It’s one thing to hustle 3 months of freelance work, but how do you turn a brief reprieve into a life changing career?
When I was called into an office one fateful day and told I was being down-sized, I suddenly had a new title. Unemployed. What was I? Who was I? My career plan had been wiped out, so now what?
When I landed my first contract, I had an income again. I felt relieved for half a second, but I still needed to figure out a plan. How would a new employer be any different than the last? What did I really want? I had a small taste of the flexibility of being my own boss; did I really want to return to the 9-to-5 grind, once again at the mercy of someone else’s whims and directives?
Long before I finished that first contract, I started hunting for the next revenue stream. I was no longer looking for a full-time job. As far as I was concerned, I already had an employer – myself!
And that was the mental shift that changed my fate.
I’ve had friends, many, who have lost their jobs over the years and who have gone on to other jobs. Some went through a few short contracts or freelance work similar to the work I did when I first started out, but invariably they eventually found and settled back in to full-time employment situations. That was their choice. Along the way, if they didn’t have steady income coming in, they considered themselves “between jobs” or unemployed.
Since going out on my own, I’ve only ever considered myself to be my own boss. It didn’t matter how many customers I had (or didn’t have), I was always working for myself. I wasn’t unemployed, I was self-employed.
That was the very first step of a journey toward realizing my own dreams, instead of working on someone’s else’s.