Being An Entrepreneur is More About Sacrifice Than Freedom or Riches

People like to dream about what you get when you choose to become an entrepreneur.

An exciting lifestyle.
The freedom to travel.
Passive income.

But what about what you give up?

Don’t forget to factor into those dreams all the sacrifices that one must make to become an entrepreneur.

You can’t wait to quit your 9 to 5, but you don’t realize that you are most likely replacing it with a 9 to 9 (and in some cases for 6 or 7 days a week).

You’re ready to take more vacations and work from anywhere, but if you don’t spend years hustling beforehand you won’t have the income to support it.

Even mobile phone app programmers and developers, which are in one of the hottest and fastest growing industries around, are still struggling to make a living.

You Have to Sacrifice Something

I haven’t met a single entrepreneur that didn’t sacrifice something when they were first starting out. Most often people give up a better paying job, health insurance, and retirement benefits but it usually goes much deeper than that.

Entrepreneurs often don’t have the freedom to “leave work at work”. I know many that are “always on” (myself included). They need to consciously force themselves to stop thinking about the work that they do because they enjoy it so much.

When you are trying to make ends meet as an entrepreneur it is also hard to give yourself time off because if YOU aren’t working than YOU aren’t getting paid or moving any closer to where you want to be.

Many others give up time with their family (the very reason a lot people think “working from home” is so great) or delay having kids entirely.

The same goes for owning a home. It’s much harder to get a loan these days when you are self-employed than if you are a typical salaried employee. Underwriters want to make sure you run a proven and profitable business over the past couple years.

And lastly, most entrepreneurs actually downgrade their lifestyle to work for themselves, not the other way around. They live with roommates or parents, eat ramen for dinner, or move to the cheapest countries in the world just so they can do work that matters.

All this to say: being an entrepreneur isn’t always glamourous.

You’ll need to give up something you want to do the work you are passionate about. (Tweet this)

What Have You Given Up?

What sacrifices have you made to become an entrepreneur?

Share them in the comments below this post.

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  • Andrea

    I always laugh when people say “It must be nice to work for yourself!” because I can tell they just don’t get it. Yes, it’s nice to work for myself – it’s amazing! But only because of the things I give up.

    I quit my job last December, mainly because I had accepted a position within my company that was a total mistake. I won’t go into the (very long) story but in the end, it was my job or my sanity. My online income was already paying my bills by that point but it wasn’t stable enough for me to leave my career if the circumstances had been better.

    In this first year of self-employment, I’ve worked 7 days a week, 10+ hours a day with very little time off. When I finally fall into bed at 3 or 4 in the morning, I have anxiety attacks because I get caught up in how much more I could/should be doing. My social life has kind of died off as my friends get tired of hearing, “I have to work.” I have nearly killed myself this year to get my business off the ground and make it profitable.

    The thing that makes it okay is knowing that (1) I absolutely LOVE what I do for a living for the first time ever and (2) seeing the benefits of all my hard work. In 2013 I won’t have to work quite as hard, and hopefully that will continue to be the trend. I’m constantly developing new income streams (although small ones) and watching them grow. Overall, I love working for myself but there is definitely a price.

  • Corey Freeman

    This post is right on the money. When I started taking my business seriously, I had dropped out of college, which meant I gave up my vision and dental insurance. My parents stopped supporting me so much, so I actually went months without the money to buy my own toilet paper (wee!) and ate McDonald’s to the point where I suffered severe dehydration.

    Now, though, I live alone, make food, and even have a Mr. Coffee! But changing my life plans was definitely a world shake.

  • Clint Walkner

    I gave up a job that I could of been “safe” at the rest of my career and left when I was 35. I took on debt and fought a legal battle, eventually coming to an agreement after many sleepless nights.

    After almost a year, we were profitable after 3 months. I actually have time to spend helping my clients and doing research. I took the most time off I ever had in my career. There is no looking back, and I am a better person for it. I couldn’t be happier controlling my own destiny.

  • Aaron Kerr

    I read a quote recently, and this post reminded me of it:

    “An entrepreneur is a person who will work 80 hours a week to avoid working 40.”

  • Christopher Walker

    I’ve definitely given up comfort & stability. The last few years have consisted of sleeping on many couches, in hotels, and in other people’s homes. No health insurance, car (sold it), or bike (sold that too lol).

    But the best part of it all is that I absolutely love it! The happiness inherent with actually taking action to follow your dreams is wonderful, even if it means giving up a lot of stuff that might make you more comfortable in the short term.

    I’m blessed to be doing this when I’m early 20’s though. Would be very difficult with a family and children, that’s for sure.

  • doi | The Travelling Feet

    I quit a corporate job to follow my passion – travelling. But some folks don’t get it. They think it’s just some form of immaturity or escaping responsibility. They judge too easily without analyzing the whole picture.

  • Amy Knapp

    Compared to a traditional life with big suburban houses with picket fences and three-car garages, it’s a big sacrifice. But it is only the old way that says we must live in this fashion, that we must own certain things, drive certain cars, and commit ourselves to certain banks. The American Dream is way outdated. Perhaps it’s time we invent a new way that works better for microentrepreneurs?

  • Muhannad

    The road of entrepreneurship is full of sacrifices – that’s probably true. Ultimately, I think, if these sacrifices lead to freedom in the end, you can call it a good investment. Same counts for sacrifices and freedom being well-balanced. What you put into something determines what you get out of it.

  • Dylan Jones

    I would say a number of things, free time being the biggest.

    Not complaining though, I’d rather work 80 hours a week for myself than 40 hours for a corporation.

    I can certainly testify to the lack of glamour but I certainly would never in a million years venture back into a full-time, hum-drum corporate role.

  • Alex B. (@DreamJobGuy)


    Great points here — sometimes we all get caught up in the fact that someone gets to “quite their day job,” but we don’t often time shed light on what they end up sacrificing.

    Again, great points here, and I really enjoyed the article.

    As for me, I’m mostly giving up TV and free time, and devoting it to my businesses.

    All the best!

  • Mathea

    I have been thinking about this alot lately, because I am at the point where my business is growing but “not quite” enough to support me. So it’s even more demanding and I know it will pay off but it’s taking it’s pound of flesh first.
    I have grand ideas about what I want to do with my “freedom” but most of it is – be here when my kids get on the bus in the morning and be here when they get home. But I am giving up things too – it has to feel like it’s worth it. And for me it does, so I am continuing to work towards that goal. It’s good to know we all have these struggles.

  • Deacon Bradley

    This is such a great point Caleb, and it’s EXACTLY why I teach that succeeding is not about WILL-power, it’s about WHY-power. We all make sacrifices, and if you don’t have a white-hot, burning “why” for what you’re doing you will fizzle (wink) out.

    For me, I’m giving up time with friends, vacations, and a ton of leisure time. More specifically, lately I’ve been giving up sleeping in. I’m up at 5am daily (6 days a week) hustling to make things happen for me.

  • Monja

    I couldn’t agree more. I gave up my first business (being a private lesson teacher) to get healthy again and have less stress. My business was successful but I wasn’t doing it from heart. So I still believe it was the right decision. I went through all the struggle once – when I set it up – worrying if I would make enough money to cover the costs? Worrying if I had enough students? But then, in the end, I wouldn’t want to trade any minute of being an entrepreneur to work for someone else. Even if it means that I will struggle a year more or two – I will do what I want to do and reach again the feeling of independence. It pays well back in the end, I love it!
    So yes, it’s a struggle in the beginning and you made tons of valid points but in the end all that counts is that you have a job you love and do not hate to get up in the morning because you don’t know how to stand the day.

  • Brian May

    Agreed. it is no longer just 5 days a week, and 6 or 7 are the norm. Striking out on your own also caused a priority shift where things like sleeping in and watching all of the latest reality shows are much less important. Free time might be reading a Malcolm Gladwell book or something. Rarely is it just idle time totally vegging out.

  • Jay S

    Great article. I can’t help but see tons of online marketers talk about becoming uber rich on 1-2 hours of work a day.

    Here’s what I gave up:
    1.) A high paying, prestigious Wall Street job
    2.) My life savings
    3.) Medical benefits and perks
    4.) Many Friends (and new relationships due to the lack of stability)
    5.) A comfortable lifestyle
    6.) Sex life

    Worth it though. Never been more excited and driven.

    • Courtney


      All I can add is that’s great! By far my favorite comment.

      *It’s always good to know that I’m not alone.*

    • Jay Samolowicz

      I am just seeing this comment now…that is awesome Courtney!!

  • Jason “J-Ryze” Fonceca

    I totally agree with this, and have made many of those choices myself — and that’s the thing.

    I like to be a bit more positive in my phrasing, because I don’t know many people who actively enjoy “giving up” things (unless it’s smoking :P).

    No human being can experience every experience there is to have in a single life time, so clearly, we will be choosing some over others.

    I let people know the path of the entrepreneur requires bold choices, especially in dealing with family, social life, image, etc.

    Is it sacrifice? Or is it being very f***ing selective in one’s choices and life path?

    Food for thought…

  • David Hamilton | Everlution

    Here – triple frickin’ here. Especially about the always on part. Waking up at night, sometimes worrying, often trying to solve a problem coming up with a new idea, constant forward focus, and picking yourself up when you’re knocked down.

    Thanks for taking the shame out of living with my Dad for a while, too. It’s easy to fall in the mindset of “I’m the one one who’s a loser living at home with my parents”.

    Gratitude for this post Caleb.

  • John Muldoon

    Great post, Caleb!

    I think the biggest lies about being an entrepreneur all have to do with the fantasy of “no sacrifices.”

    I’ll cherry pick a few from my 10 years as an entrepreneur:

    1. Having almost no money. Back in the beginning there were some lean times. I’d come from a corporate job that paid well, and the step down was shocking. After a few years, my business income had more than replaced my old corporate income, but before it happened, I was stressed.

    2. Terrible work-life balance. I’ve always run my businesses from my home. The “I work from home” idea sounds great in theory, but all too often it becomes “I live at work.” Learning the discipline to get things done when I’d rather do other stuff involves conscious daily sacrifice. Learning to turn off the work-brain is hard. You have to invent your own structure and clock out at the end of the day.

    3. Getting rejected for a home loan. This one was pretty crappy. About 5 years ago, my wife and I had found a home we liked, and my business had plenty of income to support the purchase. But the bank didn’t see things that way. They wanted to average my good years with my not-so-good years, which ended up disqualifying us. It ended up being a blessing because the market tanked right after that, and two years later we bought our dream home. Still, I felt pretty worthless leaving the bank that day 5 years ago.

    4. Relationships. Want to party all the time while you build your business? I never figured out how to pull that one off. There were a couple of years where my social life just sort of stopped existing.

    5. Doubt. Every successful entrepreneur I’ve worked with has had at least some experience with doubt. Doubting that their pursuit is worthy. Doubting their sanity. Questioning their decisions. Thinking, “maybe I should just go work at Trader Joe’s.” The doubts fade a little bit with every win you have along the way, but they taunt you from time to time.

    Is it worth it? Hell yes.

    Can you have freedom and riches? Yes, but you have to earn those things. The truth is that most entrepreneurs don’t, because it’s harder and takes longer than we expect.

  • kevin

    At last a article written about the side that no one likes to talk about. I have a mobile phone and find myself no matter even if I have switched my laptop off for the night my phone is still going. So you never switch off

  • Debbie


    I think you missed something. I have had a stable job in the same industry for 30 years. To keep these jobs and move ahead I worked a minimum of 50 hours a week. For the last 10 years I never was without a cellphone and laptop so I could work even more hours. Sacrificing your family time has been mandatory over the years. That is what is expected of many employees now a days and in return they can be downsized at any time.

    Given that, I am looking forward to being self employed and making the same choices to work crazy hours and give up vacations etc knowing I am finally in control and making these choices for my benefit. I am thrilled that people entering the work force now have so many more opportunities and options.

  • Frank

    I can relate to this article and many of you who commented. Working for yourself brings many rewards, but there are also a new set of risks and things that you have to deal with you never imagine you’d have to.

    Its funny how some people think because you work for yourself that you enjoy every second of what you do. Wish that was the case, but as we all know it is not. I can’t stand doing invoicing, phone calls that lead no where, late nights to meet deadlines I promised, but its all a part of the job.

    I wouldn’t trade being self employed for anything….except winning the lotto. If I won the lotto instead of heading to a beach, I would start more businesses and work more:)

    -Money is power, but not at the risk and cost of your happiness
    -Knowledge is power, and to stay sharp you need to keep learning what you do best
    -Sanity is power, its never easy to stay on track but stay focused
    -Knowing your pay check is earned and not relying on a boss to give it, this goes without question, not a better feeling than when you are making it on your own

    The joys of self employment. Not cut out for everyone, but the fierce will stay afloat and survive! :)

    Happy Holidays Everyone.

  • Olaf Kilian

    Well, I am sorry, but I heard this kind of stuff too much.

    I have recently heard a speech of the docstock CEO Jason Nazar, stating very much the same stuff as in this post (look him up on YouTube). He prayed the same stuff stated in this post: That – as an entrepreneur – you have to work your ass off. It was horrible! I completely disagreed! He started this company, docstock, raised the capital and now works for other people (the investors) at docstock as an CEO. He may be a good manager, but do not understand it very well to be an entrepreneur.

    In my oppinon there is a big confusion of the terms “entrepreneurship” and “self-emloyment” as well as being a “manager” such like a “CEO” or something.

    When you are self-employed – besides some benefits like freedom of decisions (which also can be vitual in many cases – e.g when great customers or a loan giver can dictate you) – you still have to keep on working. This time you work for noone else, you work for yourself. And because you cannot utilize economies of scale in regard to the administration of yourself (and many other things) you have to work even harder! In addition most people who are self-employed think the can (or need to) do everything theirselfs and don’t get employees who do the work for them. What a horror! You are still in employment. In SELF-employment. This is what most of you seem to do.

    As an entrepeneur you most likely do not do this. As an entrepreneur you live from multiple streams of passive income and also capital gains (that is selling passive income generating assets for a reason – most likely a profit). Active income (things where you have to do active work fo money coming in) can be a necessary support in the beginning, but should never be an income stream you rely on as an entrepreneur. If you build a business it should be able to scale. This basically means that you are not required to run it. Entrepreneurship – compared to self-employment – is about building assets and gaining passive income from these assets and maybe capital gains by selling an asset (flipping) when it really makes sense. Entrepreneurs are creators, builders, they are not likely the people who work at the companies they build. An entrepreneur is a person who with strong visions and enough enthusiam to sell these visions (to investors, a top manager who can build a management team and hire the needed employees, to governments, etc.). Mostly other people do the “hard” work at this company. The job of the entrepreneur – in general – is – besides being a enthusiastic visionary – to direct streams of money (maybe also other peoples money) to where it can fullfill a vision and generate economic value. Even if it is not your money at all, you will basically have an interest in the vision you build and can harvest the benefits as it grows. As an investor the entrepreneur has to check management ratios and try to get the best rate of return on his (or other peoples) capital employed out of the businesses he is engaged into.

    Well, there are several entrepreneurs who also run the companies they own. Let’s take Mark Zuckerberg for example. But what does this mean? He is not only an entrepreneur, he is also working as a manager in his own company. If one desires so, that’s ok. But it should not be confused with being an entrepreneur. Take Bill Gates for another example, he does’nt do this anymore. Look at Richard Branson (Virgin). How many companies does he “own”, not work in? Look at some real entrepreneurs and what they are actually doing. You can learn a lot from them.

    It also was said, that an entrepreneur has to sacrifice so much. In my oppinion the only real sacrifice you have to make as an entrepeneur is: your safty zone and mental comfort. You have to give up your safty zone and your mental comfort. In fact, you have to engage into massive mental discomfort to become a successful entrepreneur. You have to do things that seem to be very uncomfortable in the beginning, such as engaging in extreme risk of failure. Not your failure, not financial failure (you even do not need to use to invest your own money into a project to be an entrepreneur) but the failure of an idea or vision. Most people never manage to get there or try it once and give up. But this requires not to work your ass off, if you think like this then you are just struggling from your own limiting (and false) beliefs.

    I have had run several companies where no further work from my side was required and a had a damn good time to work not even work for a single hour on them while they gave me a continious stream of passive income. The work the entrepreneur has to do is to manifest new visions – and this may be the only point I can agree with in the above post: You cannot just leave that “at work”. When you are a creator, then you have the mind of a creator. And this means that you can have ideas all the time. And then you want to write them down and evaluate them. But to be a dreamer and a creator does not mean that you cannot manage a very good work-life balance and lifestyle. Far from it!

    Try to get rid of limiting and false beliefs and study other entrepreneurs. I wish you all the best!


    • S. Lodge

      Hi Olaf,

      Great comment, I totally agree with you. For me you get the point of the entrepreneurship. What does entrepreneurship mean if you are not a slave of an other company but still a slave, but your own slave?

      Working 70 h a week without aiming for scaling or at least transforming it in passive income is like working as a craftsman even if you are self employed. You are not an entrepreneur. But it can be necessary during the infancy of your business. If it becomes permanent, shift to something else !

      As entrepreneur you should manage your journey according to your visions, balancing risks (ie. several income stream) and try develop or stop ideas/businesses.


  • Peteni Kuzwayo

    Great post Caleb!

    I often say that before you ‘Go Up’, you have to ‘Give Up’!

    Unfortunately most marketers that sell this work 4hrs a week glamarous lifestyle neglect to mention the sacrifices.

    Always refreshing to read a blog post that tells it like it is.

  • Amy

    Very timely post! My day job ends at the end of this month. I’ve been self-employed before and know how hard it can be, but I’m determined to make it work this time. I have worked for the last year building up a client base that hopefully will support it. I also bought a (very inexpensive) home earlier this year so that I wouldn’t fall into that “self-employed and can’t get a mortgage” trap. I know the risks but I feel like I can make it work. I’ll be losing health insurance and retirement too, at least for a while. It’s scary but the day job was killing me.

  • Dave P

    I’m 22 and I quit my job a month ago. I hated working in a corporate office. It took away my freedom and made me feel very obsolete. I didn’t get care about the pointless office chatter or any of it. Since quitting, I’ve started freelance writing to pay rent until my lease is up in May. Also leveraging my skills in the dating/pickup community. The entrepreneurial journey is a tough one, and not one that many people are willing to make. It requires inner strength and confidence that is unheard of in most traditional professions. But if you’re willing to work for it, I believe it is a journey worth making.

  • Barak

    As Napoleon Hill taught, decide exactly what you want and then decide what you will give in return for it. Thankfully most of the time what you want is far better than what you have to give in return for it. Make sure you are willing to make the trade.

  • josh

    I wanted to squeeze more time out of the day, so I started doing polyphasic sleep and gave up 4 extra hours of sleep every night. Its working out so far for me.

  • darren

    I believe its more about effectively using the time you have, then sacrificing. Spending time with the family, usually means sitting in front of the TV, and watching some Worthless show for 3 or 4 hours most nights.

    spend that time working on your business. then on a week wend, take some time, grab the family and head to the park or beach, for 3 – 4 hours…. – Its quality not quantity that matters… Its all about the what, not the when..

  • Benny

    What I’ve given up is probably my free time. My mind is always thinking! When I do have free time on weekends I’m always doing something related to my business.

    But I wouldn’t have it any other way. :)

  • Niveen Salem

    Right on the spot, Caleb! But a question most entrepreneurs I know ask themselves: until when they have to sacrifice when the monetary reward doesn’t match the sacrifice? Is there a limit to when to stop and look for something else? Do they need to set a time frame?

    I personally say: if it’s a dream, then keep after it and tweak your tactics along the way.

    Your thoughts?

    Warm Regards,

  • Rod

    I have a day job where I work in my own business. I like the work so can’t see that I will be giving that up any time soon. So this means that the on-line work cuts into spare time. Friends and patients are always pointing out that I seem ridiculously busy but my reply is that its self imposed.

    I enjoy it so its hard to think of it as a sacrifice.

    I agree with Darren that quality time is what matters most. It can be hard to shift your focus but it is necessary. When its time for work – I work. However when spending time with my wife – I just choose not to focus on work projects. So sure the ideas come into my head but I just write a quick note or just let it go completely. It gets easier with practice.

  • Veso Mitev

    I gave up the “social expectations” of lifestyle.

    I gained happiness.

    And it’s awesome :D

  • Caroline Eaton

    This is a scary and exciting post for those of us just in the beginning of making the sacrifices to follow a job we love. I can already feel the 10+ hour days and 7 days a week of work starting simply because I love what I do. But, I can see it becoming a struggle to shut work off.

    My husband and I have accepted the downgraded lifestyle and less income while we start up – but trying to explain to our friends and family why we are cutting back on activities with them due to money has been tough.

    It helps to hear the encouragement from others who have been there – done that – and are currently still making it work!

  • Tina Kennedy

    Caleb, LOVE your blog!

    What am I giving up? Time and money. Switching off is a challenge, but most days its all completely worth it :-)

  • Sapna

    entrepreneurship is all about pursuing passion, there are obstacles everywhere but why not to face that with great vigour.
    I sincerely believe in order to gain something great you have to loose something but it is worth loosing.

  • Rodrigo Flamenco

    I have a job which doesn’t pay much, but it gives me a lot of free time, so I had to sacrifice like 5 offers for a better paid job because I knew they wouldn’t give me the time to rise my business like this one.

    Also, I had to start from zero, so I’ve been focused all on learning and taking action, it’s been a year since I went out with a girl.

    And I had to go into debt to get into a special group to be able to learn faster and take action.

    I’ve been sacrificing things all year long, but the rewards were worth it :)

  • Chris Jacob

    Facinating comments.

    Olaf’s counter argument almost deserves a guest post of it’s own. I have to agree with him. If you are working crazy hours and sacrificing important relationships to “succeed” then you need to stand back for a moment, take a deep breath and focus just as much effort on how you can FIX this. I know I need to.

    The hardest thing I get told constantly by my wife is:

    Your incredibly SELFISH.

    It cuts deep. My intentions are good (or so I think). I tell myself “I’m doing this for my wife and my son. To make our life better.”

    The harsh reallity is that I could make both there lives much happier right now… If I gave up. If I appreciated my job. Left all work at the office. And freed my mind up to focus my attention on them.

    Unfortunately I am selfish.

    I can’t give up.

    But I realize that BALANCE is key.

    I will have to find a way, because at the end of the day family trumps everything else.

    Never congratulate yourself for sacrificing anything to do with family. Ever.

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  • Wilton

    Between the hours worked on my “day” job and the hours spent developing my Internet Marketing business, I can honestly say that I feel like I’m sacrificing a bit of my sanity in addition to all of the social and financial sacrifices that are being made. :)

    I’m certain it will be all worth it in the end. I just have to keep reminding myself that “getting there is half the fun”!


  • Andy

    This post is so true. I have sacrificed so much to create a business that has produced me a full time income over the last few years.

    It was the hardest thing i have ever done. I spent less money, my standard of living was lower, i had constant stress and anxiety about whether i would succeed or not.

    But guess what… i wouldn’t change it for the world.

    When you get up and your excited to do something each morning, that is a reward in itself. Honestly, i don’t care i i went broke and lost everything starting my business because i loved the process and i love the feeling of being in control of my destiny.

    Although i was working practically 24/7, i have never felt so free in my life. I honestly would not change it for the world. When you love what you do and you feel like you was born to do it, that its your mission and you would do it even if it paid nothing, you have found something very precious.

    It’s called passion and love for what you are doing.

    You have that, it doesn’t mattter how many hours it takes to become a success. You have already won and it doesn’t matter if you go broke or make a billion dollars in the process.

    My 2 cents.

  • Orrin

    I quit my job two years ago and have been supporting myself on a few web projects and doing freelance jobs to supplement my income.

    Sure, there have been sacrifices… but there have also been amazing opportunities.

    I quit my job because I wanted to have the *time* and *energy* to explore other passions and interests, outside of the money making world, while I’m still young and free. I’ve taken this as an opportunity reduce my working hours and to explore frugality.

    I moved from the expensive Sydney, Australia to Hamburg, Germany and Montpellier, France where my cost of living dropped dramatically, while my standard of living increased. In these cities I live 5 minutes walk from everything I need, I can afford to eat out twice a week and I can take cheap holidays to foreign countries. And I can use my extra time to explore a bunch of new hobbies and passions.

    The challenge is in avoiding the path of least resistance. It can be so easy to jump into the comfort of a job and while away your time doing stuff you don’t really like but keeps you occupied and keeps you going. The hard part is throwing that off and facing the challenging unknown… but it’s well worth it.

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  • igbalaye Olayemi

    Sure, determination is the mean factor in any successful work. you need to sacrifice to achieve your goals. Don’t put your focus on the sacrifice you have to made but what you have to achieve and this will bring a great success. thanks for sharing

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  • http://- Gaveitagoodshot

    I’m giving up all these things people are talking about – high paying career, medical and other insurances, friendships, relationships, and it is not worth it. The isolation and 80+ hours simply do not suit me. I wish Western culture would stop glorifying entrepreneurship and that if you dare to chase your dreams you can have it all. What they don’t tell you is what you lose on the (long) road to success. Stability & 9-5 job for me please. At least I tried.

    • Salman Merchant

      Mountains worth climbing are littered with dead bodies. Maybe it’s not for you. In all likelihood It will be the hardest thing you do in life, and like everything else in life, there are zero guarantees your sacrifice and hard work will mean squat. I hope all works out well for you though, as long as your decision is based on what you truly want from life and who you are vs. reeling from the pain of failure.

  • Mike

    Is entrepreneurship overglorified? Yes. I think it can be. In my case, I say f*** having a wife and kids. I am a person that wants neither. A 9 to 5 or other corporate job? I say go to hell to anyone that offers me that kind of lifestyle. I don’t play well with others and I often prefer to do my own thing. For me entrepreneurship all the way.

  • JPH

    Cool post!

    I’ve sacrificed new clothing, stable income, Vacation Days, Health Ins, Paid Holidays, etc. It’s a hard wild ride that’s for sure. I have often worked “temp” day jobs in the process though because I’m not the only one depending on me. I’m married & have 3 teenage sons. So when I need to, I hustle out to a day job to keep things going & when my personal income is doing well I ditch the day job. Been doing this for 7 years. I didn’t take the notion to become self employed until 11 years after starting a family. I was laid off from a job that I thought I’d work at for 30 years, retire at 50 & put it on cruise control. Well, that’s a part of history that is gone for most blue collar workers.

    I’ve become a minimalist before I knew there was such a term. Once I found out about minimalism I embraced the fact that I had already been implementing it in my personal life. I don’t push it on my family, but I love the lifestyle. I would say that anyone considering being self employed should read about minimalism. It’s liberating to be both! So many people consume WAY too much in terms of material things. Far more than they need. I used to be one of those piggish consumers. If people could find happiness in the essentials & good things in life, there would be more entrepreneurs… It’s not so much about how much you earn, but more about being happy doing what you do & earning enough to get what you actually need.


  • Amps

    I gave up stability , a good salary and a corporate job. I work many hours, 6 or 7 days a week. I have spent all my savings in my business. I gave this up because I wanted to take control and build my own life and destiny. My husband and I come from two different countries, for us a corporate job in one of our countries means only having a few days per year to visit my or his family in the other side of the world. We think that entrepreneurship will give us the possibility to live in both countries or at least spend longer holidays. Besides the personal reasons, entrepreneurship is the best thing ever happened to me in my professional life. If you are thinking on becoming an entrepreneur , do it, it´s amazing!

  • Laura M. García

    I gave up a steady income to take a part-time job at a bookstore while I grow my business. I’ve given up dinner dates & take-out, weekend road trips and buying clothes. And while I don’t shut up about what I’m doing, and in some ways, my world has gotten smaller, it’s worth it to make sure my business grows. I needed to take that risk, and put myself in an uncomfortable situation to make sure I really hustled and didn’t remain in my comfort zone. It’s so rewarding to see my little business grow; and one day, I will be able to travel 3-4x/year. Maybe not next year, but maybe the following.

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