The past couple years after finishing university and entering the workforce there has been a constant echo of friends and family unhappy with what they’re doing. It’s become a common trend that when I run into an old friend or colleague and ask them “Hey how are things, what you been up to?”, the answer is always the same and ends with an unenthusiastic “You know, just work.”
Is life meant to be just working at a job you’re unhappy at? I mean I see all these people on Instagram travelling, going to conferences in New York or San Francisco, people vlogging from home and they look happy. What I’m trying to argue is why are they doing fun things and I’m not? I want that!!
We have built these unnecessary constraints on ourselves and limited ourselves to the life we’re capable of living. I mean what’s stopping you from booking a flight next week to Australia, or starting that business you been dreaming about, or finally learning how to play that guitar?
This is YOUR life, and in reality we’re all blessed with the opportunity to lead it in the direction we desire. What you want, what you dream of, is all possible, but unwarranted assumptions are stopping us from making the most of how we are living.
I’m going to break down some of these assumptions and lead you towards striving for a life you’re proud to live, because remember you’re in the driver’s seat and where you go, well, it’s up to you!!
“You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough.”
– Mae West
We’re not good enough
The odds of you forcing change and ditching your old habits are 9 to 1, so listen up because we’re going to stock up those odds to be in your favor. I realized that majority of people wanting to make a change, wanting to start a business, or wanting to travel the world just simply don’t think they’re good enough. In fact, I read a stat once that said 90% aren’t confident enough in their abilities to force change. Scary, huh?
But why aren’t we confident in our abilities? As humans we’re all capable and equipped with the majority of the tools to succeed and be happy. So why shouldn’t we? We’re built to adapt, so throw yourself in a vulnerable position, challenge yourself and watch how surprised you are when you see the outcome greater than you expected.
Henry Ford, Amancio Ortega, and Richard Branson is just a short list of high school dropouts who became billionaires. I’m sure people told them they weren’t good enough, and didn’t have the education, social or technical skills to succeed. In fact, they were equipped with the same or less skills and resources that we possess.
What they had was the confidence in themselves, that they can and they will. So take out any doubt in your head that you are not able or good enough. You are, so any time your brain is telling you that you can’t, just know you can.
Not enough time
One big issue is that a lot of you don’t think we have the time to force change. We’re too busy working 9 to 5 to support our mortgages and put food on the table, working out, cleaning the house, you name it. I get it, we’re all busy and it’s not easy. But when was it ever? There are no overnight success stories, so let’s find a way for you to revamp your weekly schedule and find the hours to invest in that change of lifestyle.
Gary Vaynerchuk is always saying when Monday to Friday hits, you better make the most out of that 7 PM to 2 AM time frame. And he is 100% right.
All of us can easily invest 2 or 3 hours a night into building a new business, learning a new hobby, and when you look at the big picture, that accumulates to roughly 20 hours or more a week.
So adjust your schedule and sacrifice. Maybe it’s time to cut out that Big Brother marathon or meeting up at Tim Horton’s to discuss the weekend’s events. Do things like working out at lunch, preparing meals the night before.
These little time adjustments will add up and give you the time that you need. So invest in your time wisely, and watch it pay out its dividends. We all could DO MORE.
Loss of security
I guess it’s commonly known that you shouldn’t quit a job without a backup. But is it really that much of a risk? I know majority of people are financially insecure, but what are you really risking? A job that you don’t like, a job that makes you miserable, a job that if you stayed at another 40 years would make you disappointed.
Is the picture starting to become more clear to you? For the most of us, the only thing we are risking by quitting our jobs to pursue our passions is being a corporate slave, strapped to a cubicle, and strapped with mortgage payments. Not so risky anymore? Okay good.
If this is something you’re looking to do, then plan your exit. Look to save up a certain amount of money before you do just to keep you on your feet for a few months. Maybe have a part-time job as something on the side. In reality, none of us will become broke and end up on the streets by just leaving a job and potentially being unemployed for a few months.
The truth is that market and that life will always be there for us. It’s not going away, and that 9 to 5 cubicle life will always be an “easy way-out” option for all of us. Just go online and you’ll find hundreds of job postings a day, all offering the same thing.
In fact, society promotes this 9 to 5 life for us. We’re all conditioned and built to accept this standard and conventional way of living. If you have the confidence and will power to break those social codes and push life in the direction you choose, you’re already given a head start because most people won’t.
Here is a great video of Steve Jobs explaining this:
It’s too late
People often assume that their time has passed to make a difference. It’s too late to learn a new sport, take up graph designing, study journalism, or build a business. This couldn‘t be more false.
Hey, if you are 25 to 30, and start something you love tomorrow, by the time you‘re 40 you could be a complete professional. For example, a kid who picks up a guitar at the age of 5 can be the next Jimmy Hendrix at age 16. Elon Musk sold his first code at the age of 12. It doesn’t take long for us to learn something new and master it. So start tomorrow and design your future by doing something you‘re passionate about.
Ray Kroc started McDonald’s at the age of 52, Colonel Sanders started KFC at age 65. You see, it‘s never too late, start a business at age 50 and you still have another 40 years to enjoy it. Don‘t let your age limit you, but exploit your experience and use it as an advantage. It‘s never too late, so do it now.
Not enough money
A lot of people associate new business ventures with high start-up costs, and capital investments. I’m here to tell you that advancements in technology are both helping cut costs to invest, and help source outside capital investments.
Funding for start-ups is so accessible now with the options of crowd funding, angel investors, venture capitalists, and credit loans.
With the explosion of social media, the $100 start-up is easier than ever. Online revenue is exponentially increasing with the options of selling email lists, affiliate marketing, and Adsense proving to be solid revenue models.
The reality is times are changing, and there is a huge opportunity for you to make tons of money with minimal risk involved.
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