A break from Technology. Kind of.
If starting this blog has taught me one thing at all, it's that waiting for direction is not a direction.
Jan Koum from WhatsApp. Steve Jobs from Apple. Bill Gates from Microsoft. Mark Zuckerberg from Facebook. Jack Dorsey from Twitter. What do they all have in common? Well - a lot of things, really. They were all brought up in mediocre environments (with the exception of Zuckerberg, arguably). They were all higher education dropouts who went on to be some of the most successful and arguably famous business people the world has ever known. They all showed an unrelenting pursuance of their passion in the face of social pressure.
Let me preface by saying this blog is less than two months old, and I am absolutely no authority on psychology, sociology or any other 'ology' (other than perhaps, technology) that makes one an expert. I just read a tonne.
That being said - I can say with absolute certainty that I have never been more driven in any endeavour of my own, or that aligns with my passions than I am right now. Those who know me will understand that's quite a statement.
You'll notice I didn't say "driven to succeed". I am driven to succeed, and I want to succeed. Of course I want financial freedom. I want to be able to provide for my future wife and child on maternity leave with my solo passive and working income. I want to be able to do both those things whilst still having time-a-plenty for my future family (fingers crossed) and do all three of those things with just enough youth to be able to 'frolic', as it were, and not die of a heart attack shortly thereafter. Who doesn't?
But I've realised recently that whilst all of the above criteria are important to me, being able to write what I want, when I want, and turn it into something that people may have value in is unbelievably fulfilling, even if it isn't providing any useful income (yet). Being able to shoot, edit and create my own video's is also liberating to a degree that I honestly never realised was possible until now.
It's the kind of desire that will keep me working eight hours straight on top of an height hour day at my day job and wish I had more time to work before I go to bed, in time to get up to work at my day job.
And I love it.
It's this startling epiphany that I think helps a lot of successful entrepreneurs truly discover themselves and ignites an internal fire that can break free of the monotony of every-day western life that can so often be encapsulating and imprisoning.
But more than that - since I started this blog, it has lead on to so many ideas that I find myself starved for time more than ideas. Starved for sleep more than direction. There are simply not enough hours in the day to do all the things I suddenly find myself longing to do - and very few of them are recreational.
During this process I've found myself expanding my philosophical point of view. I've found myself analysing and processing the world in different ways. I am still every bit as objective as I always have been, almost to a fault, but I've added a layer of perspective on to moments I simply didn't appreciate until recently.
The process of making this blog has, in a way, reignited a flame that had started to dwindle within me. I can't comment on everybody, but I do believe that same flame is in everyone somewhere, it's just hidden away until you find what it wants to burn for. For me, writing a blog was never something I had ever envisioned doing, and it certainly never occurred to me that I would find fulfilment by typing words out on a website.
And if it were only writing a blog, it might not. But when you design a blog, and when you start creating something that expresses yourself both in print and in design or creation, it becomes so much more than the words on the page. It really does start to fill in the gaps in your head of what you would like to spend more time doing, or what you can't believe you wasted so much time on before.
More than that, as I said above, it leads on to other ideas which in turn lead on to other ideas. It's a constant chain of self-inspiration and self-education that can only be healthy for the soul. In fact - this blog didn't start there.
About a year ago I started teaching myself coding through codeacademy, because I realised it was absurd for someone who regards their own knowledge of technology to be fairly high without having any knowledge of coding. Once I had taught myself Ruby, Java, SQL and Swift, I began developing an app which is still in progress. But the idea of creating something resonated strongly and the idea of the original website was simply a platform to eventually launch my app on - which lead on to a blog - which lead to now.
With that said I would like do to anybody what my friend Chloe did for me, and strongly encourage anybody out there thinking about starting a blog, a website, a portfolio, an app, a photography business or anything else to stop thinking about it and start doing it. It can be an hour a week at first - once you get going it begins to ramp up quickly once you're committed.
I know it seems like an unlikely phenomenon, but I swear that sense of creation is one of the most humanistic and satisfying feelings that I have ever stumbled upon. It can lead to great things, financially or otherwise, or it might not. But it will be a passion! And that's the most important part.
Because the other thing that Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg and Jan Koum have in common is: None of them ever did it for the money.
What are your thoughts? Comment below.