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At Your Age? Why It’s Your Time, for ‘Your’ Business

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At Your Age? Why It’s Your Time, for ‘Your’ Business

Over 50? 60? 70? It’s your time, for you, right now. 

Time to start thinking about yourself and what you want to be when you grow up. What you want to do with the rest of your life. If you are like me, at around 17 or 18, maybe 20, you were probably not thinking very much past finding a partner, getting married, having babies, buying your first home … Need I go on?

So you do all of that … In order (or not), and suddenly you find yourself on the treadmill of life. Not that this is a bad thing; it was just that it might have consumed you. By the time you paid the house payments, the school fees, food, electricity (yes even then), maybe got in a holiday or two, there was little time left and certainly no surplus funds, even on two wages, that could have been allocated to that risky entrepreneurial, outside the box idea that has been churning around in your head all this time.

You know the one? The one that you’d bring out and talk about with friends. Well-meaning friends, who would most likely put you right back in your box and make you doubt yourself even more and you’d shelve it again for another year or two.

You are where you are in life right now. No matter what happens next, you can’t turn back time and do what you ‘should have done’. All you can do is do what you can with the rest of your life. So why not make it all about you.  Try that ‘thing’ you’ve always wanted to try. Put some time into exploring that business idea no matter how fanciful it may seem.

Over the years, I’ve explored many of my ideas. Some worked, some didn’t. Some I started and realised the reality was nothing like the dream. Yes, some cost money, others made money. The way I look at it is this. Over the years, if I added up the pluses and minuses, dollar wise, I’ve probably come out about even. But even if I made an overall loss, it really doesn’t matter. Other people probably spent more on their hobby or sport than I spent exploring the ideas swirling around in my head.

So here you are. Maybe you’ve had similar experiences, maybe not. You may be finding it hard to find a job ‘at your age’. You may not need a job but are bored senseless with your life ‘at your age’. You may want to do something to help your kids or grandkids ‘at your age’.

Whatever your reason for starting a business right now doesn’t matter. What does though, is that you do something you are going to enjoy, to give you the personal satisfaction and sense of achievement that may have eluded you while you were busy. That’s not to say raising the family is not an achievement. It is a very rewarding achievement to have raised children to become healthy, well-balanced adults.

But to be able to follow your heart and try something new just for you will enrich the last leg of the journey that is your life in ways you won’t imagine, regardless of the financial outcome.

So here are my, a self-confessed serial #eclecticdabbler, top tips:

  1. Consider your business a self-funding hobby. Check out the ATO guidelinesfor deciding if your business is a business or a hobby.
  2. Keep ‘How do I want to spend the time I have left on this earth?’ as your goal rather than how much money you hope to earn from it. You will stay healthier for longer if you are doing something you love and from that point of view, what you are doing is extending your life. How much is that worth to you?
  3. Have no regrets. One thing leads to another, and even if ‘that thing’ didn’t work, it may be what leads you to ‘the next thing’, which does. I draw so much value from the experience and connections I’ve made from some of the ‘things’ that didn’t work out how they were meant to. From that point of view, they were a valuable investment and experience.

Enjoy the journey regardless of the obvious outcome.

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