Can you believe that? It’s been OVER 3 months since that fateful day of getting terminated, and I’m still alive! Haha… How insane is that? I can tell you every last detail of that day as if it occurred yesterday, crazy man…
But here we are. 1/4 into my “1 year plan” of not applying to *any* jobs, and I’m not eating Ramen and cereal every meal of the day :) I eat cereal a LOT of the meals a day, but not because of money – I work and work and work into all hours of the night and sometimes I just forget to eat! The other night I literally poured some Raisin Bran at 2 a.m. for dinner – no joke. I obviously still have some scheduling problems to work out ;)
In fact, there’s a lot of new areas to deal with now that isn’t as glamorous as it sounds. So I thought I’d list out all the major differences I’m coping with now, to give you an idea of just how interesting self-employment is. And keep in mind my “new job” is blogging and building things I’m proud of online – not everyone who works for themselves necessarily does so from home, or while traveling across the country. Let’s start with the money (muah ha ha…).
The Money Situation
I definitely have a lot less of it (my $70,000 salary is no longer around), but I definitely don’t miss a lot of it either. Which is strange right? How can you NOT miss money when you’re a finance guy? I’m thinking it either hasn’t hit me yet, or I honestly truly enjoy what I’m doing ;) But you’ll have to ask me in another 3 months or so when the honeymoon phase has ended, haha… for now, as long as I continue paying the bills and working toward things that actually matter to me, all that money stuff is coming secondary. That’s why I’ve been saving up all these years! (And honestly, I’ve been working so hard that I haven’t even had TIME to go spend anything even if I wanted to. I’m turning frugal without even trying! haha..)
By far the best thing about self-employment to date. No more asking to take days off, or trying to wiggle yourself out of boring work conferences. Now you take them when you need ’em and you CHOOSE the conferences you’re actually dying to go to! (SXSW and Blissdom, for starters). The neat/crazy/weird part about not reporting to anyone is that your entire life really does OPEN up when it comes to scheduling. You still have the Saturdays and Sundays to look forward to (I think it’s just ingrained in us), but you no longer have those limits holding you back from adventure. And on the other hand, it can really bite you in the ashcroft too!
The New Schedule
While the freedom is the most exciting part of working for yourself, it’s also the hardest to control! And to be honest, I’m kinda sucking at it. Which is actually the biggest shock to me yet – I used to be good at waking up up and cranking things out! Apparently I jinxed myself ;) I mean, I still do all my work and projects, etc on a timely basis, I just end up doing it at 2 a.m. instead of 8 a.m. cuz I sleep through half the day. This is the 1 thing I gotta change. Even though I can technically work whenever I please, it just doesn’t feel “right.” Like I actually feel BAD waking up at 10 or 11 a.m. Weird, right? I finally have no one to report to in the morning and yet I still feel guilty. I gotta figure this one out.
The New “Office”
This is another one that’s a bit tricky. If you recall from my fired post, I moved right into an office with friends and set up my own little work station. I figured it would be a natural flow to keep up that same 9-5 schedule, but instead of going to my old place, I’d now go to my new place. Make sense, right? Well, you already know about my scheduling problems as of late, but apparently It’s a lot easier working out of my home than it is going into the city! I did NOT see that one coming. How can that be when I love seeing people so much, and I’m even PAYING to have a spot there? I can’t really answer that one. I do know, however, that I gotta figure it out though, and luckily my office-mates are incredibly flexible about the whole thing :) I’m gonna give it another couple of months and see if anything changes.
Oh! And before you ask, I’ve been trying some other methods out too. One day I worked out of Panera Bread for a few hours, and the next I hit up the library! Haha… talk about a whole other dimension. I felt kinda outta place at the library, but I did enjoy myself a bit at Panera. Both places got pretty pact throughout the day though, and eventually all the commotion was just too much for my A.D.D. I wouldn’t mind going back for shorter blips of time though, as I did like the drastic change of pace.
Yeah. This one fluctuates like a mother, I’m not gonna lie. Sometimes I wake up ready to take on the world, and other times I just keep hitting the snooze button cuz I’m all wishy-washy and wondering where I fit in to this new crazy world I’ve created ;) Lately I’ve been on fire and really workin’ it out, but I hope as time goes by I’ll get better at keeping it up. The way I look at it is that it’s all a journey right now. We’re only on month 3, and one day I hope to look back and be like “What?? YOU were doubting yourself? Come on bro, you’re J to the MONEY!! What are you smoking??” haha… but we’ll see what happens.
My Overall Happiness
Now THAT I have :) When all is said and done, I wake up every single morning afternoon and ask my self how the hell I got so lucky. I’m not joking. It only lasts a mere .5 seconds until I remember all the WORK I have to hurry up and get started on, but it does hit me – every single day.
‘Cuz for once in my life I’m not wondering “what if.” I’m no longer dreaming of that ONE day far off in the future that will change my life and allow me to do the things I wanna do. I’m living it right NOW. This very second as I type out all these words. And it’s both liberating and scary at the same time. I have no idea what happens next, or how long it’ll even last, but I do know that at this very moment I am happy. No matter how it plays out, I can confidently say I DID it. And that is by far the most important thing I’ve done in quite some time.
PS: We’ll do another update in 3 months…
PPS: Is it weird that I take showers at 4pm now?
PS: Some of my favorite tools:
|Personal Capital (FREE) -- If you’re looking for a robust financial tracker, Personal Capital is the way to go! They’re like Mint, but on steroids and have much better tools for investment and net worth tracking. // Full review|
|Digit (FREE) -- A super easy (and automated) way to save. Every day Digit analyzes your income and expenses and will push money aside for you any time it sees extra sitting there. I've saved over $4,000 myself using them so far! // Full review|
|Acorns -- Having trouble finding money to invest? Check out Acorns – they round up all your transactions to the nearest $1.00 and drops the difference into an investment portfolio for you. Easy way to start investing! // Full review|