I’ve noticed a few awesome writers here who share their background and life experiences. And it’s very meaningful because I love getting to know people’s stories!
When we’re able to take off our masks and reveal our true identities, it us and makes humanity better. We also make better connections.
So in the spirit of true authenticity, I give you my true story without all the corporate sounding bullshit.
I’ve always been a dreamer, a creative, and a rebel. They are all a part of my DNA and to deny it would be to deny my very existence.
They are the driving forces behind everything in my life.
Growing up I’d spend hours dreaming about endless possibilities or creating new worlds through my artistic talents. It felt like a glorious alternate universe one could not easily explain.
Of course that brought it’s share of problems.
While my parents always encouraged my freedom of expression, my teachers were never amused. There were always negative comments on my report cards about my creativity or my inability to be a good student.
“Jimmy, you’ll never make anything of your life. You draw too much.” — 4th Grade Teacher
Because I was constantly in trouble for drawing or dreaming, it led me to the powerful dark side of the force … rebelling!
When my teacher said I’d never make anything of my life it was like pouring gasoline on a raging fire. It would be the catalyst to ignite my passion for giving the finger to the world.
Throughout my life there have been the doubters, the critics, and the assholes who tried to stop me.
Maybe it’s because I barely graduated high school and quit community college after a few weeks. I had no formal business experience, no professional training, and no internet to guide me.
Perhaps it was because I was weird with a kick ass mullet. I don’t know. Most people just never believed I was capable of success or achieving anything worthwhile of my life.
Despite all of these challenges I found a way to overcome them.
And I feel like I’ve won the lottery!
Honestly I really don’t like talking about myself or past accomplishments for two reasons: No one likes a braggart and the past doesn’t matter.
The other side is if I don’t share some of successful experiences, then how do you know I’m legit or even know what I’m talking about?
In my opinion, trust is more valuable than money.
Once you lose trust you can never get it back but you can always make more money. With so many hucksters peddling bullshit these days, trust is priceless and real proof is beneficial.
That being said, please let me share some of my wins.
I’ve earned an amazing living doing the things I love to do while working lifestyle businesses for over 35 years.
I’ve been married 32 years to my high school sweetheart and we currently travel the world as digital nomads. It’s been the adventure of a lifetime.
I’ve helped make and raise two amazing kids, but my wife deserves ALL the credit otherwise they would be completely fucked up. LOL!
I’ve served in the U.S. Army Reserve and Oklahoma National Guard because my childhood dream was being Rambo and protecting others.
I’ve appeared on national and local TV for interviews about tornadoes, religion, freedom, and even a murder. Crazy but true.
I’ve written a few books, coached thousands of freelancers, and been interviewed on some of the highest rated business podcasts.
I’ve created artwork and designs for brands like HTC, BMW, NASCAR, Arnold Palmer, Honda, Eskimo Joes, NCAA, Disney, and Nike Golf.
I’ve spoken about entrepreneurship, marketing, and freelancing at 20 conferences across the United States.
Of course I’ve had a shit ton of failures between all of these, and not all are professional accomplishments, but they are things I’m most proud about.
Especially because I was never supposed to make anything of my life.
There are a lot of other personal hardships I’ve had to overcome as well like sexual abuse, fat shaming and bullying, and almost dying multiple times — but let’s save that for another day. I don’t want to bore you!
I do want to wrap up by saying this:
Believe in yourself even when the rest of the world doesn’t.
There will be times when you feel like quitting or giving up. There will be days you think you’re stupid for chasing your dreams. There will be people who think you’re an idiot or incapable.
Give all those reasons and all those haters the middle finger.
I want to encourage you today to be a dreamer, be a creator, and be a rebel.
Pour the gasoline on your fire and go prove everyone wrong.
You’ve got this.
And I’m here to help or cheer you on.
Want some more social proof? Here’s a few links to interviews and podcasts in case you need something to check out while sitting on the toilet.