We both quit our jobs. There were many life events that factored into this decision. But the most important factor, was having the support of each other. Our dream was to own a business together, and we were not going to let fear get the best of us. Yes, many people think we are crazy. Even we think we are crazy at times. But we would rather be crazy any day over being fearful of listening to our hearts.
Fear is an interesting feeling when starting a business. You fear the obvious like how you will make money. But the scariest part for us was giving up our normal routine, our successful careers, putting aside pride, and risking our current way of life. To expand on how crazy we are, we just got married 6 months ago, had a beautiful destination wedding, an amazing month long honeymoon, added another fur baby to our family, and then quit our jobs…crazy. My husband gave up a 14 year career as a senior executive in a $4B company, one he helped build and an amazing team he hired. That takes big kahunas, I mean people he worked with were literally crying, it was intense. I gave up a career that made me feel independent, secure and confident in myself.
There have been the obvious emotions of “Oh shit, what did we just do?”, “What if we can’t make this work?”, “Will people see us as a failure?”, “What if our idea is stupid?”, but most importantly, “What if we let each other down?”. That last one is the the most haunting question you can ask yourself in a marriage. These emotions are not easy to get through, but it’s all a mental game…you have to suck it up, swallow your pride, and stop making excuses. Plus, if not now then when? The answer is likely, never.
Okay…let me throw some caveats in here, because I don’t want everyone to run out and quit their job today. That would be crazy, and I can’t have that on my conscience. So before you quit your job, ask yourself the following questions:
- THE MOST IMPORTANT QUESTION: What makes you happy? If you don’t know what makes you happy, don’t quit your job…you will just end up unhappy and jobless, and that doesn’t sound fun.
- What does your gut say? If your gut says, “Hey idiot, don’t quit your job, you don’t even like going to the grocery store alone, let alone start a business by yourself.”, then don’t quit your job…you will just be miserable and jobless. But don’t worry, not everyone is cut out to drop everything, move into a coffee shop, and sit by themselves all day. However, if you have a passion that you want to pursue, look for other’s with a similar passion and make something happen together. Push the envelope and challenge yourself, but ALWAYS listen to your gut.
- Have you taken the time to plan and save money? Let’s get real for a second…life IS about happiness, you have that part correct, BUT when starting a business, it is also important to pay your bills and feed yourself. You can’t successfully pitch investors if you are living under a bridge and starving to death. My recommendation to you: if you have an idea, start saving now. Figure out how much you need to survive and create a realistic budget for yourself.
- Is your idea attainable and realistic? For example, if you decide you love planes and want to start your own jet engine company, that is great…but do you have your pilot’s license and an engineering degree/experience? If not, I wouldn’t quit your job to start a jet engine company…maybe try educating yourself first. Be realistic with your goals, there is a difference between being confident and being delusional confident (don’t be the latter).
Now that we have gotten introductions out of the way, you are probably wondering what business we are starting. Drum rollllllll please…..
I’m not going to tell you…yet. But keep an eye out for a future blog post announcing the launch of our new business! If you have words of encouragement, wisdom or advice, please comment below.