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Recovering/Learning from Rock Bottom

A detailed account of a Fastlane process...


Silver Contributor
Speedway Pass
May 9, 2016
First off, happy 4th everyone! I hope you are all having a great holiday.

It has been a long time since I have posted on the forum. A lot has changed for me over the past 7 months. I managed to bounce back from rock bottom and I am getting far closer to my entrepreneurial goals. I feel far more confident about the next business I will start, than the first one.

I am making this a progress thread and I will update it periodically. It'll help me personally maintain focus on my goals, and more importantly I think there are people who will find value in the thread.

I'll try to keep this part short and not bore you with all the details of my circumstances.

What I will say, is that 7 months ago

I was homeless due to loved family member passing away. I was also homeless several times growing up as a kid. The rest of my family are addicted to drugs and I literally had no where to go other than the streets.

7 months ago, I had no money and I had no job.

I could not even afford to buy food or gas.

I was in thousands of dollars of debt and far behind on everything.

I couldn't pay my car payments and the bank was looking for my car to repossess it. They also hit me with an additional $400 fee for my car being in repo staus. I couldn't afford the $500/month insurance on the car either. ($500/month despite having a perfect driving record)

My car was also missing a window and a bumper.

My car also broke down during that time period which added an additional $300 or so in repairs, on top of all my other stuff.

My phone got shut off during that time and it took months for me to turn it back on.

My credit was completely destroyed.

There is a lot more I left out, but to sum it up, I was F*cked.

I literally had nothing but a few pairs of clothes and a car that technically was not mine anymore. And the worst part was I had just lost the only person that was important to me in the world.

I was F*cked due to circumstances out of my control, and I was F*cked due to decisions that I had made.

At the time, I did not see anyway out. The only jobs I could find were jobs paying $7.25/hr and that would never have been enough to pay off my debts or help me find a place to live. I was at such a low point that I was almost genuinely considering crime just so I could eat and have a place to sleep.

I feel like this post is already to long, so I won't go into every single detail.

I ended up moving (thanks to an amazing military friend that I'm in the reserves with) to a new city far away that I had never been to and cut contact with my entire family.

I got a respectable job that pays more than a laughable $7.25/hr. I work for a privately owned company, which was founded and is ran by a very successful entrepreneur. I hate that I have to trade my time everyday, but I respect who I work for and I know I could learn a lot by observing how he conducts his business. He's a fair, intelligent and honest businessman and that makes work tolerable and even somewhat enjoyable for me.

If you haven't read any other part of this post, I at least hope you read this part. Because I believe this is where the real value of the post is.

I am no longer in debt, other than what I still owe on my car loan. I paid off all of my debt and then paid off what I was behind on my car. Now I am paying more towards the car every month to pay it off early.

I have a few thousand in savings now and I have more than enough in my checking account to where I don't need to live paycheck to paycheck.

I don't have a F*cking credit card in my wallet anymore, because I don't need it and I don't need any nice shiny new bullshit toy that people try to sell me. Some people might have a practical purpose for a credit card, but not me. I paid it off completely and then told the bank to F*ck off.

I now have, dental insurance, health insurance, car insurance, my car window fixed, my car bumper fixed, my car repaired, my phone finally turned back on, a savings account that gets bigger every week and gets me closer to my goals, money to eat ect ect.

So my first point with that, is that you need to handle certain things before you try to invest all of your energy into a business. One of those things obviously, is your finances.

I was lucky in the sense that I am still young and the financial damage I caused to myself was far easier to mitigate than someone older who accumulated far more damage over time.

Financially damaging yourself is how you become a slave to the system and you will be doing yourself a big disservice if you're trying to escape the slow lane.

I started my first business at 19 and in a lot of ways I had a lot of success. There were days where I would make $7,000 and it was awesome. It was a great feeling and I even get chills thinking about how it would make me feel.

But looking back at it, I now realize that I was more focused on the events instead of the process of entrepreneurship.

When I started that company, I started it with virtually no money. I had no savings or anything. One day I just decided I was doing it and then I jumped all in. I quit my job that same day. I just shot from the hip, and in a lot of circumstances I don't think that is necessarily bad to do depending on the situation. I don't regret starting it, or failing it because that is the only reason I even learned a lot of things in the first place.

However, if I met an entrepreneur today that was like me at that time. I would suggest to him that due to his life circumstances and due to the fact he had no parents that helped to provide a proper foundation into adulthood that maybe he should stop focusing on the event of starting that business. And instead focus on the entire process. Which means delaying that event you want and instead building the proper foundation that you and your business will need in order to function properly and be successful.

Everyone has a unique set of circumstances, so what I am saying is that whatever your circumstances are. Make sure you're focusing on the process, and take care of anything that needs to be taken care of before you try to start that business.

For example, at this point in time every fiber of my being whats to start another business and focus all of my energy on that instead of my job.

That would be an event.

It took me about 7 months of hard work at a job (and I hate those) in order to build the foundation I have now. I also accept the fact that it will take many more months working hard at my job in order to make sure that I am in the correct and best possible position to go full into a business again. That is the process.

I could probably go ahead and start a new business right now. But I'd be skipping steps of that process and it would only hurt my chances of being successful. I still do things on the side, but I accept that at this time that it is not the right move for me to get restless at my job and then completely jump into a business. Certain steps of the process need to be completed first.

I've seen a lot of entrepreneurs that hate the idea of a job and then get restless looking for business ideas to jump into prematurely. I used to be like that myself. Maybe a job isn't a necessary part of the process for some people. But in a lot of cases, that job is apart of the process. I've met and seen enough successful entrepreneurs to know that real genuine and successful entrepreneurs focus on the process and not the events they want.

For example, I know when SteveO was younger he worked his a$$ off at jobs and saved money that eventually led to him being in the proper position to do the things that he did. I hope I'm not incorrectly putting words in his mouth, but I think SteveO would agree that the time he spent doing those things was a part of his process that led to his successful events.

So if you find yourself getting restless and impulsive like I was, take a step back and really look at your circumstances to see what the process is for you, and what the event is for you.

To sum it up

Focus on the process

Handle all the things, like finances, that are apart of that process

Lastly, I'm sure there are a lot of people out there in a similar situation (or worse) than I was. I just want to say that it is possible to change your circumstances and become what you want to be if you're willing to make the sacrifices necessary. It's a process and I have no doubt in my mind that if you put your faith in the process you will get where you want to be.
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