Saturday, May 27, 2017

Real Talk About Staying Motivated

So you have an idea. A dream. It may seem so exciting it even feels like a revelation. But when the novelty of your new idea wears off and excitement tends to wane, how do you stay motivated to keep pressing on and turn your dream into a reality?
You may remember in my previous post here that I discussed the fact that my husband would like to do Uber full time and that may eventually lead us to moving out of state. Those are still plans we are trying to pursue and we hope will come to fruition. However the whirlwind dreamy state of researching new cities and imagining dream houses is starting to fade as the weeks drag on and some potential obstacles present themselves.
One possible wrench in the plans has just come to my husband's attention in the past few days. In light of some past changes and some just recently to how Uber pays their drivers, we are wondering if Uber will be a stable enough company to try and earn a living wage off  of, and also whether they are an ethical company with a good enough reputation that he can be proud to work for them and to refer others to them.
Uber is a company that makes the news a lot and often not in the most flattering of lights. A google search will yeild plenty of results if you wish to research them yourself, but I am mainly referring to the fact that Uber drivers have received several pay rate cuts over the years, most before my husband ever started working for them, but just a couple of days ago they have announced a complicated new payment system that essentially allows them to charge  customers more but not pay drivers any more. You'd think this would outrage customers and drivers alike, and indeed some of the popular Uber YouTubers that my husband follows have claimed this is the last straw and are deleting their Uber accounts and encouraging others to do the same. But will enough customers and drivers protest Uber's questionable business practices to hurt their wallet and change their ways? Is this company going to keep making more decisions that ultimately bring them down? These are important questions for someone considering basing their livelihood on this business and we don't yet have those answers. It is concerning to say the least that Uber may be a company that doesn't value its customers and employees as it should, and indeed many experts are predicting it's eventual bankruptcy. But rideshare businesses in general seem to just be growing in popularity as a way to get around in large cities, so are their any other such businesses that might succeed even if Uber ultimately fails?
There are two major rideshare companies currently; Uber and Lyft. Uber is by far the largest and widest reaching, but Lyft is the only other business that is even remotely competition for Uber at this time. If Uber's popularity begins to wane as a result of it shady business dealings, will Lyft begin to rise and dominate the market? Only time will tell if this shift will happen and how long it might take, but for those like my husband looking to earn a living in the rideshare industry, the ride is sure to be tumultuous.
Just a few weeks ago my hubby did in fact sign up to drive for Lyft as well as Uber. Apparently it is a common practice for drivers to work for both companies in an effort to maximize their profits. He has been attempting to drive solely for Lyft for the past two weeks in an effort to complete a new driver goal where if you complete a certain amount of rides in the first 6 weeks you earn a bonus. It has also been giving him an opportunity to research how the Lyft market compares to the Uber market. Even though there are generally a greater number of Uber ride requests at any given time than their are Lyft ride requests, he has been noticing an interesting trend in customer that take Lyft over Uber. Lyft seems to be increasing in popularity especially amongst millennials and more liberal minded passengers and they usually cite political motives and ethical concerns as their motivation for taking Lyft over Uber. Dozens of passengers have volunteered their distain for Uber unsolicited to my husband and they don't seem to care that he drives for both companies.
If success in this industry comes down to a matter of backing the winning horse, working for two companies is definitely a good way of hedging your bets.

I am so proud of the initial steps that my husband has been taking to make our dreams of being financially independent and owning our own home come true. He has basically been working 7 days a week between his regular job and rideshare. I do worry that he is overworking himself, but he does seem to enjoy giving rides to people and also having tangible goals to work on. He has been commuting to San Francisco from time to time to see what it's like to operate in a major city, and just yesterday he made about as much in 5 hours of Lyft as he would in a full 8 hour day at his regular truck driving job. It's experiences like this that give us hope that earning a sustainable living through ridesharing is possible. Many of his rides were to and from the airport, and most metropolitan cities with similar international airports seem to be just as busy when it comes to needing rides.
He is also attempting to design a website to promote his driving businesses and generate extra income through things such as referrals, affiliate marketing, and YouTube videos. He was able to purchase a domain name and hosting platform but is having trouble with the creative design aspects of it as it is just not his forte and he doesn't have a lot of free time to work on it anyway. Any tips on how to lay out a web page would be much appreciated!

So this is the road that we are currently on; it's full of twists and bumps and is sometimes difficult to not become discouraged. The weeks and months wear on and and it can seem as though those aspirations will never be reached.  At some point we have to determine whether it will be a wise move to take the leap and leave a stabe but stagnant career and I'm not sure how long that will take. Yet no one ever accomplishes anything by giving up, so how do you stay motivated in the doldrums of a long journey? Feel free to share any tips for staying upbeat in the face of a potential wrench in the plans.

In other news I am planning two exciting trips this year, so stay tuned for several travel related posts in the next few months!


  1. It sounds like Lyft is a great viable option for him. And you mentioned that airports are a great source of business for him and the busiest airport in the US in Atlanta. That would help make the move easier as far as job stability. Everyone needs a ride to the airport at some point. I don't think drive sharing will be going anywhere anytime soon. Too many are deciding cars are not necessarily for them (financially or environmentally) but still need the random transportation. It sounds like he gets a lot of enjoyment from being a driver in a more casual capacity rather than a trucker. I hope you guys can make it work. You will never know until you try. And the worst thing that happens is that it doesn't work out after given some time and you move back home. Change is scary and cross-country moves are scary. But it can be an adventure and a great experience.

  2. Whether it's dieting or trying to keep a handle on my finances or planning some other long-term thing that may take years to play out, I motivate myself by completing small tasks that get me a step or two closer to the reality of that thing. So socking away just 20 bucks towards, say, a vacation makes me feel good and gives me a nice little motivating boost - I'm now $20 closer to that trip. It's not huge, but it's a step. String enough of those little steps together and then you've really got something, and you've made significant steps towards making your dream a reality. My lord, I sound like one of those self-help types you deeply side-eye, because what the crap do they know about anything, but really, small steps really do add up. I wish you guys the best of luck with your future plans - it's not easy trying to map where we'll be this time tomorrow, let alone months or years from now.