The Future is Brighter For Visually-Impaired Writer, Thanks To Online Freelancing

February 23, 2022
by 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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“If you’re born poor it’s not your mistake. But if you die poor it’s your fault.” - American business magnate Bill Gates.

As the popular quote says, we have no control or choice on the issue of which family we are born into.

Some people are born into royal or wealthy families and some into poor or struggling families.

Either way, your family situation is not an excuse to simply give up, be lazy, and stop working for your goals in life.

You are solely responsible for your own life.

It’s up to you if you will take the road to success or not.

Of course, it will not be easy.

Nothing worth having comes easy.

But as long as you’re willing to work hard, be persistent, and remain committed to your goals, then success will not be elusive.

Meet Maria Teresa.

She’s visually impaired but it didn’t stop her from dreaming and pursuing her goals in life.

Her biggest dream is to have her own house and lot.

When she entered the freelancing world, she was met with challenges on her qualifications and getting a client.

Fast forward to today...

Aside from her side hustles, she’s now earning well after getting two clients in two years as a freelancer.

Get ready to be inspired with her hard work, dedication, and wins, on this replay.


Know how a visually impaired writer overcomes her challenges in becoming a freelancer and learn how she handles her mindset and positions herself despite the odds.


Notable Quotes

  •   If you already started your journey, tuloy-tuloy lang. 
  •  Always guard yourself, regardless of positive emotion or negative, because those emotions are normal but they can either make you or break you, so kailangan balance. 
  • Hindi natin masasabi na positive lang, para sa akin kasi minsan nakaka-sakal yung statement na "positive ka lang", kumbaga take your time kung nalulungkot ka or nasasaktan ka, take your time na maramdaman mo yun. Actually, ang naisip ko dyan na analogy is para yang magnet, Diba kapag opposite nag a-attract sila, kapag pareho nag-aaway sila.
  • Normally sa tao, hindi naman talaga totally negative yung naiisip. Normal lang na dumadating yung negative. So habang andyan yan, kailangan lumabas muna yan. Kasi kapag aawayin mo yan na iisingit yung positive, hindi automatic na mag a-attract, baka ang mangyari parang nasiksik lang siya doon sa loob. So ang nangyari naiipon siya dun and parang nasasaktan si negative. So kapag nasasaktan ka may tendency na manlaban ka. Ok lang sana kung manalo si positive para tumigil na si negative. Pero paano pag sobrang lakas ni negative? Ang tendency baka dumami pa sila. So take your time na lumabas muna yun kasi lalabas din naman si positive. Hindi sa lahat ng oras kailangan labanan mo sya consciously, Kailangan minsan lagyan mo sya ng space na andyan muna sya kasi part ng pgkatao yun. Kapag nagsawa yan kusa yang aalis. Parang sasabihin, "Ano bah yan! ayoko na dito wala naman akong nakukuha sa taong ito".
  • At the same time, kapag positive medyo guard ka din, kasi baka mauwi ka na parang mayabang ka na. Kapag puro ka positive,tapos dumating yung negative baka hindi mo na alam paano e-handle kasi sanay ka na dun sa puro positive.


Maria Teresa Olvido’s Journey to Freelancing 

  • A graduate of Bachelor of Arts in Psychology with Guidance and Counseling in 2016.
  • Initially planned to take master’s degree but did not push through since the major subject that she wanted was not available at that time in Negros Occidental.
  • She tried finding a job but to no avail, so she became unemployed for several years.  Her only income was from paid surveys where she earned very minimal.
  • She was diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder and went through medication.
  • Then she discovered a job training program by DICT in partnership with Digital Hubs. PH.  Companies/trainers/education providers were hesitant to hire her since they do not know how to handle a visually impaired applicant.  At first, she was also hesitant, doubting herself that she’ll get nothing in visiting the fair, but she went anyway and passed some tests and interviews. And she was one of the 25 people who qualified for training.
  • During the training, she was allowed to bring her laptop since provided computers for trainees were not suitable for a visually impaired person.  This was the time when Maria discovered about VA Bootcamp while doing some tasks of her training.
  • She graduated from the training.
  • She then had her first client working as a content writer.  But it only lasted about 4 months since the work became more demanding (she was asked to write a thousand words for 2 hours only plus the SEO works) and her schedule no longer meets with her employers.  At first, she did not want to let go of the client but then she realized that she entered freelancing to gain control of things, which she did not have with the said client.  She just motivated herself that if she found a client before, there is no reason she can’t find another.
  • Around July of 2020, she started finding jobs online, but it was only November of that year when she received a reply from one of her many applications.  She has even forgotten from what platform did she applied for it.   After tracing, it was still August when she applied for the job.  And it became her second client.
  • Then December 2020, Maria enrolled on VA Bootcamp’s Complete Package.  Months before, she was already planning on enrolling at VAB to learn another niche aside from content writing, but unfortunately, since she lost her first client, her budget did not permit.  Good thing VAB had a year-end sale in which she availed.
  • Maria started some modules so she can join the internship program of VAB-FLIP. Then February of 2021, she became the “Feb-ibig Moderator” Intern.
  • After the internship, she wanted to join the GHC but unfortunately, she didn’t have the time since her existing client was very active.  Though, when she has some idle time, she applies for one-time projects online as her sideline.

Q&A Highlights

Yung lakas nang loob mo, saan mo nakuha yan?

Before ako nag freelancer, I have been into medication since I was diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder. At pag gumaling kana sa major depression, unti-unti kanang makakabalik sa katinuan mo, in that way maiisip mo na dapat pala hindi ganun, dapat pala ganito, and maiisip mo na it's ok pala to show your vulnerabilities kasi pag tinago mo yun dun kapa mafu-fall sa kung saan-saan.

 Yung experience mo ba as a person, naka tulong ba nang husto sa journey in freelancing? marami ka bang inapply na natutunan mo?

Yes naman po. Isa na dun ang mag build ng boundary mo.

Nung nagka client ako, yun na yung time na tapos na yung medication ko, so parang in a right timing talaga, kasi kung hindi, possible hindi ko rin ma-manage yun. Na realize ko after my major depression, yun nagpaparemind sa akin na opps wag ganyan, ayaw mo na bumalik dyan dba, wag mo nang ulitin.


Let's talk about rejection, Kasi nasabi mo nga na even in the practical world, they just didn't know how to have a relationship with visually impaired people, kaya yun ang reason kung bakit sila ng re-reject, Hindi naman personal, it's not because of your skills, are there instances in freelancing that you had to deal with this?

Sa freelancing, ang na experience ko is hindi sila totally nag reject, actually nagpa trial pa nga sila, then na realize lang talaga nila na mahirap talaga sa part ko kasi walang permanent na umuupo sa akin for the graphics so napagkasunduan nalang namin na hindi nalang tumuloy kasi mahirap sa part ko, mahirap din sa part nila, so it's still a win-win situation.

 When it comes to accepting the differences, Hindi mo na meet yung expectations nila due to circumstances na beyond your control, how were you able to tell yourself na it's ok?

Effortless. Effortless kasi tanggap ko yung limitation ko, ganun lang naman yun eh. Kasi pag hindi mo matanggap yung limitation mo, dun ka mahihirapan. May mga limitation kasi tayo na pwede pa natin magawan nang paraan pero may mga limitations din tayo na hindi magawan ng paraan. Kailangan ma-identify mo yun, tapus pag hindi na siya controlled, wala ka nang magagawa dun, hindi mo na dapat e-stress yung sarili mo. Kasi alangan naman sabihin ko na paano ba ako makaka-kita eh hindi na nga pwede yun.

Kahit naman cguro hindi ka blind, may mga certain limitations talaga na hindi mo magawa, like for example kung hindi mo talaga kaya maging poetic, wag mong sisihin sarili mo, hanap ka na lang ng iba, mas maaacknowledge mo yung kaya mong gawin.

Pag-dating sa pag-aaral, I know you went to a normal school, right? And you graduated as a Psychologist, itong mga courses namin, was it challenging for you?

May mga part na challenging, pero hindi ko pa talaga na uubos lahat, nasa complete package ako. Sa mga napag-aralan ko, mga 80-90% keribels naman.


How was the experience of hustling without the GHC?

Ok lang. Kasi bago pa ako naging freelancer, nag a-apply na ako online pero walang reply, walang interview. Tapos nag training sa DICT, may topic about cover letter so may ng re-reply naman. Tapos nag enroll ako sa VA Bootcamp nitong 2020 so nadagdagan yung knowledge. Mapapansin mo yung improvement. Kung dati walang nag re-reply, or may isa or dalawang ng re-reply, ngayon naman, mas dumadami yung nag re-reply. Minsan hindi lang na tutuloy talaga pero yung idea na nag re-reply sila parang for me, it's something kasi napansin nila yun, so improvement na yun.


What lead you to VAB (VA Bootcamp) particularly?

May task kami nuon sa DICT, 21-day campaign kami nuon, kailangan namin mg post sa facebook, linked-in at twitter na ibat-iba. Yung iba kasi nakakagawa nang graphics, and ang naging solution ko, in which pumayag naman yung trainer ko, pag nag link ka nang website duon and may featured graphics, automatic siya nakikita sa facebook page. Tapus sa pag hahanap ko, bigla ko nakita yung VA Bootcamp, tapus nakita ko meron silang free courses. So nag free course ako, yung sa Virtual Assistant yung kinuha ko, yung 5 days.

Then kinuha ko yun para sa English na course, tapus nag nanuod ako sa FCC, then nakita ko yung facebook group, na amaze ako kasi may mga nagtatanong, then ang active ng mga responses, parang milagro kung may tanong na hindi na sasagot. Na amaze talaga ako kaya sabi ko, join nga ako dito, kasi wala naman akong kakilala na freelancer na pwede mapagtanungan, ako lang mag-isa and marami akong gusto matutunan, and tatargeten ko yung complete package.

Ayoko e-avail yung skills package kasi nandun na yung training ko eh. Then nung nakita ko yung prices nang individual courses, ang laki naman ng difference mas mapapamahal ako, so nag complete package ako.


Siguro naman napansin mo na meron yung iba na medyo slow yung progression nila compared to you, do you have anything to say about that?

Kung sabihin ninyo na ang bilis ko, and ang slow ninyo, pero kung titingnan kasi natin, hindi naman ako ganun ka bilis, may mas mabilis naman kaysa sakin. Ibig ko sabihin, regardless of mabagal ka or mabilis, may mga tao talaga sa paligid mo na mas mabilis kaysa sayo, mas mabagal kaysa sayo, kaya ok lang yan, take your time kasi pag masyado mong minamadali yan baka iba pa yung kalalabasan


Was there a time in your freelancing life where nag-aalangin ka, nag-sisisi ka or parang gusto mo mag quit?

Sa freelancing journey ko, wala.

Ang na face ko lang is ganito, though hindi siya burnt out ha, passion ko kasi yung writing, isa na yun sa hindi mawawala sa akin, specifically yung creative writing, creative fictions, poetry, etc. Parang meron lang akong gusto na sana maka kuha ako nang ibang role, kasi monday to friday magsusulat ako nang content, tapus sa saturday at sunday magsusulat pa rin ako for creatives, so parang puro nalang lahat sulat. Pero masaya pa rin naman ako sa content writing, kumbaga kung pwede lang magkaroon nang variety yung ginagawa ko.


What is the future for you, what is your grandest goal in the world of freelancing?

Yung magawa talaga siyang stable, to the point na kahit bumitaw yung isa, keri-keri lang kasi stable kana, and syempre if possible yung makatulong kana sa ibang freelancer kasi pwede mo na sila e-hire, ganun yung pinaka biggest.

Sa ibang aspekto, yung magkaroon nang sariling property, house and lot na gusto mong design at features especially sa amin na more on audio, so sound proof features.


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by 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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54 comments on “The Future is Brighter For Visually-Impaired Writer, Thanks To Online Freelancing”

  1. " Sa freelancing na experience ko hindi talaga sya na-reject kasi may training pa, hindi na lang ako nagtuloy kasi mahirap na sa part ko at sa part nila" - Maria Teresa

  2. Meron pong mga FB Groups like: Copywriter Meets Graphic Designer, for those na writing lang talaga ang kaya or vice versa, hanap sila ng partner for projects, so they can work as one 🙂

  3. Don't forget to share this #JasSuccess Interview, so you can receive Maria Teresa's FREE Gift, "Beginners Guide to Managing Emotions for
    Writers and Other Freelancers: The Uncommon Technique".

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