Top 10: Reasons I Like Working for Me (and Why it Sucks)

I’ve been working for myself full time for a little over two years. Below are the top ten reasons why I enjoy working for myself. To add a twist, I am also adding a reason for each about why each thing sucks!

1.) I can make my own hours and work whenever I want. I can also take vacations whenever I want. I can go to the gym in the middle of the day, eat lunch whenever, take time off to visit friends…etc. I can pick and choose which domain conferences I attend, and I don’t need to get permission to attend a business conference.

  • I tend to work 12-14 hours a day, and it’s not straight through the day, so I can work until midnight or later on some days. If I am in the middle of a big project, I can forget to return phone calls, and this tends to hurt friendships (sorry, Adam). I have become a workaholic and don’t stop working until something is finished or I am forced away from my computer. I love what I do, but it’s still consuming.

2.) There is no need to get anyone else’s approval when I make acquisitions, sales, or have expenses. I can rapidly make deals on the fly and be creative with terms if necessary.

  • Great… spending thousands of dollars without a second opinion that has a vested interest in my business. Nice. I am also in charge of my accounting… too bad I took Financial Accounting during college the semester I pledged my fraternity. That 1.92 GPA for the semester haunts me sometimes.

3.) Every month, the pressure all falls on me, and I tend to work better when there is more pressure.

  • I work longer hours, become ornery, and don’t have time to do the things I enjoy when I am under pressure and facing a deadline.

4.) When something is successful, I can take credit for making it happen and it feels good to accomplish something on my own. Of course, I thank the people that assisted, but a successful project for my company doesn’t necessarily mean much to others.

  • It’s great to have personal successes and to celebrate them with my family and friends, but I think it was much more fun when I was working on a team in the corporate world. I miss that camaraderie.

5.) I don’t have to share the profits with business partners or investors.

  • Since everything is self-funded, there’s more pressure to make things happen.

6.) If there’s something I want to test or explore, I don’t need to make a business decision to justify it.

  • It can be better to learn from someone else’s previous experience, and people tend to be more willing to share their unbiased opinion when they have a vested interest.

7.) I have the chance to meet with others who are in the same business as I. There is a lot of networking and open discussion among domain investors who work for themselves.

  • At the end of the day, just about all of us are competitors in some way. Those who consistently buy and sell domain names are usually competing for the same domains in auctions, drops, and private acquisitions. There’s a fine line between sharing and keeping the cards close to vest.

8.) Having a blog has allowed me to connect with many of the most successful domain investors via email, phone, personal meetings, and business meetings. I have received great advice – everything from domain investing to general business advice to personal advice.   I doubt my company would be in its current position without the blog.

  • The blog has also exposed me to unconstructive comments (mostly anonymous cowards).   I appreciate all comments that are constructive – especially if someone disagrees with me so I can see a different point of view, but it’s irritating when people leave comments that are meant to be hurtful to me or to other commenters when they don’t add value. I guess the bad economy has left some people pretty bitter about things.

9.) I can work from wherever I want. In fact, right now I am writing this on an airplane.

  • I tend to work wherever I go – even when I am on vacation.

10.) Over the past 6 years, I’ve learned quite a bit about the domain industry and even the politics within the industry. I have built a good gut feel for things and believe I have good instincts when it comes to making business decisions.

  • If my instincts are wrong, there isn’t anyone with a vested interest to help – especially on confidential deals.
Elliot Silver
Elliot Silver
About The Author: Elliot Silver is an Internet entrepreneur and publisher of Elliot is also the founder and President of Top Notch Domains, LLC, a company that has closed eight figures in deals. Please read the Terms of Use page for additional information about the publisher, website comment policy, disclosures, and conflicts of interest. Reach out to Elliot: Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn


  1. I’m going to contact you soon about a network idea I have for the domain industry. It is similar to how doctors have a private website where they discuss things behind closed doors.

    I think if we had a couple of people get together to get it done it might work.

    Talk later.

  2. Great synopsis and I would emphasize flexibility with greater accountability – in the end you have to drive revenue somehow and many professionals may find that necessity uncomfortable (esp. in a recession).

  3. Elliot,

    I think you wrote the perfect top 10 for people that work the way we do.

    Happy Holidays,

    larry Fischer

  4. Elliot

    Wonderful post and agree on them.

    The past 9 years, I worked on my own and ran a business first 6.5 years or so. Then past 2.5 years had to take a job for that weekly income and the business.

    I’m still not used to working under someone but I’m regrouping and plan to change direction some with a new venture in 2010 and also an area I know well. Its like your dogwalker site and your passion for it.

    The freedom, the vacations I miss the most when things were doing good.

    I liked how you put the pitfalls to things as well and the negatives.

    Your headed in the right direction Elliot and keep it up!

    Happy holidays

  5. Elliot,
    You do a fantastic job with your blog! Thanks for sharing all of your insight. I’m sure it takes a pretty good amount of discipline and focus to be successful working at home. Congrats to you for doing it! I’m not sure if I’d have it or not. Probably better keep my day job. : )
    Have a great day,

    P.S. I love the advice/motto/guidelines cosmetics guru Bobbi Brown put on a card. Click my name to read it.

  6. I liked Your Points.. it happened with me(and also happens with many people too) many times.. but i never thought it could be a topic in somebody’s blog.. 😉
    Wow.. You think and write great things which come from your own experience (which is bound to convince people most) and is.. as i think.. one of the secret behind a successful blog with a good fan-following!
    Keep it up!

  7. If anyone deserves success it is you. We don’t know anyone who works harder OR, is more giving of their time than you.

    I know you helped us on more than one occasion and we are grateful.

    We wish you the best year ever in 2010.

  8. I agree with all of this post. I have worked for myself since I was 18 (7 long/short years ago) and I think it takes a special type of person that has ambition and drive to work from home, or whereever for themselves because I have seen many fail because they can’t balance the ultimate freedom you have working for yourself.

    With that being said, I spent the last 10 months helping a company grow and I am fully ready to be done with going into an office and dealing with that. So, I am going back to my own stuff. The big difference? I am starting a company to encapsulate some of my major business stuff and taking on a close partner that i’ve worked a lot with in the past to have that vested interest view that I do feel (like you) is important.

    But ultimately, Cheers to us – the people that can handle working for themselves. 🙂 //g

Leave a Reply

Recent Posts

Trademarkia Hiring Lead Developer for Domain Registrar Integration

Trademarkia is a website I use occasionally to perform trademark-related searches. This morning, I noticed a job listing the company posted on LinkedIn that...

SquadHelp Ultra Premium Marketplace Goes Live

🎉 It's here! The Ultra-Premium Marketplace is live We've partnered with @HilcoDigital to curate an incredible collection of domains. More additions coming soon! 🌟 Check it...

ROTD Auction Web3 Domain Names

According to a press release I received a moment ago, Right of the Dot is auctioning "Web3" domain names in partnership with Unstoppable Domains.... Dispute Gives Guidance on Common One Word Domains

The latest #UDRP Digest (Vol 3.37) is out now! Read about some interesting cases including,, and more, with commentary from @dnattorney...

BuyDomains Discontinues Sharing Domain Name Sales

BuyDomains owns and operates a very large domain name portfolio consisting of hundreds of thousands of domain names - possibly millions. Many of the...