You know, I think there is one thing that prevents this from being an even higher number. Health insurance.
If you’re young, looking for flexibility, and not really finding it, working freelance might look like a pretty attractive option. But, your health insurance costs might be pretty manageable, especially if you’re in relatively good health. Those of us who are older, or have some health issues that cause the price of getting a health insurance policy on our own to be rather high, might have a more difficult time making this decision.
I have had conversations privately, so some people already know this, but while I’m not necessarily for, or against, Universal Health Care, (I think it’s a really complicated issue that we refuse to talk honestly about, from both sides) if the US ever gets to that point, I will be planning my exit from Corporate America the next day.
And, I actually like what I do. How many people out there are in jobs they can’t stand because they can’t afford to freelance? Those folks will be gone as soon as they put together a freelance plan.
I suspect you’ll see a whole lot of people who don’t have a “job”, but do a number of things to make money, so that they can live their lives, on their terms.
I have no problem with that, either. That’s why I would be looking into it for myself. Americans spend far too much time “at work” because the workplace demands it, even when that time is not spent doing actual work. It’s about time we started to reevaluate that and created a workplace that fits with having a life as well. Freelancing gives people a chance to build that.