I hope some of the older members can help! I began mowing lawns in 1985, started with 2 push mowers in the back of my Toyota Celica. In 1997 I had about $150,000 worth of equipment, 5 employees, had great accounts, great reputation and made good money. Then the bottom dropped out. The labor pool dried up and the bottom feeders were the only ones you could find employ. In 14 mos I had employees steal over $4300 of tools, wreck (1 totaled) 2 trucks, 3 workmens comp claims (2 on their first day of work and before lunch), 1 new Great Dane torched and a turnaround of 24 employees. Of course work and reputation suffered. In May of 2001 I became so burned out with dealing with a major crisis EVERY DAY, I returned to the job that I left in 1990 to mow. This job is not physically demanding, somewhat stable, and the people are great, but there is no challenge or motivation (government job, but not all are like mine) and there is no chance of promotion. I am going crazy because I still have a lot of ambition, miss having that excitement of "earning" my pay, using my creativity, and providing a permanent testament of that in my landscaping. I loved the lawn work but I tired of fighting sorry help, etc. I've been here for a year and have had time to ponder over my mistakes and realize I lost control because I became a slave to debt, made bad hires because of it, etc. With God's grace, a lot of long hours, and selling some of my excess I have recovered for the most part. I have kept my business operating (Seeding, landscaping, mowing) and am doing better now than in three years. I am considering returning to the full time status, but now I make $21 and hour, have lots of time off, and have a 401K, am I a fool to consider this?. I am 43 years old, can I do this at 53? Has anyone else had a similar situation? Would like some advise.