The fantasy of being an entrepreneur

If you have social media accounts, I am sure the past couple of years you have been bombarded on multiple occasions with ads showing entrepreneurs and freelancers sharing their “secret” to get rich whilst working on a beautiful beach or in a trendy coffee shop.

Of course, when you want to sell something, you have to make a beautiful offer or people won’t buy it. 

With time, the digital nomad culture expansion and the consequences of Covid, we all had the occasion to wonder what it would be like to work for ourselves, where we want and on our own schedule.

I am 29 years old and I feel it is a big dream of my generation to have this kind of freedom. We have to work, there is no way around it, but if we can have as much freedom as possible, of course we want to take it. 

But after conversations with different experienced entrepreneurs and listening to podcasts, I came to the realization that we tend to idealize this way of working way too much. 

Especially with the influence of Facebook and Instagram, we just picture ourselves with a big smile on our face, laptop on our knees facing an exotic beach. 

But being an entrepreneur or a freelancer is not only La vie en rose and I want to remind you a few things in this article about the downsides of it. 

Being an entrepreneur or a freelancer is to be the master of your project and your time, but it’s also you who is only responsible for everything that happens. You don’t have a 9 to 5 job, you have a 24/7 one! But not everybody thinks of this adventure that way. 

In this case, you are the one who takes the entire responsibility of your tasks, the successes and failures, the processes, the organization, being alone or managing the team, taking care of the taxes, handling the paperwork, etc …

If there is just you, you have to do everything, all the time, and it is exhausting. 

If you have a team, you have less tasks to handle yourself but you have to hire, train and manage people and that is really hard (it takes years of practice and some people can’t handle that kind of position). 

If your project/company is small, you might struggle to make money and it is going to impact your quality of life. Stress, anxiety and sleepless nights are in for you.

Making money is going to release you from material challenges, but you will have to be responsible with your spending habits and handle another kind of stress. When you have a team, you are responsible for the members’ paychecks and a part of their lives. 

It is like everything in life, there is a positive and a negative side to everything.

If you are an employee, you won’t have that much freedom about your work conditions, your evolution and your paycheck, but you will have more stability and less responsibilities. 

If you are an entrepreneur, you will have the freedom … of everything but also all the pressure for yourself. 

We all have different personalities and needs, I think our desire to work in certain ways will just vary depending on the state of our lives. 

Some people are “made” to be an employee, or a manager or an entrepreneur. 

For some others, we will go from one position to another depending on our goal, our financial stage and the opportunities coming to us. 

I think it is also important to take time to work on the transitions when it happens. If you have a 9 to 5 but want to launch your own project, no need to quit suddenly and jump right into entrepreneurship. Take time to organize your schedule, split the tasks, define short and long term goals. You can use your free time for your personal project step by step, and when you are really ready to go full time on it, take the jump ! 

Instagram is selling us very well how glamorous it is to be an entrepreneur, if it is your path, go for it ! But if you feel fulfilled in your 9 to 5 job, there is no shame either ! 

Enjoy your path, and if you feel bored or overwhelmed, change up your routine.  

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