6 Ways to Know If You Are Ready to Make the Jump from Employee to Entrepreneur
Take an honest assessment to see if this life is for you.
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I'm someone that thought they would spend years climbing the corporate ladder...
When I first graduated from college, I started working at a tech startup, where I was able to climb multiple rungs at a time. Sadly, my dreams were shattered when the company I worked for went bankrupt and I found myself broke, unemployed and jobless.
That's when I decided to make the jump into entrepreneurship. I didn't want anyone else to decide my fate again. I wanted to be my own boss, control my future and have financial freedom. I was terrified because I didn't have the experience but I took the leap anyway. And looking back, it was the best decision I ever made… and it might be the same for you.
Here are 6 ways to know whether you're ready to make the jump from employee to entrepreneur:
1. Pay attention to what you say
If you're constantly thinking or saying things like:
- "I'm so exhausted from working."
- "There must be more to life."
- "I need a change."
- "I'm so sick of my job."
- "I wish I was doing something I was passionate about."
- "I feel stuck, but I see no way out."
Don't just dismiss those feelings – give them space, and pay attention. If you feel stagnated, bored, unfulfilled, unchallenged, those are all signs that it might be time to do something different.
2. There's something (else!) you're passionate about
Sure, your 9-5 doesn't exactly light your fire – but there's something else that does, and whenever you get a taste of it, it's all you can think about.
We often talk about "passion" as a synonym for love, but it goes much deeper than that. The word "passion" comes from the Latin root word for "pain" or "suffering." Passion is about wanting something so much, you would suffer for it – meaning you'd sacrifice your time, your energy, weekly brunches, extra spending money, and more to make it a reality. If you have a business idea or a dream job, you'd be willing to sacrifice for, that's a sign you could have what it takes to make your dream a reality.
3. You have a clear vision of what you want to create
You have an idea you just can't get out of your head – and it goes far beyond an elevator pitch or a clever name. When you close your eyes, you can see exactly how your donut shop would look on the corner of 8th, how your handmade candles would look on aisle 12 of Target, how happy you could make your customers, how fulfilled you'd feel providing jobs to your community. Vision is key to entrepreneurial success.
4. You see problems as opportunities
The best entrepreneurs aren't just go-getters, they're problem-solvers. In times of change and uncertainty, they're looking around trying to think of how they could make the situation better. They experience fear and self-doubt just like anyone else, but they don't let fear stop them from taking bold action. If you're proactive about solving problems, that's a sign that you may have what it takes to be an entrepreneur.
5. You could live with the worst-case scenario
Don't get me wrong, optimism is a powerful thing. It's good to keep your mind on the best possible outcomes and focus on your dreams. But let's focus on the NEGATIVE for a moment. Because when we let the negative possibilities go unchecked, they tend to get all blown out of proportion in the shadows.
Go ahead and ask yourself: what's the worst that could happen?
No one knows your personal situation better than you do – be sure to gauge exactly how long you could live without a regular paycheck before quitting your job and who will be impacted by your decision.
6. Your heart beats faster when you think about it
You know the feeling. Your heart races, your face feels warm, and you feel giddy with possibility. That's a sign that this change really excites you. That a part of you, however big or small, yearns for this. Figuring out whether choosing entrepreneurship is right for you is about trusting yourself – listening to your heart and your body.
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