First of all, I am neither an IT expert nor a Computer nerd, I am actually an HRM graduate (Hotel and Restaurant Management). And I know, being an HRM graduate isn’t ideal in becoming a home-based freelancer.
But I am writing this because after working for about 8 years in different types of food industries, I felt tired.
I grew tired of having to deal with illogical customers, having to please too many bosses, traffic getting worse, working overtime even on weekends, and the feeling that I am not getting paid enough.
I told myself that challenges won’t make me stop pursuing my dreams, but it’s actually easier said than done!
I actually fear unemployment, and I am still unsure about where I really wanted to work.
But then, I didn’t quit and decided to become a home-based freelancer overnight (I wish it’s that easy!).
My Struggles At Work
As expected, as an HRM graduate, I worked in different food-related companies. Just like any other job, there are good and bad things about working on food industries.
First, there are customers who act like they are superior human beings as if our whole world revolves around them.
Food-related companies rely heavily on customer service, thus I had to deal with lots of customers.
Don’t get me wrong, I don’t expect all customers to be nice, but it brightens our day if you treat us with respect, too.
Because there were some customers who just tried to bring out the worst in me, treated me as if I am their personal servant.
Second, working overtime, working on holidays, internal politics, lots of bosses, and too much workload was so tiring.
Again, in a food industry, we don’t enjoy holidays with our families, that’s the time for us to work overtime.
For about 8 years of working in a food industry, I mostly enjoy my rest days on weekdays.
However, I am still lucky because most of my jobs had really fun working environments, especially the last office job I had. I was actually hesitant to resign because I do not want to leave my manager, my co-workers, and my staff.
But I once experienced a toxic job wherein the thought of going to work is so dreadful.
Lastly, I felt that my salary isn’t enough compared to the stress and workload.
There were times that I had to work for about 15 hours, and still had to go to work early morning tomorrow.
I once hoped that if I work hard now, maybe my work will get easier later on, I was wrong. No matter how hard I worked, the situation remains until the time came and I can no longer take it.
And here’s what I did when I start feeling hopeless…
Things I Did Before I Resign at Work
Since my workload and work schedule are so tiring, I tried traveling during my rest days to unwind and escape the stress at work.
Then, I fell in love with traveling, seeing different places made me feel recharged and relaxed.
I decided to Become a Travel Blogger
And as a person new to traveling, I relied heavily on Google and Instagram when planning my itineraries.
But sometimes, there were places that I wanted to visit, but Google doesn’t have enough information.
That’s why I gave birth to Rest Day Adventures, I decided to become a travel blogger to share information to people who will travel for the first time. I ventured into blogging while I am still employed in my office job.
My brother helped me set up my own website, and I began to love writing. But simply loving the things that you do won’t guarantee you a success, my first blog post didn’t become successful in Google.
Did you know that my first ever viral post is about Goshen Resort and Hotel?
My blog post about Goshen Resort isn’t my first, second, nor third, it’s actually my fourteenth (14th) post!
That’s how I love writing, I didn’t quit just because I didn’t get it right the first time, I strived.
And that post about Goshen resort is now on the first page of the Google search engine when you search for “Goshen resort”.
Until now, I still want to improve my craft, I keep reading on the latest trends in writing.
But I realized being a full-time travel blogger isn’t enough to pay bills, and I am still incapable of resigning.
What I did next is…
I signed up at Upwork
Upwork is a website, similar to JobStreet or JobsDB, but its market is mostly for home-based freelancers. In Upwork most clients are from different parts of the world, and you get to be paid in US$.
Luckily, Upwork approved my profile on the first try, I just don’t know what happened but it’s hard to get approved now.
However, the real challenge starts when you have set up your profile, and you start submitting applications to clients.
Unlike with applying personally, wherein you can submit resume to unlimited companies, Upwork only gives you 60 connects per month.
To apply for a certain job, you will need to use 2 connects, so basically, you can only apply 30 times a month.
After you used up all your connects, all you can do is hope someone will hire you, or just wait for next month to have new connects.
So, you might ask, how can an HRM graduate work in a platform like Upwork, what services do I offer?
I actually applied as a Content Writer, Virtual Assistant, and Customer Service Representative.
And since I wanted to try doing my new-found passion, I pursue Content Writing. and someone hired me.
How I Got Hired as a Freelance Content Writer
If like me you wanted to become a home-based freelancer, keep these things in mind:
- Speaking and Writing in English fluently is a must
- Know your Worth (Don’t accept rates that are too low!)
- Have a stand-out profile
- Be Profesional
- Know Proper Email etiquettes
- Have a Stable internet and a laptop
Yes, the English language is very essential if you want to win clients who can pay US$. You must be able to express yourself properly, and you must understand their instructions well.
Do you want to know how I got my first client as a freelance content writer?
I tried impressing the client with my cover letter, he was looking for a content writer for his coffee-related website.
And I impressed him by discussing all the things I know about coffee, thanks to my first job as a coffee shop barista.
Then, I sent him a link to my website, to give him a feel for how I write my articles.
I also included on the cover letter how many of my articles already land on the first page of Google search engine.
And I think I was able to impress him because I got hired and he’s still my client.
See, how I used my previous work experience in a totally different field, just think out of the box.
I only quit my office job when I tried to work in Upwork as a part-time freelancer, I decided to become full-time.
Benefits of Working as a Home-Based Freelancer
- I can work anywhere, at home or while traveling
- Better pay
- Saves time, because I no longer have to spend almost 4 hours for daily commute
- Getting paid per task
- Reporting to only one client
- No need to wear a uniform
Being a home-based freelancer solved most of my problems at work, but it doesn’t mean I have a perfect job.
I realized that everything has its pros and cons, home-based freelancing included.
When people learned that I work at home, they usually think that I work as a full-time blogger, but no.
Some think that working at home is a get-rich-quick job, or that it only entails minimal work.
Disadvantages of Working as a Home-Based Freelancer
- You don’t usually have paid leaves, paid break times, or double pay
- No regularization
- You have to pay taxes, SSS contribution, Pag-IBIG, PhilHealth, and HMO on your own
- Some clients require you to work on their time zones
- You always pray for the stability of your Internet Connection
- It’s hard to explain your job when you’re applying for a bank account or a visa
Overall, it’s just a matter of what you can and what you want to do, my freelancing story may or may not be for you.
Hoping you liked my article because I am planning to share more freelancing stories here on Rest Day Adventures.
If you’re a freelancer or planning to be one, I hope you share your thoughts below and share this with your friends!