Learning A High-income Skill Is Just A Waste Of Time And Resources, Or Is It?

The greatest misconception Nigerian freelancers have is learning XY skill automatically gives them access to a job or working with clients, but this is not always so, as many freelancers are frustrated when they don’t get it and end up reverting to their corporate 9-5 jobs. In this article, I debunk this myth, by showing them ways to get out of this trap and make money like they’ve always wanted to.

Well, to answer the question, it can and can't be. What do I mean? For those who are hearing this for the first time or who have and still don't know the meaning. Definition High-income skills are professional abilities that earn you a six-figure salary. The first thing to the note is that they are in high demand, which means they're a lot of job opportunities out there.

Multiple clients and companies want to hire you, which is good because, in Nigeria, finding a good job that pays really well is difficult. Your 9-5 might not be doing you really well, and you just have to switch. But is it really about the pay? If you love your job, I mean if you find fulfillment in it, then, by all means, stay. This is for those stuck, who need a way to escape from their 9-5 but are scared because they don't know how and have people depending on their income. They have to sacrifice their time, sleep, and dreams, all because the system is messed up.

Also, how many of these jobs pay really well? Before you earn what a social media manager is earning in six months, you'd have to climb up the career ladder till you reach your 3rd or 4th year. Seems a little unfair, doesn't it? Is all hope lost?… Lastly, the six-figure salary is worth raving about. It's crazy! With skill, you can earn $10 000 to $20,000 per month. (Last time I checked, a dollar is now 720 Naira, so do the math...mind-blowing, right?)

The best web designer jobs pay up to $95,500 per year, that's twice the amount a banker earns in that same year. Did I say twice? I meant thrice. So, what are you waiting for? Go ahead! Jump right into it! But I might warn you; it's not as easy as it seems. Why it might be just a waste of time

I love financial freedom(if I didn't, I would not have written a 1500-word article on it), that's by the way, but honestly, you should check it out, www.divinelaoye.com. Have you done that? I guess we can continue.

I love what it does for the average human. But many do not make so much progress because they haven't learned how to navigate through the online space and break through the clutter of adverts and find the right fit for them. Or maybe they have and have chosen to settle with data science or graphic design but have a hard time finding clients, or their job application is being turned down by every company they apply to.

All the training, courses, books, and knowledge you've gathered can be put to waste if you don't know how to monetize what you've learned. It's one thing to learn a skill, and it's another thing to monetize it. It doesn't just end like that; there's much more to be done. And many seem to skip that part—the part of much more to be done. I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but it's going to take a lot. I know you were already excited and eager to start making lots of money, but I'll be a bad person if I don't let you in on the secrets of high-flying freelancers. Are you ready for it? I guess I can walk you through the process, but before I do that, for those who are still doubting, I'd like to share my story.

My Story

At the beginning of the year, I decided to pick up a skill and make money from it, so I chose to Copywrite. There were so many options to pick from―digital marketing, business communication, web design, and data science. Once I received a certificate[not to brag though, but I was the second-highest in my exams], I jumped into the job market, young, naive, and greedy enough to lay my hands on any project that came my way.

Did they come? Yes! Did I land the job? No! What happened? I had the skill, I knew how to network, I learned a thing or two about marketing, I went as far as reading many more books on copywriting, and I practiced every day, but with all these, I was still at a disadvantage. I began to ask myself questions, where did I go wrong? Is this thing really a scam? Or is it for a selected few?

I gave up and decided to work with my degree[I have a B.SC. in microbiology], I would work with the big industries―NNPC, SHELL, Government or Private hospitals, and Argo Allied Industries, but deep down, I knew I wasn't happy. I wanted something more, something different; I had dreams, big dreams. Furthermore, I didn't want to get stuck in the system of having to work under someone, imprisoned, kept in bondage, and never allowed to do what I loved. Not only that, I loved writing, but how was I going to make money from it if everyone kept turning me down? It would be better to revert and stick to my 9-5.

Turning point

You know that saying that there's a light at the end of every tunnel—yeah, that's what happened to me when I stumbled across personal branding in a book by Kyle Placy and Erin Deckers and learned two major things that helped me grow to this level.

The Discipline factor

The fact that you have a passion, hobby or whatever it is, doesn't mean you don't have to work hard at it. I love it when people have big dreams, but when bills and taxes come knocking on the door. When are you going to do it then? I'm not saying it doesn't pay the bills. It does. But you have to work hard. Dreaming is not enough. If you decide to stick with freelancing, you have to treat it as a full-time career.  

 "Hard work beats talent when talent doesn't work hard." — Tim Notke, basketball coach.

 Other Key Factors

There are some other key factors that we'd consider in the next article. Asides from determining to work hard, there are other things to consider. Trust me, you'll face a lot of hardship trying to land your first job or client, no matter how good you are. If you neglect these things, you're going to have to suffer for it. Hard work makes you effective, but working smart makes you much more effective. It's one thing to have zeal, but zeal without knowledge would destroy.

There are some other key factors that we'd consider in the next article, from building a network with other freelancers, the power of Facebook groups, sending out warm emails to your prospects, reinventing your CV to fit into your role, building a portfolio, and many more. Stay tuned!

PS; I mentioned something like an article on financial freedom; the truth is, it's an article I'm working on and will publish real soon, so don't click on the link. And by the way, this is me building a portfolio, what many would call a test practice. This also leads me to introduce myself; I'm Divine Laoye, a B2C and B2B content writer who loves helping brands grow with content and social media marketing. If you want to connect with me, my social media handles are on my profile. And if you think this content is helpful, then share it with someone who needs it. Also, you can check out the story I'm writing-When, God writes A Love story; chapter three will be out very soon.

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