Thanks for the advice everyone, really appreciated. Between working full time, lifting 3-4 days a week, teaching myself graduate level numerical methods, and barely getting 4-6 hours a of sleep a night, this helps a lot. Ive been feeling guilty about being so tired, and it only makes things worse when you tell people your goals and dreams (get a PhD in engineering and start a business) and all they do is give you shit why it is ok to stick around at a menial 9 to 5.
My best defense so far has been to ask them why...but honestly it is tough coming home at night, being so tired that sitting on the couch results in passing out for a few hours (this Sunday after I got home from the gym I sat on the couch and passed out until 10pm), on top of not having anyone to talk too (because they are so damn negative, undisciplined or lazy).
Ive got a good friend for example, I asked him to look into investing in a business together. We both have a complementary skill set and I believe as a team we'd have great potential...But at the end of the day a 9 to 5 route is simply easier. And that his the path he choses, but then goes on about all the crap he wants to do. I said to Im "If you aren't doing it now youre never going to do it." Sent him a wonderful speech "The Art of Being Fully Human" where this message is repeated. Sigh...
I guess I am feeling a little like I did when I was living with my parents. They hated the idea of me being successful. I was regularly put down and discouraged from doing anything remotely impressive. Still got my degree in aeronautical engineering (with great letters of rec), lead a team to design a UAV which met some pretty impressive goals (alas, we did miss deadlines), and in the weightlifting circle, I'm very close to a 315 ATG squat and probably over a 500lb farmers walk/frame carry. I got into a gym where we have some people going for their pro-card in strongman.
So screw the people who say what you cant do!
I was enrolled in a PhD program, but I didn't even make it past the first semester. I was so depressed... It was like "I cant believe I made it through all this." and something in me shut down. Like I couldn't handle the fact that I got though all those years of put downs, abuse, and negativity, without resorting to drugs or self harms. I got offered a position researching turbulence in supersonic flow and after that for some reason this incredible cloud of doubt and sadness came over me. I feel like that mistake screwed my life up so much. Every day I wake up wishing I had my life back right before I started that program. Every hour I think about it (it has been 2 years). And the worst part is for the first time in my life I doubt myself.