My name is Daniel, I am a Full Stack Web Developer, Forex Trader and Blogger.
Honestly looking back, I can’t believe how far I have come. I have my own shares of ups and downs but I’ve survived through all of them so far.
And for that I am very thankful.
Almost 10 years ago I started in a single bedroom with one computer running in a Pentium processor, CRT monitor and an open PC case to handle the heat as I did not have air conditioner. I did not have a TV then as well and I was still using a keypad type phone.
Now I have laptops, PCs with LED monitors, high-end smartphones, TVs, a house of my own and I can buy one anytime one of them fails.
I did not buy them all for my entertainment though as my current works require me to have as many screen monitors as possible.
Let’s dive a bit at how I started.
My First Jobs
My first job was adding new coupon codes to my employers website for $1/hour. I did this for like 3 months before finally resigning. This is because I wanted to switch full time to my another employer who is paying me a higher rate of $2/hour publishing post on his website.
A much easier task in comparison but with a higher pay.
All the while I am studying WordPress Theme and Plugin development. This is because I always knew that I wanted to take a shot on being a WordPress Developer.
I had been studying it on my free time and when I successfully created multiple themes and plugins without breaking a sweat I finally start looking for a job.
The WordPress Developer Journey Began
My first job as a WordPress developer is a fixed price job of $50 to redesign the homepage of a specific site. I did the design but my employer starts adding more stuff to work on which is not part of the contract.
More on this later, I will create a complete list of tips on how to be successful in Upwork and I will tackle this issue.
Long story short I finish the additional tasks he mentioned and thankfully I got paid. But I do feel like I got scammed in the end. This experience made me avoid fixed price jobs altogether.
My next job is a $3/hour job as a Web Developer for a Law Office. I managed a dozen of Law Office websites for quite some time. For some reason I do not consider this a real Web Developer job as I just do updates on the contents.
All the while I am looking for another job focused entirely on developing a theme or a plugin as I know that is where the real money is.
Finally Real Web Developer Jobs
A few weeks later I finally got a Web Developer job for a Web Design & Development company for $4/hour. This is exactly what I was dreaming of as I will finally be able to show off my skills in the real world and grow my portfolio with what I consider real Web Developer works.
I originally applied for $5/hour rate but the manager who interviewed me asked me if I could work for $4/hour for the first month as a trial. I honestly do not mind as it is already higher than my current rates.
At this point I decided to resign to my $2/hour job as I cannot handle 3 jobs, my employer asked me though if I could recommend someone. As of all the people he worked with I am the only one who he grew to completely trust.
I told him I would need to train my wife but as it is pretty easy I think she could handle it. My wife then signed up for oDesk, verified her account and within just a few hours she already got her own job.
After a month, I already published a couple of sites in my new job. There is not much plugin development honestly as my employer prefer getting a ready made plugin.
Since a month has already passed, I asked my manager if I could finally get the rate which I originally asked for. He said yes but a couple of days has gone by and there is still no raise. I asked again after a couple of days and he said that he would ask my employer again. I am really very annoyed at this point.
A few days has gone by again and still no raise, I decided to message my employer directly about what happened in the interview and how I was looking forward to work on the original rate. After a couple of hours I get a notification in oDesk saying my rate was changed to $5/hour. I am so relieved and happy at this point and the annoyance I got for my manager finally diminished.
Fast forward a couple of months, the Christmas and New Year approaches, I got completely surprised when my employer changed my rate $6/hour and emailed me directly that he is looking forward to working with me for a longer time as he loved my work.
My Law Office job rate is still the same but I completely understand as it is indeed way easier.
The Breakthrough To Financial Freedom
The next year, at around August, I got an invite to work as a full time Web Developer for a private company. The rate is $8/hour but I am a bit skeptical as the employer history is barely new. I went ahead and do the interview, he asked me a couple of questions and I did the same.
Immediately after the interview I got hired.
He then emailed what he wanted done to the site later and I told him I will start working on it the next day.
The next day, I emailed my Law Office employer that I would need to resign as their Web Developer. The history repeats itself and he asked me if I could recommend someone again.
This time though I do not think my wife will be able to handle HTML, CSS or ever more PHP tasks. So sadly I got to say no to them. I still get heartbroken whenever I reminisce about this. I worked for them for so long.
The Rest Is History
Soon after that I start getting invites to $10/hour, $12/hour and $16/hour jobs. I repeat the same process I have been doing which is resigning to my lowest rate.
The last couple of years has really launch my career as a distinguished Full Stack Web Developer.
I do consider myself a workaholic, I rarely get out of the house even on holidays. What makes me happy is knowing that I did something productive before the end of the day.
I think the reason for this mentality that I have is because I grew up really poor.
I still remember when my uncle and I would go to the middle of the sea at night time to catch some fish using a fish net. If we get lucky and caught some then we would have food the next day but if not then we need to wait the next night to catch again.
I really think this is the reason why I cannot stop working and why I cannot stop finding more ways to earn.
I am now the bread winner for my family and I happily accept it. I got well paying jobs where I am happy, I also do Forex Trading and Blogging on the sideline.
My main goal in creating this website is to make it as an instrument to express myself, my thoughts and be able to talk about the things that interest me freely.