So you want to get away from the corporate job and do your own thing once and for all. Great! Sounds like a plan, right?
But there is that nagging question, that thing that keeps buzzing like a mosquito in your ear as you’re trying to get to sleep. And that nagging question is THIS:
When is the perfect time to ditch the good ol’ JOB and take a chance?
Hmm…talk about a loaded question! It brings up ALL kinds of stuff. The “how” of your dreams. The in-your-face reality of 3-D world. The “it will never work” kicking in.
Sometimes it’s like inviting your old frenemies fear, doubt, and panic over for tea….and wondering why they don’t leave when they’re asked to.
I will tell you this up front: it’s a lot easier to honestly answer the question than it is to take action on the answer.
It’s also something that you’ll probably get a LOT of advice on…and it may or may not be advice based on your best interests.
I heard plenty of advice and anecdotes when I was contemplating it.
Yes, go for it now, ditch that job and Carpe Diem! No, keep the job until you saved enough money. Yes, jump, but keep the job until you have enough clients. NO, don’t do it at all, it’s TOO big of a risk until you have EVERYTHING figured out (and therefore no chance of pain, fear, or inconvenience…)
It went on an on. All well meaning, and most of it well-reasoned and true enough…and all of which was probably the right answer for the person talking. Fair enough.
But honestly, it often left me more confused than convinced. And no closer to getting to a plan that I could live with. (Which meant no REAL change–and a LOT of frustration.)
Quite frankly, others could offer their thoughts and suggestions and could tell me many cautionary tales as well as stories of triumph…but that didn’t mean that any of them had anything to do with my situation.
Now, I know what you might be thinking right now. I’m not telling you anything about how much money you should have saved up. I’m not talking about all the Plan Bs you should have in place. I’m not talking about any “worst case scenario” situations and how to avoid them.
Quite honestly, that has all been done to death. There’s plenty of risk-management advice out there. Plenty. You don’t need any more of that, I promise you.
I’m not going to take that all on because somehow I think you already know what you imagine could go wrong. I bet you already know how to plan for a rainy day.
You probably know that all too well, in fact. That’s what we’re all taught to plan for, isn’t it? Not only the rain but also the hurricane, the tornado, the earthquake, and the tsunami. Not to mention the house fire, the tidal wave, and the plague.
How about planning for a SUNNY day, too? Wow….what an idea. Seriously.
And when I came to that, was then that is when I made a BIG discovery:
It was all on ME to make the choice….and I had to decide what it would be, make a plan, and go for it based not only on my “real time” situation, but also on my gut and my heart. (Not to mention my courage!)
When it came to it, I was responsible for my actions. Not my friends, not my family, not my coaches and mentors, not the mail lady.
And in my case, that meant making a plan and GOING for it. And whatever the outcome was, knowing that I was responsible for what I did…and that I could change course at any time.
There are no guarantees. I’m sure we ALL know that.
Sure, cover your bases as best you can….but be OK with risk. You’re gonna have to be, especially when it comes to doing your own thing.
Oh, and another thing….. to start planning for MIRACLES. Start trusting your own judgement. Start exercising your FAITH.
How about making THAT the default response?
Look, there’s no one-size-fits all answer to this big-ass question. But this is a GOOD thing. Why? It’s an opportunity.
Learning to trust your own knowledge and judgement about your situation (i.e. the “practical” stuff) and making a plan that comes from a place of love and trust rather than fear and doubt (i.e. the “idealistic” stuff) is invaluable.
And Lord KNOWS you’re going to need that skill when you’re actually IN business for yourself! Now is a good time to start cultivating that skill–and getting comfortable with going forward with both your knowledge of your “real time” situation AND your own FAITH.
What has been your experience here?