The Next Chapter for The Olsens


Major Announcement!

Short version

I have accepted a position as a sales agent for SelectQuote insurance! I started Aug 7th. I am very excited about the job and about moving into this new chapter in life.

I don’t know what the future holds for this blog but if I had to guess it will either die a slow death or I’ll totally delete everything by the end of 2017. (Anyone want to buy it?)

Thanks! It’s been fun!

Uh….. Bye.

-Derek

Much, much longer version

haha, okay, that short version was probably good enough for a few people, but for those who are interested here’s a deeper dive into how we (Carrie and I) made this decision…

First, in case you don’t know, Carrie and I have two little girls (age 3 and 8 months old).

Second, Carrie runs her own voiceover business. (These facts are really important to the story!!)

I guess I’ll start the story from when our first daughter was born three years ago. Carrie was working her 9-5 job and I was blogging and writing books and articles. After 3 months off, Carrie went back to work and I was at home with our new baby girl. Guess what? IT’S HARD TO GET ANYTHING DONE WITH A THREE MONTH OLD AT HOME.

I did okay on the nights and weekends keeping up with everything work-wise, but it was hard to keep up the same pre-baby work schedule.

When our girl was just 7 months old, Carrie quit her job to start her voice acting business. She replaced her day job income working nights and weekends. It was obvious that if she quit her day job and was able to work a little more she could easily make even more money. So, she quit and she’s been a voice actor ever since.

So, now we are both at home, each running our own business and taking turns parenting. Things were great!

But again, with a now one-year-old it’s just almost impossible to both work full time and run a business. Well, two businesses now.

Carrie’s business started making more money than mine was. So basically when we would plan our days it made more sense for me to take care of our lil girl and for Carrie to work. This worked fine for a couple years until we had our second baby girl just eight months ago.

Now we have two lil girls and I couldn’t keep up with my work *at all*. Carrie’s business was still going strong so she worked and I took care of the girls.

So, this paints the picture of how our two girls changed things up big time in our life. Also shows how Carrie and I changed things up work-wise to adjust to our new life. Basically I had to decrease the amount of time I spent on my business to take care of our girls and my business slowly declined over the past 2-ish years.

Here’s when another huge piece of the puzzle comes into play.

Carrie’s Mom moves to town! yay!

Within a few months of Carrie’s Mom moving to town we hired her full time to help with the girls and some housework. This was a huge win-win-win for everyone. Grandmommy gets to be with her grandbabies everyday. Grandbabies get to be with grandmommy everyday. Carrie gets to keep her VO business going, work from home, and be with our girls a lot (waaaaaaay more than she would be able to if she had a regular 9-5 job).

But now what do *I* do???

With Carrie’s Mom helping with the girls, I suddenly found myself freed up to return to…. what?

Anyone who runs an online business knows that if you let it sit for a few months it quickly loses it’s momentum. I thought about picking it back up for about a split second and decided against it.

Here’s a couple of reasons why I decided not to return to blogging/writing books and stuff…

  • I lost my energy for it: Anyone who does this blogging stuff for very long knows it takes all your energy, time, and concentration. This is no secret, everyone will tell you this is true. I just didn’t have it in me anymore. I felt like I had climbed a mountain and then had to come back down (in order to take care of our girls) and now that I was free again I looked back up at the mountain and just didn’t feel like climbing it again.
  • I’ve said everything I have to say: Towards the end I had a hard time coming up with new things to say. I guess I only had five years worth of posts and articles and four books worth of stuff to say about personal finance. I’ve said it all!
  • I lost my discipline and self-motivation: The first four of the five years I’ve been blogging I had all kinds of motivation, discipline, and energy to do the work. A couple months after we had our second girl it was like a switch flipped and one day in the car I just said to Carrie that I was done. It was actually a really simple decision to make.

So I decided to go on a job search.

One of the first job postings I found was for a company called SelectQuote. It turns out I already knew a lot about the company because I used SelectQuote to buy life insurance, car insurance, and renters insurance. It also turns out that SelectQuote sponsored a post I did about the experience last year. I had a really good experience with them so (after seeing nothing but good reviews about the company online) I applied. It turns out they have an office here in Kansas City! Here is the exact job I’ll be doing. (Link might not be valid anymore)

So anyway, I accepted the offer from SelectQuote! After the interviews, a company happy hour, a company ice cream social and researching the company I’m 100% confident it’s the right choice, it will be a great fit, I’ll enjoy the work, and I’ll be good at it. (Update: SelectQuote won best place to work in Kansas City 2017)

Other Options?

I thought for a little while about doing something else on my own or starting another business (We even talked about me working for Carrie’s business) but here’s why I decided to get a more traditional job…

  • Out of the house: I love my girls and my wife more than anything in the world. But all day every day is a bit much. I need to be out of the house to balance things out. Carrie and I have worked together a lot on each other’s businesses over the past five years. But we both agree that we would rather be husband/wife/parents only and not so much business partners. Some couples are great at being business parters (we were good at it) but we would just rather keep that stuff more separated and be more of a couple. We talked about business ALL THE TIME and would rather just leave work at work and be a couple.
  • Fill in the gaps financially: With Carrie’s income and mine together we will have all the bases covered and be able to max out all the investing options and benefits offered to us. Carrie will max out her SEP 401k, I’ll max out the 401k at my work and we will be able to save and invest above and beyond all that stuff too! Right now we use Carrie’s income to pay for health insurance out of pocket and we will switch all that stuff over to my new work benefits and free up that cash from Carrie’s business too. Carrie makes more than enough for us to live on alone. But her income would come in waves. One month we would bring in three months worth of income and the next month we would bring in three weeks worth. It would all even out at the end of the year, but it was always a roller coaster ride. With my steady paycheck and her irregular income we will be in a really good spot all the time, not just during the good months. In theory we should be able to save like 80% of my new income because we have been living on Carrie’s income almost exclusively for about 2 years. Time will tell. And as far as retirement goes, we are still on track to be able to retire at age 60-ish.
  • MORE vacation!: When both you and your partner run your own businesses you end up just working ALL THE TIME. Nights, weekends, holidays, work, work, work. We do take some time off and we do go visit family several times a year, but even when we go visit we bring our work with us. And even if you aren’t actually working, you’re always thinking about it, you can never fully get away from your work when you run your own business. My new job starts with 15 days paid time off plus 9 Holidays off. That’s a full 4 1/2 weeks! If I end up taking the full 15 days off, and we actually *don’t work* during those three weeks off, that will be more vacation per year than we have taken in the past five years! (Except that time we took a 7 month road trip around the USA, oh yeah, there was that, but even then we worked a ton while we were on that epic road trip.)

Other reasons that are just as important as those reasons listed above:

  • Full time Dad is not something I’m cut out for: Holy cow! I have HUGE respect for anyone who has ever spent anytime at all as a full time parent. It is the hardest job in the world. I kept it together most days, but when there was more than 4 or 5 days in a row when I didn’t get any breaks I would start to lose my shit!!
  • Carrie will be able to work less: Our plan is that Carrie will work fewer hours on her business starting Jan 1st, 2018. Her goal is to make the same amount of money while working fewer hours. That’s the beauty of owning your own business is this is totally possible. Even if her income does go down a little, my new income will more than cover it.
  • Treat my money like a hobby rather than a job: I’ll hopefully be able to enjoy managing our money more without feeling a weird job-like pressure. Sometimes when you take a hobby that you love (budgets!!) and turn it into a job (blogging about money!!) it takes some of the fun away.
  • One entrepreneur in the house is enough: Seriously people, one at a time.
  • Co-Workers/Part of a team: I actually have co-workers that I like!

More excited than I thought I would be

It was ten thousand times easier to let go of my blogging career and jump back into the corporate world than I thought it would be. I’m so thankful for that. I always thought I would only go back to a 9-5 kicking and screaming. But I’m actually extremely excited. I can’t believe I feel this way.

THANK YOU!!!!!!!

I thought about listing peoples names here but it just isn’t possible. There are too many people to say thank you to.

You know who you are.

I’ll miss it.

I’ll miss you.

There is so much more to say, but seriously, aren’t you tired of reading this and isn’t Dancing With The Stars on right now?

-Derek

5 Responses to "The Next Chapter for The Olsens"

  1. Ms. Montana   September 18, 2017 at 8:52 pm

    Congrats on finding something that fits best for you all!

    Reply
  2. Mo   September 18, 2017 at 9:06 pm

    May you Olsen’s be blessed in all that you do!

    Reply
  3. Steven Goodwin   September 18, 2017 at 9:26 pm

    I’m happy for you guys! Bummed out about not being able to get together at FinCon but it sounds like you are taking care of your family first and some really good things are on the horizon for you guys! Congrats!

    Reply
  4. Steveark   September 18, 2017 at 9:39 pm

    Great decision and so well thought out! The only thing I don’t get is why a grandmother would want to full time sit grandkids. I know that is some people’s thing but my early retired wife and early retired me will enjoy seeing grandkids on occasion but would not ever want to do that on a daily or weekly basis. It would not fit with our distance running, tennis and extreme hiking lifestyle. We raised our three kids ourselves and shouldn’t want to be tasked with doing that again.

    Reply
  5. Lauren   September 21, 2017 at 9:09 pm

    I actually wrote a similar post recently (I’m currently in the middle of re-evaluating what to do with my blog) and received nothing but positive energy – you gotta do what’s right for you, and everything you said about running an online business above is accurate. Your new path forward sounds exciting – best wishes!

    Reply

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