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Useme has published a dry-but-useful article for companies about hiring international freelancers. The whole process is far from simple. Employers may need to comply with the laws of both countries (their own and those of the freelancers they hire), follow privacy rules, fill out special tax reports, prevent misclassification, and follow labor guidelines:
“For example, in Spain, freelancers are entitled to benefits, such as yearly paid time off, if they work primarily for one client.”
One notable takeaway, however, is that truly independent professionals who work with multiple international clients are likely to be much easier to hire and work with than full-time freelance contractors.
Here’s a new testimonial from our member Ivana Strakosova Hruba, who is a English-Spanish-Czech translator:
“Freelancing.eu helps me reach out to foreign clients without having to pay for any PPC campaigns or having to compete with large companies.”
⭐ Are you a freelancer too? Join us and reach out to new clients.
If you’re a writer or creator-storyteller of any kind, there’s a fantastic book about narrative structures used in everything from marketing to movies to novels to nonfiction to self-help books.
Its author, Steven Pressfield, titled it Nobody Wants to Read Your Sh*t after a piece of advice he got as a novice marketing creative, but it’s actually full of kindly wisdom and hard-to-find knowledge about storytelling.
A little more niche than Steven’s bestseller The War of Art, this book is a real gem and a lot of fun to read 💩
One would think that everything is known about procrastination, but the science is still evolving.
In a new episode of his popular science podcast, Huberman Lab, called Leverage Dopamine to Overcome Procrastination & Optimize Effort, Stanford neurobiology professor Andrew Huberman summarizes the latest science from the last 5 years and explains how dopamine works, why it's closely related to procrastination, and how to combat it.
Unlike the topic of how to improve eyesight, we're not including a short summary this time because this episode is really better listened to in its entirety. It's available on Spotify and YouTube — and as Huberman says, listeners have been asking a lot about procrastination:
By the way, Huberman was recently a guest on the JRE podcast, and in an amazingly candid interview, he discussed topics related to productivity and health.
Over the past year, freelance creatives have been given AI tools to bring their ideas to life in photorealistic quality. Here's a demonstration of what the combination of two state-of-the-art AI tools, GPT-4 and Midjourney, can look like in practice, with breathtaking results:
Adobe is now on the move with its new AI product Adobe Firefly, which has generated a lot of excitement among designers.
Here’s a new testimonial from our member Pavel Lorenc, who’s an e-learning designer and consultant:
“Thanks to Robert Vlach and the online support he provided to a Czech freelance community that had grown around him, I have been able to find the necessary information, support, contacts and clients for growing my freelance business. Freelancing.eu scales all these benefits even further. It opens doors to international freelancing for me. I’m excited for any new opportunities that I meet thanks to Freelancing.eu.”
⭐ Are you a freelancer too? Join us and reach out to new clients.
As freelancers, we're part of the economy. So it's useful to have a basic understanding of economics, even if it's just for small talk with clients or reading the business media. The Economist has addressed this need with their free glossary of about 500 terms, The A to Z of economics, written in plain English. Check it out!
Note: Sadly, the term freelancer is not included.
Our editor Daniel Sacha writes from Japan:
This is news to me too.
I was going to write you about something else today, but on my way to a meeting at the train station in Mitaka (basically Tokyo), something caught my eye. Station Work. A room right on the platform that you can rent for quiet work. You have a desk, WiFi, a power outlet, and air conditioning. Somewhere even a monitor with HDMI connection or other services. The idea behind it? Use your time efficiently, for example when you're waiting for a transfer and don't want to leave the station. The price is about €1.9 for 15 minutes.
The smaller boxes are for one person, the larger ones can accommodate a small team, so you can have a joint work session or meeting, for example. You can also easily pay with the card you use for train travel, you just have to register in advance. Station Work website is in Japanese, but with a translator that won't be a problem.
On past trips to Japan, I've written a few articles at train stations (just waiting for the next connection), but the roar of the express trains doesn't help with concentration. Anyway, it looks like I have a nice alternative. I'll definitely give it a try! By the way, you can find them in other cities as well.
Easy searching of scientific studies, publications and other sources is one of the first tangible benefits of AI for freelance knowledge workers.
For a non-scientist, searching on Google Scholar tends to lead to more frustration and questions than good answers. This is where AI-based research tools like Elicit.org and Consensus.app come in to help. Both allow users to search many millions of scientific papers using natural-language queries and present the best results with comprehensive summaries and citations. They are far from perfect, but they are definitely worth bookmarking in your browser.
Free enterprise by free(lance) individuals is an important part of a free society. But democracy is never safe from the autocrats and tyrants, who hate it more than anything else. That is why Timothy Snyder, a highly acclaimed historian, wrote his groundbreaking book On Tyranny, and why Robert Vlach chose it as the first candidate for the book of the year. Here’s his review.
Timothy Snyder's book On Tyranny (Updated with Twenty New Lessons from Russia's War on Ukraine) is the best book I have read this year.
Here's why you should read it, too:
A professional historian, Snyder wrote the original book in 2017 when he was concerned about the threat to American democracy posed by Donald Trump's presidency.
He wrote the short book, and its 20 lessons, as a kind of handbook for his fellow citizens on how to protect democracy.
But there was an unexpected twist:
When Russia invaded Ukraine in 2022, he realized that the need to stand up to tyrants like Putin was more important than ever.
He sat down for 1 DAY and recorded an unscripted addendum to the original audiobook. And what a remarkable day it was!
In the addendum, which is far longer than the original recording, Snyder applied each of the original 20 lessons to Ukraine.
As a historian of Central and Eastern Europe, and Ukraine in particular, he speaks with deep knowledge about the threat to Western democracies from Russia, China, and other autocracies.
The newly added material is so remarkable that it blew me away.
More than that.
I realized how great Snyder's book is as a template for discussions about democracy and past or present tyrants with our 8-year-old son.
We took long walks by the ocean and discussed why we should NEVER take our freedom for granted.
That's how rudimentary and simple most of these lessons are:
A truly unforgettable audiobook with 20 timeless lessons for all of us in the free world.