The Threat of Golden Handcuffs

Golden Handcuffs.

Where one chooses a well-paying cushy job over the entrepreneurial path. Mark Cuban had a recent quote: “I’d rather work 80 hours a week to make $50k/yr on my own thing than to make $750k/yr working for somebody else”.

We need leaders and we need followers in all endeavors of life. Both are admirable and respectable. No human can lead at everything, and leading requires a great deal of responsibility, time, and sacrifice. The term “golden handcuffs” applies to the fearless leaders who feel they are bound by their current role. How does one avoid finding themselves in that situation?

We are ever-evolving creatures, and thus, we must develop systems to regularly self-analyze and find ways to be deeply truthful to ourselves. Am I doing what I truly love? Am I living up to my full potential? Am I excited about what I am working on? What are my current values? Remember, what is right at one point in your life may be different at another point.. and don’t forget- it is extremely easy to lie to yourself.

It is possible for an entrepreneur to become an employee while retaining their freedom and identity to contribute to a mission much greater than what they otherwise could. I have witnessed many entrepreneurs who have become employees, and vice versa, both with positive outcomes. These are not golden handcuffs.

To drive it in again, the critical point is that you have to continue to question yourself in every aspect of life. Every day that passes is one less day to pursue one’s dreams. Are you doing what would truly fulfill you? Are you playing infinite games or finite games? Are you chasing money, riches? Are you surrounded by great people who push you to grow? Are you surrounded by people who value you? Are you hypnotized by the golden handcuff virus to the extent that you’ve forgotten what you used to dream about? …and now, you’re scared to follow your true north star?

Fear impacts everyone, and no one is immune to it. But for most, it is often buried so deeply they’re not consciously aware of it. The way our life unravels is based on our decisions- and really, just a few important ones. We cannot blame external circumstances or people for what happens in our lives- we can only blame ourselves. We must take full responsibility for the past, present, and future. Only then can we look at ourselves in the mirror and come face to face with reality… our fears. From there, we can strategize a plan, and set out to destroy those fears, one by one. Then we can live the life we were meant to live.

The biggest failure is to get to heaven to have God show you the man you could have been. Instead, choose to leave it all on the table. Get up. Work Hard. Find and follow your true path. Surpass all expectations. You can do it.

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