Doing what you love.

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by SClay115, Mar 6, 2011.

  1. SClay115

    SClay115 Throwin' loops

    Birthdays(today) sometimes make me re-think what is going on in my life, where I'm at, and where I'd like to be. All that philosophical stuff that just makes you think.

    So for a while now, I've been looking into and thinking about starting up a small business of my own. It is not that I am particularly unhappy at my job, but simply, I'd rather do something that I enjoy doing, something I can show my kids(someday), instead of just a paycheck. Why not be happy to go to work in the morning? And have full control of your future, instead of being a figure on a piece of paper underneath someone's ownership.

    So, I wanted to see how you folks are making out. Seems like most people on here are far wiser than I, and it'd be nice to hear some opinions. But are you guys "doing what you love"? Or is it just a means to an end?

    And for the people that are doing something they truly enjoy, does it take all the enjoyment out of it? That is a big worry of mine, obviously.

    If I were to try and get something rolling, I would of course keep my day job, running the small business in my off time, if only just to make sure it will actually work. Definitely not wanting to put all my eggs in that unsure basket!

  2. makin moves

    makin moves Well-Known Member

    Happy birthday and good luck with your decision on which path to take. I kick this around all the time and I always end up at work monday morning ;D My problem is its hard to leave good money to take a chance on running my on thing. When starting a new business your going to have to work alot more hours and most likely alot less money :( . Iam lucky enough to be in a position where I have a boss that has me run the show for him, so I bust my butt to make sure things are running right so when the good fishing is going on I can be out there playing. Its like I have my own business with out all the risk. The decision is tough for you because you have kids but on the flip side what better drive than to build something up for them to take over. Iam rambiling either way good luck your not the only one having these thoughts run through your head. :)

  3. anytide

    anytide Administrator Staff Member

    go for it Clay -and gooood luck  :) :)!!!
  4. Brett

    Brett > PRO STAFF <

    Remember the 4 R's of small business startup.


    Do your research. You need to understand fully, what it takes/costs to setup and run a business.
    Understand the risks. Don't think that running a business is something anyone can do and that all businesses succeed.
    You will be responsible for everything that goes right and wrong, emotionally and financially.
    Plan on long days and longer nights. That's what it'll take to make it work.
    The rewards will come, but don't plan on them any time soon.
  5. firecat1981

    firecat1981 BBA Counselor

    I do what I love already, and not being my own boss has benefits too. Like a pension, health benefits, and not having to worry about turns in the economy as much. My wife wants me to start a side business on my days off building boats or kayaks.
    The thing that stops me is in a good economy 80% of businesses fold in the first year, and 90% in the first 2 years, the numbers get worse with each passing year. This is not a very good economy!
  6. cvilt

    cvilt I Love!

    Happy Birthday SClay. I have spent all but the last 2 years of my life self employed and there is no comparison to a JOB. I closed my buis when things got bad and hung out for a year then got a job and though I could do it. I am working on an exit strategy to get on my own again. Test the market work your heart out and remember failure is not an I believe there are fewer guarantees working for someone that can say see ya at any time. And a pension, really? I will work doing what I like till I die or just cant. No need to retire from what you love. Good luck and if you want to bounce some ideas around feel free
  7. TomFL

    TomFL Well-Known Member

    After starting a business and working 18 years with my family, and then doing it again on my own 10+ years later, I've seen a lot of crazy things.

    I saw times when I was young and times were so tough that my Dad was crying and saying we weren't going to make it, and I've seen times when he was so proud after we bought our first commercial building and things were going incredibly well.

    I've had the same types of ups and downs on my own.

    Oh and I've also seen the happiest day of his life; the day he sold everything and retired ;)

    There are pluses and minuses to both sides. Pluses are, obviously, that you can work your schedule to find time during the week to do fun stuff like fish. I work at night/weekends/real early in the morning a lot, and that enables me to take a bit of time during peak hours.

    The downsides are:

    Healthcare. Absolutely #1 issue facing small/independent businesses. If your wife has great bennies at her job, that's perfect until she loses her job in this economy. Don't think it can't happen to you!

    Risk: Nobody guarantees you a paycheck on Friday!! This might be the hardest thing for you to adjust to after many years of knowing what day is "payday". If YOU don't make the $$, YOU don't get the $$.

    You'll have ups and downs the same as you have in your job now, there's no doubt. So don't think life will be all joy-joy/happy-happy once you leave your current job.

    Do your research, believe in yourself and know going in there will be tough times. Improvise, adapt and overcome.

  8. cal1320

    cal1320 Well-Known Member

    It sounds like your considering two different things. You can be an employee and still love your job. Just as you can own a business and hate what you do. Find the occupation you love and do it on someone elses dime for awhile. Then if you still love it, go on your own. You might love to fish but if you were forced to do it everyday no mater the weather or personal obligations it might not be so great. ;)
  9. DuckNut

    DuckNut Brandon, FL

    I started my career in corporate america and quit after 1 year. I was familiar with a particular industry and wanted to explore it more. Later I started working for myself and never looked back. I now use the term "work" loosely. I currently do consulting and work on my schedule, not theirs and that still affords me 5-6 months off per year.

    I am not, by any stretch of the imagination, cut out for corporate work and will never do it. I have actually been exploring a completely different field lately and I am excited about the possibilities - but the fianacial investement/commitment is not for the faint of heart and has my wife trembling.

    Here is my advice: Do your homework as stated. Do it again and then hire a professional to review your due diligence and possibly add some insight. Then make up your mind to follow through or wait. Most importantly, if you are going to be providing a service, don't give it away - you are worth more than that.

    Best wishes.
  10. swaddict

    swaddict Thread Killer

    The grass is always greener on the other side. In this economy benefits would be a big factor, especially if your wife has a job with excellent benefits then your decision will be easier. If you believe that you have a product or service that people need, then go for it.
  11. firecat1981

    firecat1981 BBA Counselor

    Like I said the benefits of working for someone else are many. A pension/retirement fund is very important especially in todays world where social security most likely won't be around in much capacity in the future. It's great to say I'll do what I love till I die or can't when you are 30 years old, but can you say the same when you are 60? The mind may be willing but the body won't be at some point and with life expectancies being stretched to the 100 year mark now, it's something you need to plan for very very carefully.

    IE my wife just got her retirement estimates back from her 401k, If she put in $15k :eek: a year to it, assuming a 6% assumption rate she would only have a little less then a million dollars when she is 60 years old. That sounds like alot of money, but the estimates also say she will need 2.3 million at that time in order to keep her current level of pay for the remainder of her life. Sadly we had the numbers checked and they are fairly accurate. Luckily we have several retirement accounts and plans as well as a good amount of insurance, and aren't relying on her 401k (which despite popular belief was never intended to be used for retirement purposes, but as a way to compensate executives).

    As said if your wife has health benefits at work then it's great as long as she keeps the job, but if she doesn't for what ever reason then it will only take one trip to the ER to take everything from you. Oh and don't forget Obamacare is coming into play and prices and mandates are about to go up.

    I'm not saying don't do it, do it on the side like you said, but I wouldn't give up a steady paycheck in this economy and political climate. Oh and don't do it if you have to take out a large loan to get it started right now!
  12. DuckNut

    DuckNut Brandon, FL

    In this political climate...what a load of crap!

    You can not predict the political climate 20 years down the road, let alone in two more years.  It seems that there are a lot of people on here that do not necessarily agree with the current presidental administration.  The other half didn't agree with the last administration either.

    As a self employed person, health care premiums are a deductible expense.  You can contribute up to $49k per year in a retirement plan. 

    As far as counting on a pension from a public works employee, I would not rely on that.  The fact is this country is broke and drastic changes are coming to entitlement programs near you.  Don't believe you can loose your pension.  Look at what is happening in Wisconsin.  Closer to home read about House Bill 1319 (a bill to reduce teachers pensions).  New employees at state level jobs are now being paid more because they are no longer offering pensions to employees and the additional income is to entice them to save for their own future like everyone in the private sector. 

    Times are changing and the best way to care for yourself in the future is to do it yourself and being self employed is the most flexible way to accomplish that.

    And as Swaddict eludes to: if you have a product that people need or think they need (want) and are willing to pay for it - go for it.

    Once again, best wishes.
  13. SClay115

    SClay115 Throwin' loops

    First, thanks for all the replies so far.

    And just want to clear some things up, not married, and no children. That was meant to read that in hopes that I have kids someday, not that I have them now. Not single, but not married, yet.

    I do see the benefits of working for somebody, I do however see benefits of working for yourself, and it's certainly not money related, as it obviously isn't always the more profitable path. That is really my going motivation for this in general, it is not that I expect champagne and roses to fall from the sky as I grandly start up a company and make seven figures. In fact, my thinking is that it might not even work the first time around, but, how will I know unless I go for it? Honestly, I do not want to be wishing years down the road that I hadn't at least tried.

    But the key here is that I would be keeping my 'day job'. Which means, steady pay, benefits, stability and security. If whatever business I choose to attempt in my off time takes off, and the profit begins to become a real thing, then it would be time to consider devoting more time to growing the business, but not until then.

    More to follow, back to the 'day job' for now.

  14. Dailey

    Dailey Well-Known Member

    Just my .02, Since your a single man I would go for it but be smart. My dad started a business in the early 70's and after 35yrs he sold it a retired He had no regrets. His number 1 saying was "I would take a slow nickel over a fast dollar any day."
    Good luck
  15. firecat1981

    firecat1981 BBA Counselor

    Ducknut, as I am very involved with my union trust me when I tell you I am well aware of the crap that is going on in wisconsin, and the very less then legal way they are attempting to strip people of there right to organize. And unlike most people I didn't just read the highlights, but actually read HB 303, SB1128, and SB1130. That being said I'm not in the FRS system, we have a private high risk pension that is subject to different rules, but is mandated by both state and federal law, I'm not so worried. As far as the state pension system is concerned (FRS) it is not in any danger! Infact quite the opposite as florida has one of the healthiest and well funded systems in the US. Shady politicians are trying to convince people that it will collapse soon, but the fact is the unfunded liability is less then 11% which is damn near perfect for a pension system of it's size and amazing for this economy. However I do agree the members should contribute something like they did before 1974, just like we do now.

    As far as political climate being crap, it's not, and it doesn't just mean who is elected is means the stance the american people take as a whole and right now it is a conservative wave! Which means opening a business is hard because people are affraid to spend money, or they don't have any, and lenders are more restrictive. The economy will bounce back quicker then the rest, but the bad taste will hang around a while. Heck all you have to do is check the history books, seems to happen about every 25-30 years or so. DN I respect the fact that you did your own thing and it worked out, but statistically you are very fortunate and part of a shrinking minority over the last 30 years. I'm all for free enterprise and I like to see the little guy grow into the not so little guy when possible.

    Ok back on topic....... What kind of business are you thinking of? or is it secret stuff? I think you would be wise to test the waters and retain your job. Also look into the future, I know it's not all about money, but families are expensive these days (ie florida prepaid college is now costing me $360 a month for 16 years for a 4 year plan :eek:). Point is basically if you are gonna do it, make sure you can do it with as little debt as possible and make sure it is a viable and consistant business. Don't be like a friend of mine who opened a strippercise studio in a small town up north with a church on every corner :-[ [smiley=1-smack-myself.gif]
  16. cvilt

    cvilt I Love!

    firecat I am closer to 60 than 30 ;)and will do as my 91 year old Dad and do what I love till I die or cant. SClay Most fail and I believe it is from giving up and not knowing what your in for. Don't borrow money and you can always get a JOB. Job stands for
    Just Obout Broke :D