Sunday, January 17, 2016

Boost Your Freelance Career In 5 Ways

If you've been a freelancer or entrepreneur for quite some times, you know the drill during the start of the year. Your business and personal goals should already be in place and your strategies laid. If you haven't written them down, I am sure you already have it in your head the path or career moves you plan to take. But it helps to write your goals down. It is good to revisit them as the year progress and see how well you are doing.


We all wanted improvement in our lives. As a freelancer or an entrepreneur, nobody else would initiate our improvement but ourselves. To help us out on how to do that, I have highlighted some points that we need to look at and consider.

1.  Increase our rate

Inflation rate here in the Philippines averaged at 8.70 percent from 1958 until 2015. How can we beat that?

Aside from getting smart with our money and invest on products that could potentially earn more than inflation, we need to increase our income. That means, we have to increase our rate. But of course, we should be ready to justify by the quality of our work, additional knowledge and new skills we develop.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

5 Health Tips for Freelancers and Remote Workers

Nowadays, more and more people are seeking for a balanced lifestyle. Working remotely or freelancing become a very appealing option especially in busy cities with intense traffic. By working  remotely, we become more in control with our personal lives and health.

During my 6-year work in graveyard shift at the corporate world, I gained 30 pounds. Those were the years of sugar, carbo and caffeine which were like my coping mechanism against stress and sleepiness. Fast forward to 2011 when I decided to work freelance, I got stuck with my old routine. I often work at night, eat a lot with less physical activities. Before I know it, I already put on additional 15 pounds in 3 years.

In a span of 10 years, I've gained a total of 45 pounds. I just hope we are talking about savings here.

It was a wake up call when somebody thought that I was pregnant! And I am not even married yet! 

So, even if it is the holiday season, I made a decision to be on diet and to live in a more active lifestyle. So far, in a span of 3 weeks, I lose 8 pounds without starving myself and over-exercising.

Here are some health tips that I would like to share to freelancers and to virtual or remote workers who are living in a sedentary lifestyle.

1.  Active break from sitting

Everything done in excess is not good. Hence, prolonged sitting is hazardous to our health. The American Cancer Society made a connection between sitting and obesity.

Prolonged standing, however, is not good either. It is not the cure. Standing desk can be part of the solution if it will lead you to do more walking.

Expert suggest an active break from sitting every 30 minutes. This could be doing tasks while standing or walking to get some coffee or water.

Personally, what I do is to work standing while I can. I would often move my legs that way. But I would also sit down if I need to.

From article: 2 Hours of Standing at Work May Boost Your Health

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Upwork's In-Demand Skills

Are we going to acquire new skills or improve what we already have? What are the most in-demand skills in Upwork?

2015 is almost coming to an end. Soon, we will be facing 2016 with our resolutions or goals. Before
this year ends, it would be helpful to review what we've done so far, what's the situation in the industry and what are we going to do about it.

Photo Credit: Upwork

Last November, Upwork listed the top in-demand skills. Here are the top 20:
  1. PHP Development
  2. Graphic Design
  3. Data Entry
  4. Content Writing
  5. Internet Research
  6. Javascript Development
  7. Web Design
  8. HTML5 Development
  9. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
  10. Social Media Marketing
  11. Logo Design
  12. Virtual Assistant
  13. Lead Generation
  14. MySQL Administration
  15. Android App Development
  16. jQuery Development
  17. iOS App Development
  18. Email Marketing
  19. Customer Service
  20. Illustration
To have a thriving freelance business, it is high time that we consider on positioning ourselves in any of the skills enumerated above.

Upwork's prediction for 2016 will soon be posted in the blog. Let's watch out for that.


Thursday, October 1, 2015

Online and Offline Learning For Work At Home Freelancers and Some Events To Attend this Q4

Our progress as a work at home freelancer depends on our hands. Nobody will tell us to do this and that. Hence, we have to design our own career path. While we are enjoying the flexibility of our work and freedom from any corporate rules and policies, let us not forget that we are still doing business.

We have to change our employee mindset to being a business owner or entrepreneur. We need to understand that we have to take charge to where our business is going.

For our business to grow and for us to improve, we need to prioritize our education. It could be through self-study or attending seminars or workshops.

If we have problems, we can always talk to our friends. Regarding our business, we need to talk and learn advice from people who are experienced and expert in our field. Many of our concerns are not the concern of our family and friends. So, basically they won't understand what we are going through. Some people may see that we are lucky because we work at home or we are freelancers--we don't go to the office, we don't have to face the traffic and we don't have a boss. But they never know our difficulties with regards to finding a place to stay with reliable internet access, finding coffee shops that are open 24/7, comfortable seats or work space, paying our monthly contributions, handling distractions at home (like uninvited guests, phone calls, kids, chores, etc.), marketing ourselves, finding new clients, and getting enough sleep.

Online Learning

Everything that we need to learn is now online. Almost any topic that you can possibly think of is searchable. And what amazes me most is that you can consume all the information for free. In the past, we have to spend thousands of pesos to buy books and encyclopedia. And, gosh, they are heavy and they accumulate dust. Now, learning can happen in our finger tips.

We have to thank SEO and Google's algorithm that makes relevant content easy to find. You can just type your keywords and in just a matter of seconds, Google can give you thousands of searches. Of course, you don't have to browse everything. Often, we just click the first few pages of the search results. Well, not unless if you are desperate enough to check the next 50 pages.

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