Lots of my friends are asking me “what do I really do as a freelancer?”.. and normally I am having difficulties to answer them, it’s more complicated than just a few words. So here’s my story..

I was quite well paid as an engineer before I quit to work as a freelancer. My friends either thought that I was crazy or that I am making big bucks with what I am doing.

Truth is I am just making a decent income, most of the time probably lesser than what I am supposed to have if I continue pursueing my engineering career.

My buddies are kinda curious on how an engineer with not much experience with IT.. in fact it’s quite difficult, I has to rely on others constantly.

Ok here’s the business secret, what I do is to get projects and contacts from countries like US, UK and Australia and then look for freelancer from ‘poorer’ countries like China, India and East Europe to handle the projects.

I get the money from ‘rich’ countries and pay portion of it to ‘poorer’ countries, it’s more like a middle-man role for outsourcing rather than really working as a freelancer.

I don’t even need much of IT or programming skills to do what I am doing, the biggest asset is the contacts that I have on both side of the earth.

So how did I managed to get all those contacts? Well, that’s the REAL SECRET. I used more 1 whole year on building the contacts, with no income at all.. thus I am not ready to share what I’d work that hard for, not without a price at least lol.

As said I am not making big money from this, the major benefit from my work is the freedom of time. It doesn’t necessary means that I work less, it’s just that I can work according to my own pace and liking.

The biggest challenge working as freelancer though is the loneliness and self discipline. Sitting in front of the PC, working alone, nobody to chat with during tea break and the need for self motivation.

Most people I worked with are communicated with MSN, 90% of them are people that I never met before.

There’s a point last year when I planned for getting a real life job, sort of getting to know more people.. but later on found out that I am still loving what I am doing, so here I am still a freelancer.

No worries, I am not a social freak.. in fact I have more time to interact with my friends at night and during weekends, I value friendship alot.

So that’s my simple life as a freelancer. Questions?



15 Responses to “Life as a freelancer”

  1. Joshy Says:
    April 21st, 2006 at 6:29 pm

    its very good to be able to properly plan your free time and do what you wanna do,instead of letting your leave schedule affect your planning totally :) haha but i guess i would suck at this kind of job..sure jialat jialat

  2. Jee Says:
    April 21st, 2006 at 8:33 pm

    I actually forgot to mention WHY I worked as freelance at the first place, well perhaps next time.

    Getting out of the 9-5 job is definitely one fo the WHY.

    Joshy.. everyone can do it if they want to, you can to, just need to work hard and be determined.

  3. ade Says:
    April 22nd, 2006 at 12:59 am

    Getting out of the 9-5 job is definitely one fo the WHY.

    Cheers.

  4. Jee Says:
    April 22nd, 2006 at 2:28 pm

    Cheers ade..

  5. alicia Says:
    April 24th, 2006 at 9:13 am

    it’s always good to have the flexibility of time… glad to hear that u made it cuz not alot will have the drive or dicipline to be a freelancer..

    xD

  6. Jee Says:
    April 24th, 2006 at 12:07 pm

    You’re probably right alicia..

    I believe the challenge for most people can be the temptation to get back to 9-5 job after not getting results in a few months of freelancing career.

  7. Chris Says:
    May 3rd, 2006 at 12:39 am

    So true.
    I can relate entirely. Its my life, carbon copied. Most people do not understand freelance and never will. Most people I know works from 9-5 and its a real challenge describing what I do. I never want to go back to the desk with the flourcent lights above me, of course if I have to I will, its just too damn good when you’re in the grocery store at eleven in the morning strolling the isles alone when everyone else is in a closed door meeting. Its like viewing the world upside down.
    The flipside? Money, making phone call after phone call because I have none. I try to stow money away for when the jobs aren’t coming in, its totally random when they do happen but quite frankly I can go months without a call. It happens. You adapt. You end up putting a lot of pressure on yourself and your pocket book, however it can be rewarding as hell when it all pays off.
    One word sums it up: freedom.
    Can I hear your secrets if I tell you mine!
    Good luck on your end,
    Chris

  8. Jee Says:
    May 3rd, 2006 at 2:05 pm

    Chris.. glad to see someone sharing similar life :)

    And YaY to freedom, shopping at weekdays working hours are kinda fun, no crowd, no jam and I found that the promoters in the store are more friendly during leisure hours too.

    Ehh secrets? Thanks for offering, I must say no this time.. at least not until I can diversify my income source and can live without the advantage I am currently having.

  9. loser Says:
    June 18th, 2006 at 11:40 pm

    19 male haf worked about 20+job, but stil job jobless after 1.5years…
    i really a loser…
    i think i really born to b a freelancer….
    cos my english not so gud… i duno hw2 write my life after form6….
    haiz…
    any suggest can gif mi 2b a freelancer?
    thk

  10. Jee Says:
    June 19th, 2006 at 3:03 pm

    You can start with giving yourself a better nickname.. no one is a loser at age of 19 with plenty of life ahead.

    Is study not an option for you? It’s not easy to make a decent living as freelancer if you do not possess some skills.. the best I can recommend is to pursue further studies or to learn something useful at least.

  11. daphne Says:
    June 23rd, 2006 at 2:55 pm

    It is the first time for me to look at your blog, but I nearly read every words in it. I am curious about your vocation- freelancer, which is a way of life you can’t imagine how far from me.
    It seems that I am willing to obey every rule, regulation, law… when i was a little girl, I obeied my teacher & my parents 100%, I even never thought to violate. NOW I AM working in a factroy, I follow every regulations our company realeased. Forom

  12. daphne Says:
    June 23rd, 2006 at 3:04 pm

    Some people might think I am a good daughter of my parents, perfect student of my teacher, hard-working fellow of my managers. However, from the bottom of my heart I don’t want to be a so ordinary girl as I am now.
    Jee, you just told us that you spent one whole year without any pay. This is unaffordable to me. I really don’t want to upset my parents, although they don’t really need my support, I don’t want them to worry about my life.

  13. Jee Says:
    June 23rd, 2006 at 11:33 pm

    daphne.. glad to hear from you. Life is always full of choices, and it’s up to us to choose the path that best suit ourselves.

    I understand your feelings, I have strong heart for my family and my mum and siblings were worried when I made the decision too. Still in the end I showed them my determination and told them what I really want in life.. and they gave me full support back then.

    Question is what do we really want in our life, what do you really want? If you know what you want and know what is need to be done to achieve it, I believe your parents will support you as well.

    For freelancing, it will depends on what special skills you have.. it’s not necessary something techie, it can be as simple as something you are really passionate with.. and you can always start with part time.

    I made some careful calculations before I actually quit my job, I knew I could survive for some time and I could work with much pleasure.

    You don’t need to quit your job daphne, you just need to work harder with your new venture instead of giving too much time on your current job.

    Good luck and all the best.

  14. daphne Says:
    June 26th, 2006 at 8:45 am

    HI Jee, thanks for your encouragement, i will think carefully before i decide to do…
    Not everything is perfect, then I need to enjoy life, work…
    I am working in a day and studying at night, I am busy but enjoy

  15. Jee Says:
    June 26th, 2006 at 4:53 pm

    You are welcome daphne.. being happy is the most important in the end.


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