Engineers earn more money than we need, and the world is full of interesting problems that don’t promise a financial return. Why are the overwhelming majority of us still working for a paycheck?

Work on your idea full time without pay: This strategy has all the benefits of a side project but allows you to focus on your work without having to sacrifice family, friends, or health. Ditching your day job frees up time to learn more, be more giving, and be more creative. The biggest limitation is that with no feedback from the market or from a boss, it’s hard to be sure you’re doing something useful. It’s up to you, every day, to evaluate whether you’re taking a risk on something valuable or whether you’re just entertaining yourself. Money is the obvious second limitation, but you can solve the money problem simply by spending less.

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