Getting out of the Cubicle

Getting out of the Cubicle

  • Shanjei Perumal|  
  • July 13, 2021

Yet, before that let’s talk again about taking that first step again.

The first step comes with a lot of sacrifices that you might face. You don’t have the security of a monthly salary, you will lose benefits like medical, insurance, EPF, ETF, fuel, and car allowances or sponsored overseas trips. Why you might have to give up your car, and I know how hard that is for people in Sri Lanka. A car is a luxury good in Sri Lanka where people get into debt to show off their living standards – the fact that we have 7.2 million vehicles on Sri Lankan roads should prove this. At least, that is what the system has made its people believe in.

Taking the first step is about stepping out of the system. Doing things differently to stand out in the assembly. If you are a person who can sacrifice these hoodwinking benefits, eat twice instead of thrice, and cut down on lifestyle choices – then this process will become as smooth as silk.

You might have been born with a silver spoon in your mouth, but forget that if you want this. This is not for those who can’t feed off the suffering.

Next, let’s look at the kind of MENTALITY that you need to have;

You have figured what it is that you want to do. You are ready to take the first step. Yet you may ask “what should be I thinking about when doing this?”.

I’m sure you have seen Kavadi dancers who pierce their tongues and cheeks for God, people walk on fire at religious festivals, women sacrifice their hair for causes, men grow mustaches for causes and people go on fasts for various reasons. They don’t do this on a regular basis, but they will do for a bigger picture which in their mind is the goal.

That should be your mentality. No matter what hardships you had to go through, always tell yourself that you are doing this for the bigger picture. The goal in your head.

You cannot do this if you don’t BELIEVE in your goal;

No goal can materialize if you don’t believe it can happen. This is not a game of poker, where you can assume. If you assume here you will only make an ASS out of U and ME. When you walk into any forum where you have to present yourself or your goal, make sure you give them something to think about. You can only do this by knowing and believing in the idea that you want to sell to the world.

Let me give you a classic example – I’m sure Jehova’s witness has visited your home, or you might have heard of Colombo’s elite prophets who call themselves the messenger of God. Irrespective of whether you believe in them or not, the reason why we are aware of them is that they have been able to convince the world. That’s because they believe that their cause can make an impact.

All will go to waste if you do not PERSEVERE;

You will never get it right the first time. It’s been 6 years since I started my own business, yet even I think I can make things better. Don’t lose faith just ‘cos you didn’t get it right the first time. Remember every time you fall, this will only make you stronger. Learn from your mistakes, improve on your strengths, and always strive to do something never done before. You cannot give life to something completely new without perseverance.

In the words of Rocky Balboa – “it ain’t about how hard you can hit, it’s about how hard you can get hit and still keep moving forward. How much you can take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done.”

Finally, be SIMPLE and SMART;

Maybe you have got everything that has been mentioned thus far right, but that doesn’t mean it will retain. If you want to stay a champion, be humble, be simple and most of all stay smart. Most entrepreneurs start an exciting business, but it goes all stale after a while, ‘cos they get too drowned in the success. Success is like a tidal wave. Learn to surf against it, or you’ll get swallowed into it.

Anyone who starts a business starts very simply. Yet success confuses their choices and things become not so simple. Growth in business is not necessarily how big your staff pool is or how much bigger you have become. Actual growth is where the basics of the business stay the same, but yield keeps increasing year on year. One way this is disturbed is when the basics become complexes.

So stay simple. Always think twice before you make luxurious choices. I generally ask myself these three questions before I make choices for my business;

  • Why do you need this? Does it add value to your product/service?
  • Is this decision rational? Can I afford it?
  • Can I do without it?

 Last but not least – LIVE life.

Why do we do what we do? To go through with life, right! Don’t just go through it. Enjoy it and Live it. While you give priority to your business, don’t forget that your life is not your business. Make time for your friends, family, and loved ones. Take spontaneous trips with your better half or children. Join a club that you have always wanted to. Take time off your business – this will help you to think better and understand why you exist better. If not, why get out of the 9 to 5 cycle?

If my life is all about making money, then what good is that? I should have the time, the friends, and family to reap the joys of that money. If not then why go through this entire process. Remember, while we are educating ourselves and enriching ourselves with the knowledge to make more money. Money should not be your driving factor in life. Money will come today and disappear tomorrow but you and your business will stay. Don’t let your brand be about the money you make, let it be about the ethos you practice. This means not every business decision you make is about the money. It could be about helping people, helping animals, feeding children, or a bigger cause that can change the world for the better.

Think about it. I am not spending my time here writing posts because I earn money out of it. Yet I believe that these words can influence and impact change in the industrial world we are stuck in. I’m happy that I have been chosen for the choices I made in life. If it did me good, then why not share the same with the world. I don’t need to be paid for that now, but maybe this could be the seed I plant for a big tree in my garden.







This content is the sole responsibility of its creators. Any opinions expressed herein do not necessarily reflect the views of USAID or the United States Government, European Union, or Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation.


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