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There are tons and tons of articles out there telling you how, where, why to start a startup. I'm not going to tell you those things. Rather, I will give you a taste of why I started to work on a startup. I hope it helps fellow entrepreneurs a bit in facing that million-mile road in the desert of challenges. The following is the thought process of someone who yearns to make something more of himself. And hopefully, knowing you're not alone will give you the confidence to break away and Do It Yourself.
I'm sitting home alone...
...asking myself: What's wrong? I feel hollow. I have a good job, wonderful friends and partner. Yet I feel a little bit off, like something's missing. Missing from my life. Missing from this world. Actually I believe many things are missing...
I go outside, hear the birds singing, smell the fresh air. I'm holding a woman's hand as soft as a baby's cheek, and walking. She's beautiful and smiling. For brief seconds, time stops and I just feel joy and serenity, like everything's perfect. But then I forget how beautiful that smile is, and remember...something's missing. Geez brain... Why do I have to remember? The good thing is, I think I know what I miss. I hope that this is it. This has to be it!
I need to create! I have so many things in my head, I have to get them out and materialize them.
So you might ask, How do I get those things in my head out into the world? Many of us encounter problems on a daily basis. Personal problems, problems at work, problems around the house. Problems that are small, big, annoying and enduring. There's a problem on your computer, in your head, in the society, on the shelf. There are problems everywhere waiting to be solved. There are problems that you can't deal with. They are too big for you, or no solution is available. If you find a problem like that, don't let it go.
From the greatest dilemma, comes the greatest idea... Solving it will make you whole.
Problems are the test of our viability. The man or woman that sees a problem as an opportunity...is a dreamer. I can't deny I am one of them. But that's not enough. You have to act as well. Dreams have never solved anything. But the dreamers that have the ability to go out and DO, those are the people we call real entrepreneurs.
Okay, now we know how ideas are born. But which problems are worth solving? Of course all of them. Maybe that's a little vague.
Let's try again: Which are the problems that, if solved, will make you rich? Sounds weird after these sentimental lines, but let's face it, one of our goals when starting our startup is to be rich: To provide for our family, to fulfill our physical, earthly needs. So if we want to create something, let's create something that makes money!
I choose to sell a service or a software. I think there's too much risk and cost in distribution. That is the business of the past. That is why I'm into websites, software and applications. But we're not the same, so you might choose a completely different area or industry. Follow your gut. When it whispers, "Do! Do now!" you know what you have to do. Just don't procrastinate. The whisper is only valid in that very moment! Don't ignore it.
So you say, "Okay, I have a problem to solve, I may have a solution which makes me whole and rich. But how do I solve it?" I told you, this is not that kind of article. No one can tell me or you how to solve our problems. You can read specific articles regarding your idea (some in this very series
), but all the advice in the world is worth nothing without courage, determination and enthusiasm. And I think this is the key. Enthusiasm. This is the soul of a startup. So if you have it, you will make it! Do you have it? Go forth and live your dream.