No one will argue with the fact that collecting a paycheck every week or month feels good. It’s also nice to have your health insurance subsidized, and your 401k sorted out. And no one is going to complain about on-site chefs and masseuses in the office.
Indeed, the luxuries of working at a large, established company are many.
The problem is, large companies make it so comfortable to work there, that most of us never really take the time to consider the alternatives, such as entrepreneurship.
For some reason, the prospect of grinding out 100-hour work weeks with low or no pay, no healthcare benefits, and not so much as a whisper of a 401k, just doesn’t have the same appeal.
But today, I’m going to make my case for why starting your own business, in particular a low-risk online business, can provide you with a host of benefits that make an established company’s offerings laughable.
So if you’re looking for some motivation to start your own business, or to get yourself out of a rut, or to simply bask in the glory that is entrepreneurship, I suggest you stick around.
So in a separate lesson, we busted The Myth that Entrepreneurship is Risky. In fact, we proved that it’s one the lowest-risk ways to build wealth. But that’s just the start. There’s so much more going for entrepreneurs.
And since we’re on the topic of building wealth, let’s start by covering some of the amazing economic benefits of being an entrepreneur.
To me, at the top of the list is the fact that, as a business owner, we can finally get paid what we’re worth.
One of the most frustrating aspects of being an employee is that you have to rely on what your employer thinks you’re worth. If you’re not a particularly hard worker, but you know how to look productive, this works out great for you, because you get paid far more than the value you contribute.
But if you’re like me and like to go full tilt into whatever it is you’re working on, being an employee ends up being a bad deal, because no matter how hard you work, you’re only going to get paid as much as your boss, or your boss’s boss, decides is reasonable.
And rest assured, that amount is almost always going to be less than they make. Even if you contribute way more to the company than they do, they essentially represent your salary cap.
That’s a deeply frustrating situation to be in.
By contrast, when you run your own business, you have much more control over how much you’re paid for your work. The better you serve your customers, the more they’re willing to pay you.
And every day, you have the opportunity to convince new customers that you’re worth even more than you were the day before. Try making that pitch to your boss…
So forget about HR salary caps and ungrateful managers. When you’re at the helm, you set your price. And at the end of the day, you end up getting paid exactly what you’re worth, which I can guarantee you, is a lot more than your employer thinks you’re worth.
Now, beyond that, there are a slew of other economic benefits to being your own boss. Perhaps foremost among those is the various tax breaks that a business is eligible for.
For example, while tax laws vary significantly between countries, it’s a safe bet that, wherever you are, you can deduct business expenses from your profits.
This is a huge tax-saving opportunity. Especially once you discover how many of your monthly expenses actually qualify as business expenses.
If you work from home, you can deduct a portion of your rent, along with your internet, cell phone, and other everyday expenses you’re used to paying out of pocket. This also includes equipment, meals, and even travel expenses that are related to doing business.
While you need to be careful that you aren’t blending personal expenses with business expenses, the bottom line is that, when you run your own business, you can end up collecting a significant portion of your income tax-free.
Given the potential gains, I strongly recommend consulting a tax professional to figure out what you can deduct for your business.
In addition to the economic advantages, entrepreneurs enjoy some great lifestyle benefits.
The most obvious benefit is that you set your own schedule.
If you’re a morning person, you can get up at the crack of dawn, work until noon, and close up shop for the day. Or if you’re more of a night owl, you can work late into the night, with no stress of having to get up early to be in the office before your boss.
In either case, no one’s telling you when to punch in and punch out.
And if you goof off, you’re fooling no one but yourself. This motivates you to be efficient with the time you allocate to your work, and you ultimately end up with more free time because of that enhanced productivity.
Likewise, you have no restrictions on where you work.
Don’t like to commute? Make your home your office, or the coffee shop next door. Tired of paying expensive downtown rent? Then simply move to the suburbs, or to a cheaper city, or even another country!
You don’t need anyone’s permission to do whatever you feel is best. And that freedom opens up endless possibilities for how you configure your life.
Another huge advantage of being an entrepreneur is that you develop invaluable life skills.
When you’re starting or growing a business, your primary occupation is Chief Problem Solver. You learn to cut through the noise to find the signal, pinpointing bottlenecks and ruthlessly eliminating inefficiencies.
This makes you dramatically more productive, not only in your work, but in every aspect of your life.
Given your limited resources, you also learn to be resourceful.
Early on, you can’t solve your problems with money. This forces you to be creative. You figure out how to do more with less, and how to juice every last drop out of what you have.
This skill continues to serve you as the company grows by ensuring you manage your finances in the most efficient way possible.
Finally, entrepreneurship teaches you perseverance in a way you’ve never experienced before. You’ll be surrounded by doubters telling you what you’re doing won’t work. You will encounter seemingly insurmountable obstacles at every turn.
Every successful entrepreneur learns how to turn down the volume of that little voice telling you to give up, and how to amplify the voice that says “every problem has a solution”.
This determination to persist must come from within. And once you learn how to cultivate it, you become unstoppable.
The Greatest Benefit of All
There are countless other advantages to running your own business. The ones I’ve outlined here are some of my favorites, but that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
Perhaps the greatest benefit of all is the deep sense of fulfillment you get from seeing something, which you’ve poured your lifeblood into, grow and thrive.
And obviously, the life of an entrepreneur is not all unicorns and rainbows. Far from it.
The pressure and uncertainty of being your own boss can be punishing. And it’s easy for your business to crowd out other important aspects of your life, like your social interactions and your mental and physical health. Ignoring those is a sure recipe for burnout.
But with practice, you learn how to strike the right balance. And the rewards vastly outweigh the drawbacks.
Hopefully this has given you the kick in the butt you needed to get your own business off the ground, or to keep at it, if you’re feeling stuck. We’ve all been there.
Just know that committing your life to something you are passionate about is the best way you can spend your time.
And, if what you’re working on doesn’t pan out the way you’d hoped, you’ve still developed invaluable skills along the way that will be instrumental to your success in your future endeavors.
So stop second guessing yourself and take the plunge.
Now that I’ve shared my thoughts on the benefits of entrepreneurship, I’d love to hear your thoughts. What advantages do you see in starting your own business? What other life skills does entrepreneurship cultivate?
Share that with me and the other Wealth Stakers in the comments below.
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With that, I bid you adieu, and happy Wealth Staking!