Excuses

This has been one of those times where I’ve started the blog and deleted everything I’ve writing a few times. This time, whatever hits the page is staying on.

It’s easier to write when I write every day. Only a few things would have happened that I really want to write about and I write about it. Now, it’s hard because it’s been so long since I’ve written something. Eliz came back. She booked nearly everything for the wedding. We will decide on some things together but that’s about it. If everything goes according to plan we should have the house this week. I’m looking forward to it but I’m also anxious. It’s a lot to think about. We went to visit it and there is a lot of work to be done. Things I never even thought about. For instance, I never had to cut grass before because I always lived in a condo. That’s one of the upsides of living in a condo.

Today was hard for me. I’m trying to list my products on Amazon and I’ve been struggling. Everything I try hasn’t worked. Now I need to wait again for approval before I can get the product listed. It feels like it’s taking forever. I may just be impatient. Maybe I’m just mad at myself for those nights that I procrastinated. Although, I don’t think that’s what it was. I don’t think I was procrastinating. Maybe I wasn’t prioritizing it ahead of everything else. I wanted to write. I wanted to spend time with family. I wanted to see friends. I wanted to sleep. Spent most of today on it and I don’t feel like I truly accomplished anything. It’s an overpowering feeling.

It would’ve have been nice to be able to say, at least I finished the listing, but I wasn’t able to complete it. I can only control what I can control. I’ve been sitting here like an upset, grumpy old man because of things I can’t control. I hate when I do that. Then I get more upset because I see that I’m acting that way and wishing I wasn’t. Then when I can’t change it right away I get even more frustrated. It’s a vicious cycle. All the while it’s affecting people’s moods around me.

I feel the need to mention a conversation I had with one of Eliz’s cousins few days ago. We went out to grab a beer and had a great conversation about business, ambition, relationships, Continue reading “Excuses”

Fear Set

I’ve started to learn the Dvorak Keyboard. I’m learning it quickly. I need to make time to work on it.

My products have come in from China for Invictus Beard. I was worried about the quality of it. I was worried about how it would get through customs. I was worried the products may get sent back because I forgot to include “Made in China” anywhere on the label. Luckily all my worries were unwarranted. Mark Twain said, “I’ve had a lot of worries in my life, most of which never happened.” I like that quote because I tend to worry about the future and be anxious.

I think about this quote often. Anytime I think of scenarios that may happen I pause and remind myself that it’s all hypothetical until Continue reading “Fear Set”

Booked

Today was a great day.

We booked the trip for my bachelor party. I’m really looking forward to that trip. My best friends and I hanging out in Dominican Republic. It’s going to be amazing.

Once again, I need to reiterate how important it is to have good friends. It’s great to have people that I can turn to for advice. For counsel.

Most of them are a year or two older than me. We are all going through the same things. There will be seven of us on the trip.

I talk to these guys every day.

We talk about starting a business often. Something we can all contribute to. We still haven’t done it yet. Maybe we will. We’ll see. It was hard enough to get the trip booked. We kept putting it off. Then it took one of us to look it up. Make a call. Then we were all booking within a few hours.

Of course, there was some research that took up a bit of time initially. In any case, we needed that one person to take the lead. I’m glad he did it. I really appreciate it.

It wasn’t hard. It didn’t take long. He simply looked online. Found the best deal. Made a call. Told us. We booked. Done.

I’m trying to be the one friend Continue reading “Booked”

A Cold Shower

I never think of the Title first then start writing. I don’t know if this is the correct way to do things. I just begin writing, most of the time without a clue of where I’m headed. Usually, I’ll just pick the title afterwards based on something I’ve written.

I take cold showers now. I had read an article a few months back that mentioned the advantages of taking cold showers. So I began slowly making my showers colder. Now, I’m at a place where the entire time the water is cold. I still haven’t reached the capability of having only cold water on. Now, let’s be clear, cold water in Canada is different than cold water in Dubai.

In my trip to Dubai I only ever had the cold water running and I could’ve been in the water for hours. Then I came back to Canada, a brave soul. I tried it here and was quickly reminded how cold a Canadian shower can get.

My mornings are becoming more of a routine and it starts with journaling. Then gym. Sauna. Finished off with a cold shower. I try to read aloud my goals to myself too. And I definitely need to start working meditation back into the routine. Nonetheless, whenever I follow this routine I am notably more productive. Also, I feel significantly more energetic.

Maybe it’s the cold shower that does it. Trust me, after a 20 minute sauna, a cold shower will give anyone energy.

I told myself to try new things, and this is definitely one that has been paying off. I thought, taking cold showers is great and then I came across a name, Wim Hof.

This guy is incredible, he basically says he can control his immune system. He ran a full marathon in -20 degree Celsius wearing shorts and did the same in the desert without food or water.

I want to be able to do that some day. I know everyone says stuff like this but once I achieve financial freedom and have the ability to retire this is the kind of stuff I want to get into.

Hof says it’s all about meditation. That’s it. We all have the tools within us to be able to achieve such tremendous heights. Yet, we waste it away. We don’t think about the time we are wasting every day on incredibly frivolous things. These are the types of things I am striving to do once I reach my financial freedom.

I was able to slowly build up my cold water tolerance to a place that I’m quite proud of right now. It just took a few seconds here, a minute there during my regular showers to be able to achieve it. This is how I envision myself becoming successful in my career and in my online store.

Day by day. Slowly pushing myself to get better each day. Constantly pushing myself. An hour, 10 minutes, the entire morning, whatever it is. Simply getting better. That’s the goal. I believe the 9-5 is an extremely outdated system. How is it that I can do all my work from my laptop, anywhere there is Wifi, yet I have to go into an office from 9-5? How could it be that someone extremely efficient still has to work the same number of hours as someone that is idle?

Well, luckily, I don’t have to go to an office. This doesn’t mean I sit around and don’t get any work done. On the contrary, I’ll argue that I get more done working from home. There are fewer distractions here as long as I create a space to work from.

I can put on some music and just do what I need to get done. I can knock out so much work in 1-2 hour intervals and take breaks in between. Go for a walk with Niko or make myself something to eat. It serves a purpose. If I sit and try to work all day then I’d get less then. Try it yourself if you can. Interval working.

The emphasis is to always be productive and move forward. I really am beginning to understand that our time here is limited and I want to enjoy it all. At the same time I am beginning to understand what gives me true joy.

What brings me enjoyment? Well, knowing that I am able to transform myself. Knowing that I am bettering myself each day. Knowing that I am continually looking to improve and now I finally know how. Books.

Before smartphones I used to go to bathroom and sit there and think. I remember as a teenager I always used to ask myself how I can improve upon myself. What could I do to be a better basketball player? What could I do to be a better friend? What could I do to be a better person?

I would sit there and ponder these questions and hope to find answers in my own mind. I guess even that was a form of meditation. Sometimes I would find those answers within myself.

Not like in books though. Now, I read books written by people that have studied brilliant minds. I read letters written by Seneca. I read autobiographies of wealthy people. I read about 7 habits that are sure to make anyone more effective.

Books have the answers. Learning from someones experiences is the fastest way to growth. Reading makes me think unlike watching a movie. Oftentimes I face situations and just think what would Tim Ferris do? How would Stephen Convey react? How would Wim Hof handle this challenge?

Reading books has helped me finally answer those questions I used to ask myself while sitting on the toilet as a teenager. Each day I’m getting better. Each day I’m pushing forward, even if it is ever so slowly. Doesn’t matter because I’m proud of myself. I’m proud of my goals. I feel as though I am reinventing myself like a snake shedding off his old skin. It’s all thanks to books.

Fail, Don’t Quit

I’ve been working on my site now for a few months and I’ve made some progress. I thought I would be further along but at least it’s moving.

Besides, it was Christmas time, and now people are just coming back from Chinese New Year.

That means there aren’t any excuses left. It’s really time to get the products and make some sales.

Oh, and my friends found out about my store. I was trying to keep it a secret but I think it’s better that they know. Why keep it a secret? Well, what if I fail, it’s not easy to face my group of friends after failing at something. Or, at least that’s what I thought.

A friend of mine mentioned that he doesn’t care if I fail but he’ll destroy me like Lebron did Charles Barkley if I quit.

Makes sense.

I think we are all mature enough to understand you can fail but you can’t quit. At least we should understand. There is a difference between failing and quitting.

I knew my friends would support once I started something but I think I needed to actually start it before telling anyone. There is always a thousand reasons not to do something and I didn’t need to hear any of those reasons from people I respect.

Maybe they would’ve said it’s not the right product to sell. Maybe they would’ve said it’s a bad idea. Maybe they would’ve been supportive right from the start. It doesn’t matter now because this is the way I did it and so far it has worked for me.

I didn’t want to present anyone with the chance to change my mind. When I set out to start my online store only my fiancé knew and if I had her support it was enough.

It seems I’m at the most critical point of my young online store. I have to put up a significant amount of money to order my products.

Some of you may think “So what? Just get on with it” but it’s not that simple.

As I mentioned before we got a doberman now, Niko. What’s that got to do with anything?

Well, he is a big boy now and doesn’t fit in our Honda Civic Coupe. We are looking at buying a new car. Something bigger, an SUV. As you know, the bigger the vehicle, the more expensive it is. Thats expense 1.

I mentioned my fiancé so obviously there is a wedding to consider and where there is a wedding, there is a bachelor party.

I love my group of friends and we want to go on an all inclusive trip. Yeah, I know “Boo-hoo, 25 year old wants to go on an all inclusive and wants to complain it’s too scary to buy products to start a business”. Well you’re right but I’m 25 once. I’m only going to get married once. I’ll only have a bachelor party once, so yeah, I’m spending some money to enjoy with my best friends. That’s expense number 2.

Now, the big expense. The wedding. It’s still a year away but a year goes by real fast. I’ve put some money away already but I know that I’ll still need more. I could put away the money that I would spend on the products and be in a better position for the wedding but my goal is to start a business. That’s expense number 3.

Let’s not forget the everyday expenses. I’ve considered all of this. I’ve also considered the fact that I work at a start up. I think I do a great job but I don’t get paid a lot either. Still probably an entry level or close to an entry level salary. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining, these are just the facts.

Basically, what I am trying to say is maybe I don’t have a lot of extra money but at this stage I don’t care. I am willing to take these risks because it’s been a dream of mine to start my own business. I never knew what I would do but I have a great idea of what I want to accomplish.

Despite having all of these expenses, I’ve decided to go ahead and order the products. It may all come crashing down but at least I can say I tried and did something. The potential ROI outweighs the risk in this instance. Actually, I’ve wanted to do this for so long that I already feel like I feel the returns in my mood. I don’t think I’ll fail. I definitely don’t plan to. Even if I do, I’m going to keep trying until I find a way to reach my goals.

One thing is for certain though, I can’t quit because Barkley got it bad from Lebron but I’ll get it worse from my boys.

 

 

Finally

I’m finally doing it. I think.

I read 4 Hour WorkWeek almost 2 years ago. I told myself I would start something for myself. I didn’t say I would quit my day job. I like my job. Although, it’s getting pretty rough nowadays. Good thing about it is I get to work from home. Few of my friends have been asking what’s holding me back from starting my own thing?

I don’t really have an excuse. I don’t get stuck in traffic every night. I don’t have kids. Nothing is consuming my time outside of work hours. So why haven’t I started something?

I didn’t know where to start. I kept putting it off. Day after day.

“I’ll do something tomorrow.”

“What should I do? ”

“How would I do it?”

“What if I fail?”

“What if I lose money on it?”

“It’s okay, you don’t have too many responsibilities yet. I’ll be okay. Alright, I’ll start something tomorrow.”

Repeat.

This went on for about a year or so.

Then I began to realize that I am wasting my time. Realizing is different than actually doing something about it. I’d say to myself:

“I know I shouldn’t be watching re-runs of Friends. Do something. Start something.”

“I know I shouldn’t start a new show on Netflix. I should be starting a business. Doing something.”

“I know sports aren’t that important. But the Raps are facing the Cavs. I should be doing something. Starting something. I’ll just start tomorrow!”

Then this went on for about a year or so.

Frustrating.

Then I went to lunch with someone I admire. A client. Young guy that started his own business. He’s making great money. Sitting a few rows behind the Raps bench. Season tickets.

During this time I was suffering a concussion. Worst thing ever. Can’t watch TV. Can’t read. Can’t listen to music. Can’t be out in too much light. Brain chemistry is messed up. It’s not a great place to be.

I decided to listen to Tim Ferris’ podcast. He interviews extraordinary people. I enjoyed the questions he would ask. “What’s your morning routine?”, “What’s your favourite book?”, “What’s the last book you gave as a present?”.

Back to my lunch. Having been hearing these questions, I asked if he likes to read. He told me he read Think and Grow Rich. Suggested I read it too.

I did. It’s amazing.

It’s amazing because it made me realize one thing. I am the only thing holding myself back from starting something for myself.

So I decided to start something. Really start a business.

I began to re-read 4HWW. There’s a portion that suggests one contact a person that has found success in what one is trying to achieve.

I want to start an online store. I know this because I created a goal while reading T&GR. It’s simple really. Make a lot of money, and have a lot of time to do things I love.

So I decided to look for successful online stores.

I came across Steve Chou. This guy has started a course about selling products online. He has done it. His wife quit her job so they can do it together. So I signed up. It’s been pretty great so far.

We’ll see how it all turns out.