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INTRO I made it to the top of the slowlane but I still want more

ravenspear

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Yes, the time has finally come. I put in my notice a little over a month ago that I’ll be walking away from my job at the end of the year to get started on my own journey in entrepreneurship. I haven’t posted on here in a few years but given I never made an intro thread I thought I would post one now that I have reached this point. I accomplished everything I wanted to in corporate America. I have reached the pinnacle as I had defined it for myself. So let's review. I work as a software dev and I make over 200k per year (plus great benefits). I work on average maybe 2 hours a day, sometimes less. All of my work is remote at this point so I don't even need to go into an office. Some days I don't do any work at all. Some days I only send like one email. If we go with an average of 2 hours per day though, that means my work is currently valued at around $400/hr.

And I F*cking hate it.

If I were posting this on a lot of other sites people would think I was crazy. But that's how I feel and I'm ready to quit. Some people would think this is a great gig. A minimal amount of work is still perceived as adding sufficient value to my team and company to justify my rather large salary. When I told my manager I would be leaving he said I would be missed and could come back if I wanted to. My coworkers told me the same thing. But the negative aspects of this have finally reached a tipping point for me.

Now, a little background. I've been exposed to an entrepreneurial mindset since I was 20 and in college. I saw some other people take that path a long time ago, but for whatever reason I put it off and went the slowlane route as it seemed safer maybe, and I perhaps didn't feel I had what it took to work for myself. Now at 35, I'm finally ready to start. This post provides a bit more background into why I held onto this job the last few years. I was making good money and figured I could start something more fastlane on the side since my job required so little time. I have to credit @lowtek with something he said in that thread though, which is that if I stayed I would become infected with slowlane mindset, and that's exactly what started to happen. When I didn't have to do much work at all to still make 200k, I lost motivation to do anything more.

Another thing that really grated on me was the reality of needing to focus on someone else's work requirements at the start of my day. When I get up in the morning I want to do what I want to do, not check my email to see what meetings I have or what reviews I need to do for someone else's projects. Recently there have been some days where I just ignored work until 4pm or so while I did what I wanted to first. Those days were by far the best I've had in a while, and I still managed to do better work for everyone else once I put myself first. The sense of adventure and pride you have when you are directing your own ship is not something that's easy to trade away for money. Having that feeling every day is what I crave now.

Recently I started to think more deeply about my situation. I don't care at all about the work I'm doing for this company. Sure I guess maybe it's helping their customers, but I don't really care about their products. I'm still trading my time for money, so I'm only doing it because I'm required to. Then I started thinking on another line. If my current skillset is valued at 200k+ for a minimal amount of work by corporate America, imagine how much I have been selling myself short. How much more could I accomplish if I was putting in a lot of meaningful work on a project I actually cared about? What if I actually cared about the product I was building? What if my standard of success was exponentially higher than what I have settled for in exchange for an easy life and the comfort of stability and low effort? I think the answer is more than I could even comprehend right now, and that's why it's time to find out.

I'm also taking this step now because I have enough money saved that I could have no income for at least 2 years and still feel comfortable. That much time gives me a blank canvas that I can use to fill in anything I want, and that excites me. I also had to get over the common misconception that to work for myself I had to have some revolutionary new idea that would change an entire industry. As we know and as I learned, most businesses are not revolutionary new ideas, most are incremental value adds in established markets. I've already identified at least 4-5 potential income streams around a broad category that is what I want to focus on, and that really inspires me. I can't wait to see what the future holds now that I'm finally taking it into my own hands.

I'm reminded of something Tony Robbins often says which is that we always get our musts but rarely ever get our shoulds. I realized that building my own businesses was just not happening for me until I made it a must. Once you cut off the comfort of someone else providing your income and it's time to either sink or swim on your own, that's when real growth and personal transformation shows up, and you find the strength of will to accomplish something great. Once I had that understanding the decision to quit my job and start out on my own made so much sense and I'm ready to see it through.
 

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Vadim26

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Wow, you have a f***n amazing gig, to say the least. It makes me want to go back to school and study software engineering too.

Good luck on your journey, friend.

What's the worst that could happen? You'd go back to your 2-hour remote work day, 200k a year job :hilarious:
 
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ravenspear

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It makes me want to go back to school and study software engineering too.
Of course I never said it was easy to get to this point and it wasn't. I have a CS degree plus 15 years experience in this field, but along the way I feel like I have sacrificed too much in my personal life and my own growth potential (including outside of career) because of the lack of drive to improve yourself that can set in once you subscribe to slowlane mindset and that's another reason taking back control of my life at this point means more to me than simply more easy money.
 

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Good luck to you @ravenspear.

A friend here made the leap from corporate making similar money. It was tough to do with the golden handcuffs. In his case he built it on the side, until it was doing well enough for him to feel confident quitting.

In any case, if you're worth $200k in the corporate world, I'm sure you have solid skills to make a go at something. Hopefully "burning the boats" works for you.

Make sure you have discipline and solid time management systems in place. Once you quit, the clock is ticking, and you need to make the most of the day to day. You can go through 2 years of savings really quick, especially once you start investing into a new venture (been there).
 

arl

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If you only really worked 2 hours a day, what was keeping you from working on your fastlane project while keeping the job? Not many people would walk away from a gig like that. But again, not many people have your skillset. So you will probably do alright.

Good luck!
 

richardd

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I actually completely understand your situation. Check out my thread "From 0 To $240,000 Per Year PROFIT In 18 Months". I was also consulting making about $320,000 a year. I was billing a lot of hours sitting in an office 8 hours a day, on call with my other consulting jobs as well. Some days I'd do absolutely nothing but sit there, maybe a meeting here or there, respond to some emails. I was bored out of my mind. I used to have 4 consulting clients. Gradually, I quit 2 out of the 4 contracts. I have 65 days left before my 3rd contract ends by my choosing.

It's life sucking. But I've transitioned to financial independence running my "side businesses". And even though that consulting money was great (I was basically making $500 per hour based on the amount of "productive" work I did), the work really took away my focus every day from running my businesses. It's the right choice to leave it all behind. @Vadim26 is correct that you can always go back if you need that safety net. I sometimes think that way for me. But I know I won't. And I hope you won't either.
 

Ing

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Well, if you would see a opportunity to go to the fastline, you could do it beneeth your slowlane job.
If you don t see that opportunity, than you even won t see it, when you quit your job.

In my case, the work/earning ratio isn t quit as good, but my job is bright.

Imo when you cut of the job and make it as an entrepreneur, than you have a job, which you hate and you ll work all day long with the maybe opportunity to go fastline.

So put your a$$ down and work aditional hours for your own business untill you have it. Than quit your job, if you think, its time.

Returning in that present job after quitting it will not be as easy, when I were your boss now!
 

richardd

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Well, if you would see a opportunity to go to the fastline, you could do it beneeth your slowlane job.
If you don t see that opportunity, than you even won t see it, when you quit your job.

In my case, the work/earning ratio isn t quit as good, but my job is bright.

Imo when you cut of the job and make it as an entrepreneur, than you have a job, which you hate and you ll work all day long with the maybe opportunity to go fastline.

So put your a$$ down and work aditional hours for your own business untill you have it. Than quit your job, if you think, its time.

Returning in that present job after quitting it will not be as easy, when I were your boss now!
I actually agree with this. I hated my jobs for over a year. Kept them while I built up my business portfolio to the point where I make way more money as an entrepreneur than what my family needs.

Then I started quitting my jobs. It does suck, but it makes the transition much less risky.
 

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I actually agree with this. I hated my jobs for over a year. Kept them while I built up my business portfolio to the point where I make way more money as an entrepreneur than what my family needs.

Then I started quitting my jobs. It does suck, but it makes the transition much less risky.
At the same time, some people want that fire under their a$$. I personally think it was a good decision because OP has solid savings and can always fall back into a job if he needs to.

The way I see it is that he has essentially set for himself a deadline that he needs to get something working by - and that's a great way to inspire some urgency and start taking action.

It may not be necessary for everyone, but it certainly is for many.
 
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ravenspear

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At the same time, some people want that fire under their a$$. I personally think it was a good decision because OP has solid savings and can always fall back into a job if he needs to.

The way I see it is that he has essentially set for himself a deadline that he needs to get something working by - and that's a great way to inspire some urgency and start taking action.

It may not be necessary for everyone, but it certainly is for many.
This is definitely true for me.

One of my favorite quotes by David Deida.
In any given moment, a man’s growth is optimized if he leans just beyond his edge, his capacity, his fear. He should not be too lazy, happily stagnating in the zone of security and comfort. Nor should he push far beyond his edge, stressing himself unnecessarily, unable to metabolize his experience. He should lean just slightly beyond the edge of fear and discomfort. Constantly. In everything he does.
The bolded is exactly what I've been doing the last few years, and it has to stop if I'm going to become the person I know I'm capable of becoming.

I realized that having a super easy job that pays you a lot of money for minimal work has become almost like a drug to me, a numbing life sucking drug that takes away any sense of urgency. But life doesn't run slower for me than for anyone else. If I ask myself if this is where I want to be in 2 years, doing the same thing with maybe 200k more in the bank, or if I want to undergo a radical transformation of my thoughts, actions, perceptions, and drives, the comparison isn't even close.

Another good one is stay hungry, stay foolish by Steve Jobs. I haven't had any hunger or foolishness in my work in a long time, and I know restoring that will also benefit me immensely.
 
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ravenspear

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If you only really worked 2 hours a day, what was keeping you from working on your fastlane project while keeping the job? Not many people would walk away from a gig like that. But again, not many people have your skillset. So you will probably do alright.

Good luck!
It was simply mindset. I would always come up with excuses like this project wasn't good enough, or I need a better idea, or I can do that work tomorrow, etc.

Since I put in my notice I've written down a lot more good ideas that I can actually execute on then in the many years combined I've been working for someone else. That says to me I'm on the right track.
 

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richardd

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It was simply mindset. I would always come up with excuses like this project wasn't good enough, or I need a better idea, or I can do that work tomorrow, etc.

Since I put in my notice I've written down a lot more good ideas that I can actually execute on then in the many years combined I've been working for someone else. That says to me I'm on the right track.
I like your action. You've got guts and conviction, and I complete respect that. I think that many/most people including myself play it safe.

I wish you well in your endeavors.
 
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ravenspear

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Well, if you would see a opportunity to go to the fastline, you could do it beneeth your slowlane job.
If you don t see that opportunity, than you even won t see it, when you quit your job.
To be clear, I have seen opportunities starting 15 years ago when I was first exposed to the entrepreneurial mindset. I haven't had the courage or drive to execute and capitalize on those opportunities to this point. I believe quitting my job will change that. I also believe (and have already experienced) that the shift in my perceptions resulting from this will allow me to spot even more opportunities.
 

MoreValue

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Wow, jeesus. Wish I had that gig with that ratio of work hours. I always had the impression that the higher you move up the ladder income and hours increased simultaneously.

Here I am stuck in the most dead end field with 0.25 raises. If I was a kid again, I would have done software engineering. Oh well...

At least you have zero things inhibiting you now. Good cash cushion and since you left, all the time.
 
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ravenspear

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I like your action. You've got guts and conviction, and I complete respect that. I think that many/most people including myself play it safe.

I wish you well in your endeavors.
I see that you have a family, I will say that being single definitely changes the calculus for the level of risk I'm willing to accept.

Wow, jeesus. Wish I had that gig with that ratio of work hours. I always had the impression that the higher you move up the ladder income and hours increased simultaneously.
If I wanted to make more than 200k in the slow lane that would be the case and I would have to go back to the typical 50-60 hour work weeks. That’s even more horrid to me than the job I have but hate now. I was already offered a promotion into management at my current job and turned that down (this is at one of the top 10 software companies in the US).
 
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ravenspear

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Good luck to you @ravenspear.

A friend here made the leap from corporate making similar money. It was tough to do with the golden handcuffs. In his case he built it on the side, until it was doing well enough for him to feel confident quitting.

In any case, if you're worth $200k in the corporate world, I'm sure you have solid skills to make a go at something. Hopefully "burning the boats" works for you.

Make sure you have discipline and solid time management systems in place. Once you quit, the clock is ticking, and you need to make the most of the day to day. You can go through 2 years of savings really quick, especially once you start investing into a new venture (been there).
I actually have 3-4 years of savings so I’m feeling pretty good about it right now.
 

MoreValue

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Good luck to you @ravenspear.

A friend here made the leap from corporate making similar money. It was tough to do with the golden handcuffs. In his case he built it on the side, until it was doing well enough for him to feel confident quitting.

In any case, if you're worth $200k in the corporate world, I'm sure you have solid skills to make a go at something. Hopefully "burning the boats" works for you.

Make sure you have discipline and solid time management systems in place. Once you quit, the clock is ticking, and you need to make the most of the day to day. You can go through 2 years of savings really quick, especially once you start investing into a new venture (been there).
Yeah, I second this. When my contract job ended. I essentially delayed having a job hoping I could make it work. But it ALWAYS costs more money and time.

I ran out of money real quick. It’s funny how some regulars on here think business is free and you can build a business with zero costs. I have to suck my ego and painfully go back to the job market. Actually struggled to get a job when I went back. But then again, I don’t have corporate skillslike @ravenspear

I start Monday...Sigh...


I actually have 3-4 years of savings so I’m feeling pretty good about it right now.
Are you going into the same industry? If so, your gauge on savings could be more accurate.If different industry, you gotta factor in the “you don’t know what you don’t know” price.
 

arl

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Are you going into the same industry? If so, your gauge on savings could be more accurate.If different industry, you gotta factor in the “you don’t know what you don’t know” price.
He is most likely talking about living expenses. Since he is a developer he probably has a good understanding of what it'll cost him to develop his project and he actually can do it himself.
 

AceVentures

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Really inspiring story! I'm in a similar boat and have been debating whether to quit for some time now.

I've thought a lot about doing what you're doing, but time after time, I've held myself from making hasty decision. I'm debt free, have a saving cushion to last me a couple of years, maybe more if I live abroad, and I've never been more excited to take risks in my life. So why don't I just do it already?

There's something you said, which resonates so strongly with me: "If I ask myself if this is where I want to be in 2 years, doing the same thing with maybe 200k more in the bank, or if I want to undergo a radical transformation of my thoughts, actions, perceptions, and drives, the comparison isn't even close."

That's the burning question for me! Sure, delay quitting so you can get the bonus in February. Sure, delay quitting so you can get those performance stocks to vest in July. Sure, delay delay delay, because the golden handcuffs become shinier. At what point do I say enough is enough?

The problem is, I don't HATE my job. Work demands very little of me at the moment, and the leadership team is very happy with the work I output, which requires little to NO work on my part. Sitting around pretending to be busy is what I HATE. Coming in to the office, when I could instead just stay at home all week and send 2-3 high quality slide decks and make everyone happy? I HATE that.

Maybe it's as you suggest: to get out of the comfort zone, you've gotta create radical changes to your lifestyle. You want something you've never had, then you've got to live life in a way you've never lived before. For me, moonlighting a couple hours a night feels like massive action faking. I feel like I need a gun to my head, and if I fail I lose it all. I need THAT level of push in my life, to kick me out of my comfort zone.

Mad props for doing what you're doing. I don't think you're crazy at all, you've just got priorities around what really matters in your life. Excited to see where life takes you, and I'll be watching closely to see how this change in your life impacts your entrepreneurial ambitions. Please do keep us in the loop, you just might inspire another person like myself to take a leap.
 
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AceVentures

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In one way that I believe my situation is different from yours however, is that you're working remotely. The largest part of what I hate is the lack of autonomy over my time and location, which you don't actually have.

Working so few hours, remotely, why is that causing you so much mental pain? Why couldn't you imagine being an entrepreneur with say 5-6 different ventures, and this is ONE of them, that requires 1-2 hours of work and brings in 200k. That's one revenue source, and it's a significant one that currently comes to you with little effort. I understand that abandoning it will give you the mindset shift you need, but could you attain that mindset while saving the income source?

Looking at what you're giving up and what you're gaining. You're not gaining THAT much, in that you gain 1-2 extra hours in TIME. You gain infinitely from the mental barrier being gone sure, but it'll also come with new mindset challenges relating to spending, funding ideas, paying for conveniences.

I think I understand what you're doing, but I just wonder if you could optimize the situation a bit. Why not have your cake AND eat it?
 

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@ravenspear ,
I understand exactly how you feel.
I share some similarities with your feelings and situation in my own field. I'm roughly the same age, also single, and have put in a good amount of time and hardwork in my field over the years, now at the point where I should start reaping the benefit of the years of hardwork I have put in in my slowlane field (though I definitely don't have your cash cushion).
I've also resigned my job recently to pursue entrepreneurial projects.
I'm also one of those that need the adrenaline of "sink or swim" to get things really going.
I'll probably create a progress thread today or tomorrow to update on my current progress and keep me accountable.
Wish you all the best in your new entrepreneurial ventures.
 

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ravenspear

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In one way that I believe my situation is different from yours however, is that you're working remotely. The largest part of what I hate is the lack of autonomy over my time and location, which you don't actually have.

Working so few hours, remotely, why is that causing you so much mental pain? Why couldn't you imagine being an entrepreneur with say 5-6 different ventures, and this is ONE of them, that requires 1-2 hours of work and brings in 200k. That's one revenue source, and it's a significant one that currently comes to you with little effort. I understand that abandoning it will give you the mindset shift you need, but could you attain that mindset while saving the income source?

Looking at what you're giving up and what you're gaining. You're not gaining THAT much, in that you gain 1-2 extra hours in TIME. You gain infinitely from the mental barrier being gone sure, but it'll also come with new mindset challenges relating to spending, funding ideas, paying for conveniences.

I think I understand what you're doing, but I just wonder if you could optimize the situation a bit. Why not have your cake AND eat it?
This is clear evidence of why you are not ready to quit yet.

This was exactly my mindset several years ago in the other post I linked.

The reason I can’t do that is that I currently lack the discipline to make that work.

To develop the discipline required, I’ve realized I need to become fully self sufficient.
 
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ravenspear

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In one way that I believe my situation is different from yours however, is that you're working remotely. The largest part of what I hate is the lack of autonomy over my time and location, which you don't actually have.

Working so few hours, remotely, why is that causing you so much mental pain? Why couldn't you imagine being an entrepreneur with say 5-6 different ventures, and this is ONE of them, that requires 1-2 hours of work and brings in 200k. That's one revenue source, and it's a significant one that currently comes to you with little effort. I understand that abandoning it will give you the mindset shift you need, but could you attain that mindset while saving the income source?

Looking at what you're giving up and what you're gaining. You're not gaining THAT much, in that you gain 1-2 extra hours in TIME. You gain infinitely from the mental barrier being gone sure, but it'll also come with new mindset challenges relating to spending, funding ideas, paying for conveniences.

I think I understand what you're doing, but I just wonder if you could optimize the situation a bit. Why not have your cake AND eat it?
It’s honestly awesome if anything I do was inspiring to someone else. And yeah I’m sure I will keep some progress threads on here.
 

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This is clear evidence of why you are not ready to quit yet.

This was exactly my mindset several years ago in the other post I linked.

The reason I can’t do that is that I currently lack the discipline to make that work.

To develop the discipline required, I’ve realized I need to become fully self sufficient.
I feel like I’m in the same boat.

Got about a year of expenses in the bank and really want to quit. I feel like as long as I’m comfortable and getting a steady paycheck, I’ll never take massive action.

There’s no fire under my a$$. No boats are burning.

But quitting your job without something else lined up is dumb according to 99.9% of society...
 
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ravenspear

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Since I only have two months left at my job I figured nothing to lose so I might as well practice my negotiation skills. So I sent my manager an email, now this email took about 20 min to write and was 3 long paragraphs but it essentially said that I only want to be available for half the day for the next 2 months so I have half a day uninterrupted to do whatever I want, and also that during my now half day of work, I only want to be assigned easy low effort projects. The terms were accepted. So there it is, my next 2 months just got a lot more free with one 20 min email.
 

AppMan

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Yes, the time has finally come. I put in my notice a little over a month ago that I’ll be walking away from my job at the end of the year to get started on my own journey in entrepreneurship. I haven’t posted on here in a few years but given I never made an intro thread I thought I would post one now that I have reached this point. I accomplished everything I wanted to in corporate America. I have reached the pinnacle as I had defined it for myself. So let's review. I work as a software dev and I make over 200k per year (plus great benefits). I work on average maybe 2 hours a day, sometimes less. All of my work is remote at this point so I don't even need to go into an office. Some days I don't do any work at all. Some days I only send like one email. If we go with an average of 2 hours per day though, that means my work is currently valued at around $400/hr.

And I F*cking hate it.

If I were posting this on a lot of other sites people would think I was crazy. But that's how I feel and I'm ready to quit. Some people would think this is a great gig. A minimal amount of work is still perceived as adding sufficient value to my team and company to justify my rather large salary. When I told my manager I would be leaving he said I would be missed and could come back if I wanted to. My coworkers told me the same thing. But the negative aspects of this have finally reached a tipping point for me.

Now, a little background. I've been exposed to an entrepreneurial mindset since I was 20 and in college. I saw some other people take that path a long time ago, but for whatever reason I put it off and went the slowlane route as it seemed safer maybe, and I perhaps didn't feel I had what it took to work for myself. Now at 35, I'm finally ready to start. This post provides a bit more background into why I held onto this job the last few years. I was making good money and figured I could start something more fastlane on the side since my job required so little time. I have to credit @lowtek with something he said in that thread though, which is that if I stayed I would become infected with slowlane mindset, and that's exactly what started to happen. When I didn't have to do much work at all to still make 200k, I lost motivation to do anything more.

Another thing that really grated on me was the reality of needing to focus on someone else's work requirements at the start of my day. When I get up in the morning I want to do what I want to do, not check my email to see what meetings I have or what reviews I need to do for someone else's projects. Recently there have been some days where I just ignored work until 4pm or so while I did what I wanted to first. Those days were by far the best I've had in a while, and I still managed to do better work for everyone else once I put myself first. The sense of adventure and pride you have when you are directing your own ship is not something that's easy to trade away for money. Having that feeling every day is what I crave now.

Recently I started to think more deeply about my situation. I don't care at all about the work I'm doing for this company. Sure I guess maybe it's helping their customers, but I don't really care about their products. I'm still trading my time for money, so I'm only doing it because I'm required to. Then I started thinking on another line. If my current skillset is valued at 200k+ for a minimal amount of work by corporate America, imagine how much I have been selling myself short. How much more could I accomplish if I was putting in a lot of meaningful work on a project I actually cared about? What if I actually cared about the product I was building? What if my standard of success was exponentially higher than what I have settled for in exchange for an easy life and the comfort of stability and low effort? I think the answer is more than I could even comprehend right now, and that's why it's time to find out.

I'm also taking this step now because I have enough money saved that I could have no income for at least 2 years and still feel comfortable. That much time gives me a blank canvas that I can use to fill in anything I want, and that excites me. I also had to get over the common misconception that to work for myself I had to have some revolutionary new idea that would change an entire industry. As we know and as I learned, most businesses are not revolutionary new ideas, most are incremental value adds in established markets. I've already identified at least 4-5 potential income streams around a broad category that is what I want to focus on, and that really inspires me. I can't wait to see what the future holds now that I'm finally taking it into my own hands.

I'm reminded of something Tony Robbins often says which is that we always get our musts but rarely ever get our shoulds. I realized that building my own businesses was just not happening for me until I made it a must. Once you cut off the comfort of someone else providing your income and it's time to either sink or swim on your own, that's when real growth and personal transformation shows up, and you find the strength of will to accomplish something great. Once I had that understanding the decision to quit my job and start out on my own made so much sense and I'm ready to see it through.
Why leaving such easy job , I am software developer myself, and I work in startup like environment, although I am paid well, I am sure I could be fired at the moment my manager know he can live without me, many software companies are going into this direction and trying to get the most from their developers. If your job is such easy you can work on your business wihtout leaving this job until you get some momentum
 
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ravenspear

Bronze Contributor
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Why leaving such easy job , I am software developer myself, and I work in startup like environment, although I am paid well, I am sure I could be fired at the moment my manager know he can live without me, many software companies are going into this direction and trying to get the most from their developers. If your job is such easy you can work on your business wihtout leaving this job until you get some momentum
Already answered this earlier in the thread, but thanks. I'm done working for other people.
 

IlseVdG

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You can shift your mindset and at least get something lined up before you quit. That is easier than it seems.
Could you elaborate on this a little more please? On the getting lined up? Many thanks in advance!
 

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