This is a question that anyone who has considered to work from home is asking themselves.
When starting something new there is always a risk involved. Starting a company, moving to another job, making new partnerships, going self-employed has a part of risk and the outcome is uncertain.
The last thing you want to do is to get yourself in a situation where you can’t pay your bills and put considerable stress on your family. Each individual is different, but can you really function well, find new clients and serve existing clients well while under stress?
This being said, the fear of failure should not stop you to pursue your ambitions and analyzing the situation you currently are in can help you answer the question of leaving or keeping your job.
There are two ways you can freelance: part time and full time.
Freelancing Part Time
Freelancing online with UpWork or Fiverr is perfectly compatible with part-time work. How many people are doing two or three jobs they have to go to to make ends meet? Freelancing online can facilitate this and bring a second income working from the comfort of your home at hours you choose.
In your busy schedule, a day job is already taking 8 hours of your time without counting commute time, and altogether it can reach 10 hours. You need 8 hours of sleep every day and what you have left is another 6 hours.
So, when can you find the extra time to work online?
Usually, people go to bed at any time in the evening, but get up at the same time in the morning. It seems that it’s more difficult to be disciplined for bed time. A solution is to schedule your bed time the same every day, so you can make time for freelancing.
Let’s say you go to bed now at 10 p.m. every day and get up at 6 a.m. You can now schedule 2 hours of work from the time you get home and your bed time. You can work from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. and still have one hour to watch a TV episode if you wish to before bed.
That’s 10 hours per week and 40 hours per month you can do without too much effort. Another solution is to get up an hour earlier and freelance one hour before going to your day job. It’s all a question of habit and getting enough sleep.
If you want to work on weekends without too much pressure you still can add 5-10 hours of freelancing per week to bring your total freelance hours to 80 hours per month.
Freelancing part-time can help you get started with peace of mind that you don’t risk your family’s well-being and help you transition to full-time freelancing.
Freelancing Full Time
If you have enough resources to live on while building your Freelancing business, going full time is ideal because you can concentrate on finding new clients and serving existing clients well, so you can get more work from them.
If you have a spouse with a fixed income, this might be a chance for you to start full time. If you have been laid off with compensation, this might be a good time to go full time. You may also have the possibility to take a one year sabbatical leave from your day job to minimize your risks.
Working full time from home is a dream for most people, but actually doing it effectively demands a lot of discipline. If you are constantly distracted and tempted to land on the sofa watching TV or playing video games, it might be a good idea to completely separate your work area from you living space.
Before you go full-time freelancing and quit your job, these are a few questions you can ask yourself:
- Can you finance your business?
Working from home still needs you to invest in office equipment like a desk, a good chair, a computer, printer, a cabinet, a fast Internet connection… If you already have them, that’s already a good start.
- Can you support yourself?
When starting freelancing, the income you will have during several months might be or probably will be much inferior than what you got at your day job. You have to think of what budget you need monthly and how to make it for the difference.
- Can you afford unforeseen costs?
You may have a computer part to replace, a new printer to buy, ink and paper to buy, pay for Gigs on Fiverr or hire another UpWork freelancer to design your logo, website header and so on… You car may even need repair or your mother in law arrive unexpectedly!
- Can you be a one man’s show?
In your day job you might have only one role to perform, when freelancing you will have to do more than the actual job for your clients. This can be marketing yourself, answering phone calls, sending-replying to emails, doing your accounting and secretarial work.
- Do you have the skills?
This is the most important question to ask yourself. Do you have the skills to provide services to clients and the skill to run a business online? You may not have all the skills yet to run your online business, but you can learn and outsource when necessary.
I hope that this is helpful for you and that you will be able to make a better decision about leaving or keeping your day job.
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