This weekend I’m engaging in my annual rite of penance and mortification. Somewhat like Prince Vronsky in Anna Karenina, I take the opportunity of the due date for my federal income taxes to re-examine and put the finishing touches on my books for the previous year.
As I think I’ve mentioned before, last year my income in real terms was the lowest it’s been in my adult life. The reasons for that are complicated. Mostly it boils down to my long-term clients having fallen on hard times, a result of the sluggish economy, changing conditions, and long-term mistakes (not my mistakes but theirs many of which I’ve been fighting for, literally, decades).
Now I’m rebuilding my client base. It’s something I should have been doing all along but, honestly, I got a bit lazy. My new clients haven’t produced much billing yet but I have hopes.
My wants are pretty limited. I need about $15,000 more business to stop being panicky and with about an additional $30,000 in net billing I’d have as much as I want or need. You’d think that would be doable but it’s proven elusive. Nominally I have some pretty desireable skills, I have extensive experience, and I’m very good at what I do. I rarely have problems closing once I’ve gotten my foot in the door.
Only my dear wife’s earnings prevent me from being desperate but it’s pretty humiliating. I really should be doing much better than I am.
I’m not a particularly desireable employee for a variety of reasons including my age and that I don’t want to be employed full-time. That’s why I’m looking for business rather than a job. If this goes on, I may be forced to look for a job, something I haven’t done in 35 years. The conditions are really terrible for that and, as I say, I’m not a particularly desireable employee.
A desireable employee is me, thirty-five or forty years ago. Somebody who’s young, unmarried, energetic, and ambitious who’ll work for half of what he’s worth and put in 60 hours a week doing it. Somebody who doesn’t have a life.