2 months of being my own boss – my experiences.

My work station

Its been 2 months since I left my job and started blogging full time. I had thought about it for months before I actually did it. Now that I have done it, I have some first hand experience of my own to share with you. It has come as a mixed bag of things. Here are the pros and cons I am experiencing after making the shift.

Pros :

1. I can finally do exactly what I want to do. When I started working for a firm after my studies, I was told what to do. Then I grew bolder and started asking for what I liked from among the project requirements. I got it a lot of times. Some times, I didn’t get it. Now, I just do what I like most. Everyday, I get up and think about the topic that I would like to write on, and then I start writing it, right then. All the rest of the things in my life are built around this activity. I do get bored sometimes but, for the most, I am so engrossed in my work that I have to be torn away from it.

2. I get the most optimal use of my time. I get up in the morning, start my computer and start working. I get up after one hour for exercising, taking a bath and having break fast. Then I get back to work. On most days, I complete my writing for the day by 1 pm or 2 pm. If I have to stretch, I just get up and do it. If I feel like resting, I go into the bedroom to take a quick nap. I do exactly that which I find most productive.

3. Money is gained on value addition vs time spent. On a job, I was paid for the time I spent there. Looking back, it seems all wrong! They didn’t care what value I was adding in those hours. All hours were the same to them. If I finished my day’s work in 2 hours using the Pareto Principle and left, I would have got less money than if I had finsihed the same work in 8 hrs and left. That’s ridiculous! Right now I am not making money with this blog. When I will, it will be for the value that I add through my blog and not for the time I spend. The readers won’t bother whether I spent 2 hrs or 8 hrs on an article. If people like the articles, they will keep visiting and I will keep making money.

4. My product is in my name. In the beginning of this year, I created a very nice and useful piece of software for my project. It was very well recieved and people praised me for it. My manager said that I easily saved the firm about 20 thousand dollars. But I can’t sell that item to someone else now. The firm has the rights on it. I don’t know about you, but if I pour my heart into something, I like it to be in my name. Whatever I have written on this site is all in my name. Whenever I get a good comment, the feeling of satisfaction is indescribable. I feel like I have already earned a lot! I know now that my product has a value for some people. All I need to do is build upon this value and take it to more people.

5. Character build up. I am facing my fears with this venture. Make no mistake, I feel scared at times. I knew what I was getting into when I left my job and this was a very hard decision for me. I knew the comforts I was leaving behind and I knew it might take some time before this blog becomes profitable. I also knew, the more I delayed this decision, the harder it would be for me to take it. I have never doubted my capabilities. This is not to say that I am overconfident. I just believe that its not a question of whether I can succeed but whether I will hold on till I succeed. The question is, would I dare to try rather than hold on to something secure, inspite of feeling like I am dragging through life? I decide to dare.

Cons :

The cons I mention below, only look so in the short run. I think they also will become pros as I continue

1. Profit comes later. Its been 2 months since I left my job. I have written over 25 articles but I am nowhere near making a profit out of it. This is the time while I am building my value. This is a time when self doubt and uncertainty keep haunting me. Self suggestion, law of attraction and faith in a friendly Universe help me a lot when such feelings arise. Here is an instance of the Universe acting friendly. My google adsense application got rejected last week. While this is not the end of the world, I was feeling low for the last 2-3 days, thinking about it. On a whim, I opened zenhabits.net , I keep reading Leo’s posts there. And what did I find there? An article on overcoming self doubt! :)

2. You hold full responsibility. While your product is all in your name, you also hold full responsibility for the quality and success of your product. When things go wrong, and they will sometimes, you have no one to share the responsibility with. I think its a good thing in the long run. Although I feel scared and doubtful at times, I wouldn’t want to be a sheep for the rest of life just because of that. There is a sense of being alive in doing something in spite of fear! Imagine being on a high all the time you work.

3. You have to be extra careful with self discipline. Its easy to fall into bad working habits when you work alone. There is no one to question you if you get up late or are falling behind expectations. You have to make sure, all by yourself, that you keep working in a disciplined manner.

4. Friend circle. Whom do I talk to when I am done with my work at noon? Well, right now, no one except my wife. Even she is busy with the prepration for her GRE test next month. All of my old friends are working in 9 to 5 jobs. most of them don’t leave office at 5, they come much later. I think that’s a thing with making such a change with your life. You have to find a new circle that is more compatible and conducive to your new life style. Your old friends and acquaintances unconsciously pull you back to your old lifestyle. If you leap to a different platform in life, you have to seek out friends in your new place.

Being your own boss will bring a lot of freedom and a lot of responsibility with it. You will be facing things that you may have feared for a long time. Shiv Khera says that failure and hard times make winners and break losers. I think being a winner or loser is just a choice you make. If you decide you will hold on till you achieve your goals, you have just made the decision to be a winner for life.

5 Comments

  • Debi
    November 15, 2010 - 4:26 am | Permalink

    Hi Dost Let me start my comment with a nice quote. Guy Kawasaki says “The hardest thing about getting started is actually getting started”. So you have crossed the hardest thing. Now its really a pleasure to do something that you believe in and very soon anyway you will come to know what you believed is right or worng. There is nothing you are loosing in this process if you material/famliy need is taken care of. So all the best buddy. Have you picked on any specific area on which you want to focus and write??

    • Rahul
      November 15, 2010 - 6:10 am | Permalink

      Hi Debi,
      You are right, I am probably past the hard part :).
      I am already sure what I am doing is right, I have no doubt about that. Either I’ll be successful or I will have a learning experience which will help me in my success later.
      For me, my family needs will always be met, I believe in a friendly Universe.
      Thanks for the encouragement. I’ll be writing on Personal Development.

  • M
    November 15, 2010 - 7:22 pm | Permalink

    Hi Rahul!

    This is a such a well-thought-of article – very crisp and refined writing! Am sure this venture definitely helps you discover yourself all over again. Sending out warm thoughts and wishes from US. GOOD LUCK with all that you do!!

    ps: am a reader of zenhabits too. Infact, I think he is hosting some kind of training on blogging which might interest you.

    • Rahul
      November 16, 2010 - 12:42 am | Permalink

      Hi Mano!
      Thanks for all the encouraging words and wishes!

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