‘Feck I’m a Freelancer’ -Relationships, Recruitment & Realisation

I have a confession to make- a known fact and shameful admission, I hate Sundays.

Always have.

There it is, I said it. I mean they should be the best day of the week right, the day of rest all that. But as a kid they normally comprised of things I didn’t really want to do, going to church, soggy Sunday dinners, crap TV, visiting relatives that didn’t really like me and crumpets with too much butter. As a late teen there was left over homework and working in retail then as an adult the pressure to be doing something rather than staying in bed alone and hungover, dreading Monday.

And bank holiday Sundays are EVEN WORSE as you feel you should be out doing something even better rather than in my case, over sleeping, cooking soggy fajitas and blogging in the spare room with a Luke warm beer.

I thought a relationship would save me from the bitter sensation of Sunday based loneliness but in actual fact it only made it worse. The sadness and almost jealousy as they left in the afternoon knowing they were off to the pub and you were in for the ultimate treat of last night’s casualty on Iplayer and an early bed.  But it shouldn’t be like that you shouldn’t secome to anxiety because you feel you should be out doing stuff when in reality you’d probably get drunk, spend money you don’t have and spend Monday battling through a three day hangover.

God I sound like a right miserable cow, a one woman monologue to a warbling Smith’s Soundtrack whilst world’s smallest violin plays softly in the background…

I mean it’s not that bad, at least taking the ‘freelance’ work option I don’t have to get out of bed when anyone else tells me too (lazy cow) but this ‘freelance’ lifestyle can cause all kinds of worm holes.

Could you imagine if your love life had a CV?

How would it read? Would potential employees with that special vacancy laugh in your face, decide you weren’t the right fit? Tell you to get more experience or keep your CV on file for when the time was right?

What about freelancers and tempers who wanted to move into a more permanent position and build something lasting with the right firm?

As a recruitment consultant I was always taught that it was a big risk to put freelancers or people who liked to jump about a bit forward for permanent roles it raised cautions.

But what happens when you’ve inadvertently been a relationship ‘freelancer’ for most of your adult life – the odd permanent position here and there but a project by project temp bod, something you’d practically made a career out of…

Is it possible to brave the way to a permanent position where you build a future with no breaks or are you infact fucked?

There’s lots of ways of freelancing…Some times it’s just for an odd project, an intense couple of weeks and then you move onto the next. Sometimes it can be for a few months at a time, sometimes you end up in a permanent but casual relationship with little stability treated like a bit of a dogsbody and you know you’re better than it but can’t leave. Other times you’ll stay for a while, go off and come back again. Then occasionally there’s the magic temp to perm where you start off casual knowing it’s not going to last but with hard work they see the potential and decided they can’t function quite the same without you.

It’s the same with relationships.On a permanent contract there are provisos, more terms more conditions but ultimately more stability. You’re never alone and even when you just can’t face it and you want your own space you have to go in, make the effort and make it work.  But it’s a difficult commitment to get into. There’s the references from others and always that one person whose got that dogey pic of you on social media to show you up. Then there’s the inbetween guys putting in their two pennies, the  recruitment consultants and  stuffy Moira from HR- outside influences who put in their opinion on the hiring. The recruiter for their own self gain like the jealous friend or fat girl in the friend zone. The HR the policy givers, like the family members who watch the company nurture and grow and take the flack when things don’t quite work out- it’s all relevant.

With permanent fixtures comes holiday pay, bonuses and the occasional treat for good behaviour, you get sick leave. They can’t just walk away from you and chuck you when you’re ill, stressed or depressed as much as they might want to , because they have to stick by you and support you, give you a break, cut you some slack and be there where they can as a duty of care. On a freelance contract that doesn’t apply even after four months of intense giving and late nights they can walk away from you and then bitch about you down the pub on a friday night about how you were a pain in the arse who wore too many short skirts.

Occasionally you’ll get that magic temp to perm contract and it’s cut short when the above happens. Or you yourself decide it’s not right. Too many people stay in shit jobs for years upon years, miserable every day or just mediocrely content because it’s convenient but too scared to be unemployed or worse down the job centre (internet dating) and then they jump into the first one that comes along willing to take them as they’re too scared to be without.

It’s far braver and stronger and right in the long run to walk away from something after the four month probationary period then to stick it out and make things worse for yourself. Doesn’t stop it from sucking like hell though.

The sense of failure, you really thought this was going to be the one this time, you’d told everyone about it, everyone was gunning for you, even your bloody gran was proud. To begin with you’re full of excited posts on facebook, then comes the odd rant, then it all starts to dwindle and you delete your employment status from your settings in the hope no one will notice or catch on to all the free time you suddenly have. Just like admitting defeat with a relationship.

Life as a freelancer , the self employed, lone worker was not something I ever intended for myself, just something I fell into and have managed to make work for myself. I just wish I could say the same about my love life…. because the link is uncanny.

I’d forgotten that sad sensation where you feel so lonely, like you can’t breathe, panicking when your phone goes off and not being able to face your room because it lingers of them. Even your bed has their imprint. The trail of their odd socks and empty cider cans mixes with the unwashed plates, old magazines and empty wine bottles to the point you just can’t face any of it. The mould settles inside a Cavern Club Liverpool mug in the windowsill and you’re worried the decay is two deep to save it.

But you try your best and attempt it anyway because you know that one day when you least expected it the right opportunity will come along and that person will choose you to fill their permanent opportunity.

And when that comes along, great but it still won’t stop you from hating sundays…

 

 

 

 

 

 

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