Our sailors’ words: what does it take to live a freelance life?

So, lately we have been wondering what was driving our coworkers to come and share their workday with others. We asked them to tell us about their motivations. What makes them wake up every day? What makes their lives so special? Here are some surprising and not so surprising facts that we discovered.

1) The co-working spaces aren’t just for freelancers and entrepreneurs.

You might be surprised to know that not all (of our) co-workers are entrepreneurs. Some of us have a part-time job and go freelance for just a few days a week. One of our sailors pointed out a great advantage of combining a freelance life with a part time job:

“Coupled with a stable part time, I have the luxury of choosing the missions and the life I want”

There is actually a growing tendency among workers to combine two or more part time jobs: we call them slashers. Their work life (or should we say lives?) is multiple, varied, sometimes exhausting and overwhelming, but certainly flexible. Some co-workers are slashers, as they would typically need an office from time to time, on demand. One of them testified: 

“Having two [or more] different work rhythms and work lives is actually very stimulating and enriching because it allows me to constantly be able to take distance from a particular task or job by switching to the other”.

Even more surprisingly, we have actual employees among our sailors, who decided to spend some of their working time with us. At Le Phare du Kanaal, we also have a PhD student in Social psychology that comes regularly. For him, the important advantage that he takes out of the experience is the “change of scenery” and, simply, a “better work/life balance”.

2) Co-working spaces aren’t just for geeks and creative people.

There are, actually, all kinds of job profiles at le Phare du Kanaal: people working in IT and entrepreneurs, sure, but also architect, event planner, teacher, designers, stylist, consultants, writers, urban planners, and so on and so forth. 

Those are just a peak of the possible types of job that you can meet within our walls, so imagine if you take a bigger scale. Not only are the profiles varied, but they’re not all creative people who come to enhance their creativity. Here comes the example of the PhD student. Isn’t everything is possible, after all?

3) Entrepreneur or freelance life is about freedom.

That is no surprise that being your own boss makes you feel a lot more freedom than working for a company (and follow their rules instead of your own). One of our sailors put is marvelously well: “I would rather live my dreams than working for someone else’s [dreams]”. Well, who can blame ya?

With freedom comes more responsibility, but also creativity. Sometimes you experience a lot of pressure. But it’s all in your hands, so you’ll manage. According to our sailors, it’s enriching, dynamic, fun and challenging! And if you ever want to make a change, you can. And of course, you get to know a lot of people.

So, to answer our very first question: what does it take to be a freelancer? Who is a freelance life for? The answer is simple: The willingness to experience new things and to be free. The rest is about daring. It’s not about certain jobs that would do better than others. It’s not just for adventurous risk-takers since you can choose in-between options. So what are you waiting for? Get out there. Experiment. Fail and learn from it. Try it again. You can do it: all is possible.

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