Career Tips

To Be or Not To Be A Freelance?

Think twice before you make that choice

Alvie Balquin
3 min readDec 12, 2021


Photo by Taryn Elliott from Pexels

When was the last time you had a promotion?

In my case, it was way back then.

Work promotion does not apply to me anymore.

When I decided to become a freelance, I knew I wouldn’t have a career anymore.

I have owned my growth and don’t rely on company training.
In short, I set my path.
It’s all up to me.

The position and title do not matter anymore.
Some call me their consultant.
Others, their Freelance Manager or a Process Manager.
Or their trainer, business analyst, technical writer, etc.

I am a jack-of-all-trades.
But fortunately, I am a master of some.

As a teacher, I know the theories.
And, I had a hands-on experience while I was in the corporate.
The two combined provided me with the skills to thrive in freelancing.

I capitalized on my experience before I started.
But I invested more in continuous learning.
Otherwise, I won’t survive.

Being freelance is not easy.
Skills are not enough to thrive.
Courage and the right attitude would surely help.
And, don’t discount self-discipline and quality consciousness.

To say it’s difficult is an understatement.

But in exchange, being freelance provides me advantages:

  • The flexibility of time.
  • Have time for my other interests aside from work.
  • Less stress when I work from home; thus, I seldom get sick.
  • Opportunity to learn new technologies.
  • Able to experiment and be creative on process methodologies.
  • Realized what work culture fits me.
  • Apply my learning to the next team I work with.
  • Learned NOT to rely on external affirmations.
  • Freedom to start with a new opportunity.
  • And, free to stop when I need to.

Do I have regrets?
I can honestly say, “No regrets.”

Freelancing has given me a different perspective of what work is all about.
I’m already ten years ahead when it comes to working remotely.

Well, I cannot say I am a trendsetter.
I only followed what worked for me.

Looking back, I cannot tell you how risky it was in 2010.
I embarked on a world that I do not know.
It was a difficult decision that most didn’t understand.
( Not to mention the judgmental opinions I don’t need at that time).

But 11 years after, I’m still here.
Not the person that I used to be, but I could say way better.

Freelancing helped me develop strength in my character.

I already know how to affirm myself.
My self-worth is not based on how others see me.
Or, based on a Performance Evaluation.

The journey to knowing my worth has no price.

Healthy self-esteem is needed to accept my own strengths and weaknesses.
And, the courage to stand up for who I am.

Freelancing is not for all.
But I can proudly say, it works for me.

But hey, there’s nothing wrong with working in the same company for a long time.

No judgment in there.
In the same way that you don’t judge freelancers.

NOTE: This post is originally posted on Linkedin but with some minor updates.



Alvie Balquin

Agile Practitioner * 20+ years in software management * Technical trainer * Always a teacher by heart.