Journey of My Own

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Why Don’t You Get a Job?

GetaJobAs someone who has decided to start their own business, I am met with constant criticisms from people in my life that just don’t understand things the way I do.  These are the early days and I’m not making a great amount of money.  Whenever I tell my mother about a small success I’ve had or a sale of a few dollars, she cynically asks me if I found that money on the sidewalk, as if my entire business was nothing more than looking for stray quarters that people drop on their way to work.  My friend assumes that this is a passing phase and that I’ll soon regain my sanity and get a job.  People are always giving me tips on some job they saw in a newspaper or on craigslist.

It’s frustrating and disheartening.  It feels like the people in my life that I trust the most are betraying me and trying to pull me down.

So, why don’t I just get a job?  The answer is two-fold:

First, the economy sucks. With the real unemployment rate around 17.5%, now is a very stupid time to go out looking for a job unless you are absolutely desperate.  I have a masters degree in architecture, which makes me too “over educated” to get a job in any other field.  With most of the major architecture firms laying off about half of their staff, my odds of actually landing a job in my field are even slimmer.

There are barely any jobs out there in architecture these days.  The few job that there are are bombarded with so many resumes that the competition makes it almost an exercise in futility.  Even if I could get a job, all it would mean is that I’m willing to do the most amount of work possible for the least amount of money.  Not exactly the optimal position to be in.  Why try to win a battle in a losing war?

Secondly, working for a living is a waste of time. Yes, you heard that right.  If you’re here on my blog, you probably already believe this to some degree.  Take me, making a few hundred dollars a month and any one of my friends out there with a full-time job making $40,000/year ($3,333/month), and it looks like I’m coming in the loser.  But if both of us stopped working, I’d still be making a few hundred dollars every month, while their earnings immediately go to $0.  Starts to change the way you think about  things.

Add to that the fact that there really is no ceiling on how much I can make on my own.  I can keep working and keep growing my income into the six- or seven-figure range if I keep at it long enough.  While my full-time friend is stuck earning a solid $40k on salary if he works 40 hours this week or 80 hours.  The only time he can get that bumped up is by crossing his fingers and praying that once a year, his boss will give him a one or two thousand dollar raise.

So, even though I’m not really making “big money” yet, I still think I’m in a better situation.  I can keep my dignity by running my own business.  I don’t have to go out and sell myself all over town the the lowest bidder in this dismal economy and I don’t have to trade my time for money.

So keep laughing at me.  The joke is on you.  You ask me if my money comes from finding nickles on the sidewalk, but you wake up at 4AM to “survive” another day and come home tired only to piss away your free time in front of the TV.  You think I’m insane when you rent out your mind and body to someone else who can instantly decide to kick you to the curb and leave you with nothing.  I’m out here creating my own opportunity, and I’m out here creating my own assets.  One day I’ll be living the life and you’ll be left wondering how I did it still zoning out in front of the TV and renting your mind.  See you then.

[end rant]

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10 Comments

  1. Hey Clayton,

    I’m right there with you on this post. Trying to make a living on the internet comes with a lot of scrutiny from your peers. Just remember man, most people are going to be mediocre. Not many people want to put in the effort to be something more. Starting your own business is definitely putting in the effort to be more.

    There is no way I can work for someone else my whole life. One day when your sitting on the beach sipping a corona and you already made 500 bucks that day, the scrutinizers will be in their office putting in their typical 9 to 5. No thank you I say haha.

    Good Luck with it man.

    • @Travis Thanks for the comment, man. Yeah, I know what you mean, and trust me, I’m in this IM thing for the long haul. It’s just that IM is hard enough on it’s own without all your friends and family trying put you down with all their snide “So, are you a millionaire yet?” comments. At least my girlfriend is 100% behind me on this, which I am so grateful for.

      I’ll meet you on the beach, man. You bring the Coronas, I’ll bring some limes.

      Take Care,
      Clayton

  2. I’ve found it one of the hardest things (along with putting my arse on the seat and doing directory subissions ;)) is to keep going despite your closest “allies” putting you down. I get a lot of it too.

    I think resilience is one of the hardest skills to master on this journey.

    It helps to make the decision that you’re in it for the long haul no matter what because you’re less likely to cave in to getting that job. Sometimes it’s best to burn your bridges so you’re not tempted to go back.

    If you guys are bringing the beer, I’ll bring the surfboards.

    • @ Keith, trust me, there’s no way I could go back even if I wanted to these days. My industry is just way too competitive with all the layoffs that have been happening. Plus, now that I’m starting to make a few sales a week, I’m completely hooked on internet marketing! I might have to get some kind of job, if I run out of money before I can make a full-time income at this, but my heart won’t be in it. I’ll probably use every spare cent I get my hands on to outsource work!

  3. The wealthy get paid by results the poor get paid by time. I think betting a job should only be for those who want to takeover the company or buy the company. Either or is unnecessary, unless your using the money to find your own dream!

    • @ Jonathan, that’s how I’m starting to see things. It’s interesting, I was just having a conversation with someone a few days ago about how financial advisers always tell people to diversify their money by investing in multiple stocks or mutual funds. But for some reason people don’t do that with their income streams. They just get one job and put all their eggs into that one job basket. It’s a very dangerous way of living your life, and now that economic times are very tough, that strategy is leaving a lot of people hurting.

  4. Just noticed this post. You are young (my guess from your Affilorama photo), can take risks and do not need to play it safe. Learning as you are doing and learning through real experience is excellent. I teach students and they only start really learning once they start out working or in business. Stick with it, keep your goals in sight and never give up. By the way I’m 52 with responsibilities and are taking risks right now, so you also go for it.

    • @ Harry, Thanks. I’m 27 right now. I worked in a cubicle for 3 years before I decided I needed a break and headed off to grad school. I’ve always been one to play it safe growing up, so I really feel like I’m taking a big risk by doing all this stuff.

  5. Now that’s what I’m talking about C! I went off to grad school and graduated 15 years ago with a master’s in one of the social sciences. I’ve had some pretty good jobs along the way. I still do, luckily, but I woke up one day and realized that it’s all really futile.

    No one comes to the end of their life and says, “Boy, I wish I spent more time at the office.” I cannot stand the idea of literally dying at work, surrounded by strangers who don’t give a shit about whether you live or die.

    The way things are going, retirement from traditional employment is likely to consist entirely of the few moments it takes for us to fall out of our work chairs as a result of suffering a fatal stroke.

    No thanks.

    So, keep going and let no one stop you.

    • @Carl When I was a kid, my dentist retired and then died of a heart attack 6 months later. At my first office job, one of the partners of the company retired and died 3 months later. Retirement, is the fool’s gold that you get if you waste your time working at something that doesn’t fulfill you.

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