It has almost been a month since I was laid off from my corporate job. Since then, I have been freelancing, blogging and teaching Pilates.

I knew the layoff was coming back in November 2014, and in fact, I was already making my plans to transition into freelancing at that time. I began my Pilates certification in February 2014 with the intent of following my dreams and leaving my desk job. That’s why getting laid off was a good thing in my case (most people don’t look forward to a layoff).

CloudPeeps has been an integral part of making this transition possible for me by opening a world of freelance possibilities.

I have learned quite a bit in this last month. I went from being a full-time employee to being my own boss, managing several income streams. I don’t make a ton of money yet, but it’s enough to get by for now. I have big dreams for the future. I wanted to share a few tips that have helped me make this transition from steady paycheck to a jane of all trades to help you meet your future dreams when leaving corporate.

1) Make a plan of attack

This is a big one. If you are getting ready to quit your job and pursue freelancing, make sure you have some kind of plan. I picked up a client through CloudPeeps about a month before I was going to be laid off. Being able to establish that relationship helped tremendously. I also lined up interviews at different Pilates studios in San Diego so I could pick up a few more classes once I had the time available.

Write down your goals whether they’re income-specific or just personal growth related. Having a goal you’re passionate about is very important when you are working for yourself. When you’re an employee, someone is usually making the big decisions for you, so having your own goals as a freelancer will help keep you on track.

2) Keep a regular schedule

It is so easy to waste time when you work for yourself. This is one of the challenges I have faced in the past month. I have slept in too many days this past month, so my next goal is to get up at 8am every day of the week and reserve only Sunday for sleeping in. I feel like I have wasted some valuable productivity time.

The great thing about freelancing is you can work when you want, so find what works the best for you and try sticking with it. Maybe you work best in the morning with just some coffee and have a late breakfast, or perhaps you like to workout first thing in the morning and start working around 10am. You need to find your groove as soon as you can. I promise it will help you feel so much more productive and accomplished with each passing day.

3) Find a passion project

My passion project is my blog CohesiveFitness.com. I started the blog two weeks before my last day of work, and have been contributing three posts per week ever since. This is a way for me to combine my love of health and fitness with my love of writing and educating. I eventually plan to monetize the blog by creating workout programs to sell. I will also be offering online personal training eventually. My blog gets me amped up everyday. There is something magical about being able to express what you love and share it with the world.

No matter what your passion project is, make sure you carve out time for it. As a freelancer, it’s very easy to feel like you need to be working all the time — even more than when you were working full time. A passion project will help you still feel sane, get your creativity flowing, and benefit your freelance clients in the end because you can deliver your best work.

With a little planning and dedication, you can make your dreams come true. It takes a lot of guts to make changes in how you manage your life and work, but all risks come with rewards. I wish nothing but a dream filled future for all of you.

If you’re considering making the leap, start working on your first freelance jobs with CloudPeeps today. 

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Stephanie Benton is a STOTT PILATES® Certified Instructor, Healthy Living Blogger and freelancer living in San Diego California.
  • From Desk to Dawn

    Very useful! I think sticking to a routine is extremely important. I’ve just taken the plunge and left corplife and couldn’t be happier!