Into Fire

I originally wrote a blog before this, but it didn’t end up saving. Honestly, I can’t complain. Not a lot has changed since I first penned the blog, though the topic has certainly shifted. “Just do something” was the advice I received from my younger brother, Mark, as he and I discussed the recent dilemma that has been occurring in my life. A part of me is restless because I’ve lost passion and purpose for what I’ve been accomplishing in life. Most of this stems from work; my web design/business consulting work is enough to put food on the table, along with the occasional superfluous purchase, but does little to fulfill my desire for success and achievement.

There have been quite a few individuals who have suggested I be happy with the fact I’m a 23 year-old self-employed individual. However, (and this is a big “however”) I am quite aware that my potential is greater than spitting out websites and giving first-time business owners pointers on how to succeed in their business, save on marketing costs, or find unique ways to gain customers.

Several years ago, I was driving to my Mom’s house and I noticed the sky was brightly lit up in the horizon. Even though it was late into the evening, the night sky was illuminated by the bright lights surrounding a huge construction project from a new project being constructed by a large corporation. Driving up the road, in my 1994 Volvo 940 Turbo sedan, I thought “Someday, I’m going to light up the sky” as I drove. Something in my heart began to shift, and I realized the path ahead of me was not going to be an easy life, nor would my goals be similar to my peers. From this point on, I began to mentally mine my inner desire for achievement and success; it was deep within my heart and inner DNA, but required significant thought, discovery, and sacrifice in order to be realized.

I would continue to discover many life revelations in that car, driving down country roads, unsure of whether or not I was racing along the road to calm my mind, or because racing down the roads was the only thing I could do to match the rate at which my mind was going. Driving home from work one evening, I took the detour through Upper Arlington, and it dawned on me that there were living human beings who inhabited these mansion-esque houses. Then it clicked…it’s possible. It’s possible to live a life much different than the one you are currently living. It’s possible to rise above your circumstances and create a new world for yourself and those you love. It’s possible to rise above the status quo of average.

This led me to a period of life where my constant inner chant was “I want it all”. This was the lens by which I viewed life, as I saw every dream was possible of being realized, should one properly live their life in such a way as to obtain it. It dawned on me the sacrifices and hard work that would be required in order to become extra-ordinary. No sacrifice seemed too great. No amount of work seemed too backbreaking.

Three years passed, during which time I began pursuing several entrepreneurial projects, hoping to find success and wealth. I upgraded my Volvo for a BMW 330i and learned how to tie a proper tie, while also learning how to speak the language of a young businessman. Unfortunately, all of these experiences were external, rather than internal; I learned how to walk, talk, and act like a businessman, without actually being one. One of my projects, VroomLive, was similar to this; we had everything but a sustainable business; a fancy office, underground parking garage, extravagant dinners at Hyde Park, slick looking business cards, an office full of interns, and a cool logo/concept. However, there wasn’t a revenue stream. The project failed, just as I, too, have failed in this capacity.

No, I’m not being too hard on myself. There is something wonderful about being honest about yourself to yourself. No lies. No flattery. Just pure, simple, honest truth that penetrates past the ego/pride. Were this to not spring any sort of conclusion or change, it would simply be a moment of harsh feelings towards myself that are entirely counterproductive to my well-being and future. However, I intend to do something with these revelations in order to spur me on to becoming the best possible version of myself.

I will not quit this life, nor settle for mediocre. I want success so badly that I am willing to do whatever is required to obtain it, through self-sacrifice, discipline, patience, and as much hard work as is required in order to become the person I dream of becoming. I will not settle for ordinary, or the average American dream. I want to obtain the highest possible mark of success and achievement that I am capable of obtaining with the life I’ve been given stewardship of.

No excuses. Just results.

Amen.

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