The million dollar life choice
Background: I am a 21 year old Male asian student studying Hospitality Management (hotels)
The most common advice given in lecture halls and motivational speeches is "Do what you love doing the most, Follow your dreams, You can achieve anything you desire"
and the famous Alan Watts advice now given to ever university student.
The thing is... When you're asian it's not just money you're after. It's harmony too.
I have a choice between joining my father's business and becoming and living the millionaire lifestyle (real estate) vs Starting my own pub with some friends and Having this crazy marketing gimmick to kick it off which may or may not do well but on hard accounts, it'll take me 2 years to break even and start making considerable profits which even then won't be the level that I could get if I put half of that effort into my dad's business.
There is another issue. While I don't want any of it, my dad has an empire around him and he really feels mortal and looks upon me to carry on his empire.
I don't think I am capable of handling myself let alone an entire empire... I have trouble keeping my room clean, shaving and bathing every single day and I have every stupid habit in the book (procrastination, lazy, long hours of video games, late nights etc.)
I am really good at getting research and high IT work done though. Part of the discipline plan in my younger years was to limit the money we got to miserly levels and I got a job as a Network Admin for a company and made shitty iPhone apps and sold them. I can also speak in 6 languages and have the ability the absorb massive amounts of data in short periods (if I am interested).
My dad did point out that the money I can potentially make in an entire year would be made in like what... 2 days and I am wasting my time. While The younger part of me is all about Alan Wats and doing what I believe, reality hits me and tells me this:
Assuming something does affect the health of my dad, I'll be absolutely incapable of holding millions of dollars of estate and without any knowledge, it'll be like the scene in batman where joker just sets a million dollars to fire.
It'll be anti-thesis to my relations with the extended family as it is expected of the son to be able to up hold the reigns of the business immediately. It'll just create so much bad blood and feuds and arguments will be all over the place.
I want to complete my 3rd year university... But because of an argument I can't until February which means now in this transition time, I can't do anything. I feel so helpless and depressed because I see all my friends completing university and I can't even go.
The thing is I really resent the fact that life has made the choice for me... I feel helpless against it. I hate the fact that I had no say in the matter.
Even If I do "follow my dreams" it would just be such a selfish thing to do... My father needs my help right now.. he has no one else to share his burdens and pains with and I am trying to do my own thing. How can I follow my dreams knowing that I have hurt my family, been a disappointment and in the future who knows if everything fails for me and my friend/family is in the hospital, where will I tap the funds necessary to pay it off from ?
But I am conflicted that if I do follow my dad's business, what happened to my chance ?? My time to make some mistakes ? My quest on seeing if I can succeed in life in my own way ? My room for improvement or error ? What if I was.... content and could manage with my smaller establishment.
I just feel so scared of committing to either options... Your job is like your wife. It takes all your time, is part of you and you make every single decision and life choice with her in mind. I need to pick carefully as whichever I pick will take 100% of my time and attention. There isn't 'doing both' or 'one after the other' or 'Finish this than that'. In either businesses, you roll money in very different ways, Cash flow paths are sooo different amongst them that i'll have to remain shaking my hands for 2-3 years in case I decide 'it's not for me'.
I... am just so lost -_-"... Sorry for the long rant. If you need clarification on something please ask. I just typed everything in 1 go. I can clarify more details on request.
Opening a pub with your buddies? Ha!! It's every party-boy's fantasy to own a bar. But it's LONG hours, putting up with bad help, cranky and drunk customers, high liability insurance rates, rent, taxes, etc. etc. - and you are at the mercy of the economy.
At 21, you don't need to make a life-long commitment about what you want to do. In fact, I don't think you CAN make that decision, right now.(Just like you aren't ready to get married, either)
Why not just learn some of the parts of your family business that interest you? Look over his entire business and pick out what area you'd like to explore. No need to think you have the entire thing on your shoulders. Yes, family businesses have their issues, too.
P.S. Watts hardly lived a life according to his own philosophy. Depression and alcoholism were his demons. I believe he took his own life, if I remember right.
It sounds like you could potentially have the best of both worlds! Not at this very moment but you are only 21! Right now as SusieDQ says to learn some parts of the business that interest you and focus on those.
And that's terrible you keeping your room a mess and only wanting to play video games! helloooo you are 21! I think that's what a lot of guys your age would prefer to do, and they are so addictive once you sit down and start to play, minutes turn to hours. (I play candy crush lol) anyway don't be so hard on yourself for having a few breaks, you don't appear to want to lay around for life doing nothing, which is what some your age want to do.
But who knows you may get to own a hotel/pub in ten years time or sooner (is that your dream) and still help with your fathers business. You could even put your idea to your dad and ask him to be a business partner. Do you think he would like that? but it seems you have the money to do it, some only have the idea and dream but never have the finances to pursue it
Best of luck!