My Long, Winding Road

Ever since I was little, I knew that I was going to be an entrepreneur. I was the kid who (with the help of his parents) would buy candy in bulk and then resell it to the neighbor kids on the street. 

In high school, my friends and I started a clothing company, where we silk-screened t-shirts & hoodies and eventually expanded into hand-crocheted beanies for the winter months. I distinctly remember how nervous I was approaching our first snowboard shop about selling some of our products. Eventually, we had 8 stores selling our line. 


Fast forward a few years and just before I was set to graduate college, I decided to start a photography company. No real experience to speak of, just a knowledge that I could do it better than the ones I'd seen. (that's how most businesses start, right?)

And with hustle, it started to grow, and I began booking more and more shoots, including one across the country less than a year into it. But as time went on, I kept running into the same wall: I never seemed able to break that threshold and find the success I both needed and hoped for. 

With my wife still working as well as a new baby to care for, things were getting very tight financially. It seemed that each month there was a mad scramble to figure out how to pay the bills. 

On the outside, I kept telling myself that "we're okay, we got this" but deep down I was beginning to doubt myself. I felt like I wasn't measuring up and was letting my family down. And when my wife came to me one day, gave me the look, and said "we need to talk", I could feel that we had reached the breaking point. Something had to change. 

As we sat down, all the emotions just spilled out - a total avalanche of angst, frustration, and worry for the future. It was incredibly painful. In fact, I can still feel those strong emotions stir when I think about that night. Ultimately, we came to a decision: either things needed to change (and fast) or else I would have to go out and get a 'real job.' 

Shortly after that, I was turned on to a man by the name of Jim Rohn, who said something that completely rocked me to my core. He said, "In order for things to change, you must change."

Those words seemed to penetrate every aspect of my body and I knew in that moment, that my problem wasn't my circumstances, my lack of opportunities, or even my lack of effort...the problem was myself. I was the one who needed to change.  I had been so focused on getting better on my job, that totally neglected bettering myself. 

After that, I decided to get that straightened out. I immediately set to work on improving myself each and every day, with the faith that our circumstances would follow suit. 

And that's exactly what happened.

Because of those simple words, I got so focused on turning my life around that I started doing things I never thought I could before, my business began to turn the corner, and the relationship with my wife become stronger and stronger. 

Ultimately, my business doubled, my wife stopped working to stay home with the kids, and we were finally able to extricate ourselves from our financial pit. 

Since then it hasn't always been sunshine and rainbows. We were thrown quite a curve ball when our third daughter was diagnosed with stage IV cancer. Fortunately, through a lot of support, medical attention, and prayers, she is doing well and all of her tumors are now gone. #miracle

Yet through it all, inspirational words like Jim Rohn's have inspired us to press on. Now, I've made it my mission to help share these life-changing words with others. That may be all you need to turn your life around. It was for me. 

-Mark 

 

p.s. Have an experience similar to ours? I'd love to hear about it. Shoot us an email at EverydayArtworkShop@gmail.com