The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way businesses function, right from work patterns to business investments- they have seen hundreds of adjustments in their work. Changes that many of us predicted would not even happen over decades have instead happened virtually over a few spans of weeks.

While the pandemic has not been a globally positive experience, many people have adapted to the flexible and remote working style as a consequence. As a result, the tendency to switch to freelance work has increased. If you have always wanted to be your own boss and enjoy a perfect work-life balance, then you can choose freelancing as a career.

The growth of freelancing cannot be negated. A report by Payoneer titled ‘Freelancing in 2020: An Abundance of Opportunities’ shows that India registered a 46% increase in freelancers between Q1 and Q2 in 2020 because the country witnessed several job losses between April and June. Further, according to Upwork’s ‘Freelancing in America’ survey, 53% of Gen Z workers freelanced in 2019, making it the highest participation ever.

Ten benefits of freelancing in 2022

Flexibility of work and location

Freelancers have the freedom of a flexible work life, which is a dream for most people. The concept of ‘Monday Blues’ does not exist in freelancing because you have the freedom to set your own working hours. The privilege of a midday nap or taking a day off can be particularly attractive. As long as your work is completed within the deadline, you have complete control over your working pattern. Further, all your work is done digitally over the internet, which means that you can go beyond the challenges of location. You may choose to travel the world while still working and earning a good income. You can choose to work with clients outside of your geographical location.

Increased platforms and clientele

Freelancers have the privilege to choose who they want to work with. With this choice comes the benefit of working with different clients at the same time. As a freelancer, you are not bound to work for one person; you can work for multiple clients and take ownership of their work. This is one of the most important benefits of freelancing as it opens up your ability to work on a variety of projects and offers a unique exposure. This experience is quite different than working in-house for a company. Moreover, there are numerous platforms like Freelancer, Upwork, Fiverr, and others, where you can choose from various options and broaden your horizon, making your work less boring and redundant.

Freedom to follow your passion

One of the biggest draws of freelancing is the freedom it provides- freedom to follow your passion, freedom to choose your work, freedom to make your own schedule, and the freedom to be your own boss. It allows you to make your passion into a strong career. You decide to become a writer, graphic designer, or programmer because you love the work. Since you have control over the work you choose, you put in all your passion and dedication towards that project. You are also free to use your creativity and ideas in the direction of your work. Also, as freelancers, you are never restricted to a particular genre of work. No matter what you do currently, you can always learn new skills and are free to jump to another genre simultaneously.

Control of workload

Apart from living a life free from the cubicle and a 9-to-5 job, choosing to freelance as a career allows you to control your workload. You can work for one or more clients, depending on your availability and needs, and choose to work on projects you are passionate about. When you are allowed to choose the number of projects you want to take at a time, you get to maintain a healthy work-life balance. You can pursue your interest areas and focus on the work you love without any distractions from meetings and zoom calls. And to top that, you can also take a well-deserved rest anytime you want.

Increased earning potential

The earning potential for a freelancer is theoretically unlimited. Unlike traditional jobs, where you have a fixed monthly salary, freelancers can set and negotiate their own work rates. You do not need to wait a year for a salary raise, rather set your rates according to your skill level. You may want to start a little low in the beginning, but when you have built a successful clientele and a strong reputation, you can increase your rates periodically. Your income is parallel to your work. The more hours you commit, the more you work, and the more you get to earn. Freelancing knows no bounds, and you can earn manifold.

Increased demand

The year 2020 saw the rise of numerous small businesses- from bakery to grocery- we witnessed an increasing execution of small businesses. These small businesses are usually bootstrapped and do not have the budget to hire professionals for their work. They resort to freelancers for setting up their business- right from coders to business developers, small businesses have an increased demand for freelancers. They are always on the lookout for flexible talents to run their business, giving you an opportunity to get new clients. In fact, the COVID outbreak has led many multinationals to follow the same approach and look for freelancers for different kinds of work.

Improved skillset

The pandemic has made us all realize the importance of learning new skills. With job losses and salary cuts, one person has been wearing multiple hats- and upskilling has become essential for everyone. With freelancing, you can try your hands on various projects from multiple clients. Each project is sure to bring something new to your skill set and provides you a new learning opportunity. Unlike traditional jobs, freelancing involves continual learning and growth as you tackle a wider variety of projects. Moreover, you can also learn new skills when you get the time and stand a chance to apply them in your work. For instance, a content writer can upskill himself by learning SEO and supplement his content projects with SEO-friendly content.

Job security

As mentioned earlier, freelancers are in great demand these days. As freelancers are self-employed, you do not have to worry about job security. Moreover, as a freelancer, you work with different clients for a certain contract period. You can always look for new clients when your contract is about to get over and secure your earning source. Unlike traditional jobs, where you are vulnerable to receive a pink slip during layoffs, freelancers do not have this job threat and can stay relaxed. Further, many freelancing portals also offer affordable health insurance, life insurance, etc., for a stable future.

Self-management

As a freelancer, you are your own manager and your own boss. You get to choose your work hours, time schedule, workload, clients, dress code, and practically every aspect of your life. Freelancing teaches you self-management, where you need to ensure your clients are happy with the work, follow the necessary deadlines, keep track of budgeting, seek new clients, and manage yourself properly.

Taste of a startup or small business

Freelancing allows you to build your own portfolio and successfully grow your client base. It gives you a small taste of building your own business. You get a chance to experiment and try out different services to understand the work landscape and earning potential. Once you have a precise understanding of the freelance industry, you can also turn to launch your own freelance agency to expand your client base.

Takeaways: Is freelancing good for you?

Ultimately, freelancing is always a personal choice, but you are sure to get a strong dose of motivation to start your career freelance with an understanding of the benefits it holds. If you are an ambitious go-getter motivated to become your own boss and have marketable skills, freelancing as a career can be successful and rewarding.

Wondering how to get started? One of my favorite freelance platforms is Upwork. Whether you are a web developer, content writer, or social media manager, Upwork has everything for each one of us. Check out this fresher’s guide on how to get started on Upwork. With pure passion, dedication, and hard work, you can become a successful freelancer on Upwork and receive significant rewards, both financially and in terms of lifestyle.

Connect with me at vikas@lancerninja.com for any queries. I would be happy to help you! Join the Discord community of like-minded freelancers here.

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