Four years ago, my partner and friend Brian Clark launched a newsletter called Further.
The project was a “side hustle” for him, and he curated the ten very best articles on personal development—focusing on health, wealth, and wisdom. (The latter, now known as personal growth.)
Brian and I were born around the same period, and we proudly boast our Generation X badge. Though we’ve had different journeys to get where we are, our paths have diverged many times.
We are still partners at Copyblogger Media, cheerleaders of the other’s work, and once in a while, fans of each’s musical taste. (Though he hates to admit that somewhere deep down, I’m right about Sarah McLachlan.)
When I met Brian in 2009, he was (and still is) at the top of his content marketing game. The blog he created, Copyblogger, started as a teaching mechanism for what he thought was lacking in the space—expertise on how to write persuasive copy and headlines that work.
Did you know in his first article on Copyblogger, Brian threatened to hurt a fictitious kitty named Fluffy if anyone bothered to read it? Don’t worry, he has softened quite a bit over the years—and I must say, it looks good on him.
I have been an avid reader of Further, and have watched him evolve it into something compelling. Aside from trying to learn what (and why) he’s doing certain things, the content resonates with me.
Now that I’m entering my prime (er, my mid 40’s), thoughts such as “What do I really want my life to be about?” or “What’s getting in the way of what I really want to do?” have been on my mind more than ever.
A quick Google search tells me that the average life expectancy of a male living in the United States is just a hair under 79 years. Doing the math, that leaves me with 35 more years on this planet, give or take, depending on my destiny.
I am not currently—nor have I ever been—into physical labor as a way of making a living. It’s just never been my thing, though I admire those who pound the pavement day after day. So I’m not exactly worried about my body giving out.
My job is to sit around a coffee shop, think, read a little, and then write some while doing a bit of design. Throw in some serial entrepreneurism, and this covers the past twelve years of my life.
I love what I do, and have zero plans on retiring—anything I’d do on the other side of that decision would be precisely what I’m doing right now.
It’s no secret that I am a champion of ”the journey.”
I’m not referring to the band, though I do love the skyscraping vocals of Steve Perry. I’m talking about the actual journey one takes while going from point A to point B.
The journey might be the trek that mountaineers make when climbing Mount Everest—or it might include the route one takes when going from desktop to dream job. Either way, there’s a start, and there’s a finish.
A few weeks ago, I spent a week with some friends up in the mountains of Breckenridge, Colorado. On our first day skiing, three of us decided to do something that required an “above and beyond” approach.
We took the Kensho SuperChair, where it left us at 12,300 feet. The top of Peak 6, however, sits at 12,573 feet—and the only way to get there is to hike the difference.
We did just that—the three of us made it to the very top.
You won’t find our names listed in the credits of a Warren Miller documentary, nor will you see us heli-skiing in Alaska. We are not extreme skiers, but we did an extreme thing—and we did it together. I can assure you it wasn’t easy, but we got there.
The one thing I have learned over the years, especially while running a business, is that nothing is guaranteed. Just because you overcome a hurdle, doesn’t mean you will overcome the next one.
I hiked to the top of a majestic mountain in Colorado, and for a few moments, felt invincible—until I wasn’t. For your viewing pleasure, click here to watch.
Yep, that’s me taking a fall down a double black diamond bowl, hosting what we often call in the ski world, a “yard sale.”
You Win Some, You Lose Some
You win some, you lose some, the adage goes. But here’s one thing I know: I overcame adversity, did something I’ll remember, and had a few laughs along the way.
Situations like this happen all the time, and I guess that many of you have gone through similar ones. Perhaps while on vacation, or like me, on your entrepreneurial journey.
The best part of the wipeout? My friend Nathan snowboarded down the mountain to get my ski, patiently waited for me to slide down to where he was at, then helped me get back up on my feet.
Better together, as I say.
“Further” is all about enduring through seasons of struggle. It’s about being diligent when times are tough and pushing through when it feels like you can’t go on. It’s about persistence and embracing challenges, while experiencing the breakthroughs that often bring us to the other side.
Running a business isn’t much different. Over the years, I have fallen many times. But you know what? I have picked up the pieces and swiftly skied to the bottom of the proverbial mountain each and every time.
So the next time you lose a ski, slide down a double black diamond bowl, and have your ego bruised—keep your chin up, and as Brian says, keep going.
. . .
Just a friendly heads up: The first Authentik Mastermind group has one more spot left. Each week, we have video calls where we share the highs and lows of our entrepreneurial journey.
It’s a great group of people, and we’d love to have you join us.
Click here to get started today. (It’s a great way to go further.)
. . .