Sunday, April 20, 2014
DYING TO LIVE!
Exactly four years ago today, I woke up at 5 in the morning lying in a hospital bed praying that my heart stop beating or someone mistakenly kill me by giving me the wrong medication. I was bedridden was relying upon people to feed, clean and wipe me down and had to face a permanent spine disorder & my girlfriend of 11 years and then wife of 5 years took a khula because she did not want to do time with someone who might not recover mentally and physically. I was suicidal, depressed, my business failed and my parents bailed me out from the people I owed money to the only other problem I had was that my limbs refused to move so I could not kill myself!
So in one line “Mother Nature took a massive dump on my life and the “Allah” that I believed in all my life was not talking back to me or giving me any form of hope!” Slowly, as I became a bit mobile I got on the internet but disconnected from everyone because only one of my so called friends came to see me regularly and spent time cheering me up! I hated life my positivity was replaced by new found bitterness for everything and I had developed the following skills / triats,
1. To be able to utilize my time effectively as I was going nowhere (literally)
2. To be able to listen to people and understand their needs (it’s amazing how you look at life when you are numb from pain killers)
3. To be able to respect the little people (I mean sweepers, ward boys, nurses etc. who got paid shit and whom we take for granted!)
One day after checking my emails, I found myself on Twitter. One of the tweets took me to an article about this new thing called whatsapp on TechCrunch. That article took me to coding blogs, where I discovered you can actually learn how to code. A few months later I was back home in bed writing code for a VOIP solution as I still had problems walking when I was disrupted by a call from a friend of mine (who had just gotten back from tha You Kay after five years). During the call, I realized that day was actually the birthday of another friend of mine so I reconnected on Facebook where the top post on my news feed was about what a loser I was and had vanished having eaten up some ones money. (Whilst hospitalized my parents cleared that due)
With bitterness and anger fueling me but limited mobility and still partially suicidal somehow I overlooked everything and started focusing on getting me a job. After I had no luck having pursued a blogging job I started coming up with a new startup ideas that to me could be much better than Viber, Napster etc. etc.! Soon, my mind was exploding with amazing ideas and I was exhausted.
OK, STOP! FU*K ME, I WAS A SELF PROCLAIMED BROKE WANNABE ENTREPRENEUR. But it was 4 a.m., the middle of the night, and I had truly wasted another day doing nothing but jumping from one website to another. I was still depressed & had a headache and felt so much pressure on my forehead. I was in bed with my cell phone logged into Facebook. That day, Three years ago, I decided to change the way I work because I was finally so fed up with the one thing that made me fail over and over again:
I was the distracted miserable guy jumping from one website to another, from one idea to another, while getting absolutely nothing done. Oh, I also found it cool to call myself an entrepreneur. Bad Time Management, Distraction and the inability to focus on things are the new illnesses of our generation of entrepreneurs. I realized that there is too much noise, too much information overload. If you don’t start controlling your environment, you are destined to fail. Of course I had my excuses such as:
“But I am an entrepreneur and I need to be inspired,”
“I need to learn new things if I want to become a successful entrepreneur,”
“I am just curious”
Yes, it’s true. We, the entrepreneurs, are curious. Actually, the problem is, we are so curious and critical about everything that we are constantly distracted while getting nothing done.
Here is what I did after that night that has since revolutionized my life:
1. BE ORGANIZED & CONTROL YOUR ENVIRONMENT
Entrepreneurs are the smartest people I have ever met. I don’t think it’s just because they are born to be so, but also because they use their brains much more than their peers working in the corporate environment, who are usually checking the clock to call it a day and go home.
Use this to your advantage and control your life. It all sounds easy, but how will you implement them on a day-to-day basis? Here are my suggestions that helped me a lot:
Write a little to-do list while you are enjoying your coffee. On a piece of paper, write down the things you will get done that day. Key: Don’t over-target. Be realistic about what you can accomplish during a single day. Don’t turn your LAPPY OR MOBILE on until you finish your breakfast.
Don’t check your emails or Facebook/Twitter at least for the first two hours in the morning. This will revolutionize your workday. Don’t let an email or Facebook post control your day; let yourself be the power here.
Go offline. Literally. Use software’s like Anti-Social or Cold Turkey to block websites like Facebook or whatever you want to. I personally use Cold Turkey; it’s free and I block distracting websites for hours or I go completely offline (you can block your entire browser application such as Chrome) when I need to focus.
Disconnect & don’t bring any of your devices (PC, iPad, cell phone) to bed and change your focus by doing something other than your business. Read a book or socialize with friends. This is crucial for two reasons: First, for your creativity and keeping yourself fresh without burning yourself out. Second, for letting your body produce melatonin, which has been identified as an absolutely crucial sleep hormone. And blue light is the biggest enemy of melatonin. No matter what, control your environment. You are the smartest thing you have ever met. Use that.
2. INHERIT THE OBSESSIVE COMPULSIVE TRAIT
Come on. It’s not rocket science. You are not looking for the love of your life. If you are reading this, I assume you have spent about 15 years on this planet and have at least an idea of what you like and what you don’t. Remember, you don’t have to reinvent the wheel.
Discover what you are really passionate about and what you would change in your life or people’s lives. Think about what one thing you can do better than others, or how you could improve an existing problem. I understand you need inspiration, but wasting a million days in a row jumping from one distracting website to another won’t help you find the idea of your life.
How do you make sure you’ve found that one single idea? Ask professionals (not khalas and Khalus) about their opinions! Don’t start a company unless it’s an obsession and something you love.
If you have an exit strategy, it’s not an obsession.
3. DO IT NOW – DON’T WAIT!
Procrastination / waiting or deferring your start date has been the single most reason Entrepreneurs have failed over the past decade. So stop the vicious cycle and just start. You will be impressed by how many people will contact you or will want to work with you once you begin. Scratch your idea onto a piece of paper (yes, just on a piece of paper) and walk out of your home. Talk to people.
By the way, get a life and stop that bullshit of, “What if they steal my idea?” Talk to as many people as you can. Let them steal it if they really will, but you will kick their ass because you conceived it.
Please also stop saying, “I need to find an investor.” How about making some sales first? Maybe you will even realize you don’t need to give any share of your business to an investor. Even if you really need an investor, by making some sales, you will have a stronger hand to play.
4. BE FOCUSED! Say no to other ideas: Keep doing one thing, and do it fu*king well
Just because you started working on your idea doesn’t mean you won’t meet distractions along the way. Your mind will be about to explode with all the ideas you can apply to your business, the many features you can add to your product, etc.
Keep your focus. Say no to distracting ideas. If you keep doing that, another thing that will impress you will be the power of what you studied in your marketing book: word of mouth. You will be truly impressed by the number of people coming back and asking for more work. Who cares about competition? You are just beating yourself. Isn’t that what matters in the end?
5. GO NUMB & DON’T CARE! Stop giving a fu*ck what other people think!
If you are an entrepreneur because you want to prove other people that you are successful, then please go back to step one above. Make sure you are following your passion because you have a vision and you are out to change something in this world. Otherwise, this will kill you. You will have difficulty focusing and you will keep being distracted because you won’t really be passionate about getting anything done.
I did the hardest thing and that was to focus on being a TOP salesman that had no education, could barely walk, zero trust factor and had to rely on mommy's car when available! Today I have the ability to write my own paycheck because I am still not textbook educated and I had fallen so low that the only way to look down was to look up! Yes people fought me and those who are jealous still do mock me and try to flood me with negativity but I get the last laugh because I work because I want to where as 98% of the people I know today work because they have to. The day they stop working their lights and fans go off and they will be evicted from society but as an entrepreneur I live in a fortress of self-created security that i own!
One important thing to remember is that your destiny may be defined in the stars but you choose your fate of tomorrow daily by your immediate honest decisions and actions today!
Now what? Stop wasting your time reading this blog and get your ass back to work.
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