Why I Want To Start My Own Business

Why I Want To Start My Own Business

The calling to become an entrepreneur has never been stronger.

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I've had a few jobs in my lifetime. I can't say I enjoyed any of them. My last job had long hours with 10-hour shifts on average. Something that I learned with my last job is that I don't work well with others. I feel as though I am more capable of working on my own without others to slow me down. I've always been this way, ever since I was a little kid in elementary school. I was known as a 'quiet kid' but I was also known for being much smarter than the rest of the class. I focused on getting my work done early so I could relax while the other kids talked to each other and then struggled to finish their work on time.

See, I've always thought of working with others as a hindrance to my productivity. They bring along their opinions, drawbacks, and doubts. I don't need that. I know exactly how I want something to be done and I don't need anyone else disagreeing with it or trying to tweak it to fit their ideas. You might call this narcissistic but I think of it this way: if you want something done right then do it yourself.

A wise man once told me if you're not working for yourself than your just working for other's dreams. Most people have a boss and that boss doesn't care about your goals. That boss only cares about his own goals. Odds are you won't feel the same urgency to complete your work because it's just a paycheck to you. I find this system to be quite dreary and uninspiring. Your time is the most valuable thing in life. You can always make money back but you can't turn back the clock. Why chip away your effort at something that doesn't serve you?

A few years ago I had a business idea. I felt very good about this idea, sharing it with everyone I came across hoping to gain more insight from those with business experience. I was preparing to go into the School of Entrepreneurship and signed up for a ton of business classes and all the entrepreneurship classes I could take before getting into the program itself. The program starts junior year of college so for the first two years I just had to take care of all the prerequisite classes. I was deadset on becoming an entrepreneurship student. I sent in my application and wrote an essay about my business idea and why I would be a good entrepreneur. I waited and waited until one day my inbox lit up with an email from the program coordinator. Anxious to see the good news I opened the email, only to discover I hadn't gotten in.

With that, my entrepreneurship itch faded away. Doubts and adversity had overcome hope and passion. I started to think that starting my own business was a pipedream, that there was no way I could make this great idea a reality and make millions of dollars before I turned 25. I gave up on business school and switched to something easier - creative writing. I had always been a good writer and I figured I'd give it a shot. I knew it would be easier than business calc and accounting. While the English department has allowed me to expand my creative talents it still feels empty. As I write this article I imagine making a living for myself that is independent of others - I want to become an entrepreneur. The path is yet to be discovered but the seed has been planted.

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8 Things You Need To Know About Selling On Redbubble

Everyone buys their stickers from Redbubble, but have you ever wanted to be the one making them?
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As someone who loves to fool around in Photoshop and Illustrator, I saw Redbubble as a chance to flex my skills as a graphic designer. The massive popularity of them provided me with an opportunity to make a little money on the side doing something I not only enjoyed but could do when the mood struck me. It seemed like a win-win, but there were a few things I wish I knew before I started making stickers.

1. Don't expect to be rolling in dough.

It took a month and maybe 10 different designs before I sold any of my stickers. I joined in October of 2017, and I have sold about 20 stickers.

2. Redbubble stickers are expensive for a reason.

At this point, I have sold about 20 stickers which may seem like a lot, until you find out how much I make per sticker. The artist sets how much they make after Redbubble’s share, so artists can set it as low as 0% profit (which means the sticker sells for $2.29).

3. Buying 10 and getting 50% off is great when you're the one buying the stickers...

...but it sucks when you’re the one selling them. I make an average of 20% per sticker, so when you buy my $2.75 sticker for $1.38, I only make 23¢.

4. Make things you would buy.

If there’s something you want to buy, but it doesn’t exist, make it. Keep in mind as well that if you wouldn't buy it, odds are that not too many other people would.

5. Try to offer variations.

You might make a design in blue and love it, but consider offering it in different colors. Someone might love the design but hate the color.

6. Make your designs as versatile as possible.

Redbubble is primarily known for its stickers, but your designs can be put on anything from a poster to a wall clock. Take advantage of that because more expensive items mean you make more for the same design when they sell.

7. Keywords are KEY.

You want your designs to be as visible as possible, so take advantage of all the tools they give you. Try to tag your design with anything that might relate to it; you want it to pop up in as many tags as possible.

8. Do your research.

If you are interested in making something, search one of the keywords and see how many results there are for it. Sometimes there is a need, and you can fill it.

I have enjoyed my time on Redbubble nonetheless, and I recommend it to anyone who likes to design or draw. It’s certainly not a good way to get rich quick, but I enjoy it. Every time someone purchases one of my stickers, I feel this rush of pride in knowing someone liked something that I designed. That's a big reason why I continue to put designs on Redbubble.



Cover Image Credit: Meagan McDowell

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