For years, we assumed that the only way to have a successful career was to go to school, get a job, and spend your life working at a 9 to 5 schedule. Then, in recent years, the internet emerged, and we discovered that there were more ways to work than we had previously realized. The cloud and mobile working solutions have given birth to something called the gig economy. In the gig economy, employees can choose their own hours, their own clients, and even decide what they want to get paid for certain jobs. While you might need to take out a student loan and go back to college to develop a skill that gives you an entryway to the gig economy, the work often pays off. It means more freedom, more time doing what you love, and more opportunities. The question is, will this life be right for you?
The Benefits of the Gig Economy
Living life as a freelancer or mobile worker means that you have more freedom over the work that you do. Instead of working for a single employer, you might have multiple clients dotted all around the world. Some people stick to the same selection of clients for years at a time, while others add new people to their roster every week. For the most part, you’ll work as your own boss, which means that you get to choose the hours you work, and how much you charge. However, you’ll also need to take the deadlines and requests of your clients into account. The good news is that because you control your workflow, you also get to decide who you don’t want to work with too. At the same time, when you’re in the freelance world, you don’t have to worry about things like commuting to an office every day. You can work from home, or your local coffee shop if you’re working on a laptop. You have the freedom to call the shots in your career.
The Downsides of Freelancing
However, while this lifestyle appeals to a lot of people, it’s not going to be the right option for everyone. It’s important to remember that a lot of people can feel isolated when they’re working away from the office, and don’t have any connection with regular coworkers and colleagues. Additionally, because you need to maintain a consistent stream of income, you’ll always be searching for new gigs. Instead of a single boss, you’ll need to juggle multiple clients and make sure that you deliver the results that they expect. What’s more, although you can choose the hours that you work, you also won’t be paid for any of the hours that you don’t put in. There’s no paid time off or paternity leave in this world, which means that you have less support too. Obviously, living this life has both its ups and downs to consider. Although you do get more freedom as a remote worker, that freedom comes at the expense of less stability, and more stress for some people too.