Sunday, April 28, 2013

The Drive

When you are your own boss, you have to crack the whip on yourself.  This is a big difference from being an employee.  Since you have the freedom to work when you want to, you have to keep the wheels turning.  No one cares if you do or not because in the end it is you who will fail if you don’t stay at it.

Too many times I hear about drivers who can’t make it out here or who have lost everything and after being through some of the trials and tribulations that I have experienced in trucking, I only imagine that whatever they went through must have been worse than my problems.  What I imagine actually happens to most people in trucking is a point at which you are exhausted, dirty, lonely, poor, and then hit with a large repair bill backed up with no work and a family at home who isn’t happy that their breadwinner is gone all the time while the roof is leaking and the kids are in trouble in school.

The stress that the driver feels is enormous in these situations, but as a former mentor once told me, “the hard road is the right road”.  I know that the hard road is a huge pain in the ass, but as long as there is light at the end of the tunnel, you have to keep going down the tunnel.  Even if it stinks and is painful.  Too many times the load will require extra work that you weren’t told about or what the customer wants is unrealistic and will result in damage to your equipment costing you money and precious time.

You have to keep your eyes on the prize and proceed to your goal.  In previous posts I have mentioned that having realistic goals is important, they serve a purpose when the times get tough, because you have to keep heading towards the goal.  You might get knocked down.  You might get the crap kicked out of you, but you have to keep moving.  You can take a break and recuperate from time to time and you can use some of the money you have earned to treat your loved ones to a good time, but you are responsible for the business and only you will make it succeed. 

When you have developed a system that works for you and consistently has you making money and keeping it (and these jobs are out here by the thousands), you will find a way to lessen your exposure to pitfalls and start to regulate your work and down time.  The tough thing is walking away from a very relaxing time off with friends and family only to get behind the wheel and hit the road again.  It can help sometimes when you are fully caught up on your rest and relaxation and are ready to hit the road.  This is when you know that you are in the right place. 

As long as the wheels are turning and freight is on the deck for a decent rate, things are going well.  Most of us owners are driving, eating, sleeping, loading, unloading, fueling, cleaning, or doing maintenance.  Then add to that a wife, kids, mortgage, house maintenance, and health care, and you have yourself a full life with little time for yourself.  As long as you keep pressing on towards your goals, you are the most likely to succeed.  It isn’t a guarantee, but it is the right road to take.

1 comment:

Scott said...

Very true. You'll get knocked down...but you gotta keep getting back up.