January 2019 report

January 31, 2019

TLDR

I made between 1000$ and 2000$ in January 2019!

I worked on 7 different projects this month!

I don't have the exact number of proposals for January.

I don't have the exact number of interviews for January.

The money has come from:

  • 60% from freelancing websites
  • 40% directly from clients

Overview

This report is the first of its kind but I intend to post a report like this every month. (not sure until when) I only include in the report completed jobs and by that, I mean projects that I have delivered the work and that the money has already entered in my account so, for example, the work I am doing in these last two weeks of January will only be accounted for on February. Also, I try to deduce any tax that I had to pay for receiving the money or to the platform that acted as an intermediary between the client and me.

I am still concerned to publicly display my income and I am doing it not for flexing about it, but I do think this information will help others to choose a freelancing career or actually stay the hell out of it.

It is not an easy task to work on your own, from your house, at the same place you play video games and watch Netflix. You will need some discipline and will power, but no one is born with these attributes. This was not a natural skill for me. In my opinion, you have to fail many times before succeeding to have self-control.

My current goal is to have a consistent monthly income of around $2875, after paying all of my taxes and by taxes I mean, platform taxes (i.e: UpWork's 20%!!! of each job until $500 ), the tax to receive the money on my Brazilian account ($1 in case of UpWork, more in other cases) and any Brazilian taxes I must pay (which I think will be between 15-20% depending on how much I make ).

So basically I want to "double" my current income. * nervous laugh *

What I've worked on during this period

I don't really mind much the technology as long as I feel be able to deliver a good service, so sometimes I adventure myself in unknown terrain, but usually, I propose on web tech-based projects. Javascript, node, HTML, CSS, ...

I won't say exactly what I have done, because I would have to ask each client if I could talk about their projects still, these are the technologies I have used during this period:

  • Docker
  • Node.js automation
  • Google speech to text API
  • Google text to speech app
  • React
  • Canvas API
  • General js, HTML and CSS fixes

Where the projects come from

I basically use UpWork as my main source of leads and projects, but as time passes some clients prefer to negotiate directly instead of using some kind of platform.

This month I submitted countless proposals to projects, but I guess only around 30% of that ended up in interviews and probably 5-10% of all proposals became projects. For next months I intend to take note of all numbers around the platform, how many invites I received, how many proposals, interviews, etc.

In the end:

  • 7 projects were on UpWork
  • 2 projects came from direct clients

Where the money comes from

  • 60% from UpWork projects
  • 40% from direct clients
  • 0% from others

Where my time went

Mostly on work! But not only...

During this period I still wasn't sure about freelancing full time (and still am a little reluctant), so I spent many hours of this period sending my CV around, making interviews for "normal" jobs, making any assignment necessary, updating LinkedIn (which still needs improvements), UpWork description, etc etc etc.

I also always try to have some time to work on side projects like Prank or Agrade.

But other than working, a major time eater for me is studying. What do you ask? Trying to keep updated with current technologies by reading articles and watching youtube tech channels. I also try to always read some technology related book, which I will write about someday in the future.

Summary

I have worked before as a freelancer to earn some extra cash, never as my main source of income.

For me, this month proves to me that freelancing has the potential of achieving my goals. It won't be an easy road as I have many obstacles to surpass. Hopefully, my hard work will be worth it.

I still have a lot to learn, but sharing my experience might be useful for someone else. Why don't you also leave your thoughts here in the comment section?