Realities of Being Self Employed

I recently saw the quote “their grass isn’t greener, they just used a filter”, and it really stuck with me. It’s no secret that in Ireland especially, if you have a blog or are considered an “influencer” there is a certain stigma attached to that association, and a lot of the time it can be pretty negative. To be honest, I totally understand why this is, even though I don’t agree with it personally. It’s so easy to assume things from the outside looking in. I posted on my story this week about how lonely it can be to be self-employed, so I thought this post could be a nice follow on to that to make it crystal clear that it is not all press trips, fun events & freebies.

Let me also just preface this entire post by saying how grateful I am to be in a position where I can work for myself. I know that I am so lucky. BUT let me also say that I was also incredibly lucky when I was employed but the different companies that I have worked for in the past. If you are in a position to be earning money and can sustain the life that you want, then you are extremely #blessed. It’s all relative and no two peoples lives, situations or journeys are the same.

Below are some of the realities that come with working for yourself, in my opinion…

Isolation

The loneliness is REAL! I consider myself a social person, so spending the majority of my days alone in my office makes me feel so isolated.

Taxes

This is so high on the list because it was such a time suck for me this week. I never appreciated having that side of my finances taken care of when I was in full time employment. I have an accountant, because I am the worst with numbers, but it’s still a stressful and nauseating thing to worry about.

Benefits

Sometimes, with full time employment can come lots of amazing benefits like health care and pension plans. Of course this totally depends on who you work for, and of course there are lots more benefits that can come with different packages. But these are the two that we can’t really go without, so it’s another thing to navigate solo when you are self-employed.

Location, location, location

I’m very lucky to have a home office that I can work from. But before I even considered investing into doing up our spare room, everything that I did and produced was done so from my laptop at the kitchen table.  I can’t express how much I regret not tackling the office sooner,  but it was something that I had to save for, so the kitchen table and cafe’s had to do. Not having a dedicated work space that is quiet and private is definitely a disadvantage when it comes to working for yourself.

Discipline

Finding the discipline and the motivation each day is definitely hard when you set your own deadlines and are your own boss. This leads me on to my next point which can be a pro and a con and that is…

Working Hours

Not having rigid work hours can be a pro (obviously) because you can work whenever you want. But with that said, I personally find that it can be difficult to be strict with myself on the hours each day that are dedicated to work. With blogging and working in social media, the lines can sometimes be blurred when it comes to what is work and what isn’t.

Responsibility

When you’re self employed, naturally you are responsible for everything related to your business. This can be a daunting and again, an isolating factor when it comes to working for yourself. It’s fine if things are going well and you’ve nothing to worry about, but when there’s a problem or something that needs addressing, that’s when you really miss having people around you. Whether it’s to talk through a problem or just to feel less alone in certain situations, it’s something that could easily be overlooked when you think about self employment.

I hope you enjoyed this post & found it interesting.

See you in the next one!

Niamh xx

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