Entrepreneur Beginners Guide
“You Love Your Life”
The best way to predict the future is to create it.
—Peter Drucker, author, management consultant
Sometimes I have to pinch myself and ask, “Is this for real?” For instance, I recently played eighteen holes of golf on a beautiful private course in Orlando, Florida, with three physicians, some of whom certainly have a net worth in the millions. On the sixteenth hole, one of my major clients called to verify my company’s ad-dress to send two large checks. At the same time, my various businesses are generating income (I get e-mail alerts about sales figures). Meanwhile, my family is enjoying an extended vacation at Disney World and other attractions around Orlando. Normally, we fly to destinations, but this time we drove because one of my clients gave me a luxury SUV to use for the trip. And that was just one day!
Other pinch-myself moments include being-invited-by the Norwegian government to stay in the Nobel Prize winner’s suite at the Grand Hotel in Oslo, being invited to the White House by President Barack Obama, eating dinner with Kenya’s vice president in Nairobi, sitting courtside at an NBA All-Star Game, playing golf with Vice President Joe Biden in St. Thomas, chatting with Kanye West during a private listening party for his new album, and so on. All of these great moments occurred because I had the fortitude to start my own business and to create value for these important individuals and organizations.
The quality of life that I have had as an entrepreneur has been greater than anything I could have imagined. I am especially proud of the fact that my businesses have allowed me to support my growing family as well as the families of those who work for me, to travel the world to over twenty-five countries, to help many charities and causes dear to my heart, and to inspire others to pursue their dreams. If I hadn’t caught the entrepreneurial bug during my sophomore year in college about twelve years ago, I would lead a very different, almost certainly less-fulfilling life.
Yes, life is good—and you would probably expect me to tell you that as an evangelist of entrepreneurship—but things haven’t always been perfect, and I don’t expect them to always be that way.
Life as an entrepreneur has been difficult, too. In some wearisome times I thought I was going to lose, it all,. wondering if the path that I was following was the right one. I’ve wanted to give up. In fact, on my worst days, all of these thoughts can cross my mind. However, no matter how down or unsure I have felt, I have always believed that entrepreneurship is the surest way to happiness and to self-actualization. This strong belief is perhaps what pulls me back again and again to start yet another business.
Apparently, I am not the only one who feels this way. I have never met an entrepreneur who hates being an entrepreneur. Regardless of whether they are filing for bankruptcy or preparing for an initial public offering, entrepreneurs love taking risks and starting businesses. For most of them (and me), no other way of life comes close.
Entrepreneurs love their lives not necessarily because of the benefits of success but because we love the game of entrepreneur-ship, which can bring joy and pain. An indescribable feeling of joy comes from knowing that you are in control of your destiny, and this joy is present through the good and the bad times. When I say I love my life, it’s neither to gloat nor to boast, but to reaffirm my belief that being an entrepreneur is life at its best. This is what makes entrepreneurs one of a kind.