How to Escape the Corporate World and Survive?

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I get asked this question on a regular basis, so I have decided to share it here.

For me, leaving the corporate world has perhaps become the most important decision in my life.

The last time I did something so major was when I decided to start a new life by moving to a different city with nothing more than my backpack.

However this time round, I never imagine on how much this decision would impact my life.

It affected everything from my mind, body, love and soul.

I had to reinvent myself not only once but many times over.

I was no longer just the IT guy. I was the Entrepreneur, Blogger, Speaker, Coach and so much more.

I made plenty of mistakes and had some spectacular failures.

I had to learn new skills like how to start a business while bootstrapping it, marketing, sales, networking, mastering time and making this new life work has been a real challenge.

I have spent countless times lying awake questioning my decision. And I still do sometimes.

But, I am a survivor!

In my journey as I look back there are 12 things that really stood out that has helped me escape and survive.

How to Escape?

Escaping is the easy part.

To escape,

1. First, you just need to make a decision.

Decide and commit to it.

Look it isn’t an easy decision especially if you have spent a greater part of your adult life indoctrinated into corporate life and its culture.

Your life will change. It can be positive or negative.

– The quickest way to tell if you are serious about your decision is putting in your resignation and telling the world you are leaving your job.

2. Make sure you have Money

Money is important. Without it you are dead.

Especially if you are the bread winner!

It is a big stress ball when you don’t have money.

Some people say 6 months of your current wages, I would say as much as you can, especially if you have no other income until you start making money from your own ventures.

Having money to invest into your venture is also important.

If you live at home, leech off your parents as long as you can. Of course be a good daughter/son, take the garbage out.

– Learn to budget.
– Be frugal

3. Plan

Have a plan of what you are going to do.

Don’t quit and figure it out on the way. Have something in mind and begin planning and working on your new life.

You can be anything you want to be, you could be a
– Entrepreneur
– Writer
– Professional Blogger – Learn How to Start a Blog and Make Money Online
– Consultant / Coach
– Whatever you want

4. Do it for the right reason

Don’t do it for more money, do it for freedom.

Do it because you want to start something.

Do it if you feel that the corporate life is killing you inside and out.

Just because you hate your boss is not a reason to quit.

I escaped because I wanted to reclaim my freedom and work on my dreams.

Like I said escaping was the easy part, now comes to the surviving part.

5. Become a learner and doer

I was never much of a reader or someone that pursued self development, I don’t even know if that phrase was around during my time.

I found out there were so much things I didn’t know.

We are so cocoon in the corporate world.

However, transformation is a must if you are going to survive this new life.

I highly recommend learning

Learn Business.
Learn Marketing.
Learn Sales.
Learn the Inner Game.
Learn things that move you forward.

And Do Do Do Do Do.

– You can get a list of my greatest books in my one of my post “65 Books that has influenced my life.

6. Take care of yourself

Such a cliché but it is the truth.

As a solopreneur there are plenty things that can and will go wrong when you start your own business.

But having good health is a must no matter what.

Without you, the venture is dead.

Exercise regularly. Two of my favourite fitness routines are P90X and running. They don’t require anyone or anything special, just yourself.

Try to eat well.

Having good sleep is important too.

– Stress sucks! Find something to distress yourself. When I am stress I like to get a good Thai massage as relaxes me completely.

7. Support

When I started, I wanted to do everything myself.

You see I didn’t like to burden people with my worries.

I am stubborn in many ways.

However I have come to realise I need support. I too need a helping hand from time to time.

Cause they can solve problems, make you laugh, make you feel loved, bring you joy and most of all enrich your life.

Family and friends are important. I am very fortunate that I have a wonderful family and group of trusted friends who are there when I need them. Going home to family or hanging with friends is like recharging my batteries.

Find a mentor or coach. Ok, I admit I don’t really have one, but I do have people who gives me advice. But if you going through some challenges and you are stuck, bloody hell find someone to help you.

Lastly I highly recommend finding peers in your chosen niche. If you are a blogger, find blogging friends, if you are an entrepreneur find entrepreneur friends.

Why? Because you don’t need to explain what the f*** you do. Many of the problems you face will be similar and you can piggy back on each other to solve it. It is like having colleagues.

8. Be Social

I admit I am not a very sociable person. Because I find small talk as difficult as asking a girl out, well not quite that bad but you get the juice of it.

Took me a long time to force myself to go out to network and meet people. But like anything you can learn to be sociable. I am slowly warming up to it.

Interaction is good for your soul I found. Good for your mind too.

Especially for those online entrepreneurs, it is easy not to go out because your entire business is done online. I personally think it is a slow way to go insane and a way of getting lost in your own world.

So go out and be social.

– Join Meetup
– Join online Forums

9. Focus

Having the power of focus is perhaps one of the most important skills or power you can ever have. If you can’t focus then you are going to struggle to get any work done.

Working from home can be such a distraction.

It is very easy to take breaks, lie around in bed or go make yourself a snack. You have to be super careful.

I lacked focus for a long time, especially when it came to my business. I had so much work, projects and things that needed to be done. Instead of focusing on one task or project till completion I worked on multiple things.

It actually became a nightmare, a lot of unfinished projects, deadlines missed and I was always frustrated, annoyed and angry.

Until I stopped doing more than 5 things! Yes I know it is not one thing, I ain’t perfect, I still like to indulge in my ideas. It is definitely way better than having 100 things on the go.

– If you can’t work from home, go find a co-working space.

10. Learn to value time

Time is the single most important thing we have in life. We don’t know when it will run out.

Don’t just value your time, value other people’s time too.

If you value time, you will find that you get so much more done. You will achieve more.

It also helps to stop procrastination.

11. Enjoy yourself

Have fun people.

Eat cake, drink beer and be merry.

Celebrate your victories. Forgive yourself for your failures and learn from it and keep moving forward.

If you are not loving it, why escape then?

That’s all I have to say about this.

12. Be thankful

This has helped me a lot in my time of sorrow, sadness and depression.

By Looking at all the good things in my life and been thankful for them it has helped me crawl my way out of situations more than once.

I have a great life. I love the life I have.

I am thankful for everything.

Well this is how I have managed to survive 7 going 8 years after leaving the corporate world. I am still fighting my way through it and making my dreams come true.

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