Old Try

It’s only Tuesday night and I’m already whopped. 

Yesterday I had three off-site meetings and then a team outing where we ran around Harvard for a couple of hours. I slept fitfully (too much merriment), then clocked back in today at 8:30am. I didn’t hang up my boots until 6:00 pm. I worked through lunch at my desk. Sent 67 emails. Sat in 4.5 hours of meetings. Blew off another festive gathering (too much merriment). Got home. Put the kids to bed. Turned on Ole Miss basketball. Opened the machine, and really got to work. 

 

The fifty hours I work at my day job pays our bills. The ones I work on the night-shift affords my sanity. 

Seven years in and this is what being an entrepreneur looks like. (And yes, I tried to spell that word four times before autocorrect helped me out. Pro Tip: outsource what you’re bad at.) You can’t put it down, or take it off, or phone it in. There’s always something breaking or an idea you’ve got to get on paper or on screen to see if its something or just nothing. There’s the ever-present maelstrom of social media and always-on chat. There are vendors dropping the ball and others wanting to grab the rebound. There’s accounting. Projecting. Warehousing. 

 

I can’t remember what I did in my spare time before Old Try. I’ve given up hobbies and holidays and all hope of being well-read or rested. A full 1/5 of my life has been spent here and my baby is now a second grader who gives me fits but has also made a million dollars. (Pro Tip Two: success comes with taxes. $356,678 and counting.)

 

Success also comes with baggage. Some love what you’re doing and just want to tell you that. Others don’t like it at all and just want to tell you that. Some want to browse. Some want to buy. Some think you’re not charging enough and some think you’re running a snake-oil operation. Make a site that looks professional, and someone thinks you should be offering free shipping. Make one that looks crappy, and someone will want to give you free design help. And then there’s a really sweet kid who asks if she can have an internship. 

 

Kid, I don’t know if you want this. But you need it. 

 

Its the only thing that’s going to make sense: jumping in and only then realizing you don’t know how to swim. First, you’ll just have some extra spending cash. Then it becomes half your family’s income. And then other families start counting on you. That is when you realize you’re in deep and got no choice but to fight. The adventure lies in getting back to shore. 

 

It is the most frightening and the most life-giving force, entrepreneurship. Once you get it under your nails, it’s stuck. 

 

So yeah, I’m whopped. But I'm not done.

 

I’m about to try this again: I’ve got an idea. I’ve bought a domain. Let’s see if lightning can strike twice. 

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