Aside from my day job, I’ve got my gun training classes, this site, advertising and online marketing for a few companies, and a large custom software project. I’m working 60-70 hour weeks and have been for at least 2 years.
When it all started, it was all necessary. We were in debt, I was underpaid for my industry, and we couldn’t make ends meet. Today, our debt is nearly gone, our savings has grown, and I make considerably more money that I did 2 years ago.
But I’m still running as hard as I can.
My wife is unemployed, but I don’t think that matters much. I probably make enough at my day job to cover our lifestyle. I’ll know for sure in 2 weeks when my benefits all kick in.
But I’m still hustling.
When someone calls me up to ask to pay me for a project–a highly skilled, high-margin project–how can I turn them down? When the headlines drive people into my classes, how can I say no to the money?
I’ve been accused of being a workaholic, and I can’t argue with it anymore. I’m working all of the time, and the rest of my life–my marriage, my kids–is suffering for it. I’ve spent so long with not enough, is it possible to just enjoy what I’ve got?
I’ve got no hobbies. I rarely spend time with anyone. I quit working an hour before my kids are asleep, and see them in the morning just long enough to get them to daycare.
I’ve got to scale back. That means my plans to go self-employed are getting paused, but that was mostly an exit strategy for my last job. I enjoy my current job. I’m doing what I love in an industry I care about.
What can I cut?
- This site. I could sell this, make a bit of money and reclaim that time, but I need this vent. I need to be able to talk about my finances and release whatever pressure is building up.
- Gun classes. This business takes up about 10 hours per class, with 1-2 classes per month. It’s not a huge time sink. Right now, business is booming. There is an old saying: “You have to make hay while the sun is shining.” Eventually, the market will slow down, but for now, we’re one of the most successful businesses in our market. I can’t turn this tap off.
- Marketing company. This is the biggest time sink I’ve got. It’s also the most profitable. This is where I spend my time every evening, and where I think I need to wind down. I’ve got a couple of major commitments I can’t back out of, but when they are done, I think this has to go. I simply can’t keep going like this. We’ll keep the business entity, so we’ll be able to say yes to the right projects and be ready to go with the next brilliant idea….crap, there I go again.
My name is Jason, and I’m a workaholic. The idea of shutting down my business hurts, but the idea of losing my wife and kids hurts more. I don’t know how painful winding some of this down will be, but rest assured, I’ll be sharing the progress here.