Monday 16th September 2019

So on Friday evening I was due out for a rock night with my brother. It’s his scene, not mine but it would be nice to have a few drinks with my brother the day before I turned 30. My sister and dad were coming too, and children were allowed so my nieces and nephews would be there. I love it when all the cousins are out together, reminds me of when I was a kid and me and my twenty or so cousins would be running around together. Usually this would be in one of the parents gardens but every Christmas the kids were allowed to go to the pub on Christmas night for the pantomime and we all loved it. Also maybe once a year in the summer four or five of my aunties and uncles and my mum and dad would take us to this big park not too far from us with these massive slides and climbing frames. As kids we couldn’t be happier, it’s a shame we only did it once a year if that. My parents worked hard and on the weekend needed to relax and recharge, as well as my mum doing all the housework by herself and also they had to either go out to the pub or have a few people round for a drink in with a game of cards. Some weekends they would do both. And that’s how it was for pretty much everyone’s parents where we grew up.

Anyway, so my other half drops me off at my brother’s and she goes home to wrap my presents for tomorrow saying she’ll meet me at the pub later. I get there with my brother and our car is parked outside. Weird she’s already here, and I see my friend’s brother walking in the door with his kids. He is the last person to be going to a rock night – but there is another bar in the back. Strange but okay whatever he’s local so maybe. I walk in the door and see my uncle pointing a camera straight at me, giving the game away. I walk in to around fifty people shouting surprise and singing happy birthday. I was truly chuffed, seeing plenty of people I haven’t seen for much too long. A few things over the last week or so made me think there may be a surprise party but I refused to let myself think about it too much in case there wasn’t. As the night went on more people showed up including friends I haven’t seen for ten or more years. A great time was had with most of my family there, plenty of friends and messages from even more that couldn’t make it.

Despite it being ‘my night’ and constantly being offered drinks, and shots, I didn’t get too drunk and remember most of the night. Also I wasn’t hungover the next morning. My girlfriend had told me that my present wouldn’t be arriving until Monday but there are a few little bits for me to open and there are plenty of cards and a few presents from the party. I’m not really one for presents but my other half got me a few little sweet things which I much prefer over some expensive over the top present. If anything whenever I’ve been given a big present I feel overwhelmed. Even as a child it just felt too much, and I wouldn’t want to use whatever it was for fear of damaging it. I was once given a £120 jumper and I never wore it for fear of ripping it, I ended up selling it on eBay unworn with the tags still on like ten years later (I was much too big for it by then so I justified selling a gift but I still felt guilt as I posted it). Maybe this feeling towards big presents comes from knowing we didn’t have a great deal of money as a child, I’m not sure. It makes sense now as an adult looking back. I just couldn’t justify that amount being spent on me; it’s not that I felt I wasn’t worth that much (vain as that may sound, I know what I meant) but it was just I knew that money could be better spent elsewhere. I prefer smaller, meaningful, personal gifts. If there’s a new toy or something I want I can save and get it myself. Anyway my friends mainly got me bottles of my favourite spirits and my girlfriend’s sister very thoughtfully got me a hardback of the new Handmaid’s Tale book that just came out. I was very pleased with that.

Following that I got up with my family and had a cup of tea and some cake before getting ready and going out for lunch. We went to the shops first to get some bits we needed, including me spending some birthday money on a new Nintendo game. Admittedly this is a game my step-son has wanted for a while but yeah I was looking forward to playing too. After lunch we had planned to go see some of my family, especially my sister whose son shares a birthday with me. But we needed to get home and rest first. I watched my football team finally win a game (what a birthday!) before playing the new game with my step-son while my girlfriend slept. Next thing it was half past 8 and I had to put him to bed. My girlfriend and I had what we call a ‘picky-bits’ dinner (usually three or four smaller bites or sides with no main portion like steak or chicken. Today it was small stuffed mushrooms, mozzarella dippers, posh crisps and hummus). I tried to stay awake to watch the highlights of my team on Match of the Day (despite having watched the second half of the game and seeing the goal on a replay) but I just couldn’t keep my eyes open and had to go to bed. Not once did I remember on Saturday that I had commited to writing a thousand words a day.

Now I will admit on Sunday I did remember my promise. I wasn’t too bothered I’d missed a day on Saturday and told myself I would do my thousand words for today a little later. As you now know that didn’t happen. As the day went on I didn’t think about it again (maybe I should set an alarm – though it would then become a chore I have to get through. Maybe that’s what I need. We will see how I get on in week two). Although in my defence I spent a few portions of my free time listening to an audio book which is massively informative and helpful with what I plan to do in the future (Rich Dad Poor Dad – I’m a little late to the party but definitely recommend it) and was checking out different avenues to invest in to make my money work for me. The plan is to have multiple passive income streams eventually but I recognise that active income streams will be more likely especially early on. My first priority has to be creating a source of income that can replace a traditional job; something I can do from home utilising the internet and the vast potential that starting a brick and mortar business simply lacks. Start up costs and overheads for a start would rule out a brick and mortar business straight away, I could save or try to get a loan but both have bring new issues. Following that even if I did get started I can only deal with x amount of people a day, confined to that area, and across a portion of hours in the day. If I set something up online I could potentially service people all over the world 24 hours a day. And if it is something virtual such as software, an ebook or some kind of template I only have to create it once and it can be sold multiple times without me having to do any additional work. I’ve looked in to a few design sectors to sell templates and while this interests me I’m not massively knowledgeable or passionate about it at this moment in time but it is definitely something I will look in to again, especially with the popularity of 3D printing at the minute. The most likely avenue I will take is not actually selling something virtual. It looks as though the most likely will be either being a product at wholesale and selling it on individually or dropshipping. If I can find the right product/s and build my way up to regularly making £60-70 profit a day I will no longer need to work and can put more energy and focus in to upping those profits as well as creating more free time to write, learn to code, possibly begin learning to design templates to sell on, learning my languages (which I guess could lead to other income streams or improve business), going to the gym and working on my nutrition.

Also a major benefit would be family time. It is very hard coming home later than my girlfriend and step-son, especially in the winter when it gets dark earlier and we’re all much more tired, and feeling like I’ve missed out. Also I’m so devoid of energy by the time I find it hard to not just slouch on the sofa. Other times I come home in a terrible mood and while I want to enjoy my time with my family I just need to be left alone. I hate feeling like that at the time, never mind later on when I feel guilty and disappointed that I missed out on that time I’ll never get back. I think I’ve mentioned it before on here but my girlfriend is pregnant and working in the traditional sense when the baby is here is going to make things so much harder. I can’t help but to smile at the thought of being able to stay at home and spend time with my daughter or son before they begin going to school; something that so many dad’s just don’t get the opportunity to do. I’m definitely not one of these old-school hands off dad’s that is more to do with the discipline side of things, a threat to be used against a naughty child for when I get home from work. I’m quite an emotional, sensitive guy who has always been happy playing with and being around kids. My family have often commented on it because pretty much all the men in my family are the opposite. I’ve literally been pleaded with to get a job working with kids because of how good I am with them. It’s still something I think about, like if I am going to work then working with kids is something I would find joy in. Whether that is sports coaching, some after school club, teaching or bringing my love of boyh psychology and personal development in to it maybe some sort of counselling or advisory role. As I said though for me the priority is to do something from home full-time, something where I am the boss, where I can make the decisions, choose what calculated risks to take and how to best scale the business. It kills me going to a job day to day and simply being told what to do rather than having any input on decisions (and even if I did have input and helped the business grow or become more efficient it’s not like I would see any benefit for my hard work – not like I would if it was my own business).

So, while I may not have a full plan I definitely have at least a pla (if you don’t get the reference I’m not sure if we can be friends). Go down the wholesale and/or dropshipping route fitting this around my current work, scale as best I can until I make enough profit regularly to no longer work, use my new found free time to scale more, invest the extra time and money on potential new income streams as well as hobbies. Hopefully in a year or two not only will I have a couple of active income streams that earn me more than a regular job would (and I’ve optimised my time efficiency well) but also (again fingers crossed) I’ll have a couple of passive income streams adding a few quid to the coffers. General life satisfaction would be through the roof if this was the case. Even if I don’t get as much free time to pursue hobbies as I envision at least I’ll be on the right path and in my eyes there is no way this cannot lead to a happier family life as I’ll no longer be disillusioned working every day for somebody else; everything I do day in day out will be directly for my family and myself.

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