A faint feeling of content  

rm_Michael6686 51M
15 posts
3/19/2006 3:44 pm
A faint feeling of content

Tonight after a hard day of work, waiting tables in a popular breakfast restaurant in the heart of “season” in Palm Beach County, FL, I suddenly realize something. All the bills are paid and I have rent for the week in my hand two days early. I don’t have a day off for another three days, which means more money. My life is not a glamorous life, but it’s a good one. I’m a “worker bee” living in, what is perceived to be, one of the wealthiest communities in the United States.

I found myself homeless in Fort Lauderdale after the brokerage firm a friend and I were starting up collapsed. I didn’t have a financial stake in the firm, but it was the best thing I had going for me in the spring of 2003. So I bet it all. I gave it everything I had and didn’t surrender until I financially couldn’t afford to work there anymore. Then, one day I didn’t have rent. Beginning on June 16, 2003, my home was a picnic table in a Coral Springs, FL park. It sucked, but it turned out to be the greatest experience of my business career…and defined who I would become. I immediately decided to rebuild the advertising specialties business I crashed in 2001, but improve it. That day I began my next business in my head and on paper. Three years later, it is built, online and waiting to serve its first customer as soon as I go find them.

So I learned the hardest business lesson of my life as an entrepreneur, “Know when to quit.” Since that very painful lesson, I have also added another rule since then, “Never do the same thing two days in a row (unless, of course, it’s a long term project, but make sure you’re making progress).” That prevents persistence from overcoming common sense and makes everything new and exciting every day. Both rules alone will prevent disaster by constantly, impatiently monitoring your results, as does a general in the field or a captain at sea.

So tonight I find myself somewhat content, and I’ve earned it. I deserve this feeling after working my way off the streets, building my next business, rebuilding my office and financially surviving in the high rent Palm Beach County, amid four hurricanes in two years, I deserve my kudos. Tonight I can actually relax for the first time in about three years. I have to be at work at 6:30am tomorrow, but I don’t care. Tonight, I, alone, enjoy the NCAA tourney and have a few beers with a lot of money in the bank and in my wallet.

Tonight life is good.

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