I own a small business that has ups and downs. We’re very small – like it’s just me – small. But, I average around $9-11k a month in revenue and have a wonderful amount of free time. About 3x a week I panic and think this can’t be sustainable?!

  • You wrote: “I own a small business that has ups and downs”.

    Try and get rid of the “downs”. Next ( ? )

  • It won’t be sustainable long term, but it can easily last a decade. I would start a second business that also brings in 10k a month. That will give you the peace of mind you need.

  • Panic is absolutely normal, it keeps you on your toes. Keep the panic and you’ll come up with a way to overcome it.

  • Just went through this. Got 13k every month and from one day to another that fell through. I’ve been through almost 24months of rough times now; from small fines for late payment to lawsuits about $50 easily becoming $800 just because I didn’t have the money anymore.

    I struggled through and crawling out of the dirt as we speak. My advise now? Stash your cash! Make sure you can cover your expenses (house, car, family, living …) for at least a year. If you would get in trouble; mark your bottom threshold of cash. Then calculate back the time you need to find a job and go do that!

    Don’t feel yourself a failure for taking a job again. I’d do it instantly if I had known what I went through now. Nothing will stop you from starting a new business in a couple of years. Just don’t loose your house (or spouse for that matter).

  • Really? Spend the wonerdful amount of free time you have to do more business. Unless you are semi retired.

    Sounds like you have a motivation problem to do something with the time that you have now. One critical thing nearly everyone fails to realize early enough is that time is more valuable than money.

    Everyone will run out of time, and no amount of anything will give you more time. And, generally, your 40’s and 50’s will require more time to generate the same dollar of a 20’s or 30’s person.

    If you haven’t, read the book “Built to Sell” and either sell your company to someone that sees the scale potential, or scale the business yourself.

    Companies are like children, mentor and foster their successful growth. And at some point you either focus your life on your company’s existence, or you let it go on its own with your best wishes.

    • “generally, your 40’s and 50’s will require more time to generate the same dollar of a 20’s or 30’s person”

      Really? I’m in that 40′ and 50′ group and I find that I can easily generate 2-3x the money I could when I was 30 for the same amount of work. I’m a lot smarter now and don’t waste my time chasing rabbits.

  • I’ve found once you have something successful going then it can be hard to maintain discipline of work – are your 3 days off because of this? I can sometimes go for 1-2 weeks of doing on work (laziness and being over-worked the other times as I can work 14-20 hour days for weeks at a time). As others have stated, perhaps you should use some of the free time to address the “downs” and also look at alternative/complementary revenue streams.

  • Grow the business 2-3 times and bring on one or two people to help.

    Choose carefully, communicate clearly and don’t bring them on as partners.

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