I gave up my dream to become an entrepreneur
I didn't just give up my dream, I quit half-way through it...
You know those kids that grow up wanting to be pilots, firemen, police officers... well, I wasn't one of them.
By a mere chance, I decided to apply to the airforce pilot training program. I never took it very seriously, but test after test, week after week, I kept moving through the funnel. Before I knew it, I was one of 22 new cadets in the academy.
When reality hit, I was lost and overwhelmed, and felt like the dumbest person in the room for the first time in my life.
Surrounded by youngest, smarter and more experienced people, I did - what I thought was - my best, to go through the training. These guys were flying simulators since they were born and sons of pilots, I only knew the name of one airplane when asked by the psychologist - F16.
I was struggling to keep up, flying was a unique experience but I dreaded every day I had Do it. The Portuguese Airforce pilot training is one of the hardest in the World, they expect you to land the plane on your 3rd flight and perform advanced maneuvers on the 6th...
Somewhere along the training, one of my instructors told me something that stuck with me for the rest of my life, he took me aside after a flight and said - "You could be a great pilot if only you'd focus on flying, but your head's not here. I can see there's something out there bothering you, I advise you to get out of here, solve your personal problems and come back next year."
This amazing person was trying to put me through a loophole. You see, once you fail something in your training, your gone, there's no coming back, but back then (they changed that later), if you quit, you could re-apply.
But I was shocked how he could see so much... The truth is that my mother had just gone through breast surgery due to cancer, so yeah, there was stuff "out there".
I was always a great quitter, and when my own instructor advised me to do so, this was the easiest decision of my life.
I never really gave up
Of course, next year I didn't come back, I managed to find another excuse.
And I had my mother as an excuse for not achieving my dreams, that felt good, well… it was comfortable to have someone to blaim for my failures.
But flying is something that never goes away... Once you do it, if it's in you, it lives in your heart forever, and as I grew older I couldn't stay away from that feeling, from that passion.
But I couldn't afford to pay for a pilot course either, the airforce was not an option anymore, I had been very close to the age limit to apply the first time around.
So I moved closer, I decided to become a cabin crew, I thought that being in the industry and working in a plane would bring me one step closer.
After a few years of doing this work I managed to save enough money and have the conditions to start the training.
I wasn't 20 years old anymore, this was 10 years later.
I had to do it quick though, while working and already with a daughter wasn't easy, but I was stronger now and more confident of my capabilities.
In less than 5 months I had a private pilot license and started to study to become a commercial pilot.
MJ de Marco, is the guy who turned my World upside down through his book - “The Fastlane Millionaire”.
He explains how there are 3 kinds of people:
The Sidewalkers - people who spend more than what they earn, no matter the amount and live by the motto - “enjoy life, you only live once”.
The Slowlaners - those who live frugally and save all their lives to, maybe, if they are still alive by then and everything went well with the stock market and the economy, maybe they'll live the last years of their lives as millionaires.
The Fastlaners - those who, like himself, who put all their effort into creating businesses that generate passive incomes which can be leveraged in such a way that allow you to live from the profits and retire early.
MJ himself, left his mother's house at 32 to build his business and ended up retiring at 37 as a millionaire. He now calls himself a half-retired millionaire and writes books which teach people to do the same.
From his words and looking back at my father's life, a man who made thousands per day and now lives from the government's help, I saw how everything I believed in was do ridiculous.
Becoming a pilot… earning 10x more…?
And then what?
There's still a ceiling there…
And it's so easy to reach those ceilings, no matter how high they are.
Time for money
As I explained in yesterday's post “Value Yourself”, your most important asset is knowledge, so, similarly to MJ, I started studying successful people, I learned everything I could about them, but what's interesting is that these people seem to have two things in common:
- They are constantly learning.
- They DO NOT trade their time for money.
Money is an unlimited resource, whilst time is finite, but if we trade our time for money, we’re limiting it's acquisition.
A new dream
When I started to see the World through this perspective, I could no longer live my life with the though that I was limiting myself, I could no longer offer my time to others in exchange for a certain amount of money, regardless of the amount.
I also came to the conclusion that most passions are lost when we are forced to do them for a living.
I was already too burned with the industry to just move from the passenger cabin to the flight deck with a pay raise...
So did I give up my dream?
I found a new dream, a life of freedom!
I still intend to finish the commercial pilot license, but I have vouched not to do it for a living.
I am still in the passenger cabin, facing the worse times of the last 9 years of my life as a cabin crew, but it's only a vision in my rear view mirror, I am on my way out and won't look back.
I am now landing after 3 days of an average of 10hours flying daily.
A life of abundance is ahead of me, it already started, and I will contribute to great things, I will help many people, I have already started, and the only way is up.
Thank you for reading my story. I hope you've enjoyed it and found it of some use for yourself.