A useful mental model for a creator going independent is to think about Time, Money, and Products as primitives and the conversion of one into the other as relationships to exploit.
Converting Time into Time
Time cannot be created, but time can be spent planning how to better use the future time you do have. This could be achieved by:
Planning and deliberately allocating time
Doing less or timeboxing things
Eliminating time spent on low-value activities
Using time more efficiently
Learning quicker ways to accomplish things
Parallelizing time-intensive activities
Converting Time into Money
This is being an employee, and it does not scale. At best, you can increase your earning rate or work more.
Time into Products
This relationship is spending time and effort to create products. If you make widgets and sell them, this is equivalent to Time → Money with a layer of indirection.
However, a better relationship is to build products that can generate money or free up time.
Converting Money into Time
This is paying for things that would take your time to complete.
Converting Money into Money
This includes things such as: Interest, Dividends, Growth, or Arbitrage.
Converting Money into Products
This can be buying a business or buying tools, software, machinery or other capital to make products with.
Converting Products into Time
This is using products and tools to free up or better use the time you have.
Converting Products into Money
Converting Products into Products