I needed some help so I decided to call the richest, most successful person in my rolodex. The only problem is I had no idea if he was rich or not and he wasn't in my rolodex. But I wrote him anyway and said, "Can I meet with you?"
It was in May, 2011. About six months after I started this blog. Here was my first post: Advice I Want to Give My Daughters. For years I had been writing about stocks. But that whole world is bullshit. I was sick of it and that world, frankly, was sick of me. It wasn't making me happy and after 10 years of working in finance I was starting to realize almost the entire thing was a scam.
For the first time in years I suddenly found myself happier but I still had one problem. The blog, which was such a fun creative outlet for me as well as a way for me to express my views about the intersection between entrepreneurship, honesty, and spirituality, was starting to stress me out.
I was worried I was going to run out of stories.
So I called Jerry Colonna. The only thing I knew about him was that he had invested in this thing started by two kids working out of a scrappy garbage can on Sesame Street, Geocities, which later sold for billions. It was like Facebook before people had faces and read books. Then, later, Jerry became a life coach. That's what I knew about him. I figured he would get it and understand where I was coming from.
He wrote me back and said, "Can we make it a call?"
And I wrote back, "HEY! You are using my technique for avoiding meetings!"
But we ended up scheduling a call.
I told him about my experiences. The ups and downs. The blood on the floor. The dead children. The addiction to guns. I told him about my blog. We talked about entrepreneurship. We spoke for about an hour about different authors, different ways of going about a spiritual life, where the spiritual life and the entrepreneurial life intersect and how they both contribute to the other. Together, they make both sides easier.
Finally I said, "I don't know what to do with this blog. I keep doing it. I haven't run out of stories or article ideas yet but eventually I will and I'm scared of that moment. Audience has been steadily growing and I'm having a lot of fun. And I'm happier than ever. I don't even know if I want to do anything different for this blog."
"Well," he said, "Sounds like you know what you are doing right now."
And he was right.
My blog took off and I've been happier and happier with it. Maybe I'll run out of article ideas one day. But today is today. And today I have this article!
About a year later we met for the first time. Again it was a nonstop dialogue of ideas about the intersection between entrepreneurship, spirituality, and the emotional hurdles on the path to finding the right balance. The challenges of doing both at the same time. The success that can truly only be achieved if both aspects are hand in hand. The wandering in the woods with no place to shit or pee when times are darkest. It was a great meeting. We decided to try and do an event together.
October 11, at the W83 Community Center in NYC, we're going to do that event. It's totally free of charge to attend. Please REGISTER HERE.
Just Jerry and I discussing the startup world, the spiritual world, our own personal ups and downs, Jerry might demonstrate Gangnam style dancing, and how developing health in your inner life can automagically lead to health and success on the outer side. We'll also field Q&A from the audience and break into groups for some workshops.
Here's part of the description for that talk:
How does one find "success" as an entrepreneur? What exactly is "success"? Both Jerry & James believe that true success as an entrepreneur comes from the inside out:
- a result of inner health
- a result of inner passions
- a result of inner backbone (ethics, loyalty, inner strength)
- a result of strong resilience and a striking ability to deal with failure
- a result of an inner sense of purpose and what are the things truly important in life.
- a puzzle of tiny internal entrepreneurship over every area of your life that fits together into a quilt of inner and outer success.
Jerry and James both found success and failure early on. Both hit the floor and had to bounce back. They tell all, dig deep, and in a conversation with each other discussing the full range from spirituality to entrepreneurship discuss how they found their way to balance, to happiness, to true success."
We're not charging anything. We just want to chat with each other and with you. I have a bunch of questions for Jerry, for instance. But if you can register, that would be great so we know to reserve the right sized space in the facility. Registering now guarantees you can get in.
If you register in the next few days I'll be able to also gauge how many books to order to hand out. I'm really looking forward to meeting the many people who have been in the community on my blog and would like a chance to meetup with everyone.
I'm also looking forward to the answers to the questions I have for Jerry.