Friday, October 19, 2012

Simple Financial Lessons From A Freelancer

I've been a freelancer for almost 2 years now. And so far, I never experience the strike of boredom nor the urge to go back to the corporate world. While I am far from being content and stability is a question, I am happy and comfortable of where I am right now.

Being a freelancer is quite different from a 9am-to-6pm employee. Freelancers work entirely at their own time. Nevertheless, that doesn't equate to time-freedom. The only liberty we really have is how we work and where we want to work. Needless to say, like everything else in life, hard-work is necessary.

In less than two years in my freelancing career, I felt I've learned so much than working in the corporate. Not only about the job and the projects I've handled but also about time management and, most importantly, personal finance.

For over a decade, I worked relying on the 15-30 paycheck. When I shifted to a freelance career, I now have the option when, how, and how much I am going to be paid.

I didn't started easy. I have to tell you, it was truly a rough road. But my experience made me better as a freelancer and as an individual.

I've short-listed some financial lessons I've learned as a freelancer:

  • Time is money. Every minute that I spend on unimportant things is literally time wasted.
  • Since time is money, money is indeed valuable because I work hard for it. So, I use and spend it wisely. 
  • My time is precious because I see it with monetary value. Hence, I try to spend my time reasonably.
  • It takes hard-earned money to buy and enjoy delicious meal. Thus, I make sure to finish my food and make sure not to waste it. 
  • I earn more if I work more. The saying "reap what you sow" is indeed true.
  • Well-managed personal finance is very important. The freelance business can be unpredictable sometimes. Having enough savings help me survive at times that there are less projects or no incoming money.
  • Managing your personal finance requires awareness of the money that is coming in and going out.
  • Allot budget for typical monthly expenses (electric bill, water bill, internet bill, phone/communication, etc). It gives you less headache when you received the actual bill.
  • I spend time for resting and spend money for a little pampering or simple enjoyment. A happy and well-rested body and mind is more productive and can work longer.

I live with these lessons by heart. These are something I learned from experience, and I hope you've learned something from them too.

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