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First-Time Mom’s Cool Client Lets Her Work on Her Free Time

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One of the great things about freelancing is this: you don’t have to choose between a career or family.

Because it IS possible to build a freelancing business while raising your children.

And this is what first-time mom Fatima is doing.

She got her first client before she gave birth.

And the best part is her client lets her work in her free time! 😉

She’ll tell us more about it on this replay.

Introduction

Fatima Glory Fedelis is a 29 year old first-time mom. She worked in the corporate world for 8 years but decided to resign to fulfill her dream which is being a full-time mom and at the same time being able to financially provide for her family. It wasn’t an easy transition but she managed to overcome it through her perseverance and by making her family as inspiration.

Instead of having multiple clients, she was able to take over the multiple contracts of her client by gaining her trust. And now, she is able to take care of her family and has a cool client who allows her to work in her free time.

Notable Quotes

  • Pag makikita mo yung anak mo tuwing umaga na aalis ka, iiwanan mo siya. Nanghihinayang ka po dun sa time na sana ikaw yung nag-aalaga sa kanya, na sana ma-witness mo yung mga milestones niya sa buhay, yung first walk, unang pagsubo niya ng pagkain, at una niyang pag inom. Doon po ako na-motivate na ipupush ko po talaga itong pagiging VA.
  • Kapag po talaga gusto mo may paraan po talaga.
  • Siyempre hindi naman po pwedeng puro ka na lang prayers. Kailangan gumawa ka talaga ng paraan para makahanap ka ng client.
  • Wala naman po talagang madali. Lahat po talaga kailangan mo din talagang paghirapan, pagsumikapan at pagtiyagaan.
  • Proper time management, kailangan po alam mo din yung oras ng trabaho at oras po ng pagiging nanay at asawa mo.
  • Habang nagluluto ako minsan, na-realize ko na ang saya naman ng ganitong buhay. Yung nasa bahay ka lang naalagaan mo ang anak mo, nakakapagluto ka, naaasikaso mo yung asawa mo and at the same time kumikita ka ng pera.
  • Akala ko po dati forever na po akong employee though employee pa din naman ako but flexible po. I can manage my time. I can work anytime I am free. Yun po yung sobrang saya na part ng freelancing.
  • Kailangan din po na i-maintain yung good quality ng trabaho mo. Kailangan po huwag ka pong magbabago, kung baga kailangan pong efficient and effective ka pa din kahit matagal na po kayong dalawa ni client.
  • Gusto ko pag nagtrabaho po talaga ako, ayoko pong isipin na kailangan kong mag time in para may sweldo ako sa Wednesday or sa Friday. Gusto ko po talagang makakatulong po ako sa business niya, kasi po once na si client ay naging big – kasama ka rin po dun.
  • The more you manage your time properly, mas marami kang pwedeng gawin na mas ikaka-improve ng sarili mo.
  • According to her nga po tag team kaming dalawan kasi pag tulog siya gising ako,  I can see her business and pagtulog ako siya naman po ang gising. Nung narinig ko nga po yun parang sobrang nakaka-flatter kasi yun pala yung impact ko sa buhay niya, na nakakatulong pala talaga ako sa kanya.
  • Pag mababa po ang self confidence mo, yung cover letter po na nagagawa mo parang nagiging ganun din. Lalo kang hindi mapapansin ni client.
  • Mas mahal ko po ang anak ko at mas gusto ko po siyang makasama. I chose freelancing po talaga.
  • Kailangan po talaga na once pasukin mo ang freelancing dapat decided ka na ito na yung gusto mong gawin. Samahan ng sipag, tiyaga at maraming panalangin.
  • Pag may client ka na huwag ka pong maging over confident na “alam ko na yan!”. Kailangan po na lagi ka pa ding maingat.
  • At the end of the day, talaga pong wala kang pagsisisihan sa freelancing lalo na po sa kagaya kong mommy kasi po talagang worth it po lahat. Makakasama mo yung anak mo and you can spend more opportunity to have quality time with your kids and your family.

Journey to Freelancing 

  • After graduating from college, she worked in a corporate job for 8 years and never imagined herself working at home.
  • Things changed when she got married and relocated to Cavite wherein it is a long commute going to her workplace.
  • She endured the struggle of waking up early, long hours of commute with heavy traffic, and fighting her way to get a ride for almost a year. But when she found out that she was pregnant, she started to look for other ways to earn money by staying at home so that she could take care of her kid.
  • She learned about virtual assistants through her friend Ms. Joan, who is also a top-rated freelancer and part of the VABootcamp.
  • She decided and took the risk of enrolling in the accelerated course of VABootcamp in November 2019. She juggled working from 8 am-5 pm then taking care of her son when she arrived home and studied at night.
  • In December 2019, she finished the first course and was very thankful because she learned a lot and was able to understand the job of a virtual assistant. She started to apply at the different freelancing platforms but she was unable to land a job. There were multiple rejections and she even thought that she was applying to robots because there were no replies to her proposals. She also bought connects at Upwork to be able to submit proposals.
  • Her strong desire to become a full-time mom kept her motivated and decided to file her resignation effective February 2020. She continued learning, she was consistent in applying, and also joined the Guided Hustle Challenge of January 2020.
  • January 18, 2020, her efforts paid off. A client responded to her proposal, got an interview, and that day she accepted a contract. It wasn’t an easy start because she still needs to report for her corporate job, takes care of her family, and works as a virtual assistant at night.
  • Everything became smooth when her last day of work at the office took effect. She has a US client who gave her the time to work in her free time as long as she does her job.
  • She prayed not just to have a client but to have a kind client who can understand her situation as a Mom. And now, she enjoys taking care of her son and husband, able to financially provide for her family, and having no regrets that she chose freelancing.

Q&A Highlights

Ano pong niche ninyo Ms. Fatima? 

Sa ngayon po ang niche ko po is VA na may kunting side po ng social media, kasi po yung work ko po ngayon is VA pero ako po naghahandle ng social media accounts niya. Kapag po nakuha mo yung trust ni client, syempre po yung isang bussines pa lang na ipa-handle niya sayo sobrang big deal na po yun for me, kasi pinagkatiwala nya po yung negosyo niya sa akin.

Hindi ba mahirap mag multiple clients?

In the case of Ms. Fatima, iisa lang ang client niya pero multiple tasks. To some freelancers, minsan mahirap ang multiple clients at minsan ok lang. It really depends on how you manage your time.

Bukod sa pagkakaroon ng flexible working time, ano pa po ang advantage ng working from home for you po?

Bukod po sa nabanggit ko kanina na I can spend time with my kid. Ang isa pa pong advantage niyan is if ever na meron ka pong family emergencies or something, hindi mo na kailangan magpaalam na magleleave ka kasi handle mo na ang oras mo. You don’t need to think pa na ” Papayagan ba ako ng boss ko? ” . At ang pinaka mahalaga po dun is nag gro-grow ka even nasa bahay ka lang.

Marami ka pong pwedeng magawa, marami kang masa-save na time. Instead na byabyahe ka, yung time na sana ibinyahe mo is inaral mo na lang ng ganitong skill, so natututo ka pa. Hindi mo na sasabihin na “Sayang oras ko, na traffic ako dun”. Yung isang oras po na yun matuto ka na lang, mag youtube ka na lang or manuod ka sa bootcamp ng skills na kasali sa accelerated course mo. Yun po yung pinaka magandang part ng pagiging working from home aside from the advantage po na kasama mo yung family mo 24/7.

Yung flexible time nyo po ba Ms. Fatima ikaw ang nag didictate kung anong oras ang gusto mo mag work, basta magawa mo lang ang work mo? Ilang oras po ba work mo?

Usually, I work 3-4 hours a day lang, maximum na po yung 5hours kapag merong pinagawa si client na graphic designs or flyers which takes time po talaga para gawin. But usually 3 hours – 4 hours po daily pero hindi po yun tuloy-tuloy. Minsan po yung one hour sa morning kapag tulog po si baby. Pwede po ako sumilip sa trabaho kung sa instagram ba niya may nagreply. Then another hour po sa hapon, check ko po kung meron pong emails. Tapos po yung ibang 2 hours po dirediretso na yun sa gabi before I go to bed, yun po yung pinaka focus ako para mag trabaho sa kanya. Ako po nagdecide na ganun po yung oras na time in ko kasi yun po talaga yung time na talagang available po ako which is naswertehan ko lang din po na yun po yung traffic ng messages po sa business po ni client so parang nag swak lang din po kaming dalawa.

How would you know po ba kung ano ang magiging niche mo? Thanks po.

At first po, yan din po yung naging problem ko. Hindi ko alam kung ano ang niche ko, kaya ang inapplyan ko lang po is VA. Admin assistant lang po ni client but then, nang pinahawak niya po ako ng isang contract which is E-commerce, Shopify store, parang yun po yung naging gusto ko pong i-push ngayon or next year. Gusto ko mag-focus na pag-aralan yung about sa E-commerce business and E-commerce VA.

Doon mo po malalaman kung ano po ang niche mo, kung gusto mo talaga siyang matutunan. Yung “Interesting to ah parang gusto ko tong matutunan”, lalo na kung meron ka ng kunting nalalaman tungkol sa skill na yun. You can push na yung niche na gusto mo for yourself.

 

In terms of income po, mas malaki po ba compare sa nagoffice?

In my experience, mas malaki po sa office job ang income ko po ngayon. The fact po na ang trabaho ko lang naman is 3-4 hours a day versus po sa 8 hours a day na ini-spend ko dati sa trabaho ko. Mas malaki po talaga ngayon yung income ko kasi po I am able to get one of my dreams. Na-achieve ko po siya even though wala pa po akong 1 year  sa freelancing.

Naisip nyo po bang iwan na ang corporate job at mag-focus na sa freelancing?

Yes po, yun po ang ginawa ko last year, December. I decided po talaga, nag taning po ako sa sarili ko na “Ito ha magreresign ka na, Februaury 15 ka lang sa office dapat bago ka mag last day sa trabaho may client ka na”, yun po ang ginawa kung motivation.

When you were starting out, saan po kayo pinaka na-Challenge? 

During the transition mahirap po talaga, pinaka challenging po yun. Yung paggawa pa lang po ng profile sa Upwork dun pa lang po kailangan mo na po talagang pagtuunan ng panahon, ng matinding pagsisikap para ma-approve po yung profile mo.

Any final message you want to get across with everybody?

Sa mga gustong mag freelancing po, totoo po ang pag fre-freelancing kailangan mo lang pong magdecide kung which one will you pursue. Kung ano ba talaga gusto ng puso mo sundin niyo lang po. Samahan niyo po ng sipag, tiyaga, maraming lakas ng loob. Yung mga freelancers jan na wala pang client until now, antay antay ka lang darating din siya basta kailangang mag aapply ka din, hindi pwedeng chilax ka lang  walang darating na client pag ganun.

Tuwing magcocover letter ka basahin mo ng maigi. Isipin mo kung ikaw ba si client, ok ba to pag nabasa mo? Maco-convince mo ba ang sarili mo na i-hire ang sarili mo? Then continue to learn, huwag ka pong titigil na sapat ka na, alam ko na yan, ok na yun. The more po na tumatagal ka sa freelancing mas marami kang nalalaman at natututunan.

Proper time manangement, pinakamahalaga. Kailangan mo pong kontrolin or i-balance yung life mo. Huwag din puro work kasi masama din pag puro work ka, nawala ka nga sa corporate job pero trabaho ka padin naman sa bahay. Kailangan mo pong i-balance ang life and carreer mo.

Mga mommies po jan na tulad ko na nagbabalak po na lumipat sa pagfre-freelancing, tansyahin niyo na kung kakayanin niyo na, kung sigurado kana kasi po kailangan buo ang loob mo. Sayang naman yung sinimulan mo kung di mo tatapusin.

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Jason Dulay

Jason Dulay

Jason is the founder and CEO of Work from Home Roadmap and VA Bootcamp. Aside from teaching Filipinos how to succeed working from home, he likes traveling, playing board games, and drinking coffee.

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