We Choose Freedom
by Adam J. Kovitz
For many Independence Day (July 4th) in the United States is a great time to get together with family and friends, go swimming, have an outdoor barbecue and watch fireworks at night. Historically, however, it's the day we declared our independence back in 1776 and made the transition from being a rag-tag group of English Colonies to being a brand new nation.
In the U.S., we are often barraged with terms like "the spirit of '76", "independence" and "freedom", whether they happen to be in reference to Independence Day or to some "amazing" sale happening on or around the Holiday or even used as rhetoric of some politician. Unfortunately, the meaning behind these words is often overlooked or ignored in our world of ADHD and de-sensitivity, but as an entrepreneur, these words have significant meaning.
I look at the people within my own family and look at the amazing amount of them who have chosen not to work for a large megalithic corporation or some government post, but have chosen a different path - the path of an independent business owner...an entrepreneur.
Why do some of us choose to live a life away from a 9 to 5 world of glass and steel, cubicles, water coolers, executive washrooms and regular paychecks?
To me the answer is simple...
Independence from what?
1.) Having a boss...just like it's hard to find good help, it's just as hard to find good leadership. We choose the freedom to make our own decisions, right or wrong.
2.) Having to work rigid hours...for many of us, we look around at the "9 to 5ers" and see dead expressions of quiet desperation, long hours of overtime without pay and lame excuses as to why they couldn't make it to their children's baseball games, school plays or dance recitals. We choose the freedom of work-life balance and to have work fit around those things important to us - not the other way around.
3.) Being poor...so what if we get a regular paycheck? How many people work at the same company for years only to make a small fraction of what they made more than when they started - in this recession, some are making even less than that, are putting in longer hours and are happy just to have a "job"! We choose the freedom of taking great risks so we can have great financial rewards in ways that no corporation can ever pay us.
4.) Red tape...we don't like filling out forms in triplicate, waiting on committees to decide our fates or those of our clients - we have to move quickly to get the job done. We choose the freedom of being less answerable to others and to be more creative and expedient with our solutions.
Whether you're a citizen of the United States, wish you were or glad you're not, please join me as a fellow entrepreneur and choose the freedom to make our own success as we define it.
Let us all agree to never have such a freedom taken from us.
All my best,
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