How to quit freelancing work immediately?

Software Engineer in India. Along with full-time job, I’ve been doing freelancing for a startup belonging to my previous manager. Want to quit freelancing because of below reasons:

  • Not being paid properly as he told me to provide all money after project gets live for customers
  • Never Ending Requirements
  • Unskilled and inexperieced colleague, who takes a lot of time to understand things
  • No planning and unexpected urgency of work
  • I’m frustrated with current job and want to dedicate whole time and focus to prepare for the interviews of big product-based organization.
  • Lack of time for self is affecting my mental health.

I told him a few months ago about desire to quit. But, he started pleading in front of me on call starts convincing me with his arguments and emotional stuff and requested me to stay for some time until the project gets live. I think directly quitting will deteriorate my relations with him but I was thinking whether there could be a diplomatic way. Can anyone here please help me by suggesting something?

Really hard topic. Braking relationship with someone is not always easy, and it hardly ever ends with a good relationship afterwards. It requires great maturity on both parties for this to happen.

I would talk to him, and suggest an exit plan. Something like slowly delegating the work as they find your replacement. Come up with a strategy so you don’t just dump all the work. but slowly pass it on to someone else. Pitch this strategy to them, they might be more willing to let you go if they don’t feel like you are abandoning the project. Instead you are passing the torch to some other freelancer.


Yeah, people like this have an annoying habit of having their own dream and expecting everyone to treat it like it is their dream too. They are flabbergasted that people do not want to donate their own personal time and chunks of their lives to pursue their own dream. I call these people “dreamers”. They can be very good at convincing people to work towards their dream and making them feel guilty if they don’t share the dreamer’s enthusiasm for the dreamer’s dream.

Look, this guy isn’t your friend. He is using you for his dream. He is not listening to your concerns.

  • Not being paid properly as he told me to provide all money after project gets live for customers

Have you been paid anything? Do you have a contract? Do you have anything in writing? This would be a warning flag for me.

Dreamers want you to work for free for their project with vague promises of future wealth. Is this your dream or his? Did he offer you equity in the project? I would not even consider this work unless:

  1. I was getting paid.
  2. I had a contract clearly stating what equity I was getting, etc. And that clearly outlined my responsibilities.
  3. It was also my dream and I was teaming up with someone capable of helping me realize my (our) dream.

I think at some point you may have to realize that this guy is using you and that you shouldn’t feel guilty for no helping him pursue his dream. And if you ignores your concerns and your work/life balance, then he is not your friend and you are better off without him.



If we leave the emotional part out of it, just not getting paid enough according to agreement is enough reason to pull out.
I read a lot of lack of clarity in your agreement - I think it is up to you to make sure that specifications are clear, agreed upon and signed of upon.
Then if anything changes, you need to do a re-evaluation and communicate that.
It’s seems you are being used from what I read, but it could also be someone that has no idea how these things work - there lies some education from your side I think.
In short :slight_smile:

  • be open, clear and honest in your expectations and what you will deliver
  • take the conversation about agreements direcly if anything changes and reconfirm deliveries and conditions
  • be clear about payment conditions and have them as part of your contractual agreement - be clear about consequences when they are not met

Last but not least, try to form as best as you can an idea on the person you are going to work with. Ask colleagues, friends so you can get an idea if people are honest and have integrity. If not, stay away, or charge double if that makes you happy to deal with it ;).
good luck!

This topic was automatically closed 182 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.