I woke up this morning with some random "Congrats on your work year anniversary" messages on LinkedIn.
Wow! It has been one year since I quit my full-time job...??
One year of waking up every day and working with no pay checks coming back my way.
And. It's been the best year of my working career!
I wasn't enjoying it. I've worked for years for other people, working on their desires, being a good employee and a good team mate.
The only time I truly enjoyed work was when my last company gave me and a co-worker the opportunity to start our own "startup" within their company.
That experience was so amazing that when I had to go back to regular work (after 3 short months) as allocating us to non-core business wasn't sustainable, it was tough.
After a year of being back in the core-business, I wanted my life to go back to how it was when I was working on a startup.
There was really no better time. Waiting for the "right" time is folly as that's just an excuse to either never do it or put off to the point where you receive drastically diminished returns.
I quit my job with no real, conclusive thing that I was going to work on. Nothing that was really started. I just had an itch to do something.
One of the first things I wanted to work on was an idea my wife and I had for a dietary business that we could quickly spin up and use to fund life.
She is a registered dietician but wasn't working for the last couple years since our oldest child was born. So, she needed to get her licensing up-to-date and get registered in the new state we are living in. Plus, establish a network with physicians that could recommend her.
Our idea was pretty cool and mainly focused on telehealth.
Then COVID hit. Amusing enough, this drastically impacted what we were trying to do for the better and for the worse.
For the better, many telehealth regulations were loosened or even gotten rid of.
For the worse, the lockdowns made it next to impossible to create the network needed to get going.
Long story short, COVID made it too difficult, my wife lost interest, and I moved on to other things.
My business partner and I tried a couple of more social-esque type apps.
One was to provide up-to-date statuses of what's going on in your local neighborhood. The other was a product listing / feedback generating type site.
All I have to say about social sites is => yeesh. Maybe not for me. Lot's of effort for likely never getting any returns unless you get pretty damn lucky.
My business partner is the technical genius and loves building things. Alpas is a Kotlin-based backend framework inspired by Laravel.
This framework was never meant to directly be a money-generator. But, potentially something that, if popular, would open up some other channels to monetize off of.
We worked on this for several months. But, it doesn't appear that people are looking for a backend web framework written in Kotlin. Kotlin still seems to be mainly used for Android development and those developers don't seem to be interested in web development.
We then put Cleavr into high gear. Cleavr is a server provisioning and app deployment tool that my biz partner first released as a desktop application in 2017.
We decided to bring Cleavr into our ventures and take it up a level and transform it into a web SAAS application.
Starting in April 2020, we put out a beta version and tested it with a handful of beta users.
In mid-July, we made Cleavr available to purchase.
Since then, we started to put a lot of focus in having Cleavr provide first class support for NodeJS applications - with a focus on AdonisJS and NuxtJS frameworks.
We put out a ton of new features via the pull-method of having customers pull us towards their needs.
We've met a lot of cool innovators in the NodeJS community and have picked up nearly 70 subscribers.
We're still a ways away from ramen profitability and sustainability with Cleavr. But, I feel that will be a major milestone that we'll hit this year.