In 2023, many are bracing themselves for a sharp economic downturn and a potential recession. According to a report by CNBC, 70% of adults in the US report feeling stressed and uncertain about their current financial situation, while a startling 58% say that they are living paycheck to paycheck. However, there is one group that does not seem to be affected by this statistic: freelancers.
Freelancers and other independent professionals report being optimistic about their outlook, regardless of the potential recession. It is partly for this reason that many full-time employees are considering abandoning their 9-5 jobs to pursue a freelance career. In this article, we will take a look at why you should leave your job to freelance in 2023 and beyond, complete with actionable tips for embracing independence and becoming your own boss.
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9 Reasons Why You Should Leave Your Job to Freelance
✅ Freedom & Autonomy
One of the reasons why you should leave your job to freelance is the freedom and autonomy to set your own hours, choose your clients and what projects you work on, and set your own rates.
Traditional jobs provide a stable schedule and salary, but there is no room to be flexible and often you have no say in the work that you do. Additionally, having control over your own working hours gives you the freedom to prioritize your personal life alongside your professional one, giving you a greater work/life balance.
✅ Unlocking Unlimited Earning Potential
A big driving factor for people to leave their jobs to pursue freelance work is the unlimited earning potential that comes with it. Freelancers have the ability to set their own rates and can choose to pick up additional hours or clients when they want to increase their income. Statistics back up freelancers’ experience; despite the fact that 75% of all professionals report being concerned about worsening economic conditions, 69% of freelancers expect their income to increase in the coming year.
✅ Flexibility & Work/Life Balance
Due to the fact that freelancers can choose their own hours, they benefit from greater flexibility in their day-to-day lives to pursue other interests and responsibilities and can therefore experience a better work/life balance. Independent professionals can spend their days taking care of family members or dependents, enjoying their hobbies, or even becoming digital nomads and traveling to new cities and countries while working full-time.
✅ Pursuing Passion & Fulfillment
A report by McKinsey found that freelancers are, on average, significantly more optimistic about both their futures and the outlook for the economy than the average American worker. This may be due to the fact that self-employment provides the freedom to choose which projects you work on, allowing individuals to pursue the ones that they are passionate about. This creates a greater sense of personal and professional fulfillment and can reduce feelings of stress and burnout from demanding employers and unfulfilling projects.
✅ Embracing the Growing Freelance Economy
Before 2020, an estimated 57.3 million people, or 36% of the total US workforce, were classified as working in the gig economy. As of 2023, that number has increased to around 73.3 million freelancers, which is a 27.91% increase in only four years. The freelance economy is growing exponentially as remote work becomes more accessible. Skilled professionals can take advantage of this growth and choose to transition from full-time employment to independent work, either full-time or part-time, and reap the benefits that freelancing brings.
✅ Accessing New Opportunities
The scope of work at a traditional 9-5 job is very limited, and can cause feelings of stagnation over time. By leaving your job to freelance, you unlock not only new opportunities to explore more fulfilling projects, but you have the chance to connect with a more diverse network of professionals, increase your skillset by developing business acumen and the ability to design your dream career without the limitations of a traditional 9-5 job.
✅ Tax Benefits & Financial Flexibility
Freelancers enjoy certain tax advantages, such as being able to deduct business expenses, which can help maximize their income. Additionally, freelancers have the flexibility to allocate their earnings strategically, whether it’s investing in professional development, saving for retirement, or pursuing personal goals. This financial control can contribute to a greater sense of empowerment and long-term financial stability.
✅ Increased Job Security
Contrary to the perception that freelancers have less job security, they often enjoy greater stability in the face of economic downturns. Traditional employees may be subject to layoffs and downsizing during recessions, while freelancers have the advantage of diversifying their client base and being able to adapt to ever-changing market demands.
✅ Skill Development & Versatility
The final reason why you should leave your job to freelance is that it allows you to continually expand your skill set by taking on diverse projects and working with different clients. This exposure to varied tasks and industries can accelerate your professional growth and make you a more versatile and adaptable professional. Additionally, freelancers often develop strong problem-solving and self-management skills, which are highly valued in today’s job market.
The decision to leave your job and embrace freelance work in 2023 and beyond can be a transformative step toward personal and professional fulfillment. Freelancers enjoy a multitude of benefits, including the freedom to set their own schedules, unlock unlimited earning potential, and achieve a better work-life balance.
As remote work continues to thrive, freelancers can capitalize on the numerous online platforms and resources available, further enhancing their independence. If you’re seeking greater autonomy, financial control, and a renewed sense of purpose in your career, now is the time to take the leap and embark on the exciting journey of freelancing. Embrace independence, become your own boss, and pave the way for a fulfilling and prosperous professional future.