I have always flinched
When The Social Network released in 2010, it was all-set-match for me. I have never become more impressed with a story, and I wanted what Mark Zuckerberg in the story had. The freedom, the ability to build something you’d call your creation and the entire story.
Later came Silicon Valley, the series, and the awkward fumbling entrepreneur who wanted to build his legacy. I somehow resonated with Richard Hendricks more. I was shy, introvert, with zero self-confidence, and I had these anxiety attacks that would crumble me whenever I had to face up to someone. But, Richard constantly overcame that. He had to. He put his product above anything.
That’s what I have always been after. A perfect product. Something that would be my baby. I would nurture it, pitch it to potential team members, perhaps even get some investors, and build my legacy. That’s what I have always wanted, and that’s what I’ve always been after.
However, it’s easy to say I want it. The real question is — am I willing to actually be precarious and still go after it? For the stuff I want?
When we started Dailo, we were four friends who were part-time students with no expectations from us. We could do everything and yet risk almost nothing.
In some ways, that’s what made it easy for us. Yes, you could say we risked our academic performance, yet at the grand scale of things, it meant nothing.
But upon graduation, the tectonic plates somehow shift. It won’t be the end of the world, and still, the risk factor increases substantially.
It’s not a question of what I want, anymore. It’s a question of what I’m willing to give up for the things I want to achieve?
Am I willing to give up the core of my 20s on a startup with no real experience in the field — in hopes that I will learn it as I move forward? Or am I willing to let go off my dreams and postpone it for a while, to get that experience working on a tech company? Push it further, and should I let go everything I had in my mind for the past three years and pursue education abroad?
You see, there’s no real answer to the question. People will try to convince you otherwise. They will tell you — it’s stupid to start a business when you have no experience at all. Or they will say to you- it’s not worth it to go abroad and spend thousands of dollars on studying something you can read off books. But it’s not their fault.
And it is not your fault either.
It’s a problematic conundrum everyone has to deal with, once in a while. Perhaps, one of the best decisions you could make is by knowing yourself and figure out things on the very fact that why it’s such an arduous decision to make for you.
Are you too scared to pursue an entrepreneurial venture because it puts you out of your comfort zone? Or do you have difficulty pursuing studies abroad because you fear you’ll be home-sick?
Because these questions ultimately give you the fundamental root of your problem. Home-sickness isn’t a huge deal, and you can overcome it. Leading up front, and getting out of your comfort zone isn’t one either. They are mere flinches.
But, the question of whether you want to go through the hours of uncertainty that entrepreneurship brings and the insane working hours is a reckoning one. Or perhaps, if you are uncertain of going through 2 years of college education abroad, and giving up on some family time, it’s a decision you should not make.
You can take as many perspectives as you want. Or ponder the question time and again with as many people. But only you know the answer. It’s how the world works. There will be hundreds of stories you will hear about how a simple decision changed their life. Stories about how they were clueless, with no purpose in life and went abroad, bringing in a crucial shift in their mindset. Or you could hear a story about how they gave up everything and risked it on an entrepreneurial venture and succeeded despite all the challenges.
But it’s also easy to forget that their decision best-suited them. And they sacrificed everything else but their ultimate goal because they wanted it the most. They saw it as the only thing that shone a light in their life.
Meanwhile, as fate has it, I have to answer the same question soon. Am I willing to do it? I don’t know.
But I will figure it out, eventually. After all, only I know the answer to that question.
Thoughts of a guy who just finished his under-graduate classes.