Here's My Story (So Far)

“The theme I’ve surmised from all my experiences so far is this: adversity is always engrained with a benefit that outweighs the hurt.”  – Me, as read down below 👇

When I was nine years old, my mother passed away suddenly. From that time on, I perceived that my childhood was essentially over. It was time to step up and be more of a “grownup” for my family. This instilled a work ethic and dedication in me that I hadn’t previously had.

The rest of my youth had its ups and downs, but nothing ever stopped me from learning and improving. 

Service in France

At the age of 19, I made the choice to devote myself to a voluntary religious mission for two years. I was privileged to move to Southern France and teach people about my beliefs. 

It was the most positive experience of my entire life. The days were long (about 12 hours of on-your-feet-and-moving work per day), but I never felt that the difficulty outweighed the immense fortune it brought my life. Over those two years, I feel that I grew up and aged (mentally) about twenty.

I’ll forever cherish the amazing people I met in Carcassonne, Geneva, Bordeaux, and Lyon.

Getting Started in SEO

Upon my return to the United States, I realized something sort of important: I had no life skills whatsoever.

Determined to flip my fortunes once again, I asked around to find any meaningful work I could find. A buddy of mine from my time in France happened to work for a company called Boostability at the time. They did something called SEO, and I was completely oblivious to the whole concept.

He got me a job there (I owe you one, Russell) and I began learning the ins and outs of online marketing. 

It was a challenge for me upfront to make sense of it all. 

Robots, spiders, Fishkins. What is all this?

Slowly, but surely, I started to grasp it. I worked in several different positions and offices for that company. My next stop was to try my hand at agency life.

Yet another buddy from my time in France (different one, S/O to Danny) was working at an agency called Foxtail Marketing. As I started my first few days there, it became apparent that there was so much more to learn. Once again, I was totally lost for a good month.

Agencies have a way of accelerating who you are as a marketer. If you’re good, you get really good, really quickly. If you’re mediocre, it spits you out even faster.

Luckily, I had the chops within me and developed quickly into a linchpin member of the team.

Working from a Remote Location

After a while, my wife and I made the decision (following many different events) to move across the country to live with her family in Florida. This meant that I would either have to find a new job, or find a way to keep the one I had at Foxtail. And since it’s easier to go snowboarding in Florida than it is to find a job in marketing, I only had one option.

I proposed to Foxtail’s CEO, Mike, that allowing me to work remotely would be a great experiment for him to see how viable it would be in general. Since he knew he could trust me, there was no hesitation in his voice. He agreed immediately, and I am still thankful to him to this day. 

So we packed up our few things we had in a small trailer, and headed out for the open road. It was just me, my pregnant wife, and our 6 cats. 

That’s not a typo.

Over the next year, I worked from home and witnessed some incredible things. 

First and foremost, we had a beautiful baby girl in February of 2018. Fatherhood changed everything for me. It provided even more challenges and benefits than ever before. 

Parenthood has been like the Y-Combinator of building character.

I also managed to build up a solid client base on the side for my own business, all while maintaining my remote work with the company in Utah. It was a lot of hard work, but it pushed me to grow.

Eventually, the remote work opportunity ended and I continued working on my own business. It grew fairly quickly (for a one-person show) and kicked my butt many times.

Moving Once Again…And Then Again

Fall of last year, I decided to put away my own consulting for a while in pursuit of greater skills. My family and I were down to two amazing options: Boston or Orange County.
 
I went up to Boston for some interviews and was blown away by that company. I was ready to pull the trigger on that opportunity and never look back.

I crafted the “Thank You, But” message for the company in California and sent it off.

Only a couple of minutes later, I started getting bombarded by phone calls coming from California. It was the COO and the CEO fighting for me to reconsider. They told me their plan for me: get great clients, host the company podcast, work remotely whenever, and enjoy real company loyalty.

This changed my perspective completely. I had no choice but to go with the company that fought to get me. That meant they would fight to keep me.

We got a place in Huntington Beach, CA and a few weeks later we went back on the road. 

The company proved to be exactly what I had bought into, and I was able to execute their plan for me quickly. 

A couple of months in, the company (Directive) announced the opening of their second headquarters in Austin, TX.

There weren’t very many volunteers, but I had a gut feeling (as did my wife) that this was the right move. We thought about it and prayed for weeks, and everything started to align for that shift to become a reality.

Three weeks ago, we moved to Austin, TX.

What’s Next?

I hate moving. Let me put that out there before you accuse me of loving the packing process.

That said, my little family and I are adventurous. Who knows what the future has in store for us? All I know is that it is going to be meaningful.

I’m doing my best to write my true thoughts about my failures, marketing, video, leadership, and podcasting to help others who are looking for a jumpstart.

I’m only 26, so I haven’t scratched the tip of the iceberg in terms of what I’ll do and what I’ll learn. I just hope I never stop.

 

 

 

 

 

Follow me on social

LinkedIn

This profile focuses on giving professional tips on SEO, PPC, Social Media, Remote Work, and Professional Development. I also talk pretty openly about any struggles I go through in my career.

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Twitter

On the tweeter, I like to give out tips on business tools I use that really make an impact on efficiency or effectiveness. I also get a little more human with my life and career. Like a hybrid of my Insta and LI.

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Instagram

I have no ambitions to become Insta-famous. Here, I share personal parts of my life that aren’t found anywhere else. I dive deep into family life, outside of work stuff, and things that I find interesting. 

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Facebook

Facebook is where my community resides. I  will post things that are more personal to the community if I feel that it benefits the whole. Still focused on growing websites and making your life better.

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Podcast

This is my macro platform. A bulk of the thoughts I put out come from things I discuss here. This is the best way to get to know me professionally and grow your business, hands down.

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Quora

The up-and-coming platform for me, and the coolest way to pick my brain. I answer questions here all the time about marketing, podcasts, remote work, self help, thought leadership, and a lot more.

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