Even though freelancing is increasing in popularity, there is still a range of misconceptions surrounding the work style. From friends who think you’re making easy money to parents that urge you to finally get a real job, it often seems that only your fellow freelancers actually understand your career choice.
Here are 6 common misconceptions about freelancing you should be prepared for once people ask you what you do for a living.
1. Freelancing is for Lazy People
Even though freelancing has many features that make it far more difficult than a traditional job, many people think it’s a solution for lazy people who don’t want to deal with the classic 9 to 5 schedule.
They simply fail to realize that freelancers are like small companies; they’re responsible for things ranging from finance and accounting to public relations and creative work. They’re killer multitaskers and work very hard in order to maintain their flexibility and freedom.
2. Freelancers are Socially Awkward Introverts
Professionals who have full-time jobs often get to meet more people (in person) and therefore may be considered extroverts. Compare this to freelancers, who work on their own and are thought to grow into social hermits over time.
Sure, freelancers lack the co-worker dynamic at their workplace, but this doesn’t mean they’re socially awkward or unable to form meaningful relationships with others. Being a freelancer actually means that you have more freedom to meet new people. Some freelancers even choose to work in shared office spaces.
3. Freelancing is “Easy Money”
Even though some freelancing jobs might earn considerable sums of money, many freelancers cannot count on a steady income and a nice paycheck arriving every month. The truth is, freelancers earn only as much money as the work they put in. In fact, some freelancers have to work for their success for a very long time – they need to wait two or three years before a steady stream of clients pours in.
4. Freelancers Live from Paycheck to Paycheck
Some think that freelancers struggle to find work every month and live from one job to another. But although freelancers don’t get always have the assurance of a regular paycheck, most of them know how to handle their finances and stay on top of their game.
5. Freelancers Have Fewer Career Growth Outlets
This is a serious misconception that still circulates among professionals holding onto their traditional jobs. These people often feel that anyone working outside the traditional working model suffers the same fate and cannot find any outlets for career development. In reality, freelancing offers an unlimited growth outlet – the only limit is your imagination and experience.
6. Freelancing is Stress-Free
This final misconception is something every active freelancer will find outrageous. From dealing with demanding clients and managing their companies to keeping tabs on their finances and planning their activities for the next months or years, freelancers are extremely busy people.
Many people would crumble under the pressure involved in freelancing – one mistake will cost you in not only money, but reputation as well. And that has disastrous consequences in a business where reputation counts for a lot.
Freelancing is becoming an increasingly common career option, so these misconceptions won’t be around forever.
What are your favorite misconceptions about your freelance work?