How much is your name worth? — Do the math.

Image Credits: Tom Waits / Anton Corbijn.

Let me tell you a story; it’s not too long ago.

I was in Second Year of University, and all my friends knew what they wanted to do. And I’m there in the middle of their future dreams; thinking I have no idea why I’m here; except to have fun.

Sure, I was doing alright in my degree and I got along with enough people that it landed me a job at the University’s Research Dept; and then later on into Private Research Analytics.

And in the middle of this, I thought to myself; “Man, life’s moving too fast right now. I need it to slow down.”

My friends were all complaining about how they couldn’t land jobs, and here I am getting job offers left and right — saying No every chance I get.

One of my best-mates said to me, “You have to be one of the most ungrateful person I’ve ever met to say No to opportunities like that”.

And I said to him, “I’m grateful..it’s just that I haven’t really decided on a job that I know is right for me.”

He argued about the Economy, the lack of jobs, the trouble people go through and how they’d wish to have a quarter of the job offers I was getting; how deciding on a job that is “RIGHT” for me, wasn’t an option in these economical circumstances.

So I told him my secret; my secret to being Free to Choose.

It’s pretty simple in theory.

Do the Math.

Calculate what you’re worth.

Calculate how long it would take you to find a decent job; and add 3 months to it.

Now calculate your average living expense and the minimum amount of money you’d need to survive.

Calculate how much discomfort you’re willing to handle.

Calculate if you can sleep in a room the size of a single mattress.

Then save up enough money and put it in a Saving’s account.

Then forget about the money — imagine it’s a safe and you’ll only remember the combination to when you’re absolutely desperate.

Now calculate what you’re worth again.

And add whatever else you have to that saving’s account.

And there it is — that’s your freedom, your security.

That’s your security to know that if you lose this job today; you’ll have enough faith in yourself to go back out and fight for something you actually love doing.

It’s easier when you’re a bachelor; because you don’t have to worry about the discomfort of anybody but yourself.

And I’ve always been okay with living a simple life.

Read Down and Out in Paris and London. Take Notes.

And then come back and tell me if you still think I’m ungrateful or I value my freedom too much.

It’s just a mantra, and it might not work for everybody. But it helps to know you have something to fall back on because it will save you from a situation where there’s more pain than comfort.

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