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Success is a product, uncomfortable situations are founders.

10 years ago, when I was pressing the button of my pc at my office early morning around 9.15 am. One of my seniors asked ‘Naveed! You need to go to the waiting room and wait for the boss’ I said ‘Why?’ He told because you had not come to the office last Saturday.


I went to the room waited for around 2 hours when my team lead appeared and told me ‘You are fired’. I said ‘Why?’ he said ‘because you were not present on last Saturday’ I said ‘But, I’ve taken leave systematically and your permission was involved’. He said: ‘If we need your services more we will call you back’.


I came downstairs to the office building, on a hot summer day, from a chilled cool AC room to a road with pollution and noise, and heat. Started thinking ‘how would I tell this to my mother?’ as my elder brother was also jobless for a couple of months.


I went to an internet cafe, talked with the guy at reception to rent my one computer desk for the full month.


At that time, I didn’t even have a computer, table, and an internet connection at home.

That was around 2008.


That rented cafe was full of bad smell of gutka, weird voices coming out of headphones of what guys watching in their 2×2 feet cabins.


I installed design software on that PC and started to participate in international design contests and hoping to get another new job in the meanwhile or win some contests.


PCs there had a special system that was used to restore the system to a standard point whenever it got lock or restarted. It simply means if you go for a cup of tea outside of that cafe, all your software programs and work you did in that PC will be automatically deleted.


That was happening around 3-4 times a day because I always have to leave that PC for lunch and pray breaks.


That simply means I need to reinstall all those required software programs every day around 4-5 times and I was consistently losing my work.


Whenever I use to go out of the cafe for any break I needed to make sure none of my family members or friends see me otherwise I will have to explain the situation and that somehow become painful to my family.


PC restore problem has been resolved in some days as reception guys allowed special privileges.

Upcoming 3 months passed, I got an interview from a local software house, which I was excited to join.

Also, I won 3 design contests that worth my 4-month salary at that time.


That new company was a bigger challenge of life for me that I didn’t recognize at the time of joining. The team lead’s behavior was a consistent pain and faced shouting, verbal insulting in front of all office employees on small mistakes.


In 10 months, this attitude led me to the point where I decided to leave that office, and I resigned one day suddenly and start my journey. The journey that I had left 10 months ago in a dirty cafe.


The company CEO, my team lead, and mates got shocked by the sudden resignation and CEO called a private meeting and tried very hard on me to not leave. The team lead’s behavior suddenly changed as well. But I had decided.


I took a loan from a family member that could cover 3-month salary expenses in case I don’t earn anything in the next 3-months. A laptop and laptop also bought from that money, and the journey started.


Fast forward 10-12 years, life has awarded me profound outcomes out of those uncomfortable situations. I have done hajj with my parents, visited another country with my parents, bought a home, invested in multiple investment opportunities which I never got a loss on average, became an instructor of 15000+ students in 160 countries at udemy, became top rated freelancer at upwork with $100k+ earning, published a book on Amazon, and became a founder of 3+ failed startups.


Still, my parents don’t know I ever got fired from a job.


Life teaches you in such weird ways you can’t predict the why behind. Don’t try to connect the dots. That is not your job.


Success is a product, uncomfortable situations are founders. You can’t create the product without founders. Welcome them.

Community Member

You turned every unexpected challenge into an opportunity. You kept looking for opportunity instead of seeing failures. That's why you are successful. Congratulations!

Community Manager
Community Manager

Hi Sheikh,

Your experience is so inspiring, thanks for sharing it in the Community! 

I'd love to hear at which point you started using Upwork and if the platform played a part in scaling your business?

~ Vladimir
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