Yes, respect is what freelance deserves, as opposed to a loose notion of those happy smiling faces that one sees in advertisements. The casually dressed hunks who sit breezily with their laptops, sipping on coffee and making the world of business revolve with ease. Or the made up mothers armed with their kid sitting idly on their laps as they smile with straight unruffled hair to complete their online tasks. Alright, please believe me when I say this is not true, rather it holds the same essence of truth as the forlorn picture of a haggard guy carrying a suitcase and returning home in need of a head massage after a tiring day at work.
So now you want to mop on how hard a full time 9-5 job is? Please stop midway and take a sneak peek into the lives of freelancers. And then my friends, will you pay bouquets of respect at the altar of the freelance edifice.
It is time to break these notions and get some facts straight
First of all, how do you expect to get any work done continuously from home when you have a child strutting about the place? Or when you have the door bell ringing every half hour, the phone ringing every one hour and the jibes of music, gossip or errands being hurled from the adjoining rooms? This is often the true story of how freelancers work. As a freelancer, you need to have this ability to switch on and off and have your brain tuned to be doing different things at the same time. Now this surely merits kudos, a quality that the full timers do not need to flaunt since they have the advantage of being at their desk and well, doing exactly what they are supposed to do – work.
Rush hour – 24*7
Freelancers are not these over smart, disconnected to reality people, who find it beneath them to sit in one place or area all the time. Neither are they some lazy folks who due to lack of finding a suitable job chose to make an excuse of staying at home. In fact, freelancing is slowly becoming a choice for some of the best brains in the industry, mind you, not out of circumstances but out of choice. And the reasons are quite simple.
While freelancing one can plan and schedule in order to accommodate all the activities and commitments that are on the freelancer’s wish list.
- Attending college in the morning, so find a part time freelance job to gain experience,
- Want to pursue a certain degree to help better your expertise, so freelance to pay for the course,
- Want to be independent and busy, then log in when your kid is gone to school and the list can continue.
Freelancers are thus terrific time managers, who work through multiple deadlines that adhere to the tens of different things that are up their sleeves. Full time job doers also have multiple responsibilities but can usually ignore or under perform in these under the garb of not finding enough time to pursue them. This amounts to another brownie point for freelancers who are in fact in many cases working harder than the full timers, but sadly, are made to feel like the ones who are considered free all the time.
Pride and ‘no’ prejudice
Finally, freelancers and especially the women freelancers are constantly fighting this veiled battle of trying to prove something to society but more importantly to their own self. The idea that freelancers exist because what they do for freelancing is only a passion or necessity and not really a job per say makes it, at times, mentally and emotionally stressful for people who take up freelancing as a career choice.
People tend to believe that one should have a stable job and well, then as a hobby or interest, you can freelance. Freelancing is hence often considered as an extra income generating avenue rather than a full time calling. And so about making freelancing, a full time career option? This idea is fast catching up – according to a research by the Oxford Internet Institute there has been a 26% increase from 2016 to 2017 in work that has been sourced from the online marketplaces.
Of course, this is not a conflict between full time or freelance jobs, in fact, for a robust and thriving economy the co-existence of both is essential and desirable, especially in today’s tech savvy times. There are those who enjoy their full time jobs, who love to go to work and learn and interact each day and then there are those who do the same just not confined within office walls and timings.
So dear freelancers, remember what Jonathan Lockwood said once: “Self-respect is not a function of size, age, or wealth. Breathe deep, sing loud and sweet, “I am me, I am unique, I am magnificent.””