Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Taking my own advice

I'm a student of a lot of things. I try to read and to learn a little something every week, if not every day. The internet (the Washington Post, the NYTimes, the Harvard Business Review) are my favorite learning sources but you just never know what you'll stumble across on any given day. I'm also a student of business, or at least I was for 2 years. I got a degree (an MBA if you can believe that), but what I didn't get was the necessary je ne sais quoi that made me feel like I could actually go out and start a business. It looks like that is about to change.

One of the things I frequently say on this blog when it comes to the matter of preparing for retirement, is that we have to create a stream of income that we cannot outlast. All too often, retirement planning includes the tried and true 'save' and then 'save some more' maxims which, I have concluded are just not enough for the times in which we live. With the average retiree entering retirement a cool  $250k short, clearly the issue isn't so much the saving as the income from which to save. $250,000 short is a whole lotta 'short' right there. As a result, I've been saying all along that each of us needs to create streams of income. Write a book, sell Amway, sell Avon, teach children out of your front room, invent SPANX (oh sorry, that one's been done already). It doesn't much matter what you do, just that you do.

So I'm about to take my own advice. I'm terrified. I couldn't be more terrified if I were going to walk the streets of the land naked but I'm not entirely sure that I have any other options. Costs of care being what they are, my threshold for a paycheck is probably higher than the market wants to bear right now.It's not that I don't have a good (perhaps even great) idea because I do,  rather, it is that I've not really got the stomach for being in business: the rejection, the putting oneself out there.......I'm shuddering already.

So, I'm building something, beginning with first building up my courage. I'm not sure what the 'something' is quite yet, but I'm building it all the same. Hey, who knows? I might turn out to be the next Sara Blakely...or I could crash and burn.

You would think that having already successfully taken a risk with a pretty significant amount of money and had that turn out well, I would be gung ho right? WRONG. I've succeeded once, why wouldn't I succeed again? I don't know. I'm just a cautious creature by nature, and in business, trepidation is understandable and considered quite appropriate. Trepidation aside, I'm sallying forth slowly.

Stand by for results. Maybe.

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