Until February 2016, I had the perfect job in Manhattan working for a tech-media giant and an apartment in Lower East side. Single guy, living in New York, making a hefty salary, Green Card process underway, good potential relationship and the career graph had nowhere to go but up. Living the dream, as one would say, but who wants to be comfortable? Insanity struck, and here I am building a tech startup with my co-founder in Bangalore.
A few of my personal experiences:
Finances - We are bootstrapping so every expenditure is a dent in our savings. I never had to think twice before booking a trip to the other side of the planet or drinking at a pricey cocktail bar in Manhattan. However, now I commute only during the Uber pool hours to save on transportation costs. I am on a daily budget of less than my lunch money in Manhattan.
Social life - From being the happy hour organizer of my social group, I have turned into an anti-social animal. Over the past four months, I have gone out as many times as I would in a week in New York.
Work life - My typical work week is somewhere around 70-80 hours. Only time will tell if this is sustainable for an extended period. As a founder, there is no job description. I code, write content, recruit, sell, design, pitch, and whatever else is needed. The hardest thing of the lot so far is selling, whether it is to the investors, users, or local merchants. And did I mention that you can plan your workday as much as possible, but the unpredictability of startup life plays spoiler every time? Most days you are just putting out fires somewhere or other.
Uncertainty - You work even when you don't work. The mind is constantly thinking. You worry about the validity of the idea, managing salaries for your team, selling to the customers, and an uncertain future in general.
The dark side of entrepreneurship often goes unnoticed buried deep under all the TechCrunch success stories of hefty valuations, high-profile IPOs, and exits. There is no such thing as overnight success. No battle is won without its fair share of scars. And yes, between your company, relationship, and health, you can only have two at best, so don't beat yourself up trying to achieve the perfect state of affairs.
Steve Jobs rightly remarked, "It is not fun for sane people. One should be exceedingly passionate about his/her idea to do this day in and day out."
This question originally appeared on Quora - the knowledge sharing network where compelling questions are answered by people with unique insights. You can follow Quora on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+. More questions: