Life as a Freelancer
This month marks the 5th year of my being a freelancer in a company that I must say I am happy with. I have been freelancing since 2008 and as it is a throwback Thursday, I decided to look back at my freelancer life and how I came to still do this 7 years later.
I was a graduate of BS Biology and then pursued BS Nursing because it was the "in" thing at that time and mother thought that it would be a very lucrative profession, what with she told me it pays $120/hour. Boy did my eyes made ka-ching like a cash register.
The journey towards being a nurse has been fun, but it was not an easy one. Mother passed on to the other side along the way the finances became very hard. My sibling and I are both studying and there was only Father to take care of the falling business. Looking back, I did not know how he managed it all on his own while we were happily spending in the big city, worrying about petty things such as allowances etc.
Come graduation 2008. After reviewing for the nursing boards, taking the exam, and passing it, what's next for me? I need to stop being a burden and try to earn my keep. But those were not so good times anymore. There were a lot of jobless nurses, you have to pay for your training, you have to pay to get that much needed experience if you want to go abroad.
I started Googling for homebased work, work online, and other keywords that will enable me to earn ASAP. I got scammed by PPC sites, until I chanced on a forum that directed me to oDesk.com. By then, I told myself that anything that entails you to pay for something in order to earn is out of the question. Never again.
Checking oDesk, it seems to be a good one because it did not require me to pay for anything. Registration is free. So I ventured into the unknown and landed some writing gigs. Though underpaid, it was better than none. I also got another sort of long-term job that pays the bills with some extra for groceries. I still remember the feeling of receiving your first paycheck - awesome.
I was in Manila then and the rent was just city-high. Business back home wasn't doing good either and I am now the one sending money back home. I did not want to leave the city for the fear of being left behind on what is "new" and the "latest" thing. I have my friends there too. Eventually, tight finances forced me to go back home. That was 2010.
I got a day job when I went home but still worked online - my good employers allowed me. But then I eventually quit the job and finally concentrated working online.
Fast forward today, life is better. It isn't as smooth sailing but it has been better. Freelancing has its perks and downsides. The good thing about it is that you can work at home as long as you have a reliable computer and internet connection. You can work at your own time but believe me when I tell you that you have to be disciplined.
My worry about freelancing before was that I may become stagnant and antisocial for lack of socialization. I guess that's still one of my concerns today that is why I like to travel because it is my way to unwind and have a change of scenery.
The money I earned from freelancing has kept us afloat during the hardest of times. We were also able to put up a small business. For this reason, I am willing to help anyone who wants to learn to work online to teach them how to do it. It has become my way of giving back for the blessings that we have received.
Happy 7th work anniversary to me! Yay!