Different Response When I Say I Work from Home or Online

Different Response When I Say I Work from Home or Online

I've been working from home (or should I say anywhere?) for about 6 years already and I never regret leaving the corporate world. Whenever I was asked by friends, relatives, former officemates, and some random people about what I do for a living or where do I work, I will just simply say I work from home or I work online. There are different responses from these people - both negative and positive. Some curious minds want to dig more information but I don't have time to explain the details of what I really do. 

Here are some of the responses of people when I say I work from home or online:

Wow! You're so lucky because you're not doing anything.

In Tagalog, this is how the conversation usually goes:

Friend: Saan ka nagtatrabaho? (Where do you work?)
Me: Sa bahay. (Home)
Friend: Wow! Ang swerte mo naman, nasa bahay ka lang. Wala kang ginagawa. (Wow! You're so lucky. You're just in the house and not doing anything.)

Wait, what? Do you even know what I mean when I say I work from home? This is one of the misconceptions of the people around us. We, freelancers, don't just sleep or do nothing and make money. We work our ass off every single day of our life to earn for a living. And since I don't want the conversation to go further, I'd rather have them think that way. I don't care. Hahaha!

Why don't you apply in big companies?

Friend: Anong trabaho mo ngayon? (What's your work now?)
Me: Online.
Friend: Bakit di ka na lang mag-apply sa malalaking kumpanya? Sayang naman pinag-aralan mo kung sa bahay ka lang. (Why don't you apply in big companies? It's a pity that you can't use your education.)

Hey, hey, hey! Working online doesn't mean that we're not using what we have learned from school. And being an office worker doesn't mean that you have higher status than online workers. Other people think that freelancers don't have a REAL job just because they work online. That's not actually true. In this generation full of computers and internet connection everywhere, why not leverage the use of it? Also, there are a lot of benefits if you work online

Just work abroad instead of staying at home.

This conversation is actually between me and my mom:

Mother: Mag-apply ka na nga lang ng trabaho sa ibang bansa kesa naman nasa bahay ka lang! Kikita ka pa ng malaki. (Just work abroad instead of staying at home! You will earn more money.)
Me: Ayoko nga. Bakit pa ko magtatrabaho sa ibang bansa kung kaya ko naman kitain dito sa Pilipinas yung kikitain dun? (I don't want. Why would I work abroad if I can earn more money here in the Philippines?)

Honestly, my mother doesn't know how much I really earn from my online work, although I'm giving her monthly allowance. I'm not telling anyone because I don't have a fixed income. I mean, my earnings vary depending on the clients and projects I get for the whole month. Maybe she was thinking that I can have better income if I work abroad. I just told her that I don't want to leave my family and if ever I go to other countries, it's because of vacation.

Can you teach me how to do that?

Friend: Anong trabaho mo? (What's your work?)
Me: Iba-iba eh. Depende kung anong makukuha kong tasks sa client. (It varies, depending on what tasks will I get from the client.)
Friend: Turuan mo naman ako kung paano gawin nyan! (Can you teach me how to do that?)

As much as I wanted to be a good pal, I couldn't spend time teaching my own skills to other people because I'm already busy as it is. Unless, someone's willing to pay me my hourly rate in order to learn. Hahaha! *evil laugh* Kidding aside, I became successful on this field because I was so determined to learn and upgrade skills by myself. Skills is not something that you can acquire just because somebody taught you. The key here is determination. Nobody teaches me how to work online but I managed to do it. So every time someone asks about online work, I will just give them list of websites where they can work online. I hate spoon-feeding information because if I do, I know people will always come back and ask for more.

Is it legit? Maybe it's a scam? Or is it networking?

Friend: Saan ka nagtatrabaho? (Where do you work?)
Me: Online.
Friend: Legit ba yan? Baka mamaya scam yan ha. O baka naman networking. (Is it legit? Maybe it's a scam? Or is it networking?)
Me: Hindi ah. (Of course not!)

Because of too many networking or MLM posts all over the internet especially Facebook, I couldn't blame other people when they think the same when I say I work online. Aside from networking, there are also a lot of scam job offerings out there. But if you use your brain and you're really careful, you won't fall for it! If you notice that something's not right, search for it immediately.

Can I work there? Give me a job please.

Friend: Anong trabaho mo ngayon? (What's your work now?)
Me: Online freelancer.
Friend: Ano yun? Pwede din ba ko jan? Bigyan mo naman ako ng trabaho. (What's that? Can I work there? Give me a job please.)

This is one of the most annoying responses I get. Yes, we are working online but that doesn't mean that we're giving away jobs to anyone. We are in a battlefield wherein we need to win the client over thousands of freelancers. It's not easy. Although in my case, I do have people working for me but they undergone trials before getting hired. I'm not giving jobs just because we know each other personally. Having the right skills for the job is more important. 

How much do you earn from working online?

Friend: Saan yung trabaho mo? (Where's your work?)
Me: Online.
Friend: Magkano kinikita mo sa ganyan? (How much do you earn from working online?)

If you're not aware, asking someone's salary or earnings is considered rude by some. Whether you're an online worker or have a regular office job, talking about income is not a good topic because it makes other people uncomfortable. You may earn more or you may earn less than the person you are talking with. If the other person happens to earn more and he said the actual numbers, some listeners may perceive it as bragging, although some may be inspired. One more thing, freelancers have different rates so we can't specifically tell anyone how much we earn.

So, there you are. How about you? Do you have an experience having a conversation with someone about working online? How did it go? Did they have weird responses? Share your experience in the comment below!

About the Author Kaila Sharlene

I am a freelance web designer, web developer and SEO specialist – one of the “Top Rated” web designers on Upwork. Living a digital nomad lifestyle, our family loves to explore the outdoors together while doing some freelance jobs in between. Know more about our family adventures at wyattmaktrav.com – named after my son Wyatt Maktrav.

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