Woah, a bit of a negative post today, hey? If you’ve read any of my self employed posts before, you’ll know that usually I’m pretty positive about it all, because it works for me. Especially since having Ada, it means she only goes into nursery two mornings a week, so no massive nursery fee bill at the end of the month, and more time spent with my daughter.
But alas, things can’t be sweetness and light all the time, and unfortunately there are a couple things that I wish could just didn’t exist, quite frankly.
U N C E R T A I N H O U R S
Whilst this can sometimes be a positive as I can just work outside of Kane’s working hours/time with Ada, most of the time I do wish I had a few hours to just be able to sit down and work. Preferably during the day too, rather than at night when I should have my feet up watching Corrie.
It’s hard to switch off being self employed, so you do find yourself responding to emails in bed or planning the next day’s work over breakfast, when really you want to just be focusing on one thing.
T A X R E T U R N S
January’s a great month, right? All the excitement that comes with winter has been and gone, and we’re left skint, freezing cold, and if you’re self employed like me, a nice tax bill to pay at the end of the month. Just delightful.
Growing up we’re really taught very little about the stuff that happens in adult life, like taxes, and personally I think it’d be helpful if they filled us in a little more. Sorry to be that person, but trigonometry? Never used that in my adult life. Learning about taxation and filling tax returns? Would have helped! Because I was pretty clueless when I became self employed all those years ago.
I was actually pretty on the ball this year, and whereas I saw people on Instagram frantically digging about in box files with endless amounts of receipts stuffed inside just days before the end of the month, I had mine filed months in advance. It was just paying it that was the hard part!
Luckily, there are people to help, and Contact Numbers UK are running a #LetsTalkTax campaign, encouraging people to give HMRC a ring
when there’s anything you feel you want to talk through; whether that’s if you’re owed a tax refund, or just finding out about their services. Sometimes the thought of filling your first tax return can be so overwhelming, so the #LetsTalkTax campaign is so great for getting people talking about it more and easing any anxieties they might have.
P E O P L E A S S U M I N G Y O U D O N A F F A L L
Aaah, yes. The lovely side of being self employed, people thinking because you’re at home you do nothing with your days. When I first had Ada I had about a week off after her birth before going back to work; I struggled so much to find the energy and time to get anything done, amongst breastfeeding and sleepless nights, I was getting remarks like “you’ve got the best of both worlds, being able to work at home with a baby”, rather than being on a paid maternity leave. Best of both worlds. Yes.
For the most part I’m sure people get it, although I tend to find older generations don’t understand at all. In fact I think my Grandad probably thinks I’m on the dole.
U N S T A B L E I N C O M E
This is probably the hardest part of being self employed, not knowing where your next payment is coming from. Hopefully you’ll have a few regular ones you can guarantee on, but if not it can be a bit of a scary place.
I sometimes think it must be nice to have a “pay day”, and have a nice big chunk of income hit your bank account (although I’m sure towards the end of the month must suck, too) – getting little dribs and drabs does have it’s benefits though, and it keeps me from dropping £100 on ASOS orders.
L O N E L I N E S S
This can be a hard one too, especially when I spend most of my time with a two year old – although it is easier now she understands (for the most part!) what I’m actually saying, and I can get some conversation back.
But when Kane comes home from work, and he regales me with all his stories of what he’s been up to at work and the people he’s spent time with, I have none of that. And even for a person that likes spending time on their own, sometimes the loneliness is awful.
I guess that’s one of the reasons why through everything, I’ve always carried on blogging, because the community behind it all, everyone on Instagram and Twitter, even though they’re not “real life” friends – it helps.
Despite this sounding so negative, I really do love what I do and our situation, so I wouldn’t change it at all. Like anything in life, not everything is perfect, so in the effort of keeping things real, I thought I’d share these today.
If you’re self employed, are there any things you dislike about it?
*Written in collaboration with Contact Numbers UK.