The most popular reason for staying stuck in a rut (read: full time job) is probably the fixed sum pay check that hits the bank every month. The promise of that decent amount of monthly moolah didn’t entice me for too long. Some may call me stupid. Others who know nothing think I am a rich man’s daughter/wife. But I know how hard I work to keep this freelance career going. Other than learning the multitude of things that I’ve learnt about being successful as a freelance writer, I’ve come across an unexpected lesson. A bad client with no regard for payment timelines, laziness on my part, and a few dry months, taught me the value of material possessions in my life. When I earned a steady pay check, the mall was my favorite destination after work and on weekends too. I spent money without thinking twice. Sales or no sales. Need or no need. I had money, so I spent it. But now, with the uncertainty about how much money will come each month, I’m cautious. Whenever I stray from my grocery list, I ask myself if the item I’m looking at is something that I really need. Most of the time, it isn’t. Then there was that time when I saw the big SALE posters outside every store and jumped in to buy shoes. I walked out empty handed but not feeling bad at all because I had realized that my closet at home contained five pairs of shoes and sandals already. How many more does a human being need, I said to myself. That day, I came home and admired my little collection and felt rich. And of course, I always smile remembering the humble homeless people I know, who spend their lives with a pair of rubber sandals. All that said, I am not a complete monk and treat myself to the occasional pair of earrings or lip gloss. But yes – occasional is the key word here. More importantly, the earrings and lip gloss that I’d buy earlier just because I had money to spend every month, are so much more valuable to me. Spending money is no longer a part of my routine. It is something that I do for needs and pure pleasure.
What Freelancing Taught me About Possessions