Nov 03

I was elated, it really wasn’t scary, I felt empowered, free, a man going places. It was the ultimate natural high waking up the next day prepped to grind my ass off to make sure that I kept afloat. This feeling cannot be replicated, I had it only once before and that was after a racist boss of mine set me up and strategically fired me from a position to slide his friend in. It was guys like him that made it feel good, the assholes who cut my check, the trust-fund babies who ran daddy’s company and hired guys like me to spin the gears. It was the average Joes who looked at me like a colossus for daring to go it alone. Long story short, it isn’t as scary as it seems my dear readers.

Preparing to get out – when did I think I was ready

I worked a management position that underpaid me and the location was quite a drive away from home. I took the position after the former job liquidated and laid off everyone, leaving me with a $3,000 severance package. At the time I had started freelancing web quite aggressively and my love for stacking cash to “flip” later on made that $3k a necessity to keep instead of draining while I hunted for the “ideal job” – in my mind there was no such thing so I took the first place that would hire me.

While at the new job, $3k in the bank bubbling, I took my breaks to read many books about financial education. I read the Robert T. Kiyosaki books, Who Moved My Cheese, The Millionaire Next Door, Running With The Bulls, The Richest Man in Babylon, and a few of Trump’s attempts. I burnt through these books like an ex-con at a buffet, I read the self-improvement books like How to Win Friends and Influence People. I reinvented my artist’s brain and became a better salesman of myself and I woke up.

When I awoke from the lull of the employee state of mind, I saw the world in a different light. Opportunities were presenting themselves in everything I saw, there was a way to capitalize on anything that crossed my path and it made the world seem so ripe with potential. While my fellow employees were stressing a raise I was stressing passive income, while they were taking vacation days I was home plotting. I wrote out business plans, mulled them over and wrote a start and finish to them and kept them in my notepad. By the time 2 years had passed by I had grown my $3k into $25k and I figured that it was enough of a down payment on my business plan to push off from worker bee island and make some real money.

This Isn’t For Everybody

One thing that I realized in my time as a business owner is that nobody outside of this life understands what we do. Friends assumed I was home playing the Playstation and watching movies since I kept 3 blogs updated and the girls I dated assumed that my time was infinite. None of them knew about the cold calls, the 48 hr spans at times and being my Blackberry’s bitch. It became a lonely world where my only communique of understanding was with other entrepreneurs. When you strike out on your own you must realize that your support structure is very complicated. If you aren’t at a 9 to 5 people assume that you are rich, free and without responsibilities. It’s asinine to us but it’s true, nobody gets you.

The Rewards of Self-Employment

I will be honest with you, the riches of being self-employed is reserved for those who find a way to monetize quickly and without effort. Successful business ownership is a game that rewards the smart not necessarily the hard working. To be a successful entrepreneur you have to be Michael Jordan of the broker game, a straight gamer, intelligent opportunist and a beast who acts at the drop of a dime.

The rewards you gain will not necessarily be monetary based on this thing of ours, your reward will be a freedom from the mentality of a worker. Man I cannot explain that freedom, you can go work for anyone after that and not feel chained to the check-to-check, begging for a raise mentality, your mind is on your own and that keeps it out of the slave mines that your “boss” assumes you to be in.

So if you are interested in getting out, do like I did and start reading, read and apply that beautiful wisdom those authors have put down on paper. Trust me, when you turn in that retirement letter and take your last step out of that door, you will feel like a million bucks.

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  • Jackie

    Haven’t blogged or written anything worth reading in months. In fact! I just looked and it doesn’t look like I thought it did.. from a different pc. You know? Oh well.

    BUT THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THIS ARTICLE. REAL Self employment (outside the direct sales /party plan model) is sorta frightening to me. But I k now it’s gotta be nothing short of empowering! I always barely manage to get started, then something comes up. It’s tough starting on a shoe string as a single mom.. trying to do the needful with two hands when it really requires four!

    I’ll read this again and again and have some of this energy and wisdom rub off on me. THANKS GREG! “Freedom from the mentality of a worker.” Lordy! Good stuff! Say it again! And often!

    • Hi Jackie, keep your head up – I’ve found that the best way to go about things is to put it all down on paper from beginning to end and then break it down into steps with a check mark by each step. Doing it this way makes for your business to be built regardless of time and you can actively see progress that will call you back to it periodically (this depends on the type of business).

      Shoes string budgets have a way of keeping us gloomy but keep on stacking your money earned from your side hustle without dipping into it and eventually you will have enough to afford whatever start-up you need. I appreciate the positive feedback I have received so far on this article both private and public so I will definitely be writing more and inviting some others to contribute their personal stories.

      I think the most important thing I was told was “you should expect to fail at least 3 times and be out of house and home”, I’ve gone through a couple of those and it does not kill that mentality, it’s a beautiful thing. Just plan, plan, plan and execute despite how hard the ground looks for your falling. Eventually your wings will sprout and it will be the financial envy of others that will be the issue (but that’s another 5 articles).

  • Great article! I feel you the road of an entrepreneur can be lonely at times. “To be a successful entrepreneur you have to be Michael Jordan of the broker game, a straight gamer, intelligent opportunist and a beast who acts at the drop of a dime. “ -So true!

    • This is my favorite subject to write about, Entrepreneurship is exciting but extremely misunderstood. I hope this article shed some light on a few people who were wondering and hopefully push someone over that may have been on the line to get their feet wet. I love the theme/direction of your blog, keep spreading that knowledge.