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I Quit My 9–5 Job To Pursue My Side Hustle 6 Months Ago

It is not a lifestyle that I recommend to just anyone.

By Katharine ChanPublished 7 months ago 3 min read
I Quit My 9–5 Job To Pursue My Side Hustle 6 Months Ago
Photo by Amelia Bartlett on Unsplash

It's been almost six months since I left my 9–5 job to become a freelance writer. Here are a few things I've experienced so far:

It is not a lifestyle that I recommend to just anyone.

Leaving your 9–5 for your side hustle sounds like you're pursuing your passion and living your dream. Screw conformity! Think differently.

In reality, it takes a lot of grit, patience, resilience and consistency to do this business thing, and I'm still swimming in the kiddie pool. This is not for the faint of heart. It is as challenging as it is rewarding. You need to stay hungry for the work, motivated to find opportunities and mentally strong when things don't pan out.

There's a lot of flipping between thinking that "I don't know what I'm doing" and "Holy crap, this is what I'm meant to do for my life".

Some days, it's crazy to believe that I'm getting paid to write about topics that are close to my heart. On other days, I'm going through the motions, checking things off my lists and planning for the month.

The change is very subtle.

I thought the change would be dramatic the moment I made the switch…as though my life would be completely transformed. I expected to be neck-deep in my passion and creativity with the shackles finally off. Freedom!

However, it's more like a frog in cold water that is slowly coming to a boil. The first week after my last day at my job didn't seem different from the previous ones. They started with normal, chaotic mornings with kids and breakfast and packing lunches and walks to school.

Then I settled on my computer and started working. I'd take my lunch and do my workout and then go pick up the kids. It didn't feel like much changed. Aside from the missing paycheque every couple of weeks, I don't really notice a difference in my routine.

You have to get comfortable with numbers and uncertainty.

I wouldn't have made this decision if I wasn't comfortable with my expenses and my living situation. I did a complete audit of my finances before taking this leap towards this endeavour…spreadsheets galore!

And even though I knew I was going to be okay…like I had enough saved for this to completely blow up in my face without drowning in debt or starving or having to declare bankruptcy (always makes me think of Michael from The Office)…I still worry. Maybe it's my parents' survival mode that I'm still in, a feeling that I don't have enough and that it's too big of a risk to try new things that may not turn out in the end.

I appreciate the freedom and autonomy that comes with this.

I work about 15 hours a week and 4-day weekends are part of my life now. I make less than what I did at my full-time job but on an hourly rate, it's significantly more. My work ethic has become increasingly efficient and focused. I have spent more quality time with my kids in the past 6 months than I've ever spent with them (excluding mat leave, of course). My son is almost 3 and it feels like it's been almost 3 years.

It almost feels like they are attached to my hip. We do those "Let's bake cookies after school", "Let's go to Costco on a Monday morning" "Let's go swimming in an empty pool when there's no one there but a few seniors doing water aerobics" and "Sure, let's stay at the playground with your friends while I wait" days. Besides…once both kids are in school…mama's going to ramp it up.

Okay…so that's about it for now. More to come.

This was originally published on October 11, 2022.

Need help processing emotions and writing down your thoughts? Check out my 60 Feelings to Feel: A Journal To Identify Your Emotions

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About the Creator

Katharine Chan

Sum (心, ♡) on Sleeve | Author. Speaker. Wife. Mom of 2 | Embrace Culture. Love Yourself. Improve Relationships | Empowering you to talk about your feelings despite growing up in a culture that hid them |

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Nice work

Very well written. Keep up the good work!

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  1. Excellent storytelling

    Original narrative & well developed characters

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    The story invoked strong personal emotions

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  • Jerrell John7 months ago

    I loved this so much because I'm on a path similar to yours. I'm in the process of saving up as much as I can, freelancing/marketing my brand and working my full-time job 5 days a week. I'm glad to hear you've been able to spend more time with your kids and hope you cultivate a success story on your journey!

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