About a year ago I decided to take the plunge and start relying on myself and my own business for money. I had been fortunate enough to have saved a base amount of money from constantly freelancing in the summer and working as much as I could to provide myself with a safety net from which I could start doing my own thing. This of course began on a small scale, doing vocal reels for actors, working for free (yes free) to gain experience and to get a feel for the industry to see where I fit. In just one short year I feel as if I have achieved a lot – even if just within myself. I’m not saying I have it all figured out or that I know exactly where this path will take me but I thought it might be interesting to dig deep and pick out the real reasons why I work for myself. So here we go:
Master of My Own Time
The tiny OCD part of me LOVES schedules – I like to know exactly what I’m doing, when and I think, in some ways, I love routine. But the ability to schedule my own week and mould my own time (which as I am getting busier and busier gets a lot more difficult) is such a luxury for me. I know when I work best so can schedule things to my advantage, for example – I wouldn’t call myself a morning person (those of you who know me, know this.) so I leave myself sufficient time in the morning to wake up, have coffee, work by myself a little – all setting me up right for the day.
Choose My Own Projects
This one is quite obvious – I know what I am good at so to a certain extent I can choose what I want to take on. I have the freedom to take on personal projects, as well as balancing it out with client work. However I won’t accept something if I don’t think I can do the best job possible. I want to provide value to my client, not a headache therefore I will be the first one to say ‘I don’t think I am quite right for your project’ while of course offering my help in other areas if they need it.
The Harder I Work, The More I Earn
I think the most rewarding thing is the harder I work, the more I earn. If I work 8am – 10pm and use my time efficiently and affectively I see the return. While, to be honest, I don’t really give two s***s about money, I care more about happiness and achievements – it is a necessary part of life and in order to afford new and better equipments and give myself more life experience one has to earn a certain amount. The more effort and time I put in, the more satisfied I am with the life I am leading and the more I reap the financial reward.
As I have expressed on this blog many times – I think as humans we should always be learning and pushing ourselves. I feel as a (current) team of one, with occasional assistants, I am presented with the opportunity to learn the WHOLE operation – that being everything from Social Media marketing to Lighting. There is not one element of my business that I don’t know everything about and as I expand and my knowledge does as well. I’m learning at 10x the speed of the version of me getting coffee for someone in a large organisation.
Similar theme to the last point is the skills I have gained will help me forever. In the last fews years I have mastered a number of things I always thought might not be for me from my time before all this this, climbing ladders and rigging lights to mastering WordPress. Actually getting to know the camera and new ways for film to all the new technology that is emerging everyday.
Work From Anywhere
I have family all over the world, from the USA to England to Spain so the ability to work from anywhere is vital for me. I think family and the relationships we form in life as the REASON we are alive so we must not loose them. I see both my brothers and my wonderful nieces and nephews at least once a year – it is so important because you never know what I round the corner or when I may have to commit even more to being somewhere more, at 23 I am able to make the decision to spend a few weeks in the USA or a few weeks in Spain and keep up with everything I am working towards.
This is a BIG one. I create my own reputation, I don’t have anyone ‘doing it for me.’ If theres a problem, I fix it. If theres a question, I answer it. Its very important to me that you go into a situation and be positive and easy to work with. Everyone from the director to the runner is important to the success of the production. Everyone should be treated with equal respect and this should ALWAYS be upheld. I’ve been in too many situations where theres a clear lack of respect for someone who’s working just as hard, if not harder sometimes that the ‘big dogs.’ It is infuriating – while its understandable that not everyone will get on and i’m not forcing everyone to play ‘happy workplace.’ Its the simple fact that everyone is human and everyone deserves respect.
Relationships / Connections
Building connections and relationships as I move forward daily is extremely important to be successful. I will be the first one to admit that I am not the best with names (I am trying!!) but I feel as if I can make an impact on the people I meet and build on that, it can only help in the long run. This is true whether you are building something or working for someone. Relationships and connections should always come first. A common mis-conception of having your own business is that you are free to make ALL decisions but the reality is that the your boss becomes your client and the more you can connect with them and their needs the better. Some clients even end up becoming friends because of how much we both put into the project.
Pride In My Work
Simple. I love what I do. I take pride in what I do.
Its hard, but I have it in me, i’m not a fan of easy…
I will be the first one to admit that it is not easy – if you want an easy life, get a job that suits you, take your holiday and enjoy life. I am enjoying life, just in a different way. I am always on call even on family breaks, I have to work but I enjoy that. I am satisfied with that life. I am responsible for my name, my work and my reputation.
Thats it! That is my reasons for doing what I do. I love it, I wake up everyday and love what I am doing. I’m not saying that I wouldn’t jump at the chance to work with (or for) people I respect but my point is, I can do that on my own terms and make my own decisions. I am lucky, I understand that, I am fortunate to be born into the family I have been born into and the time and places I have grown up in but I do work hard and strive to work harder every day. Every achievement, every failure and every moment of pure joy is of my creation.
As always I would like to thank everyone who supports me ALWAYS. I could not do it without you and thank you for reading this (slightly long winded) blog entry. You may have noticed we have moved over to www.jakewaby.com – a slight re-brand which was a long time coming. You can still access all the old content on this site. Look forward to chatting you again soon, in blog form. J Xx