The screenshot explains itself.
I’ve run paid advertising for many of my clients in the past. Though, I’ve done very little for myself until now. It’s been five years of toil, with 2 steps…
It's been five years of toil, with 2 steps back/3 steps forward sort of progress for my marketing strategy firm. However, we've finally finished our first funnels outside of the freelancing websites we started with, and have begun to build the brand in the public eye.
The way we're scaling is with paid content. I'm taking my theory, called "Universal Marketing Mechanics," and creating a whole series of different formats to start passive income streams for the company.
We're looking at millions of dollars of revenue and profit over the next two to three years, that I'm going to continually reinvest into other things.
As I go to conferences and trade shows throughout Europe, America, and soon Latin America (as that early rising market develops), the future looks very bright.
We started effortlessly gaining likes and positive feedback for videos I actually published a long time ago.
When I first published them, they gained virtually no attention. However, this was not because of the quality of the content itself.
With just a little push of reinvested revenue, both my personal brand and my company's are making a steady climb in notoriety throughout key areas of the world, based on my targeted advertising.
Over the process of about two weeks, I performed the same series of paid advertising experiments that I would for my clients, but for myself, and discovered just how beneficial videos I made a long time ago, that seemingly had no purpose, suddenly are the tip of a multimillion-dollar branding spear.
The only question at this point is speed. How long will it take to reach the number of followers I need to produce the revenue results I want?
At the current rate, I'd say three to five years; though, that can entirely change if I seek investor funding through banks I've spent the past five years building deliberate, strategic relationships with.
For instance, part of the reason why it's taken five years is the fact that I've to rebuild my credit from its fall during a dark period of my past. (I've never had to file bankruptcy, though.)
So, because of how I started off as a psychologically damaged homeless veteran, I've bootstrapped my entire way here...against all external doubt in my character.
So, at the current rate we're advertising, yes, I estimate that it would take roughly three to five years to get to where I want to go.
However, if I were to incorporate my business and leverage my newly rebuilt credit score, and pulled out a large business loan that I could invest straight into advertising and trade show speaking opportunities...the results would undoubtedly come a lot faster.
And I've done all of this while studying physics full-time, servicing clients full-time, and being a family man.
It's been a hellish five to seven years...
...I've lost a lot of friends and family...
...I've been laughed at and called crazy...
...but seeds I've sewn years ago are finally coming to light...and I'm just getting started. 🙂
I have several kinds of memories that hover within my mind throughout the day. They are not so deep that they are subconscious, while they are not so conscious that…
I have several kinds of memories that hover within my mind throughout the day.
They are not so deep that they are subconscious, while they are not so conscious that they remain at the forefront. All are extremely painful. They hurt and inhibit me in the way that Dr. House's leg hurt and inhibited him.
Every day I wake up, life presents me with a choice: To give up or keep going.
The notion isn't necessarily tied to entrepreneurship; entrepreneurship is only an externality. At the core of the choice is my why, my reason for living. It's my reason to live that drives me to accomplish a goal; the goal is therein accomplished through entrepreneurship (largely, at least; though, not entirely).
My goal is to rebuild my culture. And if willpower is the product of emotion and why, then my pain goes hand-in-hand with my willpower. They are inseparable. The pain never subsides; it only increases as I grow older, accumulating more mistakes through the process of growing, self-actualizing.
It's conventional wisdom not to dwell on the past, but I don't feel as if I can help it the moment I question the reasoning behind any action I take, any decision I make throughout the day.
In general reference to any daily action, large or small, is what I'm about to do not rational? Then, it's wrong. If it is not efficient, then why and how can I become more so?
The process of answering these questions in order to maximize my productivity in the right direction requires me to reflect, indirectly. And doing so cannot be accomplished without pain.
Memories of people I've loved and cared about who've negatively misjudged my character, how their assumptions, doubts, lack of empathy, and inaccurate gossip hurt and shake the trust I put in people, as well as make me second-guess my own actions that led to them having such low opinions of me, in the first place, as I've tried to figure my life out without much guidance. Memories of specific wrongdoings committed against me as a child. Feelings of sorrow and regret at wrongdoings I've committed against others as I've grown. Hard interpersonal sacrifices I've had to make in the process of staying focused and aligned with my mission.
These all weigh on my mind, all day. Every day. As I work. Sometimes, they overwhelm me and I need to take a break. When I do, I have to remind myself not to beat myself up for doing so. To embrace the limits of my own mortality, which are greater than some...but less than others I admire.
It is like moving through molasses, climbing a mountain with weights on.
So, you can imagine how easy it is, to want to end it all sometimes. If not through literal suicide, then at least to give up on myself, in general.
Why not cash in my laurels to spend the rest of my life playing video-games (or something)? Why keep going? Why strive to make it to point Z, when I'm already technically at point B?
What helps greatly is my marriage, the family I've rebuilt. The thought of my wife and children. I am so fortunate to be one of the men in the world to have such a supportive wife. There are many women, an increasing number throughout our civilization in fact, who don't support their husband's work or ideas. Indeed, they compete with their husbands instead, or show little interest or respect for what he wants to do with his life.
Sometimes, they use the long hours required to make a dream come to fruition as the very excuse for divorce.
What I've done is integrated work and family, together. I'm always home and always at the office of my marketing firm, because I work and study from home. This has not been an easy task, because, for most people, working from home is a pipe dream. Very few pull it off, but I have.
I had the willpower to, which simultaneously means that I had the necessary depth of pain to.
Meanwhile, my wife and I work to build the same business: I'm the CEO; she's the VP. So, being at the office for her is being at home all the same as me. We just may work in different rooms.
The challenge is in differentiating between the two: the time for work, and the time for romance and family. Though, I will admit that what we've set up as a family gives us a major advantage over many other marriages in the world, who have spouses typically work apart from each other in an unrelated way.
Therein, my family, the new one I've built rather than all those I've had to disconnect from my life for one reason or another, is my greatest strength and greatest weakness. Work would be a potential pitfall that would break us apart if we didn't structure our lives in such a way as to build our businesses from home.
So, how do I deal with the depression that comes with dwelling from the past as an entrepreneur, then?
It never gets easier; you just have to get stronger. You have to look ahead of the road before you and see where the pitfalls are as much as you can. Then, structure your life in such a way as to prevent yourself from falling in them.
The rest is courage, what would be needed to make the decision to face life head-on anyway, even though you could stop at any time.
People tend to become their parents. So, while I’ve been the victim of narcissistic abuse as a kid, I must stay ever aware of my Jungian shadow, which has that…
People tend to become their parents.
So, while I've been the victim of narcissistic abuse as a kid, I must stay ever aware of my Jungian shadow, which has that element of the dark triad within it, as well. I'm too self-reflective to have been diagnosed with the full-blown disorder; though, I'll admit forthrightly that I have some narcissistic traits that inhibit me from accomplishing my goals.
Here's a video from my marketing firm that touches on my experience:
What counter-intuitively ended up being a good thing was my first publishing of Fighting for Redemption, the very first version, no longer on the market. Why? Because the ugliness of my tumor-exacerbated shadow was on full display in the way the book was written.
When I published it, I received a wave of criticism: Some of it was warranted; some of it wasn't. The criticism that wasn't came from genuinely malicious from people from my past who knew how to hurt me, rather than seeing a wounded person who was struggling that they could help.
In the bird's eye view, though, looking back on everything, it didn't really matter whether a person was malicious in their criticism or not; what mattered is that I did, indeed, put myself out there. By exposing the ugliest part of myself to the light of the world, I was able to become self-aware. By becoming self-aware, I was able to individuate with my shadow. By individuating with my shadow, I was able to get somewhere real in life through self-development.
I was able to become a better person, even if it's taken baby steps to do so.
I just had to make it through the emotional turmoil that was the process, to overcome suicidal depression, massive embarrassment, and go deep into the source of why I had the weaknesses to my character that I did.
Attention is like a drug; the neurotransmitters it elicits are euphoric. However, there's a social stigma attached to attention-seeking behavior that isn't totally logical. For instance, what are industry influencers and celebrities if not people who are professional attention-seekers? They attract people's attention in waves; this makes them natural billboards with the potential for great profit. Movie stars, social media influencers, politicians, etc. may often not be the most likable characters of our world; yet, they are critical elements of it, and they wouldn't be able to continue existing if there wasn't market demand for them.
Attention is a critical element of raising a healthy child. There was a story I've once read about (though, I can't remember where from) about experiments the Nazi scientists used to perform during WWII. In one of their cruel (yet fruitful) experiments, I heard that they deprived a newborn completely of attention. They made sure that all of its nutrients were there; everything the baby technically needed to survive in theory was provided. They just wanted to see what would happen when they'd deprive the baby of attention.
...the baby died.
So, attention in and of itself is a natural part of life. It's not attention that's bad, nor is it the act of seeking attention.
...it's the way one goes about it that is the problem, how much they need, and for what purpose.
For instance, it's fine if a person is motivated by attention if the way they'd like to earn it is by curing cancer. Curing cancer would bring you waves of attention, without a doubt. You'd go down in history. You'd get more attention than any singular human being could probably ask for...in exchange for something you did that genuinely helped humanity in an immeasurable way.
Personally, I have zero problem with that; the ancients had a name for that kind of attention-seeking: glory.
The pursuit of glory is as old as recorded time itself.
However, there's a difference between going on a hero's journey to earn glory at great risk and sacrifice in an honest manner, and being a willful disrupter who can't or won't earn it.
I've worn both shoes at different times in my life, as I've wrestled with my mind with the genuine intent to become a better person. It's not been easy, and every new major accomplishment I've achieved has directly coincided with a new and deeper level of my own pain that I've been able to face and overcome through self-reflection.
Therein begs the question, from whence cometh my pain?
Some of it is genetic; some of it is environmental. It's a combination of both.
I can't blame my parent(s) for everything, just quite a bit pertaining to specific actions they took at different times that heavily scarred me (such as locking me in a closet with a spider I was terrified of, among others).
A combination of horrific experiences, multiplied by inhibitory genetic memory pertaining to slave evolutionary psychology have made for considerable hurdles for me to continually overcome.
Therein, as I've moved in baby steps, like a drug addict would decrease their dosage and type of drug use to something progressively mild until their nervous system could take being totally clean again, I've had to manage the kind of attention I'd seek.
As I've written before, people like me need to write, if not for other people than simply to face the literary mirror of my own mind. The process of thinking, writing, reviewing, and revising my own thoughts is in and of itself a form of meditative reflection that helps me to face the past and heal.
As I heal, I'm able to take greater steps onto higher levels of success through self-actualization.
This is why I was on Facebook for several years, writing the way that I was. It wasn't all for attention, but part of it was. Undeniably.
It's well-documented how addicting the validation that comes with people's reactions to posts are. For some, that's the extent of where they get hooked and sucked in by the void of social media. For me? It was a transitory phase to something better; hence, the gradual decline in posting and eventual shutdown of my entire, personal, public page, itself.
What helps me to gain the willpower to go into deeper levels of healing is my own personal hero's journey. I may not be a hero of the world in the ancient Greco-Roman sense, but I am a hero of my household, and it is because I need to be there for people who depend on me, people that I love and care about far more than I do myself, that I have to reach deep down, sacrifice of myself, and do whatever I need to do to reach the next level not for myself, but for them.
The reason why I want to do this is to give them a better life than I had. And the reason why I want to give them a better life than I had is because I care about and love this world, despite how dark of a character I can actually seem to be: By giving my children a better life, may they grow into better people. By growing into better people, may they make the world a better place by living in it.
This is not the same thing as me striving to live vicariously through my children, though; that's a form of narcissistic parenting. All are potential pitfalls that I should be constantly aware of, to become the best parent (and thus person) I can be, despite my scarring.
So, it's not actually narcissism that is the struggle. Narcissism, in my specific case, is an externality, a symptom, not the source. The real struggle I face pertains to the multitude of wounds inflicted upon my soul as a child that still hurt every day, and finding the strength to keep going despite them.
Because if I fail my family, if I fail my people, then a great hope is lost.