and better is definitely achievable. Sometimes the attainability of this goal is either overcomplicated or overlooked, and the temptation is just to give up and be like everybody else.
But where’s the fun in that? Where’s the freedom? Where’s the challenge, and where’s the creative spirit?
When you become a freelance writer the possibilities are endless
So why isn’t everyone doing it? Because some people place other things higher up on their list of priorities. Things like social status, security and predictability to name a few. And that’s fine too. That’s their choice – as I said, if absolutely everybody were to become a freelance writer it would be disastrous (and perhaps lose its appeal anyway!).
All I’m saying is that different people value different things. Which makes sense when you think about it; the world is made up of wildly different individuals so it stands to reason we might not all hold exactly the same values as each other.
For instance, I value above all things, including especially security and social status, something I’ve already mentioned: freedom.
Freedom in all senses – personal, financial; everything.
The trick is to find out what you – that’s you, not everybody else you work, sleep and hang out with – hold as your most important personal and professional value and make it your number one priority.
Then you work towards that priority every single day.
Want more? Check out these ridiculously useful resources for freelance writers.
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