Once you’ve done time as a freelancer, no other work would give the same experience. There is always a voice in your head that is asking you to return, no matter how rewarding your new job will ever be. Whether it is a full time job or a long term contract, nothing beats the excitement that comes from freelancing. The fear of not doing enough to survive for the month is gone, so is the excitement that goes with such a risk. The pressure to make profitable decisions is gone, but now you are at the mercy of the decisions of another person, your employer, no matter what you think about them.
You can find excitement and a sense of achievement from different types of work after leaving the world of freelancing, but it will be never the same.
“Best of both worlds” do not exist either. You have to make a decision. One could argue that part-time work, contractual or full time ones are enough, but they really pale in comparison to any situation given the same pros and cons.
Leaving full time work after three years and returning to freelancing could cause quite a shock. There is a whole world of things that you were used to before that is now forgotten. But slowly and naturally it will return. It is definitely something that requires enough time to adjust.
If you are one of those who are going back to work as a freelancer after a long break doing what everybody might call a “real job”, this article is for you. Here is how to make your return to freelancing much easier.
The Connections You’ve Made Matters
Remember whom you have worked before as a freelancer. Dig up your previous list of clients and anyone you remembered who have hired your for your services before your long break. You’ve been there before so skip making new clients and reconnect with your previous clients. This will make things easier for you as these old clients already have an idea on how you work and what results to expect. You could end up working immediately on a project the moment you contacted an old client and inform them that you are back.
Demand Like You are a Newbie
You might have experience as a freelancer but you have stopped for years. Returning might be easy but do not expect the demand the way you did before your break. Think like a novice and accept offers that are priced at minimum. Start again from the bottom and work your way up. Go back to where you were before: having a stable list of clients that provide enough flow of cash for you, then you can start raising your rates. If your previous clients offer you your service rates before then good for you. If not then remember that you’ve been there before and going there again. Also remember that the beauty of freelancing is that you have the freedom to raise your rates whenever you think it is good to do it.
Visit the Job Boards, but Not Immediately
If your list of previous client is as good as they were then avoid paying a visit to job boards. Email your former clients first and wait. If you get a good response and a project then you can forget about the job boards for now. In case your previous clients have no work for you then go to the job boards and start bidding. However, expect to get paid by the minimum.
Do Not Panic
When you take a risk you must never panic or it is game over for you. It is the worst thing you could ever do and also the easiest. You can easily think about negative things when you are still trying to look for a client. When you panic your mind will not be able to make sound judgments and decisions which will result in your failure.