“I am indeed rich, since my income is superior to my expenses, and my expense is equal to my wishes.” – Edward Gibbon, Born Apr. 27, 1737.
I'm really not qualified to give anyone financial advice.
But here is some unqualified financial advice.
For the freelancer or entrepreneur just starting out… freedom can cost less than you think if you can manage to keep expenses low, and eliminate your desire for expensive material possessions.
If you're looking to make the leap from job holder to self-employed freelancer, go lean early. Cut the fat. Minimize. Prioritize. Shrink your life.
The less stuff you own, the easier it is to keep tidy and agile. The more dedicated you are to your work and hobbies, the less need you have for the stuff most people blow their money on: entertainment and trinkets.
If you can get that in order first, or at least simultaneously to building up your business, you'll find that your earnings can much more easily cover what you need to take you out of having to trade your time to some other “job”.
And really, to be rich is simply the ability to decide what to do with your own time. What you want, when you want, with who you want. Amen?
Once your income can cover all expenses, and have cash left over to save or invest, you're set for life. You can then quickly do what you need to secure that income to be automated and reoccurring and reliable.
And that's where you want to be. That's where everyone should want to be. Because the future is coming, and the entire concept of a “job” is evaporating rapidly.
Now look, if you want bling and Lamborghinis and McMansions galore, good for you. You'll just have more expenses to cover if you want to truly be free, and not belong to your stuff.
But if your goal is to just be independent and beholden to none, just live small, and work toward sustainability. Scale from there and it's never a struggle or a risk.