How To Leave Your Job To Realize Your Dreams

Chances are the idea of leaving your job to realize your dreams terrifies you. It is a normal and expected feeling, even a good one. As you do make the jump though, be proud of yourself for making a choice to escape the ordinary. Most people never make it past the thought. But what now?

How will you pay your bills? What if your dreams are too big? Does your decision have an impact on your loved ones? How are you going to survive?

All I can tell you is that education will only get you so far if you do not use the gift of realizing your dreams. Countless people dream about dropping out of the rat race. They have the desire to get off the hamster’s wheel and find a way to spend more time doing what they love, but most of them do not act on it.

Therefore, I enthusiastically approve the life decision of someone that quit their job to go after their dreams. I admire such people for daring because thrilling things often happen when they step out of their comfort zone and make room to chase their dreams.

However, let me be brutally honest with you. When you jump, do not expect your parachute to open right away because you are going to hit some rocks, get your skin scratched on the cliffs, have your ego bruised, and you may suffer for a while, but eventually, the parachute will open. It has to open if you keep going. But one sure thing is that if you do not jump, your parachute will never open.

To realize your dreams, you also have to deal with the emotional realities such as fighting doubt or keeping daily motivation. It is a real life change! There are many challenges along the way, both mental and emotional. In any case, I would encourage you to take the leap to reach your visions.

What Keeps People Motivated
It took me a little less than two years to make an around-the-clock stable income, and it will take a bit more to be financially free. I went broke several times. I was getting help from my best friend for a couple of months. And then, I moved back with my previous roommate. For all of 2016, I worked 12 to 16 hour a day while most of my ventures failed and made no money. It was only this year that I started to realize my dreams, reap the rewards, and for now, I keep working long hours.

No lie, it was stressful, and still is at times. You might ask what kept and keeps me motivated during such difficult period? Well, it was fear. Yes, fear, because I was terrified of being unsuccessful. I told no one, so I was alone. That fear came from the idea that I would fail and have to go back to doing a job I hate. This fear stopped me from sleeping many nights, teeth clenched together but more importantly, it kept me going.

Of course, to avoid such thing, you could build your dream business on the side until you have a steady income to leave your job. But I believe that if I had done it that way, I would not have made it this far. It would have been too easy some days to work less on it or give up. This fear is what makes you committed. You have to win or die trying.

The Leap of Faith for Your Dreams
There always comes a time to take the leap of faith to chase your dreams entirely. There comes the point where enough momentum is built, and you cannot progress any further as you both pursue your dreams and have a job.

You then need the emotional drive to push you to accomplish your dreams. The jump comes the moment you have that gut feeling where you know what you should do. Feeling it is not enough, you have actually to get up and do it. If you continue hating your work day after day, waiting for something to happen, you will be trapped in mediocrity.

So understand not to be too comfortable with the life you have now to do what it takes to create a better life. You have to break the barriers by putting yourself outside the box to make yourself fight for your dreams.

How far can you go to realize your dreams? I sold the small possessions I had, even the new furniture I had acquired. I even stopped my hobbies until recently. You will lose contact with many people, but that always happens on the way to success. You just have to know that all of these things return once you become successful. But giving up should never be an option.

The Courage to Go after Your Dreams
You need to realize your dreams. Too many people give up and stop chasing their dreams. They end up bitter, looking back with regrets on missed chances. You owe it to yourself to at least try. The world might thank you for it someday.

Those who do give up do not realize how unhappy they are with their job or their life. Deep down, they know the answer to their sadness, which always involves change, but they do not go forward with the difficult part of making the change.

If your job is not a good fit for you anymore, it means it is time to consider how you can either improve the issues or think about leaving it. If you feel miserable every morning, if you are anxious just thinking about your job, or if you are no longer productive at work, it is a good sign that the time has come to move on.

Such work has a negative impact on you physically and mentally. You are not growing or learning anything new, you are stagnating, and it might be the signal for you to go after your dreams instead.

All of these signs show you that you should be looking for a new or better opportunity.

Realize Your Dreams Now
Do not wait, realize your dreams now because it is not easy to pause and reflect on your life when you have responsibilities. You have to understand that when you are busy working for someone else; you begin to put off what matters to you. What are you working for? For most people, it is simply survival so they can only live day after day.

On the other hand, going after your dreams is a much more promising scenario, but of course, it does not come without taking risks. But it comes with doing what you desire as well as waking up every day with passion and full of energy knowing that you have a mission and purpose in life.

You can get off the hamster’s wheel and away from the dull nine to five job cycle. You can be your own boss and be free. Of course, the future is no guarantee, but whether you work for someone else or follow your path, you could fail both ways. You may as well choose to do what you want.

I understand that some people are just not made to be independent; some do their best work when working under someone else’s leadership. But some people feel very comfortable with the scenario of chasing and realizing their dreams.

Tips to Keep Chasing Your Dreams

  • Have fear. Terrify yourself. Use it as your ally. Give yourself no option but your dream.
  • Sell all your useless crap and get your financial house in order.
  • Consider cutting your losses and getting rid of what is eating you financially while you can.
  • Plans are made to fail no matter what you do. Get used to it.
  • Push past the doubts and insecurities which hold you down by focusing on your dream.
  • Be willing to take some risks and work a bit harder and longer to realize your dreams.
  • Start an online business, a blog, do some freelance consultant work online, work some odd jobs here and there or anything you might desire.
  • Begin to figure it out and adjust as you go.
  • Remember Why You Quit.
  • Ignore your mind which results in you putting off things that matter the most.
  • Immerse yourself in a sea of productivity, to the point where you are so busy that you do not have time to think about failure.
  • Remember that you cannot be working 24/7 so enjoy time off. Downtime is necessary.
  • Reward yourself for accomplishments or for doing great.

To realize your dreams, you are going to have to quit your job at some point. So, planning will only take you so far. You have to jump and throw yourself in the fire. Chase and realize your dreams by leaving yourself no option but to come out on top. It will be both uneasy and terrifying, but that is life. Anyway, you will get through it!


How to Protect Your Business From Cyber Crime

Is your business secure? It may not be. Many unscrupulous individuals are operating online looking for new ways to exploit honest people.

I was recently pulled into a scam enacted by someone yet to be identified via a freelance work website. Because of how personally this affected me and my brand reputation, I’ve decided to write today’s blog post about securing your business online.

My personal experience involved Upwork.com, which is a website boasting about the value of freelance talent.

Well as the old saying goes: there is nothing more expensive than cheap labour.

Someone posing as me purporting to be a writer/editor from NYC took a job writing a book for a client and the results were bad. 3 chapters completely plagiarized bad.

Even worse – the fraudulent work got blamed on me! This person’s profile had my name and my photo and her client found me (the real me) through a Google search that matched my profile photo. You can imagine the shock I felt of being falsely accused of ripping someone off!

After realizing this was a clear case of identity theft, I immediately contacted UpWork to have the fake profile taken down. This person’s client did the same; we hope they were able to get a full refund of the monies spent on the useless book written for them.

Scary stuff. But compared to what others have encountered it’s small potatoes.

While hiring and supporting local talent has always been my thing, if you have to outsource (overseas or via those freelance sites), then a great idea to protect yourself is to insist on seeing a scan of government issued ID. Take your identification proof one step further and insist on a video conference before making any commitment.

Fraud is on the rise

2016 saw a significant increase in fraud over 2015. While the numbers show the amount stolen went slightly down the volume of theft went up. A lot.

While those figures relate more to consumer fraud if you’re the seller, you can be out of pocket money if the claim means sending the now used product back to you.

The point to take home is fraud is up so you need to take action to prevent yourself and your customers from becoming victims.

How to prevent and report cyber crime

According to The National Cyber Security Alliance there are several steps you should take to protect your business and customers:

• Evaluate Risks

Identify what types of fraud or crime you may be most susceptible to. Do you work with medical information? Financial information?

Even if the purpose of your business is simply B2C there are steps to be taken to protect yourself.

Users who purchase through your website are trusting you to keep their financial information safe so take steps to do so such as having SSL installed for any e-commerce or sensitive information and it’s wise not to store it.

• Monitor Threats

This can be as simple as making sure no spam messages are opened or any emails with attachments are scanned with some sort of antivirus software. While the software is not 100% effective it will stop the better circulated scams.

• Report Attacks

If you are the victim of a cyber attack you are going to get frustrated and with good cause.

Currently Canada is really vulnerable when it comes to cyber crime and your best hope is just to call the police. While promises have been made to address this, very little has been done and international criminals are impossible to go after.

If you are a victim of cyber crime contact local law enforcement and cross your fingers. But the bad news is you are likely to get no resolution. This is something to consider if you’ve been hiring anyone overseas.

In the US reporting cyber crime is much easier. You contact the FBI via this website. They have the capacity to address international criminals and recently America has cracked down on international crime operating within its borders.

For those reading from any other country I encourage you to do your own due diligence regarding protocol for reporting cyber crime so you’re prepared should you ever need to be.

• Execute a Security Plan

For this the recommendation is to work with your ISP on a cyber security plan. While your ISP may be worth talking to you should really speak with your website’s hosting company first and foremost.

The security of your customer’s info and your business is delicate so make sure your host knows to have things such as routine backups of all information made and stored on another server.

Most of the majors stay on top of things but it’s always worth calling them for a quick review especially if you have pertinent info for them that may help.

If you have been a victim already let your host know what happened. The information may help others down the road.

• Safeguard Your Clients

The suggestion found in this article of scanning all USB drives routinely is a good one. Sometimes the information can be air tight behind the most advanced firewall but it still gets out.

One of the easiest ways to exploit technology is social engineering. Many times the information isn’t so much stolen as leaked by someone internally.

Have a privacy policy in place and make sure your employees know that any time they connect anything to your computer network it will be scanned.

Make sure all software is updated and that all computers connected to your network are running the most updated version of their operating system.

• Educate Your Team

This is an easy one.

Have protocol in place that ensures your employees follow all steps noted above.

All computers must be scanned when attached to a network and all USB drives as well.

Most people are accustomed to this now so don’t worry about implementing it suddenly.

Stay Safe

By taking measures to protect yourself you’re ahead of the game should something occur. Scrambling after you’ve been a victim only helps the people who have stolen from you by giving them time to disappear.

Online business is only likely to grow even more and along with it fraud. The complexity of the scams will evolve and hopefully so do the solutions. In the interim I hope you enjoyed these tips and that you never become the victim of cyber crime.