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I hate my job and am trying to get to the point where I can quit. The 48days community has given me inspiration and hope. As I am brainstorming ideas and writing these down I asked my son to put together an Altoid tin note box for me (he loves making kits and putting them in hinged candy tins)...UH...inspiration #1...we began thinking of different ideas of what we could put in the tins, began researching where to get the tins cheap and other supplies for the various ideas such as first aid kit, survival kit, bicycle tool kit etc. I am consulting with the local S.C.O.R.E. chapter to figure out how to get this idea off the ground (or if it will even fly). Marketing, sourcing supplies,assembly and distribution are just some of the things to consider.

Second Idea: I have some land (2 acres) and resources to start a nursery. I have to research what plants are good sellers in this area. Seed packets are cheap and I have a greenhouse I have to reassemble after a wind storm blew it over (I learned from that lesson-location is important).

  Third Idea...traveling exploratorium or living history bus. As home educators over the last 18 years I have a passion for education. I was thinking of finding a retired school bus (+/- $5,000) and equipping it with fun hands on science experiments. I could take the field trip to the students for far less than the school would have to pay to bus a load of kids to a destination.

A spin off from that is a traveling history field trip bus. I enjoy early american history and living in California's Gold Country I enjoy explaining the history of how Calif. was involved in the civil war (the gold from here was shipped around the Cape to the East coast to fund the war. I was thinking of including a gold panning demo, black smith demo and some other things.

Fourth, traveling knife and saw blade sharpening service. I was listening to the late Larry Burkett talk to a lady on the radio who bought a small delivery van set it up with the tools to do sharpening and went to restaurants and butchers and other places and sharpened their knives. Larry asked her how much she expected to make and her reply was that in the first 6 months she made $50,000. Larry said you mean $5,000 and she said no, $50,000.

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John - you have some great ideas here! Being an educator myself, I especially love the bus idea. Good luck. Let us know how it goes.

Jack,

Very cool list actually.  I have a few questions; Where is your heart?,  Which one do you feel the best with?,  Which one gets you excited?  I know, more questions than answers but that is part of the process.  

Are you looking to make a quick getaway from work or actually get into your passion?  

Again, cool list and a great start to generate some thought with.  Part of the issue is not knowing your personality or what you truly enjoy and desire for your new direction in life.  

Keep us informed in what your thoughts are and what direction you might be leaning towards.

Darren

Not a quick get away but a planned exit. I'm setting the time line around 6 to 9 months if all goes well and the job doesn't kill me or I get fired (that would be a first for me).

Please investigate the insurance issues related to an old school bus before you sink money into it.  10 years ago I was unable to insure the bus I had purchased due to its age and its identification as a school bus.  By verifying to the state that I had removed its seating I was eventually able to insure it as a truck but not as an RV.  I only ever used it for two trips, both carrying our household goods for a cross-country move. 

Hi John,

It is pretty clear from your post that the wheels of your brain are cleaerly churning. Here is what I think, it is pretty straight forward.

Just start! Pick one idea and run with it. Identify the most minimum viable product you can create, develop it, and go from there. It doesn't need to be life changing or crazy. It just needs to be something you can start with. No matter what you choose it will likely change as you get the deeper in the process. But the only way to get deeper in the process is to just start. 

We can all say it is a great idea or a horrible idea but really when it comes down to it we just would be trying to predict the future.

Thus far, no one I know can predict the future. I think that as you move forward with your idea you will learn crazy and awesome things that you never would have thought up . But that can ony happen if you start. You may develop something and then a customer or friend says it woudl be "Cool if you had ------." Then you run with that idea and it is awesome. But you cant get there unless you start.

I know this may be a little bit blunt but I really believe in it. In the words of Derek Sivers, ideas are wroth $1, execution is worth $1,000.

I hope this was helpful :)

Reading No More Dreaded Mondays has helped me see that in one person's eyes a plan may look like a failure but looking at it in another way and executing it it turns out to be a success, besides if it does fail at least I tried.

"Like"

(There's no Like button, so ...)

Ha ha Jack I am working on that list as we speak (and not doing too well on answering them, but that's another story...).  Here's the list I am working from:

Hiding place #1—Things you would do even if you didn’t get paid for it.

Reflection question:  what are you doing when you feel God’s pleasure? 

 Hiding place #2—They aren’t necessarily have to be things you chase, sometimes the chase after you.

Reflection  question:  what keeps trying to chase you down?  An activity?  An idea?  A cause?

Hiding place #3—They can be born out of personal struggles

Reflection question:  what struggles are you going throu you can embrace as part of the growth and development process?

What wisdom, insights or knowledge can you share from your own walk that would bebefit others?

 Hiding place #4—Passions can be born out of a traumatic event.

Reflection question:  What do you see yourself as the solution to?

If NO ONE was around to tell you how to express your creativity, uniqueness and genius, how would you do it?

Annie,

LOVE your list. I have recently been confronted with some major life changes (some beyond my control). Trying to chart a new path in the face of change. I now find myself searching for my passion (have lots of them...I think), but finding it o...so...difficult. I am finding the more I put myself out there, the more I am learning about myself and what God may be calling me to do. 

Keep up the search.

The sharpening idea sounds like one of the shortest paths to a decent income. Salons and pet care places need stuff sharpened too. Is this a business you really want to get into, or are you just looking at the money? Once you get it going, you could hire someone to run the shop. There is also demand for restoring old fashioned handsaws to working condition. Since they are filed by hand, there is essentially no startup cost. It does take a bit of skill though.

As for the living history bus, its a neat idea. I have a lot of questions about it though since I have never seen it done including demand and startup costs as well as liability issues. It seems like the place to start would be out of a trailer or even a traveling exhibit doing a single demonstration like a blacksmith shop or woodworking shop. I do hand tool woodworking and have thought of doing something like that at hardware stores and street fairs.

As for the nursery idea, you can buy plants to sell without having a nursery and then work into growing them yourself if you choose to do that. Another idea for growing stuff on two acres is aquaponics and eggs.

As for the first idea, keep thinking about it and keep a notepad next to your bed to write down ideas.

Thanks for all the input. We (my family and I) belong to a Viking reenactment group...Dark Boar Vikings. We enjoy getting out to the Renaissance and Celtic Faires. Although I don't set up a forge at the fairs I give a breif black smith/Viking talk and use duplex nails (the concrete form nails with double heads) and while talking to the families that I call to our encampment I hammer the shank out flat and at the end of the talk I give the kids a "Viking Sword" necklace on a string. I love doing this. I have a passion for teaching kids.

I figure I'll give myself 6 to 9 months at my current job to get some financial stuff out of the way and save up several months worth of wages.

I also enjoy mechanical things and just finished building an anvil and forge to learn real blacksmithing. The precision of knife and tool sharpening is something I would enjoy and with a forge I can also include custom knife making.

The history (or science) bus would be something I would be well off starting out with a trailer as mentioned above. My idea is to have the bus come to a school and then the students could walk through it and look at eh displays and hands on stuff and exit out the back. There would also be displays set up outside such as solar and wind generators etc.

The project in a tin is more of an idea my son and I are trying and he would probably run most of that business after I helped him get started.

Again, thanks for the suggestions, Jack

JACK,

I like your enthusiasm for life & ideas. As Kent Julian told us at the recent "Speak it Forward boot camp"  when presented with multiple ideas for a new business venture, your best bet is simply to PICK ONE! As others have also mentioned, you must zero in on one thought. If you step back & take a look at your ideas, they go in several different directions.

Which one makes your heart race a bit more?  Which one would be the easiest to monetize?  If I took every other idea away from you, which one would you feel you just "HAD" to do?  Is there one of the ideas that speaks of who you are?  

Hope it helps!!!  - The Best Is Yet To Be!!!  

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