If you're reading this article, chances are you're almost ready to do the same.
Let me guess, you're stuck in the office right now, shielding your screen from nosey co-workers who are eager to bust you doing something other than your work. Or you're reading this article while vegetating on the couch from another unfulfilled day at work, dreading going back in tomorrow. Do you ask yourself if this is it? Is this what life is going to be like for the next 40-odd years?
The answer: yes.
Yes -- if you don't do anything to change it.
For me, I decided that I needed to fire my boss, otherwise I would continue to repeat my current reality over and over again until I died at 25 but only get buried at 75.
Don't misunderstand me, I am not advocating you resigning at this very moment and ignoring any and all responsibility you currently have. What I meant by 'firing my boss' was making a decision that I no longer would live my life at the whim of someone else's control. I made a commitment to myself that I was going to begin to create a life that I love and have always dreamed of living.
The first action I took was negotiating a pay raise at my current job (side note: the only way to do this is to add immense VALUE to your employment organisation, something I'll write on another day) and as result I was able to cut my hours back without sacrificing my income, allowing an extra two full days to dedicate to chasing my passion and build my dream of writing and publishing a book.
Fast-forward nine months from then and what most call a pipe dream -- I achieved. I wrote and published my first book titled #SUCCESS in 2013, which opened all sorts of doors to opportunities on the writing and speaking circuit.
If you read through these four signs below and can say "yup, that's me", you may also be ready to make the leap from a 9 to 5 to full-time dream hustler.
1. You're bored and unfulfilled
It's sad that in this day and age, being 'unhappy' isn't a socially accepted motivator to hand in your resignation and venture out to create a fulfilling and meaningful life. So many suppress the feeling of lack and go through life on default just so they can collapse on the couch at the end of day and complain about it.
Here's a piece of advice you'll never be able to ignore: LIFE IS SHORT and you really, really don't have to live a unsatisfying and dull life. Going against the gain (society) and making a change might be scary but what should make you even more scared is living a boring and unfulfilled life.
Breaking out of the 9-5 mold and dedicating your entire spare time to pursuing your biggest and wildest of dreams, is the only way to tame that voice inside you that says you're so much more than what you're currently doing.
2. You always think "I could have done that"
Have you ever read a book and thought, man I could have written that. Or you find out Flappy Birds sold for $6 million and thought, I can design apps better than that. Or you've spoken to other entrepreneurs or self-employed individuals and thought, man it sounds like hard work but I would rather spend 70 hours building my business than 40 hours at a desk watching the clock tick.
If so, you're on the right track.
My advice would be to link up with mentors who can help you learn. Find ways to add value to them and in exchange they will teach you what they know. Remembering that every winner was once a beginner will help you preserver through the tough times ahead.
3. You're using your head as well as your heart
Do you have a game plan? Have you figured out exactly what it is you want to pursue? I would hate for you to read this article, quit your job then spend all your extra time and resources on unproductive activities that serve you no purpose.
Having a detailed game plan is critical when going out on your own. Ensure you've prepared all the basics BEFORE you jump ship. Have a business plan? Great! Have all your marketing material? Yes? Awesome. If you don't, sacrifice your weekends now so you don't waste your time on non-revenue producing activities when you cut back your employment hours.
Set your D-day and start preparing. When the day comes to start making your dream a reality, ensuring you're as prepared as possible will help with the overwhelm and uncomfortableness. (Remember, the magic happens outside of your comfort zone. Always has, always will.)
4. You're ready to know the word 'sacrifice' extremely well
Sorry to burst your bubble but overnight success is a total myth. One of my favorite sayings is, 'it takes ten years to become on overnight success'. AMEN!
You're ready to join the entrepreneur train when you've made peace with living a few years of your life like most people won't, so that you can spend the rest of your life like most people can't. Late nights will mean prospecting, writing proposals, planning, learning NOT fancy dinners and nightclubs. Early mornings will mean Skype calls, reading, research, marketing and emails NOT 4am cab rides home or sleep ins.
Think about what expenses are necessary in your life right now and what you're actually just buying to compensate for the unhappiness of your current reality. What you might actually find is that your need for particular luxuries or distractions will fall away completely when you are fulfilled with chasing your dreams.
Hustling isn't perfect -- it's stressful and consuming however I know most self-employed people would never go back to a mind numbing 9 to 5 (including me).
If you've read through these four signs and feel at least halfway ready -- jump! Start planning, start saving, start networking, and continue learning. The fear you feel now and will continue to feel is normal, but choose to use it as a motivator. I know you agree that uncertainty and feeling uncomfortable is better than regret.