To Job or Not to Job

To Job or Not to Job

To job or not to job that is the question. Is it easier to work for someone else or go out and forge your own trail? This question has been asked I am sure millions of times. I am almost certain most of you probably ask yourself these questions at least 1 or twice a month.

But the fear surrounding doing things for yourself without the guarantee of a check is frightening. Believe me, I have been there more than once in my life. I am a serial entrepreneur, but I didn’t start out that way. I would say about 90% of us in society have been told a clear path to so-called, “success.” What is the key word in that last sentence? It is TOLD. Most of us were given guidance from generations of hard-working people. Who were told the ultimate goal is to get a good job and you are set.

I had an untraditional path to corporate America. I didn’t have good enough grades to get into college, so I joined the Navy. I then served 12 years in the US Navy SEAL teams, doing multiple deployments. When I got out of the military I went directly to college, I studied hard getting a very high GPA in undergraduate and Graduate school. I was on my way to being “set.” Or at least I thought. During my college experience, I had various jobs with corporations.

Working for corporations was hard work. Working long hours to achieve goals, making sure the stakeholders were happy. Switching directions based on how someone I never met felt that day. Very frustrating experience to say the least. Ultimately, I did not feel set. I felt uneasy, I felt like I could lose my job at any time no matter how much blood sweat and tears I put in. Or I could be placed somewhere else based on my experience with another coworker.

But I am supposed to be set, right? The idea that I wasn’t set was troubling to me because I did everything I was supposed to.

I Woke UP

I used to race mountain bikes, joining the Kenda Cup circuit, and doing all local races in my area. I was doing well, ending up on the podium for Single Speed most of the time. I couldn’t complain. Why is this important? When I raced, it was an escape for me. All the training involved, all the traveling, all the comradery I needed it to stay mentally sane.

But then it came to an abrupt end. I broke my shoulder, ripping all the ligaments out of my shoulder. I had to undergo two surgeries, one to reattach my shoulder with a cadaver ligament. The other to clean all the scar tissue and undissolved sutures out of my shoulder so I could use it again. I was doing rehab and didn’t ride a bike for an entire year.

During that year I had the opportunity to think about what made me happy. This was my 2×4 moment. I was running as fast as I could to be at the bottom of an endless ladder. Then this crash entered my life. At the time I was cursing the event, my mind was in a negative space. I got no remorse from my job or even college. In extreme pain, I took my finals and went to work. They didn’t care they just wanted results.

There it was glaring at me, the thing I couldn’t put my finger on. Being “set” in a traditional sense could mean you work, work, work, and work some more. No one cares as long as the boss and the stakeholders are happy. Now don’t get me wrong there are some outstanding corporations out there that actually care about you and your development. But those are few and far between.

What was I going to do?

I continued my education because regardless of where you are, knowledge is essential. The hard work I was putting into my own development could be utilized elsewhere but where. I saw a demand for people trying to discover their own passion and be truly happy. This equated to helping teams be better, Boss’s becoming leaders, and corporations leading their people into the future.

But it was not all sunshine and rainbows. There was extensive work to be done, nothing was laid out for me. Everyone wanted to give me advice no matter the age. Many people tried to scare me back to corporate America. There were even times where I didn’t get paid for months.

Why would I continue?

Because my and your happiness doesn’t have a price. Sure, I could keep my ideas and experiences bottled up. Festering there until my dying days, cursing myself for not being strong enough. I had to make sacrifices, many sacrifices, selling most of my material possessions and making room for things to come. But that in itself was a release of my old ways, clearing a path for the future.

To Job or Not to Job

I want to let you know you can do anything you truly believe in. I have met a lot of people who have tried something thinking it would be quick financial gains. Once they realize money isn’t flying in, they quit. But here is the thing that is when it is about to get good. I am not saying leave your job and go all in if you are not comfortable doing so. Even if you have to work, you have free time to get things done. If your ultimate goal is important to you, then you will make time.

Regardless of what you do, working for someone or creating your own destiny. Either way, it will be a lot of work. Those long hours you put in at the corporations, staying late picking up shifts, not leaving when you’re off just to help. It is all hard work. The ultimate difference is in one you can dictate how successful you are.

Sometimes in a job, you will bust your ass, and get a disproportionate raise for the amount of time you have put in. A lot of hard work for not a lot of return. Now think about the opportunity you could create for yourself if you put the same dedication into your own life goals?

Once you make that shift, you will start to discover the untapped treasure you hold. Not only will you be sharing your story and experience. But you could potentially help a lot of people. Everyone has something unique about them, some struggle they have hidden from the world. I can almost guarantee you that your struggles, successes, and thought process can help someone else.

It is Hard

Either way you go, it will be hard work one way or another. Long hours for both, working through high times and low times in either case, not getting paid (loss of job), etc. You will work hard either for yourself or someone else. You can make the decision anytime. If you are thinking right now, this isn’t speaking to me I have nothing to contribute or share. STOP right now and say to yourself, “I have something to contribute.”

If you dread Monday ask yourself why you dread Monday? Then ask yourself how you can make it better. Most likely you will start to discover something is missing in your life. Maybe it is a complete job change, going back to college, or setting out on your own. Whatever it is, go after it, you will be happier, it will start a chain reaction for the people around you. Your entire life will become a place of happiness and support for everything.

I have learned things from people that are 6 months to 18 years old and beyond. You were born to do something, no one can tell you what it is. The first step is just to ask for help. Once you open the gate, fully open the gate, you will receive your answer.

Ask yourself right now what do you like about your current situation? And what do you absolutely hate about your situation? Can you travel when and where you want? Can you spend as much time as you want with your kids? Are you Happy, I mean truly happy?

I ask myself these all the time and allow myself to reconnect with my heart to see if I am on the right path. I encourage you to do the same and watch your life turn a corner you never saw before.

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