Some might think that being a translator is an easy life – what could be more pleasant and enjoyable than working from the comfort of your home? This also applies to any other job which is done from home. Well, despite public belief, the life of a freelance translator is not as easy as you may think. A translator working from home could have a hectic schedule and may get to the point where it can interfere with his personal life. Some of the translators working from home may say they don’t really have a personal life as they’re too busy with their work. As a translator, I believe them as it usually happens to me as well.
The life of a freelance translator is a hard one. While there could be days when there are only a few translation jobs I need to work on, most of the others I get so busy working on my assignments that I forget I also have a personal life.
Life of a freelance translator: the dark side
Beside translation, there are other things a freelance translator has to worry about, things that contribute to the ever increasing level of stress, things that could make your life even worse than it already is.
- I have no translation jobs to work on. Like anyone else, a translator has to make money in order to make ends meet. A regular employee doesn’t have to worry about this but when it comes to freelancing it gets complicated. Most have to struggle to bring in enough to ensure a comfortable life for them and their families.
- I have a job I need to finish yesterday. This is rather common, clients usually request tight deadlines and you have to stick to that. Since the client is your boss, you will have to deal with getting the job done in time, responding to additional requests, fix anything the client doesn’t like and so on.
The need to keep a balance between working time and personal life
Keeping a healthy balance between personal life and professional life is hard as they tend to mix together. If you need to spend more time working and this happens on a daily basis, you can burn yourself out pretty quickly. What can be done about this? There are two ways to deal with this: you either take on fewer jobs or you can look for ways to increase your productivity.
Benefits of being a freelance translator
While the levels of stress are usually higher when you are a freelancer, there are some benefits in the life of a freelance translator. A major benefit is the fact that you don’t have to wear a tie and you are able to work from home, which implies lower costs. Another benefit is that you can take a break any time you want as you are your own boss. You can also do your errands whenever you have a window.
As you can see, the life of a freelance translator is not an easy one, but all in all, it is a nice life. If I were to choose again, I would stick to my decision of being a freelance translator. How about you?