Mental blockers and fear of making the jump from full time to contract/freelance

I enjoy my current job - I work with great people, I get to learn new things every day, the pay is decent, and we have flexible hours. But I was furloughed in April and it taught me a few things:

  1. No matter how great I am at my full time job or how many hours I put in, it can disappear in an instant.
  2. I can live on a lot less money than I thought.
  3. My life is dictated by my job. When I was furloughed it was so satisfying to just wake up and live. I really enjoyed having more time

All of this got me thinking I want to make a change: less money in exchange for fewer work hours and more time to just live before I die. I’ve interviewed a few places and find myself really afraid of making this kind of move when it gets right down to it. It goes against everything I’ve learned I should strive for (higher position, more $$, and all the stress and long hours that go with it). Not to mention worrying about health insurance.

My current job is nice as far as jobs go. It’s just too many hours.

Am I crazy for wanting to make this kind of move? Anyone else on here who has made this leap? How did it turn out? Do you regret it or do you wish you’d done it sooner? What are the pitfalls or anything you wish someone had told you before doing it?

Would really appreciate some insight from someone who has been here before. Thanks!

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Hi @kellyhays.

I do not think you are crazy enough. As long as the pay of a part-time job is enough to cover your expenses and save money for emergencies and any future goal you have then I think it is a smart move.

Before people use to work long and crazy hours (which is OK if you have a short term goal that you want to achieve) their entire life until retirement age with the hopes of retiring and travel and do fun stuff. The reality is that by the team a person reaches that age (if it does!) their needs and wants (or energy and health) may have changed drastically.

With this in mind, I think the earlier a person starts truly living life the better it is. So, follow your heart and live your life. :slight_smile:
I

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Hey @kellyhays the truth is, there is nothing like living your life.
The Covid-19 outbreak has thought me a big lesson too. Just as you rightly said,

I was putting virtually 200hrs a month in my last remote job but all that didn’t count and lost the job due to the Corona virus outbreak. I wished I had started my own business earlier.

My advice is that there is nothing like living your life and having your own business. It might be really difficult for new businesses to thrive now, but start thinking of starting something of yours while you are at it.

Hope this helps.

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Thank you. It definitely does! Everyone who has done it says the only thing they regret is not doing it sooner. That really says something.

I appreciate you taking the time to reply!

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Hi Kelly,

I totally get it as probably many do here. It was the same for me in my full time job only that I noticed that only one year after I left the job.

I think you are on the right path.

I am on this path for more than a year yet, thus my insights.

What I did…

  1. Cut down my costs, spending habits, living a more minimalistic lifestyle (well that actually took years)
  2. Took time off my job, fully took time off. For me this was necessary and took many months. There was a lot of fear I had to overcome, i.e. money, status, career, being judged, doubts, etc.
  3. Tried to open up for the world and surround myself more with like-minded people (easier said than done in your home environment)
  4. Tried out many different things to learn what I would actually like to do.
  5. Learn, learn, learn… Especially hands-on skills I could apply as a freelancer (in my case I learned that I wanted to create, create something I can look at later, that makes someone else happy - I chose SEO web design)
  6. Took a part time job that is connected to the actual field I want to get into; it’s about money and surviving but in my case I got lucky as it’s connected to the things I wanna do
  7. Spending way more hours now working and preparing for my own one person business than I did for the corporate job - BUT: I chose the place and time to work which makes such a huge difference to me. I know I have a bigger goal in mind and eventually will catch up financially plus still having the freedom to work whenever I want.

At some point I want to be able of course to also work less hours. At least I want to be able to if I feel I need it.

I believe depending from where you start, how you grew up, etc. and how much luck you have it can be quite a long journey to get out of the rat race and follow your heart.

If you know what for you are going on this journey though I think it’s absolutely worth it.

In your case you could also consider a easier way by looking for reduction of your hours and responsibilities. That gives you one thing you are seeking for: time.

I believe in my (old) surroundings it’s the same. The goal is to get higher on that corporate ladder, get more pay, get a better car, etc.

I still work in myself to stop comparing. It’s not supportive to compare if you want to change, but it’s difficult to stop.

Good luck on your journey :smile_cat:

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