How to transition from 9-5 jobs to freelancing.

How to transition from 9-5 jobs to freelancing.

This article is focused on tips on how to transition from 9-5 jobs to freelancing, and how to succeed as a new freelancer. The fact remains that 9 to 5 jobs are not easy but life is harder as a freelancer if you don’t go through the normal process or have adequate knowledge of how to transition from 9 to 5 jobs to freelancing.

There is no doubt that freelancing is increasingly dominating the job sector worldwide, many people are leaving their full time jobs for freelancing jobs which is mostly fueled as a result of the rise in the different economic factors. Such as recession, economic melt-down, introduction of Artificial Intelligence which causes loss of jobs etc.

Mostly, transitioning from 9-5 jobs to freelancing can be such a huge task for newbies who are new to the sector as freelancing is not for the fainthearted, that is why I have dedicated time to share my experience with you and write out this article on how to transition from 9 to 5 jobs to freelancing.

Freelancing comes with a package of total comfort hereby giving freelancers the urge to relax. But if you truly want to conquer your industry, you will take the tips shared in this article seriously. Below are necessary tips that that will help you transition from your 9-5 jobs to freelancing.

How to transition from 9-5 jobs to freelancing – 10 Tips

1. Make your research:

Before delving or venturing into freelancing, it is necessary for you to conduct some research. Have a thorough knowledge on the in-depth knowledge of freelancing. The demands, practices and requirements, how to target and find customers and settle their preferences should be first put into consideration before venturing into it. Freelancing is not easy and leaving your job for it must be strategic. So do your research thoroughly to see if it’s worth it or not before leaving your 9-5 job.

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Also, have a personal intimate moment with a successful freelancer who has already been in the field, watch online videos, and seek guidance from other people in the field. Don’t forget, life without pay for you might be difficult. So do extensive research before dropping your resignation letter.

2. Build a strong network for referrals before resigning:

Not only for freelancers, but for every individual or worker, it is necessary to build a strong network with family and friends, as such an individual will derive solace from their relatives. As a freelancer looking for gigs, the first place to start job hunting is from the strong network of family and friends. Try and reach out to family, friends, colleagues, far and near relatives. One might actually be surprised on who can render some help.

Although, one might have a small network connection, but, on a close marking, when looking further, one might discover, there is a larger option of choices than one might think. As Most Companies still sought talent and employers through applications, but some proposals are already granted  from the inside by top managers even before the slots are being posted or advertised. Try as much as possible to create account and network on freelance marketplace like, upwork, etc

3. Find a niche:

Find a niche and work towards achieving success in that niche. As a freelancer, work in that your area, focus all your attention and content in that specific area. Although, a times as a freelancer might decide to generalize on other topics that catch much attention. But you must be good at one thing. That one thing is your niche and you must learn to be the best in it. Thats how you can get gigs regularly and earn lots of money from return customers.

Most clients prefer working with freelancers who have a specialty instead of the general ones, as they believe they have more knowledge on that specific field than the general ones.

Finding a niche helps to build such a freelancers experience, skills, and reputation within their specific domain, hereby enhancing their  prospects of securing freelance opportunities from reliable companies that seek experts in a particular field.

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4. Make plans:

As the popular philosophical saying goes, “If you fail to plan, then you are planning to fail”. For every business, planning is an important factor to consider even before doing the business. Same thing applies to freelancing. This planning covers a whole lot including the financial aspects, which is how to raise emergency funds since you no longer have a guaranteed income through 9-5 jobs, how to manage cost of living, which includes affording essential expenses such as data, electricity and important bills.

Make adequate plans before leaving your current job. This can not be overemphasized because starting life as a freelancer wont come easy. I have been there and I am telling you this from experience. Be prepared for the unexpected at all times and be strategic.


Setting boundaries from work and personal life requires a freelancer setting boundaries for themselves, placing a little gap between them and their colleagues to avoid overworking while at work. You must set boundaries between your current job and freelance gigs while maintaining your 9-5 jobs. This is the major way you can retain your job and not get fired before you resign.
It is a good advise to inculcate the habit of avoiding thinking about upcoming projects and letting it affect your current work. Thus, it is advisable for such a person to Separate their personal freelance gigs away from work. So, that at the end of the day you won’t run into troubles.

6. Networking with other freelancers:

For one to grow in ones field, it is important that one networks with other freelancers by joining their forum, attend industry events, join online and physical freelance communities like, and engage in discussions with able bodied people with sane minds.

Also, social media can be used to connect with potential and reliable clients, as it helps to develop solid connections that can lead to multiple referrals and new opportunities, also helping in building a good reputation. Most times, networking helps in building a healthy work-life balance.

7. Be skilled:

To network with other freelancers, it is necessary for such an individual to be skilled effectively by equipping themselves with some specific demanding freelancing skills so as to be and remain effective, relevant and competitive in the industry.

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Taking online courses and some certification courses in that specific field can also be an added advantage. Also surfing through online learning platforms is not a bad idea. Pay attention to perfecting your skills before leaving your 9-5 jobs so you wont run into avoidable rejections when you start job hunting as a freelancer. Be wise, learn a skill and perfect it.

8. Create an online presence:

By creating an online presence, this means creating a  website or blog that is professional likewise showcasing your works, projects, and achievements. Create and Develop an online profile or portfolio that provides a comprehensive view and list of your skills and experiences. It is not just about creating a profile online, but also being consistent on all major online platforms, as it is very essential for a productive and professional image.

9. Develop effective time management skills:

Time management skills is a very vital skill to inculcate when hoping to transition to freelancing as it helps to create a better work life balance. You will need a lot of work-life balance as a freelancer. So don’t take this advice as a joke.

Effective time management skill is a very vital aspect when it comes to having a proper work-life balance and you must not joke with it because, most freelancers always forget this part, as a result, they end up getting choked up with work and rarely have time for their personal life.

As you are planning to transition from 9-5 jobs to freelancing, you must organize and prioritize tasks efficiently, to ensure that you create more time for work and responsibilities as well as creating time for your personal self, such as spending quality time with family, engaging in hobbies and routines, or pursuing personal goals.

10. Gain some experience:

Lack of experience is a major problem of many  freelancers. Many firms and organizations prefer to give out their freelance gigs to freelancers who have more experience. So leverage on your 9-5 jobs before resigning. Get as much knowledge and experience that would be needed for you to succeed as a freelancer before resigning.

However, if you have already resigned, and want to overcome this challenge, you will need to look for opportunities to gain experience, such as working for people at cheaper rates or even free so as to gain some grounds. After that, you can position yourself for high paying gigs. But always remember to place skill and experience first before earning. Thanks for reading and I hope to read some comments from you. 

Israel Otoijamun

Israel Otoijamun is the founder and CEO of With years of experience in the digital space, I have earned a lot from freelancing, both on Upwork and fiver, thanks to my digital skills. My goal for creating this platform is to help digitally skilled people earn a living through their skills online, irrespective of their location and background. Please feel free to reach out to me if you have enquiries. E-mail: ✌️

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