And one common misconception with freelancing is that it’s feast or famine. That’s just not true.
Last month I made $2,700 from freelancing and I worked on freelance projects for about 20-30 hours a week. If we average that out it equates to $27 per hour. My goal is to bring in at least $30 an hour and I think I’ll be at that number in just a couple of months.
However, even if I stay at $27 an hour that is still more than double what I made at my last day job!
And if I wanted to do freelance work for 40+ hours every week I could easily get there. (I just don’t want to. I’d rather be flexible and have some time for my own projects.)
Anyway I’m getting beside myself here. The point of this post isn’t to calculate my hourly wage it’s just a reminder that freelancing is not feast or famine as long as you do it right!
Here’s what you need to do to get over that feast or famine mentality.
You Have to Find Recurring Income
The two clients that I work with right now have been with me for more than a year. (One of them might be going on two years.)
When I started working for them they were both providing me consistent weekly work it just wasn’t a whole lot. With time I was able to take on more and more work from these two until they filled up my freelance schedule.
You’ve got to go for recurring revenue. Even if it’s only $40 a week at first it can eventually turn into something much better.
We all start somewhere. I started by locking in several weekly and monthly writing jobs. Even though I was receiving smaller payments from 10+ clients the income was still recurring. I didn’t have to worry about constantly looking for new gigs.
Realize that Freelancing is More Stable Than a Day Job
A lot of people don’t like the “instability” of freelancing. Say what?
Once you learn how to find jobs freelancing is much more stable than a day job. I am one hundred percent confident in my ability to find jobs. And after a little while you can be too.
Finding your first job is the toughest. Then you have to play around to really figure out what you’re good at and what you want to do. (Like my freelancing turned virtual assistant business.) That might take you a year. (That’s about how long it took me.) But after that your confidence grows and your job hunting skills grow too.
Not to mention the fact that almost every single business in the world is wanting to develop an online presence! I promise – there are no shortage of online jobs if you take the time to build up your reputation and look in the right places.
*I definitely don’t recommend you quit your day job to build up a freelance business if you have no experience. Start on the side, build up clients, and save a boat load of money before you do that.
You Have to Relearn Budgeting
Another fear is being paid in lump sums verses being paid weekly or biweekly. If you start by freelancing on the side you can completely avoid this by building up a “salary fund.”
Save all of your side income until it equates to a couple months of regular day job take home pay. Then you can pay yourself whatever weekly or biweekly amount you like and just shovel all freelance payments back to the salary fund.
You do need to account for taxes. So you’re really going to have bring in more freelancing than you would at your day job since you’re now paying your own taxes. Unfortunately when you’re self-employed (or even side hustling) you’re responsible for paying your portion of FICA taxes plus what your employer would pay. That’s 15.3%, plus federal income taxes, plus state income taxes!
Freelancing is Not Feast of Famine
When I first started trying to work online freelancing did feel like feast or famine. That’s because I took whatever low paying work came my way and was lost when it came to finding decent jobs. I had very little confidence in my abilities. I don’t want you to make that mistake!
It might feel like freelancing is feast or famine for you for a little while too. But I promise, if you stick with something you’ll eventually find what works for you and what doesn’t. Before you know it the feast of famine mentality will never enter your mind ever again.
Now that I’ve been doing this a little while I realize that my income truly is in my hands. If I want to make more money freelancing I need to work more – exactly how it was with a day job. Only this time I get paid a lot better and don’t have to worry about being laid off!