- Get 1,000,0000 unique visitors to my sites
- Make $100,000
As part of my re-focus though, I’m going to quit freelance writing. That may sound odd, especially considering that I made over $10,000 as a freelance writer last year, but it is the right decision for me. I thought about it long and hard, but two thoughts really drove me over the edge in making the decision to not freelance write, and instead focus on my content.
Quit Freelance Writing – Get More Time
One of the biggest factors that influenced my decision to stop freelance writing was the time commitment involved in it. As I gained more and more clients, who requested more and more work, I just couldn’t keep up. I thought about outsourcing my writing, but then I knew that the quality wouldn’t be the same. I know that my customers kept coming back because of the quality, professionalism, and commitment to service that I offered.
The real push over the edge was during a discussion I had with my wife about my plans for 2013. At this point, we knew we had a baby on the way, and business was booming. Remember, I still work full-time outside of blogging and all my other ventures, and a few sticking points just kept coming up.
- Do we need the money? No, but it’s nice
- Do I enjoy it? Not as much as I enjoy writing my own articles
- If I focused on my sites exclusively, could I write better articles? Yes
- Would writing better articles make more money? Probably
Beyond those questions, the overarching thought about getting more time back at night to spend with my wife and family was very appealing.
Quit Freelance Writing – Earn More Per Hour
Another thing that I thought about was how much I made per hour freelance writing versus other projects I was doing. I think my freelance business was successful because I charged a very reasonable price – $10 for 350 words, or $20 for 500 words.
To put things in perspective, for most articles, I could write 350 or 500 word articles in 20 minutes – so, 3 per hour. This would give me an hourly rate of $30-$60 per hour, which really isn’t that bad. $30 is a little lower than I’d like, but $50 per hour would be $108,000 annually if I kept it up for 40 hours per week.
The trouble comes with burnout. I can only write so many given articles before I really start to slow down. Then, I slow down to the point where I don’t want to write any more – for clients or myself. Then, the hours really start working against me. Instead of 3 per hour, I get down to 1 per hour – and it really isn’t worth it anymore.
Then, let’s look at the other side – let’s say that I write 3 articles per week, so 12 total on The College Investor. That site now earns $1,200 per month, so $100 per article effectively. Since it only takes me about 1-2 hours of work to put together an article, that is still at $50 per hour. But it’s now a $50 per hour that doesn’t include burnout and frustration.
Happiness is Better than Money
Throughout these last few years, I’ve been focused on maximizing my multiple income streams. However, the reason I even have income streams is to maximize the happiness that I can experience in real life. Since I’m pretty much set on material possessions, I don’t really have a need for more money – although it does make things easier and it is a good gauge for how “well” you’re doing.
Instead, I’d rather do what I really love – write for my own websites and see the power of my own writing grow. That’s why getting 1,000,000 unique visitors is Goal #1. Money will come as a side effect of that, it’s natural. However, along with that goal, I’m giving myself back more time that I can spend with my family, which will increase my happiness offline as well.
Is money more important than happiness? Would you give up $10,000 per year?