I think we all know the story and have probably lived through it. I was working for a perfectly fine company doing perfectly fine company tasks and doing the daily grind and was mostly satisfied... except there was always something in the back of my head that itched. I tried scratching that ever-present itch on the side, spending hours at night slowly working my way through it but it wasn't enough. It didn't help that the economy was going through a fundamental shift with layoffs and severe purse-string-tightening all around that made my workplace quite nervous. We were trying out new ways of making revenue and not all of them bore fruit as much as we thought. This led to me feeling more and more that control was slipping away from me. My fate eas at the hands of people more powerful than me and I could do very little to change that. My concerted efforts to improve the product and make the customers happier for more stickiness were usually received well but rarely acted upon since I was but a developer and product was still in the hands of the Product team. Of course, I was always building up experience with hands-on software development but all the ideas of things in my head never left me alone and it was coming to a breaking point.
I was having an early-mid life crisis. I was making money but this was not enough. The dam was fit to burst.
Thus, come September 2023, I decided to take the bold step and leave my job in the pursuit of making something myself. Rather than answer to the whims of others, I decided to see what the fuss was all about and build a customer-facing product of my own so I could interface directly with customers and build experience making something people would want to use. This is also a test to myself to see if all the product ideas I had saved in my head would amount to anything.
What enables me to take this step is the support of all the people around me. My parents, who at the age of ~60, are healthy and my father, through a series of very wise financial decisions throughout his life, does not depend on me for support. I would not be able to make this decision without this propping me up and giving me confidence. My friends have always been fully supportive of me making this move and only wish me success in this venture. My former coworkers too wished me well as I took this drastic step and I hope to get in touch with them in the future with good news. And I must also thank myself, for making some wise financial decisions that enabled me to support myself through this.
I must admit, this is quite a scary place I have put myself. I doubt myself constantly and, like so many people, miss the comfort, safety and predictability of a safe job with a fixed salary and being given tasks to do. But it's now or never and even if I may not be successful in my endeavour, I know I'll come out of it a better, wiser man and gave it the chance it deserved.
What am I working on you ask? Well, I'm not totally ready to reveal that yet but it's definitely coming very soon. I want to build a product that I would love to use myself and not just make something that fits some product marketspace that I don't care about. I want this passion to build something cool that I would use daily to shine through and convince others that it's something they would use themselves.
To that end, onwards and outwards!