A while ago David Rohlander, the author of The CEO Code and my mentor in the startup game told me that the most valuable thing a person has to give or share is not money, but their personal time.
As we grow older, we form relationships with people, objects and concepts that limits the amount of personal time we’re able to give to the things we’re truly passionate about. Starting a business is no joke – it’s a lot more than just putting together an app and some marketing here and there.
In my opinion, here are a few reasons why starting early is a good thing.
1. You get to make a lot of mistakes – and learn from them
In the course of my year old startup adventure, I’ve hired many a friend, personal relationships and all -only to have to look into their eyes and tell them that we don’t need their services anymore. Mistakes that I could have averted if I had known better.
Well, guess what?
Now I do. There’s a sort of mental poise you set yourself into that allows you to split your personal and professional life before it gets too late and it ends up in one messy gunk.
I would rather learn these skills young and face this madness now rather than have to build a business 15 years later and fire a friend just to realise that I’ve not only lost a personal relationship – I’ve lost time.
2. You’re not bogged down by people
At 20, you don’t have a family you need to support. As you grow older, there can be instances where your parents, your wife or your kids will need your attention. When you’re in your 20’s, that’s almost never the case.
To me, this personally means that all my attention is focussed like a laser beam into what I’m doing – building an empire.
3. If you work with the friends that decide to stay on, you can build your own culture
Ever heard of Badcricket? It’s an indoor sport that was invented in our small apartment by 4 entrepreneurs who love working together.
In the beginning, it was something we did after banging away on our keyboards for 12+ hours building our product(my team calls this a sprint, I call this getting shit done).
But now, it’s something more – it’s culture. If there’s one thing I know, it’s that you can never fight culture. The minute you start seeing something in a particular perspective, it’s hard to change that view. If a group of people see something in a particular perspective, it’s near impossible to change it.
Being able to build our own culture has been both satisfying and amazing. All our teams have names, our meetings have strange dance sequences that precede them and we end our days with 1 on 1’s where we discuss everything from how the day went to how we’re handling our workloads and personal lives.
4. You benefit from breaking your spirit and energy
My 35+ year-old colleagues and clients often tell me how they’re not as nimble and alert as they used to be. They’re also always complaining about how failure wrecks their morale and how they can’t work 12 hour days anymore – even if necessary.
At Jobspire, our 21-year-old bodies (and minds) can actually bear the brunt of working really, really hard. I personally don’t call it work when you enjoy it. I like to call it play!
5. You’re building habits of resilience
The basic concept of weight training is simple. You go to a gym, lift weights, tear muscle fiber, only for them to rebuild stronger and better. The most successful weight trainers have only one thing in common – they make it a habit to be regular.
It is probably normal animal/human reaction: to react only when something is hurting you right now. If you take the pain away, the motivation vapours. This is one of the design flaws of the human mind inherited from animals that causes procrastination and lack of willpower.
Starting up when you’re young is akin to a no holds barred match with a tiger.
In a cage.
Most people actually know what they’re getting into when they’re inspired enough to build their own business. However, that motivation fades off after a few days.
I’m hoping that my new found ability to deal with almost anything becomes a habit that sticks with me throughout the next 80 odd years that I’m going to walk on planet Earth – To me, they’re survival skills.
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This article is written by Jobspire.CEO at
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