Statue of Liberty

Why Do You Want to Be an Entrepreneur?

by Nicholas Tart on June 21, 2011 · 34 comments

A few weeks ago, Nick Scheidies asked me if I wanted to go on a walk. I had a long day, I was tired, and I wanted to go home. But a walk seemed like the right thing to do.

For those of you who don’t know Nick Scheidies, we were co-authors of this book.

So we started our walk with no aim, mission, or purpose other than to talk. About an hour and three miles later, that walk got serious, real serious. Nick helped me realize how arrogant and selfish I had been with my entrepreneurial aspirations.

Let me explain.

I wanted Fame

I’ve always want to see my name in magazines.

In college, I set my eyes on Inc’s 30 Under 30 and Businessweek’s America’s Best Young Entrepreneurs. I’ve even sent emails to Entrepreneur and Forbes recommending that they put me in their magazines.

During our walk, Nick helped me realize how thick-headed that is.

Yeah, I think it’s important to set lofty goals, but you also need to recognize why you want what you want. I wanted the ego boost that comes with seeing your name in print. Again, thick-headed.

Now I want Freedom

Another good friend of mine once told me that freedom is the number one reason to become an entrepreneur.

Nick’s entrepreneurial goal has always been to make ends meet. And he’s done that well.

His reasons? He wants to focus on making music. He wants to enjoy Colorado on a sunny afternoon. He wants to have the freedom to build relationships without being tied down to a nine-to-five.

Pursuing 30 Under 30 doesn’t leave time to freedom. As a 23-year-old, I’ve finally realized how important it is to pursue free time.

What does this Mean for Me?

For work, my first priority is the web development business. If I can keep a steady flow of a few clients a month, I’ll have more than enough to make ends meet. And I’ll have plenty of free time.

This also means that I’ll be spending less time on 14 Clicks and JuniorBiz. I’m going to try to post on 14 Clicks once a week and JuniorBiz once a month.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m still way more passionate about helping young entrepreneurs than building websites, but it takes several unbillable hours per week to update these sites on a consistent basis.

Maybe once I have a family, I’ll go after that big company. But for now, I’m focusing on making ends meet.

Update: A few years later now and I’m going after that big company! In 2014 I co-founded a simple freelance marketplace called AwesomeWeb. If you’re a freelance web designer or developer and you need more clients, find out more and sign up here.

What does this Mean for You?

If you want something that requires you to dedicate your life to it, make sure you want it for the right reasons. Fame is fleeting but memories with good friends last forever.

So, why do you want to be an entrepreneur? Answer in the comments below.

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