Why I Quit Freelancing and Got a Job (plus the Week 50 roundup)

Scythe on a wall

I’m not the sharpest scythe in the shed, but sometimes my coal-dust addled brain learns a lesson or two from its mistakes experience.

To wit: in 2011, I did all kinds of enterprising work to support myself outside the old 9-to-5: freelance writing, micro-affiliate sites, web design, junk peddling on ebay and craigslist, English teaching, and a couple other things.

I lived modestly and made enough to get by, but I still put in way too many 70-80-hour weeks. Now, every week, I spend half as many hours promoting tourism in my state for a modest salary and health insurance for my family.

In short, I quit freelancing because a cool opportunity came along and I was tired of getting my ass kicked by the patchwork Franken-career I had created for myself.  I realized I needed a smarter way to earn a living. My decision isn’t right for everyone, but at this time, it’s the best decision for me.


When I think about all the work I did, I debate whether I’m the world’s shittiest businessman, or if I was just trying to do too much.

Because I’m not without ambition, and since a struggling book publisher once credited me with saving his business, I’m going to go with the latter.

I suppose I could always sell ebooks that tell you how to make a living selling ebooks about how to make a living selling ebooks [/spammy lifestyle design blog rant].

In all seriousness, if a person diligently pursued any one of these activities, they could probably support themselves. My problem was that I just had to try them all.

So what’s the lesson?

Do less, better. 

Or, in the words of productivity guru David Allen: You can do anything, but not everything.

The bonus: I now have more time to work on things that are wildly fun and stupendously unprofitable!

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Photo credit: sidibousaid