BP and I have an interesting relationship. Our original business deal on which we were partners collapsed more than 4 years ago. Since then, we’ve worked on a few things, some more successful than others. We have never made much money together, but he pays for my travel, pays my business expenses, and when our deal was delayed, began paying for all of my personal expenses.
BP, on his own, is wealthy. He retired in his early 30s after being very, very successful in business. Now, he does what he feels like.
We both hate that I am financially dependent upon him. It’s uncomfortable and it affects our business relationship. More importantly, it stresses me out, which stresses him out.
Yesterday, I yelled at him on the phone, so angry I could not even process the full extent of my anger. We had been working on a project for the past few months and while we were on the cusp of launching . . . he killed it. His rationale was sound, from his perspective, but I was apoplectic for about two minutes.
Instead, we are launching my project, under the name I developed, and doing the work I want to do. He is taking a smaller piece of it, a different role. Though it initially saddened me to think that what I have been fearing since September was coming to pass, I began to understand the opportunity now before me. And I got very, very excited. BP says he will still be involved. He is putting up the initial capital and he will participate. Also, and more importantly, he will act as my manager, helping to find new business, helping me perfect the model, and helping me to make important decisions.
As we got deeper into our two hour intense conversation, we were very honest with each other. He kept saying, “why do you think I am abandoning you? I talk to you every single day. I am not going anywhere.” But, I know he sort of is. He is pulling back to focus on other things. But he is also right — we’re closer than that. I am not like everyone else in his life that he’s pulled away from. Plus, he views this new project as his direct investment in me, which he expects to pay him dividends on this deal and future deals.
What I know, what excited me, is that I can again become independent. I will never again have to ask him (or anyone else) for money so I can do what I need to do.
I have been trapped for a while without financial independence because of our deal that collapsed. We continue to resuscitate it, but now it would be travel and sabbatical money, not never have to work again money. That’s okay, too. If I can keep doing this, working on bigger deals now and then while having my own cash-flowing business, I think I will be very happy. It’s how I used to do it, and it worked very well.
My own company, which I can run as I wish, hire who I wish, and take on the business I wish . . . how could I not be excited? When I spoke to BP late last night and I told him how excited I was, he began to reconsider just how involved he wanted to be. The more excited I was, the more he wanted to be involved.
I could be just a few weeks away from complete independence, which is something for which I have longed, for a while. Ultimately, this is a better deal for me. While I will miss BP’s day to day involvement, I will savor that sweet taste of freedom, that heady sense of responsibility, and that security of financially stability.