I heard recently a statement that argued that if you have a job, that is, if you are working for someone else then you are not an entrepreneur. Essentially it implied you have to go all in and burn the bridge as they say and commit totally to entrepreneurship to be considered an entrepreneur.
Bullshit. I have to disagree.
Let’s face it. For many people the journey of becoming an entrepreneur must happen along side a full time or at least part time job of some sort. Many potential entrepreneurs have mortgages, families, bills, commitments, all requiring a constant flow of cash and they simply cannot quit their day job to be a full time entrepreneur. If you are lucky enough to have a significant nest egg of liquidity behind you which puts you in a position to pursue entrepreneurship full time by giving up your day job then consider yourself fortunate. It is a luxury many entrepreneurs don’t have. Of course you deserve it, you worked to build up your finances so you have the luxury of financial security to support the hustle life for a while. Others, they have to find another way to join you on the path to becoming a full time entrepreneur. That’s life.
So, if you are working full time, or even part time in a j.o.b. then be prepared to do the following;
Spend more hours. Expect to put in a lot more hours on top of your day job. If you are working a 40 hour week and are serious about building a business then get ready for many sleepless nights, loosing your weekends, filling up your holidays with hours of extra work and sacrificing a lot of social time. Expect to at least double your current workload, if not more.
Be portable. You will need to learn to take your business with you. With the technology available on smartphones, notebooks and tablets, this is more than possible. For instance, as a blogger I find myself blogging on the train, creating social media posts when I am out and about or waiting in line at the coffee shop, replying to emails and taking calls over lunch, replying to tweets and comments as I lay in bed at night, you name it. My content and community engagement is on a 24 hour cycle since my lifestyle rotates on a 24 hour cycle. Get used to it.
Sleep less. Either you wake up early or go to bed late, or both. You will have to learn to live off a reduced amount of sleep. Or sleep in multiple phases. I can’t recall where I read an article recently but it was suggesting that research claiming people needing 7-9 hours sleep could in fact be more detrimental to their health compared those who slept less and could actually see benefits. I’ll leave this one up to you but be prepared either way. You will find yourself working late at night or rising early only to see yourself head off to the day job after that. How bad do you want that dream?
To put it simply, being an entrepreneur is about hustling, it’s about linking your market up with your services and/or products and not giving up until you see that dream through. And if it means doing it along side your day job, even starting out a few hours a day and working your way up until eventually you can leave you job… you can proudly consider yourself an entrepreneur. At least when you make your first $1 anyway, otherwise it’s just a hobby.
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