Let me guess: you’ve been working as a part-time freelancer for a while now.
Perhaps you’ve been hustling for clients nonstop alongside a 9-5 job with an employer. Or maybe you decided to pursue a life-long ambition of being your own boss but you’re struggling to get work.
Either way, you’ve grown frustrated with your current situation.
It’s like the dream of full-time freelancing is within reach but you can’t quite get there, whether it’s because of fear, low finances or not enough hours in the day.
That said, don’t worry. Read on to find out how you can go from part-time to full-time freelancer – and fast.
1. Change Your Mindset
How to go from part-time to full-time freelancer 101: stop thinking of yourself as a part-timer.
You have to put measures in place to successfully be able to make the transition. And to do that, you need to change your attitude.
How do you do this? Well, believe in yourself and your abilities. If you’re not going to have that trust and faith in yourself, then what makes you think that potential clients are going to trust you?
Exactly – they’re not.
Also, if Sonny Jim from Canada can quit his 9-5 full-time job and become a full-time freelancer after several months of hard graft, there’s no reason why you can’t do it either.
In fact, you can do anything that you set your mind to if you’re willing to work hard enough.
2. Build a Pot of Money
I’m going to be completely honest with you here: there’s no way that you’re going to be able to go from a part-time to full-time freelancer unless you’ve prepared accordingly.
Hear me out.
You don’t need a ton of savings. However, having some kind of a safety net is useful just in case things go south and you require a bit of a helping hand.
The exact amount that you decide to save is entirely up to you, but I made sure that I had a couple of months’ worth of rent and bills in the bank before taking the plunge just to cover my back.
And so I could sleep at night because, you know, your girl’s a natural worrier.
3. Distance Yourself From Low-Paying Freelance Marketplaces
I know this is easier said than done.
However, realistically, it’s going to be difficult to catapult yourself to full-time success if you’re still picking up work for $10 per project on Freelancer.
Sure, those marketplaces are great as a starting point to get your freelance business off the ground and build an extensive portfolio. Having said that, they’re just not sustainable if you have them as your sole source of income.
Let’s face it, nobody can live comfortably on those low rates.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not super against freelance marketplaces or anything. In fact, Upwork has been particularly useful for me to find and connect with potential clients – and sometimes still is.
But it’s difficult to reach the next level of your business by solely relying on these platforms.
4. Line Up Some High-Paying Clients
Your main focus if you want to go from part-time to full-time freelancer (and fast) should be obtaining high-paying clients on a retainer.
This involves securing a client or two who are prepared to pay you what you’re worth on an ongoing basis.
You can often find these via:
Otherwise, you may find that you’re stuck on freelance marketplaces forever. (I know, not cool.)
Can you arrange a start date in the near future to work towards? Even better!
This will make the whole transition process a lot smoother as you’re likely to be fully booked with projects for the foreseeable future.
Goodbye part-timer, hello full-timer!
5. Raise Your Rates With Current Clients
Don’t feel the need to go out and get yourself new clients because you’re already enjoying working for the ones you’ve got? Fair enough.
That said, you should consider raising your rates with these existing clients to increase your monthly income in preparation for entering the full-time freelancing life.
Needless to say, raising your rates with clients who you’ve only just started working with can come across as a bit cheeky. However, if you’ve been working with them for over a year, it doesn’t hurt to pop them an email and let them know there will be a price increase in a month’s time.
Obviously, don’t fleece current clients by raising your rates too high. But raising them a little here and there throughout your career is how you can truly make the big bucks.
6. Cut Down Your Expenses
Take a look at your finances.
Why not make a list of all your expenses and try to work out what you can and can’t live without?
- Do you have a gym subscription that you never use? Cancel it.
- Do you spend hundreds of pounds on new clothes every month (yes, I’m that girl)? Cut down.
- Are you splashing out and stocking up on groceries at the weekly food shop that you don’t necessarily need in the near future? Give yourself a stricter budget.
Either way, try saving yourself some money every month before you make the leap to full-time freelancing. And then hopefully this habit will stick around even when you’re making a consistent living.
After all, the world of freelancing can be uncertain and your paycheque can vary substantially from one month to the next. You have to learn to be extra savvy with your pennies.
7. Just Do It
Lastly, always remember that those people at Nike really know what they’re talking about.
Confused? Let me break it down for you – sometimes in life, you just have to do the things that scare you.
Sure, it’s good to have a plan and prepare accordingly for the unknown. That said, there’s only so much that you can do before you’re just going to have to do it to find out what’s going to happen.
It’s the only way.
So, put on your big girl pants (or big boy pants) and simply give it a go.
After all, what’s the worst that could happen? You could lose all your clients? And you might not make enough money? Well, perhaps. But in this case, you’d just have to pitch like crazy until you found some new clients, rely on your partner or family member’s income or find a part-time job to cover your bills.
Either way, it wouldn’t be the end of the world. And did you know that practically all successful entrepreneurs failed repeatedly before they finally hit the jackpot?
Biding Your Time to Go From a Part-Time to Full-Time Freelancer
Even though it might take a while to go from a part-time to full-time freelancer, if you keep persevering, there’s no reason why you can’t achieve your goal eventually.
The trick is to work smarter (not harder), have faith in yourself and your abilities and never give up.
How did you transition from part-time to full-time freelancing? Got any extra tips? Let me know in the comments!