Being an entrepreneur is definitely not for the faint of heart, but it does open up the amazing opportunity to run with your ideas and see if they will actually work. It is a way to bring your passion to life as you help make people's lives better. It is your avenue to severing the ties of a 9-to-5 job and someone else being in charge of your work life.

Launching your own business can be the most exhilarating, mind-boggling, mind-blowing, happy, frustrating--and profitable--adventure of your life. Here are 23 sometimes hard-to-swallow facts that most entrepreneurs experience throughout their incredible journeys.

2. Your first try at launching your product or service will most likely fall short or even fail completely

3. You have to kiss up to a lot of people you don't even like

4. Becoming an entrepreneur necessitates your becoming a very good listener--to your clients, employees, investors--the list is endless

5. More times than you wish to admit, you have to put your business before your family

6. You never work 9 to 5 again (Yay!), but your typical workday has become more like 16 hours, all hours of the day and night, 7 days a week

7. Trying to raise money or find clients or customers is way harder than you ever imagined--you're going to get a lot of no's

8. You have more paperwork than you ever dreamed existed

9. You have to learn quickly to surround yourself with supportive people--not negative--and in some cases this means firing a friend or family member

10. You will struggle with how to keep your product or service unique from that of your competitors

11. The success or failure of your company will weigh heavily on your shoulders

12. "I will learn from my mistakes" becomes your mantra

13. You are in constant jeopardy of losing it all

14. There are times when you forget when the last time was you actually paid yourself

15. You have to quickly acquire the skill of asking for what you want

16. Your reputation is always out there and on the line

18. Every day there are more decisions to be made than you possibly have time for

19. You constantly think about cash flow, and hope your customers will pay you quickly

20. Those friends who remain in their 9-to-5 jobs will never really understand that you really are working

21. You become the jack-of-all-trades in your business

22. If things go well, you will one day come to the realization that you can't do it all yourself and you have to let go of some control

23. And, speaking of control, you come to realize that all hell can break lose at any moment, just when you least expect it

23. A year later you realize that you have a better chance of being struck by lightning than achieving your dreamed of overnight success--success is going to take a lot longer than a year