Teresa Sousa is a freelance translator and copywriter. After working in a translation agency for years, she started her freelance journey in 2015 back in Portugal. Two years later, she moved here and continued her business. Teresa translates from English/German/French into Portuguese and specialises in online content. It’s actually more transcreation than translation. Because her goal is to make the resulting text as appealing as possible to the Portuguese market. It’s not a literal translation, her process is much more creative.
Over the last few years, Teresa has learned to value her skills and services more. Since back in Portugal, everybody spoke Portuguese, being a Portuguese translator didn’t seem like a big deal. After moving here, she started to understand how people value Portugal as an interesting and growing market. It helped her understand the value of what she was providing. She now mostly works with European, international companies who want to sell their products and services in Portugal.
The freelance lifestyle appealed to Teresa, mainly because she gets to decide what she does with her time. She doesn’t have a schedule anymore and doesn’t even have an alarm clock. Having the opportunity to choose what she does with her time and what projects to work on. Creating something of her own, her own personal brand. That is what freelancing is to her. In the beginning, it’s hard to say no to projects, sometimes to the detriment of your personal life. Teresa has learned to respect her body and think about her health. To take advantage of the “free” part of freelancing by respecting her natural rhythm. She puts the most important appointments and moments in her personal life into her calendar, and work moves around that. That works for her! Don’t let your enthusiasm for your business overwhelm the rest of your life.
Teresa advises every freelancer to find their why. Why do you want to freelance? What are your values and what is important to you? Set your non-negotiables. That will help you to choose where to put your focus and what projects to work on. And if you’re motivated and happy, your workday will flow much better. At least, that is what works for Teresa!