I read the article linked above that describes a 4 year long struggle in the life of a startup founder by the founder of 99dresses. She’s gotten so much further than me, and yet I empathize more than I can describe.
Life is hard. I know that working in a corporate environment isn’t easy or necessarily enjoyable either (I’ve tried it and encountered obstacles that were as fun to deal with as getting kicked in the face, and they weren’t even as bad as they could have been), but at the same time, it didn’t consume me like my brainchild did. Working as an employee didn’t take over me and my life and my heart and hopes, but now I see the many benefits of learning in a corporate environment before getting cast into a struggle in which multiple bad decisions could lead to undesirable situations and eventually failure. Corporate is a good place to learn. Although the press likes to gloss over failure and glorify struggle, as Durkin mentions, there are some forms of struggle that are best to be avoided. There’s no point in swimming through a lake of poisonous snakes if you could have just hiked around, had you known. And while you learn the most by doing, I find that perhaps doing smaller iterative cycles of learning and building and success might be better than jumping headfirst into a four year long project.
I am so grateful to have the support of so many wonderful people, especially my parents. They have been indispensable as a support system, being real with me when they have to in the way only asian parents can (very bluntly), and listening to me and helping when anyone else would have been fed up 10 million years ago.