In the year 2004 when I was 25 I was in a job I was hating and contemplating my career choices. I was scared of having to take out student loans in order to earn a degree to get an occupation that I would have to quit within a short time. I was scared that I'd be miserable and be stuck in a job because I was paying bills and I couldn't afford to quit. I'd watched my dad working for over 25 years, one I did not like because he was married and had children he had to look after. I decided that wasn't me.
It's not a secret that My dad was an accomplished, intelligent man; however, it was an occupation he was unhappy with for a while before the day he was fired (a good thing in the real sense). It was in my brain that I had to get a decent job following law school to repay my debts. My thinking process was that I'd attend school, find an opportunity to work and pay off my debts and save for a nice single-family house and then continue to work to earn a W-2.
Six months into my first law firm position I realized that the rigors of work in a 9-5 was not my style. I began to sink into depression and not getting enough time to spend with my family, my dog and acquaintances. I had to stop. I decided I would launch my own company, perform some more transactions, possibly an Real Estate Business Plan and then decide how I felt about that (real estate law is the area I did end up having to do). It took me another six months before I could find the courage to quit my job. I was scared about failing and earning no money. I was also worried about what my parents, and especially my dad would think of me.
Making the decision to go it alone and transforming my career from one in litigation to a profession of real estate lawyer was the most successful move I ever made. While I made some mistakes throughout the process and even lost money during the first year (that's an article to come back to later) I changed my mindset completely. As I've said previously I believed that getting rid of my loans and saving to buy a luxurious home and then eventually having a family was the only thing I was supposed to be doing. This is an American Dream after all. I'd never considered Investing in Real Property or having financial freedom as a possibility. Two years after having quit my job my wife and I purchased the first property we invested in, an apartment situated in Pawtucket, RI. We're looking forward to the building of that portfolio.
The route I decided to pursue comes with sacrifices. I must get out there, be a hustler to earn every penny I make. My recent move to a major title company, and I am very satisfied with how my professional life has turned out only four years after finishing law school. I've cut down on expenses that aren't necessary and attempt to live as low-cost as I can. We don't take out to take a meal or go on holidays (not as much as we would like to in these economic times). In the end, however, this is what's going to help us in having financial freedom, and ultimately only work when we want to not because we have to.