"Quit your job, move to Costa Rica, and do what you love!"
"Stop being a cubicle dweller!"
Entrepreneurship is the new hipster thing. We love the idea of walking into our office one day, cursing off our boss and risking everything in order to pursue our passion on a beach with perfect weather and a cool beverage.
Stop. Just stop.
Here's the reality: Most entrepreneurs fail. Of the ones that succeed, it often takes years to simply break even. You have to work harder than you ever did as an employee, take on way more risk and have way more stress.
Here's the real question: How can you get both the benefits of starting a business and the benefits of a full-time job? In other words, how can you get freedom and potential for a big win while you still have the stability?
Simple. Do both at the same time — at least for a little while. This is exactly how many of the most successful entrepreneurs started their first businesses. A 14-year study of 5,000 American entrepreneurs demonstrates this exact point: Entrepreneurs who kept their day jobs failed 33% less often.
Having a cash cushion gives you time to find the best business model. Being desperate forces you to pursue any model that can pay your bills immediately. It also gives you what I call the Tripod of Stability: If your first idea fails, you can explore more because you can afford to. Without a cushion, if your first idea fails, you might have to throw in the towel. Not being patient can ultimately do more harm than good.
"But Ramit, I don't have the time or energy to work full-time and start a business!"
You don't have to.
To make the transition between your full-time job and your dream business, you just have to be a little creative. Here are five creative approaches that successful entrepreneurs like Daymond John (founder of FUBU), Sara Blakely (founder of Spanx), Jack Dorsey (co-founder of Twitter and Square), Marc Benioff (founder of Salesforce) and others used.