Why I rather be self-employed than work for someone else

man working with a Mac computer
Made in Canva

Looking for a job is like searching for a needle in a haystack. First, it takes years before finding something interesting you want to be and then no one wants to hire you because you don’t have work experience in the field you studied. You don’t get experience because no one wants to hire you. Not even for an internship. You need to be a student to get one of those. It’s even better if you’re young. Bloody age discrimination. All these job ads are a joke too. There’s always a skill you don’t have. Then you need to have a bachelor’s degree in some jobs. In design, for example, that must be some education. It isn’t rocket science. The biggest problem is the lack of work experience. If you work for someone else you have to be the way they want. If you’re good enough for the culture of the company and so on. You also need to be social and outgoing. That means talking nonsense with your co-workers. That’s not a place for an introvert. Working for someone else seems so stressful. Things like that don’t inspire me at all.

I’ve been looking for web design jobs over a year and there’s nothing I could apply to. Most of the jobs are in the Helsinki area. It’s really depressive to look at job ads and boom you need to have at least 3 years of experience. How fun. Maybe I educated myself to the wrong occupation after all. But I have always been into creative things. I could have been like a lot of people. Working in a ‘normal’ job. In a job where you have a better chance to find a job. I’ve chosen this path and it’s too late to turn back. You should stick to your principles and not be like everyone else. A lot of people settle for the job they have because they have to support their family somehow. I only have to support myself so I can do what I want without having to ask permission from someone else. Since I can’t find a job in my field, entrepreneurship is becoming the only solution. I’ve already had clients so I have worked for free. There is a lot of talks you should volunteer first before earning money for your business but I’m past that. If I were a beginner then I could work for free but now when I have some work under my belt it would be wrong.

I’ve thought about entrepreneurship for some time now. I went to the entrepreneurship course earlier this year and my dad is self-employed so I know how it is. So what is stopping me from making the first step, you might ask. Well, like I wrote in this post, it’s difficult for me to start things. Starting a business has its cons and it can’t be taken lightly. There is a lot of rules and politics around it. Especially if you’re unemployed. You’re at the mercy of the unemployment agency. If you show the slightest glimpse of entrepreneurship, they take the benefits away from you. They decide if you’re a full-time or part-time entrepreneur. At least that’s how it works in Finland. It doesn’t matter if you get paid for your work or not. You need to be really careful or you end up with nothing. You have no money to live on and then you’re in a big trouble financially. You can apply for a startup grant before starting a business but it’s no guarantee you get it. The beginning of 2018, you could try entrepreneurship for 4 months without having to worry about losing your benefits. But it seems it doesn’t really work the way it was planned. Some people got more problems than solutions when they tried it. Reading about their experiences doesn’t attract me to try it.

What concerns me even more than the financial side is finding clients and trying to sell my skills. Am I really good enough for people to buy my services? Is there a market for my services? There’s so much to think about so everything seems so overwhelming. I’m not good at marketing myself. I could hire someone to do it but then you need money. The word, networking, is the worse an introvert can go through. I feel like like I’m an outsider when I’m in situations like that. On social media, it feels like no one notices my posts so I’m paranoid I don’t get people to find my business.
Another concern is the contracts you need for your clients. When I was in school it was already written. Of course, there are tips online about what to write in a contract and so on. But still, it concerns me. I’m worried I make mistakes. Everyone does those sometimes so I shouldn’t feel bad about it if I do. We all learn from our mistakes and so what if it doesn’t go the way you want it to. Maybe these are only excuses because I’m scared of a big change like that.

When you read about opinions or experiences about entrepreneurship it’s negative or really positive. Finns have a bad habit of encouraging others in a negative way. Some have the attitude that you shouldn’t try anything because you’re gonna fail anyway. If someone does something with their life and actually succeed, then other Finns are jealous. People make entrepreneurship like it’s really difficult. Maybe they just say so because they don’t want competition. There is so much paperwork when you have a business. Someone has failed at their business so they don’t recommend it to anyone. There is always an excuse. But those people who fail haven’t done things the right way. I never understood why things are made so difficult when there are things that aren’t that bad. There are so many good things being self-employed. I might not have all that it takes but I shouldn’t stop dreaming about it because someone says it shouldn’t be done. Would it be better to be unemployed and not ever try to do something with my life? I’m not one of those who rather sits on the couch and collects benefits the rest of their lives. The thought of having my own working schedule and not having to go to work like everyone else is tempting. That’s much better than search for a job I might never find.