Choosing one’s career is challenging, however, some people have a clear calling. When I was finishing high school, I never thought I would specialize in freelance writing. Instead, I was sure I wanted to become a musician, and that’s what I did.
If youth knew, if age could
I remember being proud of myself at the age of 16. I considered myself special for knowing what I wanted, while most of my classmates were taking vocational courses and similar stuff. But little did I know that the path would not always be as straightforward as it seemed at the time.
The quote “If youth knew if age could” stroke me as a painful truth when I reached my thirties and noted that things were not as clear on the horizon as they used to be. This is when I decided to quit my career in music and try freelance writing for a change.
Starting with a few translations from English to Spanish, little by little I started to create my own content for blogs, brochures, social media, etc.
Freelance writing or a traditional job?
I know what you are thinking: is this girl describing music as a traditional job? Well, yes. It turns out that music skills can get you quite interesting positions as a music teacher. In Panama for example, I was a full-time teacher at the prestigious Oxford School and when I came back to Argentina, I had plenty of opportunities to get a steady job in a similar position. Nobody can deny that benefits like social security, maternity leaves, and pension funds are attractive but freelance writing opens a whole new world that is worth the try.
Freelance writing – Pros
- Flexible working hours
- Total independence from companies or institutions
- Possibility to set up your own fees
- Better life-work balance
- Choose your clients and your way of working
- More peace of mind
But not everything is a bed of roses:
Freelance writing – Cons
- No sick or maternity leaves
- Insecure income
- You have to do your own taxes and plan your retirement carefully
If you analyze these tables, we can conclude that there is a big risk in choosing the freelance highway and that it’s not for everyone.
Do you have what it takes to be a freelance writing specialist?
- Are you detail-oriented?
- Are you good at organizing your schedule?
- Are you good at keeping deadlines?
- Do you have any marketing skills?
- Are you willing to save money for the slim months?
- Do you have the tools to create a financial cushion?
- Are you willing to keep learning and stay informed about news, tendencies, tools, etc.?
At the end of the day, it all became clear to me. I remember that one of the arguments that threatened my decision came from a friend: What if you ever get sick? How will you manage without sick leave?
I pondered on these questions and finally, I came to a conclusion: Choosing a career path “in case I get sick” is not what I want for my life. After all, I have to live with my career decisions every single day, and choosing the regular working hour schedule for a (false) sense of security, is just not for me.