The Golden Handcuffs

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“The Golden Handcuffs” is a concept that many recognize but few escape. It goes like this.

When you start a new job, right out of college, you may not like it very much. But it’s the first time you’re being paid a salary so you deal with it. After some time, you decide enough is enough and start looking to make some changes: travel the world, follow a dream, start a business, etc. But right as you start to get the guts to make this decision, you receive a promotion, and start earning more money.

Originally, leaving your job to travel the world seemed easy. But after starting to earn more money and benefits, it begins to seem impossible. You become accustomed to earning a certain amount and you convince yourself you need to maintain that level of comfort.

The longer this goes on, the tighter the handcuffs become, until one day you wake up at 50 years old and regret never taking that big risk when you were younger. But by then, it’s too late. You’ve devoted your life to comfort, instead of passion.

If you feel those handcuffs start to tighten, ask yourself this: when was the last time you heard someone say, “I wish I hadn’t traveled when I was younger.”

Taking risks never gets easier. Waiting for the “right time” is like waiting for a green light to turn even more green. Listen to the honking behind you, it’s time to move.


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