Waiting For Your Entrepreneur-ship To Come In?
I’m driving home and I start getting texts from one of my other adult kids.
HIM: I think you have egzachary disease.
ME: Say whu?
HIM: Your face looks egzachary like your butt.
ME: OMG. I’m driving and the way Siri read that was hilarious. (talk-to-text)
Usually, that would be it. A quick Hallmark moment check-in and done…but he kept texting.
HIM: Do you still have that (memento from his childhood.)
ME: I’m sure I do. I’ll have to dig when I get back.
HIM: Okay. No rush.
ME: Good, because I’m so far from home I just saw sheep.
And this is where I thought it would stop again. Nope.
HIM: How was dress shopping?
Now I’m thinking he’s in trouble with the law because as if he cares about dress shopping.
ME: It was the jankiest, weirdest store of them all. Like if Donald’s (where we used to get his school uniforms) and Frederick’s of Hollywood had a baby.
HIM: How many stores have you been to?
He’s texting from jail. I know it.
ME: Five so far. (Blood pressure rising, wishing he’d just spit it out.)
HIM: Can I call you?
#$%@! IT’S WORSE THAN JAIL! IT’S A HEARTBREAK. IT’S HIS HEALTH. HE WANTS TO MOVE TO ANOTHER COUNTRY! GOD, HELP ME!
ME: Hey. (F! F! F! Just breathe.)
HIM: Hey, so I’m rethinking that internship this year.
HIM: And I want to talk to you about entrepreneurship. Can you have dinner?
ME: Of course. I’ll pick you up in an hour.
#$%@! IT’S WORSE THAN JAIL, HEARTBREAK, A HEALTH CRISIS, OR MOVING. HE WANTS TO BECOME AN ENTREPRENEUR!
So, I pick him up and we go to this great spot near campus and he starts his pitch.
HIM: If I take the internship, that’s six hours per week, unpaid, that I could be devoting to my (other thing).
ME: Okay. (I’m not gonna discourage him yet, especially because that’s practical.)
HIM: I’ve always been good at this (other thing) but I’ve just never thought of it as a career.
ME: I get it. Lots of people feel that way about being “makers”.
HIM: But I’ve been thinking about it a lot lately and feeling inspired by (X,Y, Z) and I really think I could do this. No. I KNOW I could do this.
ME: (I’m equal parts impressed and terrified by the unbridled confidence.) You definitely have a gift.
HIM: So I want to finish my degree.
ME: (Thank you, sweet Jesus.) Goooood.
HIM: And simultaneously dedicate myself to the (other thing) to see where it takes me.
ME: I think that sounds like a solid plan.
We talk about what that might look like and then he mentions another reason he wants to become an entrepreneur.
HIM: I don’t want to work for somebody else.
ME: Okay, my love, push pause. It’s time to take some notes.
I’ve been an “entrepreneur” since the dark ages when they called us “freelancers”, or “independent contractors”, or my reality-loving label, “chronically unemployed”. And there’s one thing you need to get straight before you jump head-first into the shallow end of this pool: while you won’t be working for SOMEBODY else, you will be working for EVERYBODY else. You see, the market will be your new boss, and the market is a crap ton of people, so you’d better get good with having more bosses than you ever nightmared of.
Furthermore, THEY will decide how talented you are, regardless of your opinion, and THEY will pay you based on the value THEY decide your product is worth. And, more likely than not, that won’t be much at first. It’s an entrepreneurial hazing of sorts. A test to see how much you really want this lifestyle…and it is a lifestyle, not a job.
But make no mistake, you’ll work your a$$ off, harder than ever before. Because you will be the inventor, the producer, the salesperson, the marketing department, accounts payable (and hopefully receivable), the stock boy, the controller, HR (this is new–but extremely important), and the janitor.
Oh, and there’s no health or dental insurance, 401k, IRA, or any of that jazz unless you figure it out (and pay for it yourself), but don’t sweat it, you’ll have like a hot second per day between panic attacks for that part. Think of it this way…
In olden times (or modern-day messed up countries) there used to be a thing called arranged marriage. Your family would hook you up with someone from another family that you would never EVER voluntarily hook up with, but there was cash involved. Entrepreneurship is saying, “No,” to that arrangement in favor of the broke girl who takes your breath away.
So, you need to ask yourself, how much of a sacrifice are you willing to make for your business broke girl?
That much, huh?
Okay, you have my blessing. I’ll just leave you with a few helpful lists. (Get used to making these yourself. It’s entrepreneurial OCD. Gives us a sense of control.)
“Leap and the net MIGHT catch you.” Liz Gilbert
“Stop doing sh*t you hate.” Gary V
“If it’s not scheduled, it’s not real.” Marie Forleo
“You are the sum total of the five people you spend the most time with.” Jim Rohn
“Imagination is more important than knowledge.” Albert Einstein
“Treat it like your job or it won’t be.” Lynda Crotty (she’s new)
The War of Art – Steven Pressfield
Bird by Bird – Anne Lamott
The Artist’s Way – Julia Cameron
Everything is Figureoutable – Marie Forleo
You Are a Badass – Jen Sincero
As a Man Thinketh – James Allen
The Science of Getting Rich – Wallace Wattles
Office chair with lumbar support
Standing desk/floor desk/laptop stand for bed
Okay, entrepreneurial village, did I miss anything? What else you got for this kid? Your own kid? The rest of us kids?
Thanks in advance, and “just keep swimming.”
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