Life is good!
What did I get myself into?
Everything is going far better than I could have ever imagined.
I feel like superman.
Did I make the right choice?
The magic happens outside of your comfort zone.
This is the roller-coaster of thoughts that have been swirling around in my head over the past twelve months. The GYFG household has experienced some massive changes. We welcomed our first child into the world back in October of 2018. And for some reason that wasn’t enough chaos and shock to the system, so I decided to start my own business about six months later. My intention was to do this business thing on the side but it took off fast. Three months in I decided to give notice and give up my comfy corporate job. You would think I would stop there, but instead I piled on an intense fitness challenge. This post is a quick update on the three things that have been consuming my time and effort: Body, Business, Baby.
Building a Body
I have struggled to stick with my fitness goals that past few years but made a promise to myself that this year would be different. It certainly has been different. But until recently, I still wasn’t putting in the appropriate effort to really achieve my goal of dropping 9% in body fat this year. I turn 33 in October and as a present to myself, I want to be in significantly better shape than I was on my birthday last year. Ideally, I want to get to a physique and level of fitness that I haven’t seen since 2014(-ish).
I dedicated 2018 to heal my lower back issues (due to a Cross Fit injury resulting in a couple of bulged discs). Then the first part of 2019 I finally took care of some stomach issues I had been having for well over a year (got treated for the H. Pylori bacteria). That made a huge difference in the quality of sleep I was getting and my overall mood in general. It also allowed me to become much more physically active than I had been in the recent past. I decided that I wanted to protect my lower back from a relapse and decided to move my workouts to the pool, where I’m very comfortable since I used to be a competitive swimmer.
Starting in July, I really started to swim consistently, 4-5 days a week. It was working well, but I knew I could be doing much better. Enter the 75-day hard challenge from Andy Frisella (see details below). It is simultaneously a health and fitness challenge as well as a mental toughness challenge. I’m currently 16 days in as I type this and I’m doing yardage in the pool that I haven’t done in years. I have to give a shout out to F-Beardsley (not his real name – the newest member of my new business team, and my brother’s childhood best friend) for getting me into this. He is staying with the GYFG family for a couple of months so we can work side by side while he trains and ramps up in his new role in my business. Just as I’ve taken him out of his professional comfort zone, he has done the same for me in the physical realm. I needed this!!!
Building a Business
The business I’ve started has gone parabolic compared to my initial expectations. Then again, I’ve been accused of being a sand-bagger from time to time, so I’ll add some detail. It looks like this whole business thing was an overnight success, but you know what I think about overnight successes – they are 10-20 years in the making. I would have never been prepared to take this new journey had it not been all the time I committed to personal and professional development over the last decade. It would have never been possible without investing the time to build relationships. It would not have been possible if I wasn’t willing to say yes to every opportunity to help someone else get what they want with no guarantee that there would be something in it for me.
It wouldn’t have been possible if the universe’s Law of Reciprocity didn’t exist (yes, I believe this is a real thing). I truly believe Zig Ziglar when he says, “You can have everything in life you want if you will just help enough other people get what they want.”
This business especially would not have been possible if I hadn’t said yes to the many requests to help a specific software company close new customers and improve their product offering over the last five years. Or in saying yes to playing a part in the annual user’s conference.
And it definitely wouldn’t have been possible if I didn’t have the support of Mrs. GYFG and the team members I have assembled to build a world-class software implementation and management consultancy.
Building this business has been both easy and hard. It’s been easy because all the pieces of the puzzle just seemed to fall into place due to all the work that was put in over the last 10 years. But it’s been hard because it has taken a lot of time and energy to grow as fast as we have.
I consider February 25th, 2019 the official birthdate for the business – the day I filed for the DBA that I operate under. It originally started as a sole proprietorship, but I’m in the final stages of converting it to a S-Corp. Its re-birth will have an official date of August 7th, 2019. The new legal structure is going to be a lot more tax efficient and will limit my personal liability as I operate behind the corporate shield. The total out of pocket expenses to get this business running was $267 and since that initial investment, the business has been self-funded.
We first began revenue-producing work on March 25, 2019. We generated about $3,000 that first month (really five business days). Since then our revenue has grown by leaps and bounds hitting new high after new high:
The numbers above may differ slightly from what I’ve previously shared as I have been moving things around in Quickbooks in order to get the most accurate view of the business. As I type this, we are currently 18 days through September and have already racked up about $45,000 in revenue so far for the month. I anticipate that we will close the month with about $70,000 – $80,000 in revenue (putting our run rate at almost $1M annually).
Of the revenue I’ve shared above, currently about $55,000 is recurring annually with an average contract length of three years. I’m working hard to get that to $100,000 before year-end. This recurring revenue is my favorite “slice” because it’s passive income and recurs without any additional effort from my business.
Building a Baby
Saving the best for last.
Little D, as I like to refer to him is my WHY (to be fair, he and Mrs. GYFG together are my WHY)!
It doesn’t seem possible that he turns one next month. Where did the time go? It seems like just yesterday that Mrs. GYFG and I thought we were never going to sleep again. We thought we were never going to leave the house again. We questioned whether we were really ready for this parenting thing. And then we started to find a new routine. It’s different but in a good way. We realize that this little nugget is the best thing that has happened to us.
This miracle motivated us to accelerate our goal of paying off the mortgage, which we completed in May of 2019. We realized that waiting until our early 30’s to have a kid was the right choice.
It’s amazing to see so much development squeezed into such a short period of time for this little guy. His natural curiosity in everything that life offers is so much fun to observe. My son’s random noises make my wife and me laugh hysterically. Then he went from lying on his back not able to get around to crawling and almost walking overnight.
We can’t wait to celebrate his first birthday and the many to follow after that.
So this post is about stopping to take it all in. So much has happened just this past year, and I want to notice it all.
I’m truly grateful for all the good fortune my family and I have experienced, from the beginning, but especially these last 12 months.
Life continues to exceed my wildest expectations!!!
– Gen Y Finance Guy
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