As I mentioned in recent posts, I have been working for myself for just over a year now. I’ve been a business owner off and on for nearly 20 years, but this is the longest stretch during which I’ve done it full time. It’s also been my most successful.
I used to think working for someone else provided job security. It gave me a steady and dependable paycheque, defined work hours, and great benefits.
Then I was laid off twice in three years.
Over the past 13 months, I’ve grown to love working for myself. There’s a lot to not like about it, (perhaps that will be a future blog post) but these 6 plusses make up for that.
1. I have a flexible schedule
I tell people that I don’t work 9 – 5, I work 5 – 9. Last night, for example, I was working until 21:45 and this morning, I was at it before 5:00. That can be taxing, but I also have flexibility. I can take off an hour to go to a non-profit board meeting or two hours to go with my family to an agriculture fair.
2. I never do the same thing twice
Every workday is different. While I do the same type of work each day (writing, editing, and social media), it’s always something new. Running a Twitter account for a realtor, for example, is not the same thing as running a Pinterest board for a furniture manufacturer. Editing a master’s thesis is not the same as editing a magazine article.
3. It’s easy to get a raise
With my employers, I had to wait for a raise or accept annual cost-of-living increases. Now, if I want a higher income, I just need to sign on new clients. It’s all up to me.
4. I’m around my family more
Even though I work in a designated office space with a closed door, I can still hear my family interacting. When I stop for dinner or to get a drink, I can interact with them. I can hear them laughing and chatting about random things. I love my family, and being around them more (even if I’m kind of not) is a great blessing.
5. I can nap
Because of my long workdays, I am often tired. If my day isn’t too hectic, I can find a few minutes to relax, put in some earplugs, cover my eyes, and snooze. If I don’t do this, I often drift off. A quick nap rejuvenates me and helps me carry on.
6. I’m super motivated
It was easy to get into a rut when I worked for someone else. Now, I’m always motivated to find more clients and increase my brand awareness. It was always someone else’s responsibility to do those things, now it’s mine. Literally, if I don’t do it, no one else will.
Are you a small business owner? What do you like about it? Share your thoughts in the comments below.