Thirty three years ago, I started my full-time career.
I was studying for a Computer Science degree and I got bored!
I dropped out.
I decided to leave.
I wanted to earn some money.
I gave up the degree course.
I didn’t know what I wanted to do. I just knew I didn’t want to go to college anymore.
I visited the job centre for a few days.
There was a job in the banking area of London. Right in the city of London. The job was for a Pensions Clerk.
£3,600 annual salary plus free lunches. That’s equivalent to £9,000 in today’s world if we use 3% inflation – that is less than the minimum wage!
But I was happy and I got free lunches. I was offered the job.
I took it.
I also had a couple of little part-time jobs at weekends and evenings collecting football pools money and valeting cars.
I certainly wasn’t afraid of working hard. I enjoyed the extra money.
My Salary Went Up By Ten-Fold
Within a few months I joined the IT department of the same London company and my salary doubled overnight.
I moved around a few companies and ended up having a great career in IT.
I was Head of IT for a large world wide corporate company. A great salary, company car, bonuses, health care, private pension, free shares.
I don’t want to mention the company I worked for but, for me, they were great. I put in long hours working for them and they treated me really well.
Then there was a lot of downsizing and redundancies / layoffs. I survived many times.
But I knew one day my name would be on the list and I wanted something to ‘keep me going’ if I were ever made redundant.
So eight years ago, I started my own on-line business while working full time. I continued to work long hours for the company I was working for and evenings and weekends on my own on-line business.
NO MONTHLY SALARY!
For 28 years, I worked for a company…for someone else.
Then five years ago, I had the option to take voluntary redundancy.
I took it and suddenly I was working for myself.
No boss. No objectives. No staff to manage. NO MONTHLY SALARY!
That’s pretty scary.
I’m now on my own.
I make all the decisions.
I decide when to work and what to work on.
Nowadays, I have 4 major activities that I perform most working days:
1. Content creation – blog posts, videos, new products, tweaking my own website
2. Marketing – blog commenting, affiliate marketing, social bookmarking, social media…
3. Clients – working and mentoring with my clients on their websites / small businesses
4. Learning – reading other blog posts, buying new courses…keeping up to date on the latest trends
Now my day looks like this:
6am. Most days, I go to the gym.
8am. Then home from the gym, I have breakfast with my wife.
8.30am Then it’s off to work…it takes me 15 seconds to get to work. I just walk from the kitchen to the home office.
Turn on the pc and while it is booting up, I just check what I have planned to do today on my activity list.
Then I check my emails and respond to any that need responding to.
Check my direct tweets and Facebook messages and reply to any that need replying to.
Check my blog comments and reply to any that need a reply.
That takes, on average, an hour.
9.30am Then I look at my plan to see what I have planned for the day.
I have a weekly plan and the weekly plan is broken down into daily tasks based upon the 4 activities I mention above.
Each daily task is broken down into 60-minute chunks.
And at the end of each week, I plan out the next week’s daily plan and activities.
By having a daily plan and planning ahead, it helps me focus.
13.30 Back to work
18.30 Back to work
19.00 onwards (depends upon how much work I have to do)…my time!
Would I ever go back to the corporate world?
I love the freedom. I love the ‘working from home’ lifestyle.
Have you made the transition from 9-5 to working for yourself from home?
What focuses you?
Please share your thoughts in the comments below.