The Barefoot Executive: The Ultimate Guide for Being Your Own Boss and Achieving Financial Freedom
Author: Carrie Wilkerson
I have always wanted to be my own boss. Like most people, I really can’t stand working for someone else, and would much rather be in charge of my own schedule. Most people, however, can handle working for another person and being told when they have to come, when they can take a break, and when they can go home. I can’t. I have anxiety disorder, and it literally drives me insane to have my every last second scheduled by someone else. I work a seasonal job in which I do have to work under another person whom I rarely see, but I’m the local manager, so I still get to feel like I’m making most of the decisions.
As much as I love being my own boss, however, I’m still have a ways to go before I’m actually successful at it. Also, even though I’m in charge of my schedule and bathroom breaks now, I still have to work for clients that I really don’t care for. (Note-if you’re reading this, you are NOT one of those clients, as “those” clients barely even know I have a name, let alone an entire life outside of writing for them). I want to reach the point where I’m writing primarily for myself, and taking on select clients that give me the freedom to give them great copy rather than enforce such rigid guidelines that every piece I write ends up sounding dreadful boring.
Why am I stammering on and on about the whole idea of being my own boss? Don’t worry, I promise it’s relevant. Carrie Wilkerson’s book, The Barefoot Executive is written for people like me who want to be their own boss but lack all the inside knowledge and practical thinking that it requires. She starts by making you answer the question of “why?” Why do you want to have your own business? Why do you want to have a specific business? These are important questions. I already know why I want to be a writer- because I’m good at it and because I love it. I love working with words, stringing together my thoughts into something meaningful, and seeing my name attached to something that makes me proud.
Although the “why” is important, it’s the “how” that most of us really need help with, and Wilkerson definitely tackles that aspect to the fullest extent. She doesn’t sugar-coat anything and tells you upfront that it’s going to take work. You may have to put your passions aside and do something a little less exciting just to make ends meet at first, but you’ll always be working towards your goal.
The book is broken down into easy-to-read sections, with case studies and calls to action (usually inviting you to watch a video on the author’s website). I found it very informative, although to be honest, I’m not a big fan of “case studies,” so I kind of skipped a bunch of those. My mom is reading it right now, and she’s been raving about it to my aunts, who are thinking of starting their own businesses, so it definitely will be making its rounds through my family.