I got interested in tech and programming, one of the reasons why I wanted to do it was because it allowes working remotely. Staying home, getting some money and avoiding the office treadmill. In 2016, I learned some HTML, CSS and Javascript and jumped on trying to get a job on upwork. I succeeded within less than a week, and a first normal client appeared, willing to pay me just enough to cover my bills. Then, after about half of a year from that, I quit working like that and here is why:

  • A constant struggle with motivation. It was tough, I got used to a schedule where I woke up late, kept it and it wasn’t easy at all to get up in the morning or even at midday and start working. Laziness and lack of encouragement made it really hard for me to stay tuned and to do my job fast.
  • Lots of bad jobs. There were many jobs posted on upwork that seemed fine from the description, but there was something bad about that job that would come up later. So, the need to filter out cheapskates, crappy projects, real scam or inadequate clients took quite a bit of time and energy.
  • Bad environment for learning. My progress as a professional was quite bad, because of all the factors listed above, I didn’t really learn as much, having to spend time looking for clients, filtering them out, struggling to work etc.
  • Worse opportunities for immigration. I’m mildly interested in traveling and immigration due to variety of reasons that I’m not going to talk about in this post. And working like that would make it harder for the dreams to come true.
  • Low pay. In general, a good professional working for a company, would earn much more than freelancing.
  • There was a problem with money withdrawal. At the time, neither Skill nor PayPal worked in Ukraine. In fact, I noticed a lot of political bullshit there, because, many sites or services just did not provide services for people living in Ukraine. They would block me out or write something like - “Sorry, but you can’t use our precious piece of crap because you’re a Ukrainian”. So, it was even kind of tough to figure out how to get money I earned.
  • Another awful thing was that it took forever for Upwork to proceed an invoice and, therefore, money, that I earned in July, I’d be able to get only around the end of August minus all kinds of fees from different online payment systems etc. With my hourly rate it was a real pain in the ass. If I was getting 20 or 30$ per I would not have cared but with the experience I had at the time I could have gotten only jobs that paid so little and even that money I wouldn’t see in time, delaying paying my bills and keeping me really financially insecure.

So, those were the reasons why I decided not to build an online career and rather try working at an office. Of course it would have been possible to overcome it and keep trying, but I saw clearly that all of it combined, overweighted possible good outcomes.

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