The freelance life isn’t all piña coladas in the sunshine. And the fact that it isn’t has nothing to do with the fact that I don’t drink piña coladas.
I’ve covered the unglamorous aspects of freelancing before, in posts like this one. I can assure you that this difficult and scary side of freelancing is all too real, and I’m sure I’ll write many more posts on the topic in the future.
However, there are also many perks to the freelance life, and it can be easy to take these positives for granted when they’re part of your day-to-day reality. I realised recently that this was something I needed to be careful to avoid doing, so here’s a happy post outlining some of the positives I enjoy as a freelance copywriter, all of which I’m incredibly grateful for!
I Choose When I Work
This one is the biggest plus to working the freelance life. With enough forward planning, I can plan work around my life, and not the other way around. This means that if I want to go away for a weekend, I can work extra hours beforehand, or simply book in fewer jobs.
In the last couple of months, my flexible work schedule has allowed me to take a friend snorkelling at Sea World on her birthday (which was a Thursday), spend a week seeing the sights of Queensland with friends who were visiting from Tassie, take a long weekend away at Byron Bay, and be at my friend’s son’s seventh birthday party. This is a pretty big perk, and one I try to take advantage of as much as possible. Not gonna lie – this aspect of freelancing is awesome.
I Choose Who I Work With (with whom I work, for you grammar warriors)
This is another big one, although during the scary times when work is quiet and I need the money (which thankfully doesn’t happen very often), it doesn’t apply. If I take on a client who turns out to be the client from hell, I can drop them. Sure, this might occasionally involve a financial sacrifice, but it’s usually worth it. And I can do that because no one is making me work with the client. I choose. And being able to exercise agency and autonomy (the ability and the power to choose) makes me happy – not gonna complain about that!
I Choose My Own Hours
Closely related to the first perk, this one deserves a category of its own. In addition to choosing which days I work, I can also choose my hours. That means that if I want some extra money, I can take on an extra job and work nights. And when I have kids, I’ll be able to cut down my hours, and work around their nap times or school hours. You can’t get more family-friendly than that. So this is a great benefit, and one which I haven’t even explored the full potential of yet, so there are exciting times ahead.
I Can Listen to Loud Music While I Work
This one doesn’t always apply, but when my house-mates are out and I need music to help me access the well of creativity within, I can turn on my sweet set of speakers and let the beats pulse. And that’s just plain brilliant.
I Can Work in Complete Silence
Ok, it might seem a little silly that this one follows “I can listen to loud music while I work”, but bear with me. I’m one of those weird people that can work in all sorts of conditions, but I will often have a preferred condition – but my preferance can change daily. So although I can work while singing along to the Frozen soundtrack playing on full volume, I can also work in an environment almost completely void of sound. Neither of these are really possible in a busy office, yet I often find that one or the other is necessary for me to work effectively. So that’s a real bonus.
I Can Work Wherever I Want (Within Reason)
My work is not tied to a specific office. Sure, I do the vast majority of my work from my desk in my home in Brisbane, but I’ve also worked at the park, in cafes and libraries, at my friends’ homes across Queensland, and even at my parents’ home in Hobart. If I ever want to (and before I’m 30), I could apply for a Commonwealth youth visa and work in the UK, Canada, or some other lovely Commonwealth country. Like many of the other perks of life as a freelance copywriter, this one is about flexibility. And flexibility is a beautiful thing.
I Can Wear What I Want When Working
I can’t believe I left this point out when I first wrote this, but it’s a big one, so I’m slotting it in now. Number 7 – I can wear what I want when working. So yes, I’ve worked for a few hours in the morning in my PJs, and I’ve even waded through work emails in my swimmers after a day at the beach. Because I started my business within a year of finishing uni, I’ve never had to fill my wardrobe with corporate outfits. And when your wardrobe isn’t full of corporate wear, it’s hard not to be cheerful.
Yep, That’s Right – I Don’t Actually Hate My Life
So there you have it – a few of the perks of freelancing. If you treat it with the professionalism and commitment that you would regular employment, it can be a flexible lifestyle rather than a job.
Over to you.
Are you a freelancer? What’s a perk you enjoy? For the non-freelancers, which perk appeals to you the most? Leave a comment letting me know, or share your other thoughts about this post. I look forward to learning what you have to say!