Your loved ones might be jealous of your lifestyle. They might feel like you’re lucky to pursue your passions and work for yourself. However, your job is not as luxurious as it appears. Your work is much more difficult and demanding than most people realize. They have no idea what kind of pressure you’re under. They have no idea working for yourself is the most difficult path you could take.
The scariest thing about working for yourself is the unknown. You have no idea whether the work you spend days, weeks, or months creating will ever sell. You have no idea whether your audience is going to approve of the projects you’ve finished. You have no idea whether your hard work is going to pay off or whether it will all be for nothing. You have to have blind faith. You have to trust your abilities, trust your audience, and trust your instincts.
When you work for yourself, you have to learn to live without a reliable income.
There is a complete lack of security. You never know when your next check is coming or how many zeros will be written down. There’s no consistency, no reliability. Every month will be different. Sometimes, you’ll have extra cash to spend on weekends and other times you’ll have trouble scrounging together enough money to pay the rent. You’re never going to know what the month will bring, which is why you have to be extra careful with your finances.
When you work for yourself, you have to have discipline.
You have to force yourself to be productive each and every day. Your friends might think you have it easy since you’re your own boss. They might think you have the freedom to wake up whenever you want and hang out with friends whenever you want — but that’s not entirely true. The only way work is going to get done is if you’re tough on yourself. You can’t allow yourself to slack. You can’t start checking texts during work hours or getting drunk in the middle of the day. You can’t give yourself too much time to relax. You have to resist distractions. You have to stay dedicated.
When you work for yourself, you have to create a schedule for yourself.
You can’t wait until the mood strikes to work because your passion is no longer a hobby. It’s a job that needs to be performed every single day. Everyone assumes you’re enjoying yourself when you’re doing what you love, but unfortunately, that’s not entirely true. There are going to be days when inspiration refuses to come to you. There are going to be moments when you’re frustrated with your job, just like everyone else with traditional office jobs. Even though your work can be exciting, it’s still work. It still takes effort. It’s not as easy as everyone assumes.
When you work for yourself, you have no one except yourself to blame for your failures.
If you fall behind on a project, it’s your own fault. If you fail to meet a deadline, it’s your own fault. Since you’re acting as your own boss, you’re under extra pressure. You have to have high expectations for yourself and you have to meet those expectations. Otherwise, you might not get a paycheck that week.
Working for yourself is incredibly hard — but it’s one of the most rewarding things you could ever do. The best feeling in the world is waking up and getting to do what you love every single day. In the end, all of the hard work and uncertainties will be worth it.