When I was 19 I became a broker, I didn’t want a regular job, I want to do something that people in the 25+ do. It was a commission job, it was tough because I’m only 19 and no one would listen to “financial advice” from a 19 year old. It was actually extremely uncomfortable for someone like me who has some confidence problem.
Then at 23 I got hired by a celebrity’s firm to work with her on her 1 year concert prep, so I took the offer and flew to Hong Kong for a year, working 16 hours a day and having less than minimum wage pay (if you divide the hours). Many times I wanted to just give up, many times I missed home and my girlfriend, but I stuck to it for 1 whole year because it’s something I needed to see through.
I returned to Vancouver last Aug(24 years old), I started to run my small business.
It is an interesting business, one that deals in Family Love Oil Painting, aimed at wedding and family niche. I loved the idea and learned so much because I literally have to do everything myself, from website building to video making, to brochure designing, talking to client, getting deals, etc. But it was the toughest thing I ever did, it was a leap of faith.
If I had chosen to just get a job like my parents have expected me to, then I’d have enough saving for a house by summer.. maybe I can even start planning a life with my girlfriend. But I chose to make something for myself, to really do something that I always wanted, to start something from scratch that I can call my own. I chose to put myself in a place so uncomfortable that I’m forced to keep moving everyday, because I have nothing to fall back on.
Was my initial business successful?
After 6 months of working on it, I’d have to say no, at least not good enough to make a long term living.
Who would’ve thought something so gorgeous wouldn’t work out? It was tough but I had to be honest and tell myself that at this moment, this product isn’t making enough for me to spend my full attention in it… It was very hard to accept this fact, but I had to. As much as I love art, it cannot feed me when my bank account is literally down to $500.
Which led me to my 2nd business venture
Ever since I started this I have consulted a mentor of mine constantly, someone I met when I was a broker at 19, he was my “manager”. This man has taught me more than I have learned in 19 years and have continued to give unconditionally even after I left the firm at 22 to work with a celebrity in Hong Kong. He had personally ordered many custom artwork from me to keep my business alive and have referred many more clients. When my business was not running so well he offered me a new business venture to partner with him, because I possess all the financial information I learned when I was 19 plus all the tech/video skills I have learned from my 1 year stay in Hong Kong AND from doing everything myself in the past 6 months.
Who would’ve thought all my past experience has added up together to make the perfect partner for his new business?
Right now we have just started our new venture idea for 1 month and it has proven to be a huge success. We just received news after our first month we have attracted new venture partners from one of the biggest firms in Vancouver. It’s still a long way to go to prove this business can be long term, but at the very least people are reacting extremely positive to it. This has also opened my eyes to the real business world, how real successful firm operate and attract opportunities to themselves!
My mentor talks about karma and planting seeds a lot, as you may have read from my blog, most of the ideas are from his teachings. He believes that what we are going through right now is a result of what we have done 5 years ago. Every moment we are enjoying or suffering the karma we created for ourselves before. Things don’t just “happen”, they build up slowly and will hit you in the face when you least suspect it.
For me, this venture didn’t happen overnight.
I learned all the financial concept from being a broker at 19
I learned video making skills from working with a celeb at 23
I learned how do all the website/online marketing from running a small biz at 24.
What my mentor needed was someone so specific that it’s almost impossible to find, because the skill sets are so weird it wouldn’t make sense for someone to possess all of them at once. I am still learning everyday, there are still days I wish to vomit because I’m being put up against impossible tasks. There are days I realise how little I know about the subject at hand. There are days I just want to be sick and curl up my bed…….. but I know that if I get over this, it will become another skill I can learn and add value to others.
The whole point of this blog is to share my personal experience with you. IF you are currently in a difficult spot right now, keep going. It sure as heck feels uncomfortable but it’s always better to put yourself out of your comfort zone. Only then will you force yourself to move forward and only then, will opportunities arise!