How to Start Freelancing While working full time.

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How to Start Freelancing While working full time.

Many people ask me about Start Freelancing While working full time. This is possibly because they have challenges with their income or they have issues with job satisfaction so they need to start freelancing while working full time.

You have got a 9-5 job, and you want to freelance on the side, right? Is it ethical to run a freelance business while working full time? I’ve never done this but I have friends that have. 

Similarly, I’ve managed an academic lifestyle with freelancing and getting clients on the side. I don’t think this is totally the same basis but it’s close by except for the legal repercussions involved in freelancing. 

Also, I wouldn’t advise anyone to drop their full time job and jump into freelancing directly too. So, it’s just better to run both together until you find a very strong foot in freelancing.

With reference to experiences from friends and other freelancers around me, this article is going to run you through starting freelancing with your 9-5. 

Where do we start? 

Before answering the question of how to start freelancing while working full time, you might want to check out this article; Freelancing Skills With Low Competition In 2024 – 5 Easy skills


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Can You Start Freelancing When You Are Working Full Time? 

Of course, it is possible to run a freelance business while working full time and still achieve a lot of success. 

However, this depends on your job. Legally, you can not take on any other employee proceeding or contracts with another company when working for some company. 

If you do, you might be penalised just for hoping for another set of bucks from freelancing. 

 You need to describe the scope of your contract and job with your present employee first, before that freelancing you are looking into. Perhaps even consult your employee. 

Similarly, you should be able to deliver your optimal service at your present workspace even after starting freelancing. This is an important note you need to take. 

How Do I Know If I Can Freelance When I’m Employed?

Freelancing with 9-5 can only be determined by the condition of your job and deliverables. So, these are what you should look into first: 

  1. Employment contract
  2. Consult your boss or manager
  3. Make sure you can still deliver optimum returns where you work
  4.  Get approval from your management team.

Come to think of it, Isn’t it possible to become a freelancer without the knowledge of your present employer? It is. However, over time, what if they discover? And that is against your employment contract? 

How to Balance Freelance Work While Working Full-Time

As much as you need to deliver optimally at your present workplace, your dedication shouldn’t shiver to a client’s project as a freelancer. You would need to balance your lifestyle between that present job and the ones you are looking forward to. 

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So, here are a few tips to balance out that life: 

1.       Prioritize Your Full Time Job 

I understand you need a bigger pay and probably, your job isn’t as satisfying in terms of the cash flow, but then, you need to take it as seriously as possible. 

Prioritizing your full time job should be the first thing on your mind, even when you are stuck between the formal.and a deadline for a freelance clients. 

2.  Know Your Worth

If you need a higher pay or more freedom in your job, you should probably discuss it with your employers first. Professionally, there is nothing wrong with this. 

Probably, if you aren’t satisfied with the outcome of this, then you can start nursing the idea of freelancing. Having an increased return from one job, is better than dividing your attention between your main job and freelancing. 

3. Partner With Other Freelancers 

Another way you can run freelancing with 9-5 is to partner with another freelancer. The only issue here is trust.

You can take on the process of delivering the service while the other freelancers work on getting the clients, then you guys split the income.

Similarly, you can work for drop servicing agencies or just hire closing agencies to do the work of closing your clients while you make your money back.   

4. Set Clear Expectation

At your 9-5 job, you might not be in total control of this since you would have to be working based on the team or employer goals. 

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However, as a freelancer, you have the freedom to communicate properly with your client. Explain how you would be able to approach a client’s work and why they would give you a longer duration to submit their project. 

5. Schedule Yourself

The best thing you can do is to put yourself on a hinge of schedules and work by it. Plan out your weeks or days before they even come. 

Then, divide these plans into achievable pieces overtime. If you can get this done, you wouldn’t be wearing yourself out over submitting last minute projects. 


Working as a freelancer, while still stuck at a 9-5 can be very tricky but not so difficult. You just have to be ready to manage your time and efficiency around both income processes. 

Nevertheless, you should understand that everything wouldn’t work out at all times. So, learn to relieve yourself of the stress of freelance projects that would reduce your effectiveness and cause burn out. 


Author Since: November 16, 2023

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