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Erin Lowry

Anxious About a Recession? Start Thinking Like a Freelancer

Even in boom times, independent workers have to manage different income streams, budget and be able to pivot when the unexpected arises.

Recession fears loom. 

Recession fears loom. 

Photographer: Spencer Platt/Getty Images North America

Although freelancers have been around for ages — the English word originally referred to a “free lance,” or a medieval mercenary willing to fight for the highest bidder — working independently is often considered unstable. It certainly can be, but it also forces one to learn how to navigate uncertainty, recover from setbacks quickly, and diversify income — all of which are useful in times of economic turmoil.

As mass layoffs start to make headlines and recession chatter gets louder, there is a lot that traditionally employed folks can learn from freelancers to defend their finances amid anxiety about a downturn.