(Prioritizing Mental Health)
Our careers have a significant impact on our mental health, whether that’s from burnout, emotional fatigue, or stress. Switching careers to prioritize your mental wellbeing can be scary, but it’s well worth the jump if it means a better work–life balance.
When Hannah, a former funeral assistant at a mortuary, found that her day job was taking a toll on her mental wellbeing, she sought out Knowadays to help her launch a new career as a proofreader. Since graduating and starting work at Proofed, her mental and physical wellbeing has significantly improved, affording her more energy and enthusiasm for her hobbies, her Etsy business, and quality time with her cat, Penny.
Hi Hannah! What made you consider Becoming A Proofreader?
After a year of working in a mortuary during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, I was completely burned out and suffering from compassion fatigue. I knew it was time to find a job I could do from the safety and comfort of my home. After doing lots of research on the best work-from-home gigs out there, I stumbled across proofreading. It was perfect. I’ve been an avid reader my whole life, and I’ve always loved writing. I knew proofreading was something I could do well. So, I looked into training programs and chose Knowadays because of its reviews.
Is there any advice you’d give to someone who is currently thinking about taking Becoming A Proofreader?
Use the proofreading checklists provided by Knowadays! I didn’t know about them before my first attempt at passing the exam. They made the difference that helped me pass my second attempt.
Was there anything surprising or particularly challenging in the course for you?
Because I was a straight-A student in school, it was disheartening when I didn’t pass my first exam attempt. But the Knowadays team was very kind and encouraging when they reviewed my results with me.
How has your transition to working as a freelance proofreader with Proofed been?
At first, it was admittedly a bit rough. I was at my computer all day, from when I woke up to when I went to bed, trying to pick up assignments. But that was just the first month. Now, as I near the end of my second month with Proofed, I work fewer hours than I did at my desk job and make more money per hour – and my prospects are still improving as I level up and gain access to more assignments!
What has been the single best benefit of having done the course?
As previously mentioned, my last job left me emotionally raw. The course allowed me to work with Proofed, which in turn means that I can work from my home and on my own schedule. This has allowed me to prioritize self-care and mental health. And I love that my cat Penny gets to snuggle up next to me while I work.
How has life changed for you as a freelance proofreader?
This may sound dramatic, but freelance proofreading has changed everything for me. My mental health and physical health have improved because I can make the time to prioritize those things. I have more time to spend with the people I love and do the things I love. But, I have the option of taking on more work if there’s something special I want to make money for, like a spa day or a girls’ night out. Freelance proofreading has also allowed me to focus more on my Etsy shop, as I can work on shop stuff while I wait for new assignments to become available.
“My mental health and physical health have improved because I can make the time to prioritize those things. I have more time to spend with the people I love and do the things I love.“
What is your day-to-day routine like now?
I wake up without an alarm, on my own schedule. I take time for myself in the morning to drink tea, read, work out, and do some yoga. When assignments pop up, I choose the ones I want to take. Depending on how I feel that day, I work in bursts that are as long or as short as I need them to be. I take breaks when I need them and snuggle my cat as often as possible. If a friend invites me on a last-minute hike, I adjust my workday to accommodate it. It’s absolutely dreamy.
Was the course good value for money?
Absolutely! It paid for itself just a couple of weeks after I started working with Proofed.
How often would you say you proofread for Proofed in a typical week?
5+ days per week.
What do you enjoy most about proofreading?
I love that I get to read all day! Some of the material can be a little dense or boring, but much of it is interesting and exciting.
Do you have a favorite type of document or subject area to proofread?
I love proofreading creative writing (who doesn’t?), but I also enjoy academic papers that teach me about a new subject.
Where do you proofread? Have you got a workspace set up?
I have a home office set up, but I head to my local coffee shop or my favorite park when I need a change of scenery. I’ve even proofread in the airport on the way to and from vacation! I love that I can work anywhere, as long as I have an internet connection to download the document first.
Have you been self-employed before? How are you finding it?
I set up an Etsy shop in May 2021 that sells supplies and services for witches and pagans, but I used to only work on it in my free time after my traditional day job. Freelance proofreading has allowed me to be self-employed full time, and I love it. I can’t see myself going back to traditional work ever.
What do you do when you aren’t proofreading?
I like to do a bit of everything – yoga, ballet, Irish dance, camping, hiking, writing, knitting, painting, cooking, baking, witchcraft. I may not be good at all of them, but they bring me lots of joy. I also recently wrote and published an original Kindle Vella series.
Becoming A Proofreader
Are you considering switching careers to prioritize your mental wellbeing? Our Becoming A Proofreader and Becoming An Editor courses are designed to provide you with all the tools you need to get started in a flexible new career. Why not try them out for free?