Freelancers Work Harder

building

Some people balk at the word “freelance”, as if it implies low quality work by lazy people in pajamas. In most cases, they couldn’t be more wrong.

After spending many years building and running my own business, there’s one thing I know for sure:

Freelancers work harder.

As many of my fellow Illustrators can probably attest to, running your own business takes everything you have. The person is the business, and the business is the person. There is no separation between the two.

Every aspect of running a creative business, from accounting to promotion to production to client relations, is the sole responsibility of the lone freelancer, which means that it’s up to the individual to succeed or fail.

This is why many freelance Illustrators either spend long hours toiling away in their studio or throw in the towel and go back to punching time clocks. If you’re the type to stick it out, you probably work harder for more hours than your peers who work for someone else. What’s more, you probably sacrifice more of your personal life and leisure, which is something many people who don’t work for themselves fail to understand.

In fact, I’ll go even further by saying that most freelancers I know work harder than any boss I’ve ever had anywhere. Period.

Pride of Ownership

The benefit of this is that the freelancer owns every success, every milestone, and every moment of pride that comes with running a successful business. On the flip side, of course, they also own every failure, every weakness, and every loss.

This can make for a more stressful life, to be sure, but it also yields the satisfaction of a path less traveled, and a sense of identity that can never be achieved by working for someone else.

Here’s to all the freelancers out there who work their butts off every day.

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Thomas James

Thomas James

Thomas James is an Illustrator who has worked with The New York Times, WIRED, Pentagram, Wall Street Journal, The Los Angeles Times, and many others. You can see his portfolio at thomasjamesillustration.com.
Thomas James

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Posted by Thomas James on 07/27/15 under business
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