I am officially no longer a bar manager. Was a decision that I had to make so I am done and dusted.
Why I Quit
It’s not easy running a bar. If you think it is, I got bad news for you. Regardless of the type of bar it is, you have no idea what goes on behind the scenes. You just have no clue what it takes to keep a bar moving forward all the time.
Factor in the fact that I was drinking every night, even nights when I was “light” drinking, I was still drinking. I got to the point where I could do 10 shots and not even blink. I’m sure I was legally drunk in most countries but I felt fine. Not even a little. It was taking massive amounts of alcohol for me to get drunk over hours.
Factor that in that I was going to bed between 4 and 8 AM regularly then having to get up and do other stuff, it got to the point where my body was shattered. I’m 44, not a young man and that is what the Pattaya bar managers game in, a young man’s game.
I did the bar manager thing as a favor. It became a constant source of stress for me. There was always something that needed to be done. I left my old life to get away from endless stress. What I found was I was working more and having more stress than before.
When you need to worry about paying the bills, the staff showing up, the staff doing their job, entertaining people when you really aren’t in the mood and short of sleep. It just stressed me the fuck out like you would not believe. To the point where I was losing my shit over the littlest things.
I kept showing up out of loyalty and pure stubbornness. It didn’t help the situation at all because it just made me more stressed.
I told my friend who was managing everything, that I just fucking can’t anymore. He was like great. The response was you are an amazing administrator, can manage the shit out of backend operations because you understand that on a level that most never will. You suck at the frontend where you constantly have to be “on” even when you feel “off”. You aren’t the best of hiding your emotions when you really aren’t in the mood to be there and the reality is, you had to be there a lot.
There was no animosity, no anger, in fact, I still do stuff, just not going to manage a bar anymore. It allows us to remain friends instead of people that work together on a level that just wasn’t going to work. They know I will help them out, hell, I even said I’ll do a cover shift if needed but no way am I ever going to grind out a bar for 6-7 days a week.
What Else Is There
I have a lot of stuff going on. A lot of it had to be pushed because I sat in a bar for so many nights and then waking up anywhere from Noon to 4PM wasn’t helping me accomplish any of it. Trying squeezing in daily life in a few hours before you have to go to work and rinse and repeat it daily. It literally becomes groundhog day.
So now I get to focus back on those other projects, stuff I’m generally interested in that I wanted to do. I thought I wanted to run a bar, I thought horribly wrong. Now it’s back to what I know and what I am good at. It also means, I don’t have to drink every day and can have a normal life where I can watch TV and do stuff normal people do. Bar managers aren’t normal. Trust me on that.
So In The End
I am happy I did my little experiment. In the 2 months I did it, I learned more than I ever wanted to. Trust me, there are things I have seen and done that that would blow your mind. Guys that have done it for years have my deepest respect.
Move to another country, do your thing, just remember unless you are willing to put in tremendous amount of work, don’t run a bar unless that is your passion. It wasn’t mine. Stick to what you know and what interest you. Don’t let a dream turn into a stressed out nightmare.
Knowing your limitations is more important than just sticking with it and destroying yourself. Failure is always an option. It doesn’t mean you suck at life, it just means you tried something and it didn’t work. Failure should be used as a learning tool. There is nothing wrong with it. In this day and age when when people can’t be labeled and there are no winners and losers fails to teach. Failure is OK! You gave it your best and now move the hell on.
So I tried and failed. Done and dusted.