I remember walking down from Manor House tube station, down Green Lanes in North London, HUGELY frustrated after another visit to the Internet café had resulted with more email rejections. I remember thinking, “Man, ALL I want is an opportunity…. Just a chance. Just an interview…! Is that too much to ask?” At that time it was….
Eventually I got my BIG breakthrough …!! I got a job where I could wear a suit!! (It sounds CRAZY saying that now!) The job I got was as a filing boy for a brokerage in the City. I was over the moon until the about lunch time on the second day!
For a kid who had aspirations of being a millionaire at the age of 26 to be earning £5.25 per hour at the age of 25, was a bit soul destroying. Also, being 6’2 and built like any good SA front ranker, being stuck in a confined filing cabinet was not great.
I remember one part of my mind saying “look at you now, packing away filing when you have all these big dreams… what a joker!” but the other side of my mind was going “Listen oke, all that you have asked for is an opportunity. Now you have got it, in a business and a sector where people make a LOT of money. Work hard and they will see your potential… Work harder than anyone else here and for once in your life, believe in yourself….!”
Six months later, I was working as a PI broker, placing millions of pounds into the UK markets. I also developed a knack for developing and converting new business. Now when you’re working in a financial sector that is highly competitive, extremely cut-throat, saturated and has huge profit margins and you are able to take business off other brokers, it doesn’t take long for your name to get around the market. I was then approached by one of our competition who offered me just over 100% increase on what I was being paid to join them.
Now please remember that I was still very new to all of this and in all honesty, paranoia was still an element of some concern to me. I actually thought that this offer was a set up and that my current employers were “testing my loyalty”… this was before I realised that there was very little loyalty in the City at that time.
Anyway, I took the job and for the next 5 years, the City became my play ground.
Things were going great until I got given a book called Rich Dad, Poor Dad by my brother on my 30th birthday. That book blew my mind and totally changed my outlook on being wealthy and making something of myself, professionally.
I started to realise that I was NEVER going to be truly wealthy if I was still earning a pay cheque. The only way to become wealthy is to earn profits instead of a salary – plus you need to be able to invest…
It’s tough when you have believed one thing all of your life and then you figure out that what you believe, is not accurate. It wasn’t something that really exploded on me but it was more like a slow realisation that I was going in the wrong direction…
This actually caused a pretty sever clash in me internally. It was something that nudged at me more and more. It started to frustrate me that I had been working towards something that I now needed to completely change direction on what I was doing and leave behind everything that I had built.
This is where people who say that they wish they “had your passion”, start realising that passion is a double edge sword. The thing is, as much drive and determination as “passion” gives you, it can also make you very frustrated, if you don’t know how to deal with it and channel it…. If you hold yourself to a high level, then you probably berate yourself too when you make mistakes. People who are not passionate about what they do, don’t have this challenge.
Well, at the time I was so deeply frustrated with myself for not seeing all of this previously, it started to impact on the rest of my life. It felt like there was something inside me just saying “Paul, there is MORE that you have got to do….!” There was something gnawing at me and making me very unsettled but I had no idea what the problem was. The frustration build and of course, like most men, I bottled it up and went into my cave….!
From the outside, I had a great job, an incredible relationship, great social life and pretty much everything else that people want in life but you know how what people see from the outside means nothing if you are not happy. I think a lot of people are like this but just block it out with the vices that life can offer….
Part 4 to follow….
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