For the last few years, I’ve struggled with the concept of full time employment versus working as a freelancer. In my experience, I feel most comfortable knowing I have a steady paycheck coming in to sustain my lifestyle and save for my future. But on the other hand, I definitely enjoy the perks of working from home, managing my own schedule and being selective with the clients I work with.
This struggle came to a head a few months ago while job hunting in preparation of my contract job ending. Even though I was getting some traction with Stylishly Made, I knew that I needed a full time job to back me up. After four torturous months of applying and interviewing for jobs, I was finally offered a full time position in December 2016 (#bestchristmasgiftever!). It was definitely a huge weight off of my shoulders, but it also forced me to question how I would handle my full time responsibilities and take on new freelance clients. I knew for sure that I didn’t want to stop freelancing, but I also knew that I had to set some boundaries for myself.
I work as a Marketing Assistant for a commercial real estate firm in Bellevue Monday through Friday. I’m currently commuting from Tacoma five days a week, but thankfully in the next two months, I’ll be moving much closer work. This will not only cut my commute time in half, but I’ll also be able to have more time in the mornings, afternoons and on weekends to handle any freelance duties. I’ve also made the decision to limit myself to only working with one client at a time so I’m not overloading myself and I have time to take of personal things.
At this point, I don’t necessarily prefer one job over the other. They both allow me to fulfill my needs. It’s all about balance and for now, I’m totally happy with the groove that I’m in. But if you’re struggling to decide between full time work employment and freelancing or if you’d like to balance both, here a few questions that should give you a better idea of what you want.
- Is your current work situation fulfilling all of your professional needs?
- Are you able to carve out at least 10-15 hours per week to freelance when you’re not working at your full time job?
- Outside of full time and freelance duties, are you still able to have a personal life to connect with yourself, family and friends?