10 Things I Miss About Office Life

I haven’t been at the freelance bit long (just over 2 weeks full-time), but I am already starting to notice things I’ll miss about working a regular 9-5 office job. Nothing earth-shattering, just little day-to-day amenities that I took for granted when they were right in front of me. Now that I’m out of the office and striking forth on my own, I’ve started to notice those little things.

In case anyone else reading here is debating going freelance (or maybe already has!), I’ve put together a top 10 list.


10 Things I Miss About My Office:

  1. Copiers/printers/scanners. (Traveling with a printer is impossible, and you’d be surprised how quickly those little per-page fees add up. Not to mention the lack of multi-page scanners at most printing places… ugh!)
  2. Office supplies. (Where do all the pens go?! The same place missing socks vanish to?)
  3. Healthcare. (Though healthcare/travel coverage outside the U.S. from U.S.-based providers is surprisingly affordable)
  4. Mail room. (Not that I send snail mail often, but it’s nice to just be able to drop large boxes off in an outgoing mail tray…)
  5. Coworkers. (Okay, that’s the obvious one)
  6. A desk. (It’s handy to be able to leave your computer at work once in a while)
  7. IT support. (When you’re freelance, it’s up to you to fix that weird website bug!)
  8. Team happy hours/lunches. (Nothing beats the camaraderie of a team that’s all dealing with the same problem.)
  9. Free tea/coffee. (For budgetary/addiction reasons.)
  10. Leftover lunches from noon meetings. (Don’t judge me, you know we all turn into vultures around free food.)

But if that sounds dire to anybody, don’t worry, I’m not pining for home or tempted to run back to my desk. I’ve actually got a pretty great counter-list so far, after freelancing full-time for the last couple of weeks.

5 Best Things About Freelancing

  1. The hours. (Tired from a long exciting weekend? Sleep in on Monday! Who cares?)
  2. The work. (Not gonna lie, I love what I do. I make up stories for a living. Doesn’t get much better than that!)
  3. The freedom. (I am currently writing this from Mexico City, my first stop on a yearlong round-the-world tour, living in a different city every month. Hard to beat that.)
  4. The people. (I miss my Wiley fam, but I’ve met a lot of other freelancers doing awesome things this month! It’s fun to hear about new people’s projects and unique work lives.)
  5. The work. (Did I mention I make stuff up for a living?)

So for all the comfort and security of my day job that I’ll miss, I can’t say I’m regretting my decision. Weirdly, I’ve been waking up earlier than I used to for my office hours – I’m that excited to hop out of bed and start writing every day! All things considered, I made the right call going freelance. (At least, so I think after a few weeks. We’ll see how I’m feeling in a year!)

But if I needed any further confirmation, I got it when I parked myself in a bookstore here in Mexico City. I found this store in the Bosque de Chapultepec (a park near the apartment I’m renting this month), and wound up lingering in it for a few hours, writing and taking notes on future projects.

The view of the paddleboats on the lake outside, and the great selection of English and Spanish books made it difficult to leave. I definitely didn’t have an experience like that in my old office!

But hey, the freelance life isn’t for everybody, and I’m starting to understand why. There are lots of minor inconveniences. Personally, I’m just happy that it’s right for me.

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