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What if you succeed?

Posted on:October 25, 2023

While listening to the podcast Startups For the Rest of Us, host Rob Walling posed a question: what if you succeed?

In a world of hustle culture, the focus is usually on what’s next. Goals are an excellent tool, but there’s always something next on the horizon, tantalizingly out of reach. Coming up with a plan to get where we want to be is “easy”, but what happens once we get there?

The prompt resonated with me, as over the last 5 years I’ve been working on growing Apollo to the point where I can work for myself. The original goal was never to build a profitable business. But as I gained traction, the more it seemed possible, and my goal posts started to shift.

Despite the success, I’ve never truly been satisfied with what I’ve achieved. Most developers I know do not operate a SaaS product on the side, let alone one that brings in meaningful revenue. Most developers I know envy the position I’ve built for myself. Yet despite all that, I find myself dissatisfied I haven’t achieved my goal of working for myself.

So, what if I succeed? The freedom of owning my own time, more time with my family, increased bandwidth to allow my creativity to flourish. Sounds great, doesn’t it? There’s a lot to like about the idea of working for yourself. But what struck me is I’ve never truly considered what would happen if I achieved it.