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October 14, 2011

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Very interesting post Michelle ;) I started following you on Twitter, valuable information!!!

I would work for myself if health care wasn't so expensive. I believe health care reform would be a great motivator for entrepreneurism in the U.S.

I really enjoyed this, especially diversifying my funding stream. Never thought of it that way before!

Thanks Epistele--appreciate it!

Eileen-I agree that healthcare reform is critical to people being able to work for themselves. If we really want to support a culture of entrepreneurship in this country, we need to start with the supports that people need to work for themselves.

Nancy--It's funny how we think that working for someone else and relying on one source of money is "safer" than diversifying. I thought that way for years!

I agree with all of your points, as I finally made the leap and quit my full time job in August. Yay! To Eileen's point though, I can only do this freelance work because my husband has a regular full-time job with health insurance. If he lost his job, I'd have no choice but to go back to a full time position.

I think there is an aspect of personality fit here too. For example, I am really looking for variety and being able to work in my own environment, and I'm willing to deal with some of hassles of running the business side of things to get those benefits.

My husband would hate running the business and marketing side of things though. Frankly, it wouldn't be a good fit for him. I wonder what will happen in the future as the economy shifts to people who really do thrive in the traditional environment. Will regular jobs still exist, or will they have to adapt just like people who used to work in factories have to reskill?

So glad to hear you made the jump, Christy! And you're right that health insurance is a huge issue, especially for a small one-person shop. It's one of the reasons I believe that if we really want to have government policies that will spur growth, we need to have national health insurance. But that's a whole other story!

RE: your point about the "fit" for people. . . I'm thinking that we may end up with more businesses that help people who are freelancers in the areas where they are less comfortable, like marketing, etc. Although things like that may come more easily to some people than others, I do believe in the growth mindset where it's simply a matter of learning new skills. They may not come as easily, but you CAN learn them. . .

"if we really want to have government policies that will spur growth, we need to have national health insurance."

There are a lot of assumptions there -- a much simpler, and politically easier, start would be to allow self-employed people to deduct health-insurance premiums as business expenses, and to form small groups to buy insurance together. Then at least the playing field would be fairly level.

This was hard for me as an extreme extrovert. I did not get the creative stimulation I needed in my consulting gig. Now back in corporate America I'm alone in an office and am still lacking the connections I need to thrive. I look for ways to connect and collaborate with others virtually but it does not fill my needs as an extrovert. It's a challenge. Sometimes I miss the days of working and interacting with the public.

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