I’m back to work after a 2-1/2 year try at full-time self employment. It was not easy to make the decision to go back to work; it actually came down to the fact that I wasn’t going to be able to pay my rent if I didn’t. I tried everything I knew to make self employment work because it’s my dream to be in control of my schedule and have that freedom. I was bound and determined not to give up but I ran out of resources and had to accept the inevitable – I HAD to go back to work or I would lose my rental and have unpaid bills.
My thoughts at the time of this decision were that it would be temporary until I could save some money and come up with a different self employment plan, and the next time I tried, it would be more in line with my passions – writing and art. I also have a little passion for thrifting and reselling, but over the years I’ve learned it can be very unstable financially and there’s a need to have multiple sources of income, and/or be able to save money for when it gets slow. I worked at this, but it wasn’t enough.
So now I’m back to work and have been for 3 weeks. I’m settled in. I’m lucky that I was able to go back to a previous job that I loved and doing what I’d been doing self-employed – listing items for sale online. Most of my previous co-worker friends are still there and welcomed me back. The conditions have improved. I now have a paycheck coming in that will cover my bills plus some. I now have time that I can take a breather and do what I want. When I was self-employed, I worked around the clock sacrificing social time and time with family all because there was never enough money to cover living expenses. I don’t mind working around the clock if it’s bringing in enough money and doing what I love to do. But it was never enough money.
At this point I feel pretty content and am thinking I may just stay here the rest of my working days, and enjoy my passions of writing and art on the side. But there may come a time where I want to give self-employment a try again and if I do, these are the lessons that will be taken into consideration:
- Have a year’s worth of living expenses saved. I had a little savings built up on the last try, but it was only enough to cover a couple months of bills. If I had a year’s worth of expenses saved, I would have been able to relax a little and think more clearly, rather than making decisions on what will provide money quickly.
- Have a good plan based on facts. I had a plan on the last try, but it wasn’t based on facts – it was based on how I thought it would work out. I’ve sold on eBay for over 20 years and thought that the more I had listed, the more would sell and that’s true to a point. But I thought that if 300 items listed makes X amount of dollars, then 600 items would bring in double that X amount of dollars. There’s many other things that need consideration than just that simple formula. So the lesson is to get to the facts of how your self employment will work, not just how you think it will work, then make a plan according to that.
- Do something you’re very passionate about. I believe when you’re passionate about something, the joy you get from doing it will lead you to success. I’m sure there will still be some blocks along the way, but the passion will get us through it. My example is that I enjoy thrifting and reselling, but I’m not passionate enough about it be at the top of the game, which is what is needed in that business because there is a lot of competition. You either have to have a niche, or if you’re selling things everyone else is selling, you have to be better at it than most. If you are very passionate about something, that passion will lead the way.
Have you learned lessons to success at self employment? Do you prefer a job with a paycheck, and if so, why? Please comment your thoughts below.
Thank-you for reading!