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INTRO Hello World! I'm Seth and I'm after it :)

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Seth Goodluck

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I read Fastlane Millionaire several months ago and like many it was a wonderful course correction and FUMA (fire under my a$$). I read Unscripted immediately after and recently have been listening to the audiobooks during exercise.

I love the unabashed honesty that @MJ DeMarco delivers.
Finally, after several months I decided to actively join this forum.

So far? It's f*cking awesome.

I've always loved entrepreneurial communities and this forum seems by in large to be filled with successful and aspiring entrepreneurs. There's a quote that captures my sentimentality for the people and posts I've gone through so far:

The only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars and in the middle you see the blue centerlight pop and everybody goes “Awww!” - Jack Kerouac
I'm due to leave my job in about 1.5 months and focus on fastlane full-time for no less than a year. I've got my LLC, products, lead list, website, all that jazz.

My profile explains a lot of the why, I'll put in a quote box so you can read it if you want to. Though, it is kind of long.

I grew up in a hicktown to a loving family that straddled the sidewalk and the slowlane.

After my dad lost his job, it was missed meals and poverty and I had my first FTE - I decided in the 8th grade while working a fruit factory line (terrible, terrible job) to go to an Ivy League and go for free. Shit education be damned, financial impossibility be damned, odds be damned.

8 Years Later, I'm the proud owner of an Ivy League degree (C's and B's get Degrees!), have almost no debt (will be clear by my birthday this year), have started (and failed/killed) 5 companies through college, and was out of the gates with a coveted Software Engineering Job at an awesome company.

"That's nice, so what have you done lately?"

I've been working at my job, aggressively attacking my debt, saving, helping family where and when I could. The salary was great, the co-workers awesome, the company wonderful as a whole.

But the shoe doesn't fit. The cushy life of a Software Engineer has me firmly planted in the Slowlane. After a couple of years, finding Fastlane, a spur of the moment YC interview, and meeting someone on a plane who was young and FI, I realized just how jaded and unhappy I was with my current situation.

It was uncomfortable to try and complain about how my 'awesome' life wasn't in my eyes. No one, outside of entrepreneurial circles, could fathom how a 6-figure a year salary, 6 days o' slavery a week life could be looked on with such scorn.

Fast forward to today... my last day is Jan 01, 2019. I have my LLC, website, products, an 8000 call lead list that I generated myself, and a raging focus on wealth generation.

None of what I want in life comes without freedom. None of it comes without wealth. None of it comes on the Slowlane (no matter how soft and cushy the ride).

Why Do You Want It?

Because I want to pay my parent's mortgage.

Because I want to be an investor and to breathe life, advice, and money into the brilliant and zany ideas of others.

Because I want to start a private aerospace company.

Because I want to be able to travel anywhere in the world with my family and friends and not worry.

Because I want to be able to comfortably and painlessly support a family (should I opt for that route) and still have nice things.

Because F*** Slavery

Because I will do better.

Because the slowlane, no matter how well traveled, under no circumstances intersects with my aspirations.

Because producers create value in the world for others and push the human race forward.

Because I can and I will

-

This works one and only one way.


So f*ck it, I'm all in on this. I'm going to succeed at Fastlane Financial Freedom or I'm going to die trying. No exceptions. No giving up. No bullshit.
Suffice it to say, I've been after it for a couple of months now and I'm stoked for the wisdom and grateful for the common mindset shared across this forum. In only a couple of days, I can tell that I've barely scratched the surface.

I'm always open to discussion, arguing, brainstorming, etc.
Looking forward to having company on this journey of mine.

If you're seasoned, *high five*
If you're new, *high five*

If you have some questions regarding software engineering/website building/etc that's my day job and I'm happy to offer perspective.

Let's get on it!
 

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Startup Steve

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Oct 29, 2018
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I'm very curious to know more about these five failed companies. I've shut down businesses before but they were all profitable while in operation.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G930A using Tapatalk
 

Merging Left

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Welcome, Seth. It sounds like you have a solid foundation for your current business venture - do you have any sales yet?
 
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Seth Goodluck

Seth Goodluck

Bronze Contributor
Read Millionaire Fastlane
I've Read UNSCRIPTED
Speedway Pass
Oct 30, 2018
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192
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Pacific Northwest
I'm very curious to know more about these five failed companies. I've shut down businesses before but they were all profitable while in operation.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G930A using Tapatalk
Hey Steve - happy to share!

1) Subscription Nutrition Supplements. Made profit. But my heart wasn't in it and once Amazon started their subscriptions the financial gain against the time needed to compete didn't seem worth it to me. So I let it fizzle out and die.

2) Charitable Coffee Company - Bought, branded, and sold coffee while travelling. Ended up donating thousands of dollars all over which was awesome. After travels, the co-founders scattered to different parts of the world and 'life/school' took focus. So it died with the dead effort

3) Software/Hardware Consultin - took on contract projects leveraging able developer friends. Built many websites. The money was good but very time consuming and because the projects were custom and I lacked the XP for SLAs a lot of time was consumed in ''little changes" and tech support. So disbanded it to work in an established firm

4) drop shipped t shirt business for outdoorsy people. Boring for me.

5) Car arbitrage. Would offer to sell people's cars for them. Had a knack for writing good ads and getting good prices. But you can only sell so many vehicles before you need a dealer license. Also, got tedious and the time-to-profit was so-so.

6) hardware repair dude - tedious and time consuming.

Engineering degree also consumed a lot of focus and energy. involved in a lot of projects with friends.

If I had to summarize the failures I'd say they largely hinged on a lack of focus and desire. I would try a business for several months or even a year or two and burn out. I didn't have any real objectives in mind other than ''start something and see where it goes".

That lack of definite focus and relative lack of passion in most of them were their downfall.

I don't regret having done any of those. Learned a lot about what I liked, didn't like, what I was good at, what I needed to learn. Valuable experiences every one.
 
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Seth Goodluck

Seth Goodluck

Bronze Contributor
Read Millionaire Fastlane
I've Read UNSCRIPTED
Speedway Pass
Oct 30, 2018
69
192
141
27
Pacific Northwest
Welcome, Seth. It sounds like you have a solid foundation for your current business venture - do you have any sales yet?
Not yet! Haven't cold called yet. I'm actually finalizing the label proofs this morning and should have the supplier container samples and sample labels here this week. Then product photography for the site and time to start calling.

I do have 5 locations that I've "sold" on the idea and have said they are willing to stock product (friends/personal connections). We'll see what happens when it comes time to pay on their part.

I've thought about implementing a money back guarantee. If they aren't satisfied with the product velocity I'll just buy my stock back so the business owners can only make money ... Need to think on that more though.

I will be posting updates and asking questions to this master mind as things get going though. My past 'ventures' don't have the level of focus, quality, and seriousness that this one does...
 

Bekit

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Welcome to the forum. You've already been of serious benefit to me in the other thread. And WOW! What an intro! I'm really inspired by your accomplishments.

Sounds like when you set your mind to a thing, you get it done. Out of curiosity, DID you end up getting your degree for free?

Wow to all your experience with the businesses you've started. It sounds like you've set up an exit strategy for yourself with you new product. Do you have a plan beyond cold calling? I wish you all the best with that!

I'd love to hear some of the strategies you used to escape the mindset of your family. Because it is very uncommon for someone to do what you did. How did you tackle the limiting beliefs you grew up with so that they didn't hold you back?
 
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Seth Goodluck

Seth Goodluck

Bronze Contributor
Read Millionaire Fastlane
I've Read UNSCRIPTED
Speedway Pass
Oct 30, 2018
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Pacific Northwest
DID you end up getting your degree for free?
Haha, sort of. I was fortunate enough to get this thing called "The Gates Millennium Scholarship" which was effectively a full-ride anywhere as long as it was STEM.

It was a 'last dollar' scholarship on minimum cost of attendance. I ended up with ~40K of debt because I chose to study abroad a couple of times (once in Australia, once on Semester at Sea), taking an extra year of school and effectively borrowed money from current me to do so.

While this may have been financially dumb, I don't regret it actually. Then me needed to have those experiences, if that makes sense. And current me is happy that he did.

It sounds like you've set up an exit strategy for yourself with you new product. Do you have a plan beyond cold calling?
Not really, not yet. If you have any ideas I'd love to hear them. Selling to small outdoor retail shops, climbing gyms, and other specialty sport stores 'feels' like something suited for cold calling and going in person.

My website (nearly ready... will post to forum when it is) isn't something I necessarily want end users to come across. It's copy mentions high margins and what not. It's meant to have a business buyer say 'alright, this feels legitimate.' while on the phone or meeting.

As for exit, there are so many ways that could possibly go. I need to think on it more. There's also this quote that goes "Premature optimization is the root of all evil... or at least most of it in programming" so I'm hesitant to spend too much time deciding how to exit when I haven't called yet. Need to think on it more.

I'd love to hear some of the strategies you used to escape the mindset of your family. Because it is very uncommon for someone to do what you did. How did you tackle the limiting beliefs you grew up with so that they didn't hold you back?
Edited/Redacted Original: Need to think on how I want to reply to that. Talking about myself isn't the aim. If anything this forum is about giving other people tools/perspective to help them along. Standby...

Family was actually super helpful.

My parents were financially senseless, sure. But they were loving, supportive, and intentionally raised my brothers and I to be completely independent, to ask questions, to question the status quo, to question authority, to demand clarity and reasoning from anyone - didn't matter who they were. That if I wanted to be good at anything or get anything, I had to put the effort in. I remember telling my mom I wanted a car the day I could drive and she said "Great! What job are going to get to help pay for it?". Not in a snide way. But in a serious, matter of fact way. "You want something kid? You have to give something"

That kind of mental training as a kid had a lot to do with letting me see the errors in their ways. They raised me to question them. And when the money problems hit and my questions arose, their answers to the pain were obviously insufficient.

I also had a couple of role models (Godfather and an Uncle) who were bootstrap millionaires. Own and grow business. So I also had a tangible example of a better answer close at hand.

If you are a parent or role model for someone, I strongly encourage you to consider just how you are imprinting on them. Please, please, teach your kids to be critically aware, independent, and to question authority/dogma - even the stuff you preach.

Question Authority as a Rule
Think Critically For Yourself
Exercise Your Independence
Give to Get and Work for Desire


~

I also learned to meditate in the 7th grade (happened onto it by luck) and that has paid so many dividends over the years that 99% of my successes and ability to keep going can be traced to that skill. It provided clarity, level headedness, mental composure, unadulterated logic, and the ability to focus any thought or feeling to pinpoint laser. Learn to meditate. But be aware, it is like business or abs. "Limitless" mental like ability won't come overnight. It comes through consistent persistence.

Learn to mediate (try insight timer app)
I'd consider meditation a base, fundamental skill that applies across all areas of life. The ability to maintain self composure under stress, to focus relentlessly on something, to be able to shift focus (off of work and onto family for example), the ability parse large sets of information by way of logic AND intuition. The ability to be resilient and bounce back. To actively lean into difficulty and derive understanding from it. To take strong feelings (desire, rage, love, fear, etc) and focus it onto a pinpoint. All of this is... multiplied over and over again through the practice of meditation. Meditation is brain exercise. And a strong brain that you can wield is able to get applied to anything else in life. Meditation is applied willpower. Sometimes it comes in 'chakra balancing' if that's your speed. Other times just breath focus. But goddamn is it worthwhile.
 
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Bekit

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Edited/Redacted Original: Need to think on how I want to reply to that. Talking about myself isn't the aim. If anything this forum is about giving other people tools/perspective to help them along. Standby...
Love your perspective on this!

Premature optimization is the root of all evil... or at least most of it in programming" so I'm hesitant to spend too much time deciding how to exit when I haven't called yet
Haha that's a great quote! Regarding exit strategy, though, I just meant exiting your current job. In other words, you're not just quitting and going out on a limb; you set something up for yourself that will enable you to quit.

Family was actually super helpful.

My parents were financially senseless, sure. But they were loving, supportive, and intentionally raised my brothers and I to be completely independent, to ask questions, to question the status quo, to question authority, to demand clarity and reasoning from anyone - didn't matter who they were. That if I wanted to be good at anything or get anything, I had to put the effort in. I remember telling my mom I wanted a car the day I could drive and she said "Great! What job are going to get to help pay for it?". Not in a snide way. But in a serious, matter of fact way. "You want something kid? You have to give something"

That kind of mental training as a kid had a lot to do with letting me see the errors in their ways. They raised me to question them. And when the money problems hit and my questions arose, their answers to the pain were obviously insufficient.

I also had a couple of role models (Godfather and an Uncle) who were bootstrap millionaires. Own and grow business. So I also had a tangible example of a better answer close at hand.
Wow, that's awesome. Really cool that they raised you that way. Maybe that method shielded you from developing limiting beliefs in the first place?
 

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Seth Goodluck

Seth Goodluck

Bronze Contributor
Read Millionaire Fastlane
I've Read UNSCRIPTED
Speedway Pass
Oct 30, 2018
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Pacific Northwest
Love your perspective on this!


Haha that's a great quote! Regarding exit strategy, though, I just meant exiting your current job. In other words, you're not just quitting and going out on a limb; you set something up for yourself that will enable you to quit.



Wow, that's awesome. Really cool that they raised you that way. Maybe that method shielded you from developing limiting beliefs in the first place?
Re Jobs:
Probably had a lot to do with it. My brothers have more limiting beliefs than I do though and I think that has a lot to do with my being intentional on getting better by hard work.

Re Work:
Ah yes. It's funny, law of attraction/mental framing/visualization in action. In HS, I used to dream about being in a place where I could quit whatever job I was in for a year or more and focus full-time on building a business. And here I am.
 
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Seth Goodluck

Seth Goodluck

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Read Millionaire Fastlane
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Oct 30, 2018
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@MJ DeMarco

I'd be interested in speaking, depending on when you set the date, you're going to find me at an interesting time that may make for an interesting talk.

In about 1.5 months I'm quitting my "cushy" software developer job and focusing on fastlane full-time for no less than a year (I've set aside a year of living expenses to essentially pay myself to focus on business w/ minimal lifestyle changes).

The gist of the topic title might be something like:
"My fastlane as of 8am this morning"
"What it's really like to quit everything and focus on Fastlane full-time"
"Cutting the Corporate Parachute"

A brief explanation of everything that brought me to that point (the second FTE of my life) and everything after (quitting a 'perfect' six-figure job, building a business, marketing material, products, and client list from zilch, and all the joys of pounding through a homegrown 8K long lead list, selling, logistics, the whole shebang).

If your Summit is in say 3-12 months, I should be full-time and neck deep in growth or failu-I mean learning :rofl:.

Overall, I think it would make for an interesting talk. Hearing about a kid who just 'started' months ago, who's giving it everything, and all of the associated learnings/experiences.

If you're curious, some business info below:
~~
Manufacturing of products focused on [a specific] sporting community and leveraging that community's centers/stores as the sales channels.

Control - I built the website, have numerous vendors for all constituent supplies, and have a lot of flexibility in manipulating my pricing, branding, etc

Entry - Generated a massive list of potential channel partner businesses myself (the list exists nowhere else). The things we sell took months of perfecting at home equivalents I've used (and sold to friends passively) for years. Additionally seeking out and competing manufacturers against each other on pricing. Well designed logos and branding materials homemade and professionally (marketing/brand friends) reviewed and approved. Is it impossible to replicate? No. But it would be a fair bit of work.

Need - Sport equipment smells bad and activities are often rough on the skin. My products are organic, all-natural, and loaded to the gills with all of the benefits you'd expect. Beyond that, channel partner companies can expect 60-80% profit margins on the products of mine they stock. So while I manufacture products for end users, I'm really in the business of making other businesses money.

Time - This is the one point of my business I need to improve on (and I know, it's probably one of the most important). I've created a members only portal on my site so that partner companies can order products whenever they want w/o having to call me. The products can be made in bulk and have exceptionally long shelf life. I need to brainstorm/work out the logistics details and how to fully disconnect. With sufficient profit, hiring a manager would be a possibility. There are outsourced manufacturers who take your directions and make your product... but I haven't dialed in those numbers yet. My gut says I can fulfill the time requirement. My brain just hasn't caught on fully.

Scale - [Redacted re public google indexing] Sports have an incredible growth curve and YUPpies with a lot of money to burn are flocking to them (trust me, I'm one of those YUPpies).
~~

tl;dr: I'd be open to speaking about by imminent successes and/or failures. In a couple of months, I'll be fresh out of the frying pan and right in the middle of the sh*t. Could be a fun thing to talk about.
@MJ DeMarco

Updates:
- This next week is my last week of 'work'.
- Product Photography is Done
- Pricing Model is Done
- Call/Sales Scripts & Rebuttals are Done
- 5 Pre-Sales (ready to buy when ready to ship)*
- Lead list finalized

Next up...
- Final Site, Product, and Price proof reading
- Start calling, visiting, emailing, and networking

*cracks knuckles*
This should get interesting :)
 

Xaridimos

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Jun 24, 2018
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I really like your energy and enthusiasm! You have the passion that is necessary to make it as an entrepreneur. Preserve it and keep working on your goals.
 

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