There has been a huge shift in the way people want to spend their working lives, and it is just Millennials who are encouraging this either. People have moved on from the archaic belief that you go to school, get grades, listen to a careers advisor read off a hymn sheet, and then pick which career you want to have for the next 40 years. People don’t want to do that anymore.
They want more control over their working situations, they want a better work-life balance and they want to be their own boss.
However, we are taught and told surprisingly little about what to expect from life as a self-employed person. Whether that is because it is still a relatively new phenomenon, we are not sure. But there is no recognized education that teaches the self-employed had to succeed or even just survive.
As such, we have compiled a list of advice collected from people who have successfully remained self-employed for long enough to be classed as success stories, and share their two-pennies worth.
Pretend You Are At Work
The majority of self-employed workers have experienced employed life at some stage, so they know what the working conditions and expectations are. Well, you need pretend you are still working under these conditions because you are. We don’t mean be miserable, we mean you should get up at a regular time, have a shower, get out of your pajamas, get dressed and feel like you are at work, pretend you run a successful business. Certain aspects of employment suck, like having to stay until 6 pm even though you finished at 4.30pm. However, other things like punctuality, self-discipline, organization and dress code are important to productivity.
Make Sure You Get Paid
For some reason, most freelancers enjoy getting themselves some new business and then completing the work they won, but they hate chasing up payment. It’s madness. Whether or not you love what you do, getting paid is a big part. So every morning, get up, look in the mirror and say improve financial health three times over. Then chase up those unpaid expenses, keep track of who owes you money and have an organized file of every piece of work you have done and what the arranged cost of you doing that work was. Set aside a day every month, or an afternoon every week, to go through this and chase people.
Learn How To Take A Break
Being self-employed tends to mean you work harder, and that is because you aren’t getting a set salary no matter what effort you put in. No. What you put in is what you will get out, which is why so many self-employed people work seven days a week without even thinking about a break. But you need to. So get into the habit of allowing yourself this. Give yourself at least one day off every week, and allow yourself sick days and go on holiday. You owe it to yourself because a week’s holiday is going to be a lot less costly than a month recovering from burnout.