The Adventure

Starting a business is no joke. It takes serious time, dedication, effort, and money. You’ll find you will significantly underestimate all of the above. The only one I knew for sure was time. I knew walking into a Business Venture would require all of my free time. You see, I work full-time as it is and maintain a (mostly) happy puppy. Every additional second for the past 3 years has been spent focusing on building and operating my own company.

Everything started out great. We had plans set in place, a budget, an idea of what needed to be done and who would do it, and how long it would take. Unfortunately, working with an old city’s zoning and property ordinances threw a wrench into things.

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At first, we found the perfect location with a great aesthetic. It wasn’t zoned properly and the churches in the area didn’t want us there. We were trying to open a brewery.

While the city wouldn’t pass us on the location, we did help to change and establish additional brewery zoning, so breweries wouldn’t be limited to just industrial zoned areas. Because of us, a brewery could open shop in most places in the city. We, however, had no location and began a new search.

Spring forward a few months later, and we had a place on the other side of the city. A growing community that in 5 years or so will be a great area for activities and shopping. For now, we are one of a few businesses in the area.

We obtained the building, spent a year renovating it (most of it done by us personally….which we found isn’t allowed….because why should a business owner be allowed to save any money?), spent double our estimated budget, and made a great friend (later business partner) along the way.

That’s where it all went down hill. One among us decided dictatorship was the way to go and couldn’t/wouldn’t compromise on anything. When told “no”, they proceeded to do what they wanted anyway. Be damned to any consequences!

Thus, ended the dream before we even opened. I had dreamed of an opening where I was proud and invited all of my friends and family to share in the moment. Due to the “dictator”, we had a horribly embarrassing opening and wasted tons of beer due to an inefficient draft system that had been placed in service by the “dictator” a mere 20 hours earlier.

The “dictator” hasn’t gotten any better since the opening.

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If anything, the “dictator” has only seized more control and resorted to threatening and lying to get what they want. The ultimate goal? All of the prestige and zero of the work. The “dictator” hopes to hire out for all of the work, so they can just bask in the glory of being “someone” in town.

Thus stands my Adventure. I’m stuck in a loveless business marriage until the time comes that my lawyer allows me to be released.

But no worries. Like any good entrepreneur, I’m ready for my next venture. Needless to say, the next one, I will be going it alone. I’ve got a few ideas and will play around with them for the next few months until I find one that really resonates with me.

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In life, there are always choices. One is choosing to be happy. While I don’t currently feel this way, I choose to be this way and am attempting to make it so. To you and all those before you that have the business struggles, persevere and overcome, for it takes true courage to even step off the beaten path and make your own way.

 

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Censored

Do you ever have those moments in life where someone tells you that you can’t do this, you don’t understand, you’re wrong, and you’re not capable of doing the thing that you’ve trained for half of your life? Try listening to those negative statements from the same person every time you talk to them. Even though you’re more than capable of performing the tasks ahead of you and more qualified to perform them than the person telling you that you’re incapable, you start to doubt yourself. 

I have been exposed to a toxic person. A person who has narcissistic personality disorder…or is a sociopath…the debate is out on the actual prognosis. Two things are for sure, he’s always right and never to blame. He’s a charmer, master manipulator, liar, and incapable of loving anyone but himself. If manipulation and charm don’t work, he will throw tantrums to get his way. He will yell and threaten and put you down until you cede to his every whim. He is not one to give in and be told no. 

He will win and you better let him or he will destroy you however he can. 

If he is called out on any of his actions, he will find a way to blame someone else, spin it so that it was their fault, or change the topic by throwing something at you that you messed up in the past, no matter how big or small. He will yell, berate, and repeat until the topic is no longer on him, but on you and how incapable you are of doing or understanding things, that in reality, you know far more about than he does.

This is what his type does and he will not or can not change, no matter how much you believe he can. I, for one, know he’s incapable of change, of caring, of compassion and can’t comprehend why others still believe there’s hope. I don’t understand why others think he can be reasoned with. “If only you would talk to him and explain things, then he would change his mind.”

I tried reasoning a year ago. It didn’t work. I tried again and again. Others have too. It doesn’t work. Eventually, you give up on the idea of reasoning with a person with his type of mental disorder. You start losing your will to fight them. You start losing hope that there’s anyway to escape them. You start believing their threats. You start to lose your voice and your sense of self along with it. 

I’ve never felt more down and alone than I do now. I have great friends and family who support me, but they don’t fully understand what has been happening. I’m a strong person, if I weren’t, I would have believed his words long ago and either given in to him or attempted suicide because that’s how bad it is. That’s how bad he makes you feel. Thats how you feel having to deal with him every week. That’s how bad it gets when you have the strength and courage to stand up to a sociopath. He attacks you every way he can at the least possible cost to him because he is a master manipulator after all.

What makes things worse is that people have seen what he has done, how he has behaved, and done nothing but ignore it. Either they don’t care to stand up to fight him or it would be bad for business if they did. How can you stand there and watch what he does and not do anything because it might look bad or he might attack you? If enough people stand up, then he won’t have a choice. He can’t attack everyone. 

In reality, I’m the only one standing up. I’m the only one daring to tell him “no”. And I’m exhausted and tired and my will to fight is wiped out. I need help. I need others to be strong with me. But they are too concerned with letting a city’s revitalizing and much needed business go down or be sold off to someone who is actually honest and worthy of their support. 

I have been verbally and mentally abused for over a year by someone I consider to be a sociopath, though others would argue he just has NPD. Due to threats that have arisen, for the first time in my life, I feel my voice is being censored. I’ve never known what it felt like to not be able to be open and honest and express my emotions…what few I let the outside world see. Due to his threats, I can no longer voice my opinion openly. I can no longer be honest to myself and others about him and his behavior. I no longer have freedom of speech. I no longer have the correct opinion, something that is inherently supposed to be mine and can not be right nor wrong.

After what will probably be a lengthy legal battle, unless I choose to give up and let him have everything for absolutely nothing in return, I will finally have freedom, my voice back, and hopefully regain my self and my happiness. 

Thank you to the friends and family that have supported me. Thank you to absolutely no one for standing with me and fighting him. Thank you to society for making the world a place where sociopath’s can do what they want and not suffer any consequences. Thank you to a society that values perception over right and wrong. Thank you for ignoring what you have seen because it might be hard to stomach or deal with. 

Thank you for not speaking out because in remaining silent, you have silenced my voice as well. 

In every cause, someone has to lead and speak for those who cannot. If you do not, then they cannot. I was that person. Due to legal threats, I can no longer be. Now it’s up to all of you. Speak up, speak out, and speak loud against the bullies of the world. 

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Dreams Do Come True…with hardwork

It’s been a long while since I last blogged, but with my good friend documenting her move from Texas to Colorado, I figured it’s time for an update.

A few years ago I claimed I was an underemployed Accountant and had goals of starting my own business and finding happiness my own way. I’ve since moved from the great state of Texas to Arkansas, my birth place….though I will always love and claim to be a Texan! I moved to Arkansas for the craft beer industry. Specifically, to start a brewery.

The craft beer phenomenon has only reached Arkansas in the past couple of1 years. There’s less than 20 breweries in Arkansas. There was about half of that 2 years ago. The opportunity is ripe for the taking!

Some friends contacted me with the opportunity trying to get me to “move home to Arkansas”. A start-up company is my weakness. So, I said yes. Packed my bags, found an Accounting job in Arkansas, and began preparation for a business to call my own.

I’ve got to give credit to anyone who has ever started their own company! It’s A LOT of work!

Finding the perfect location. Saving money. Finding funding. Getting businesses set up with the city, state, and federally. Talking to everyone that contacts you. Giving interviews. Popularizing your company on social media. Setting up bank accounts, utility accounts, supplier accounts, and any other random accounts. Fixing up your location. Finding staff. Forming action plans for sales, distribution, marketing, financing, product creation…..just to name a bit of what has been happening.

Between working as a full-time Accountant, taking a college class (I’ve got 2 degrees…but Arkansas says “Nyet! That is not enough! You must take another class to sit for the CPA exam in this state”), and starting up this company, life has been crazy. I hate it, but I love it all at the same time!

Life goal: Own my own company — Almost checked off

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Next life goal: Find a cute guy to date!

He’ll do ————->

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When do we learn?

In keeping up with all of the Obamacare changes, I was just wondering when we, as a country, are going to learn from our mistakes?

This has been plaguing me for the past few weeks and I need to get it all out, so let me explain. Affordable healthcare for everyone is a great goal. I love the idea, just not necessarily the follow-through. I’m 25 going on 26 in a few days and I am signed with my parent’s healthcare thanks to the ACA. Unfortunately, this means I’m not going to be covered as of the day before my birthday (that’s this Thursday!). My current employers don’t offer health insurance which leaves me the exchanges in October because I know I can’t afford to go buy individual insurance right now.

Signing on for individual healthcare in October? It’s a little worrisome to have to go a whole month without health insurance, but then I remind myself that I rarely get sick or injured. Why do I need health insurance again? Oh right, if I get in an accident or become really ill. What are the odds of that? No, seriously. If anyone has statistics on that, I would love to know because I’d like to weigh my options of having health insurance vs. not making those monthly payments.

Anyway, all of this brings me back to my original question: when are we going to learn? If history has taught us anything, it has taught us that the government, try as they might, isn’t that great at taking over a private industry and not making it a money pit. Social security, education, space exploration, and even transportation.

Based on everything I’ve been reading lately regarding young people like me signing up on the exchanges, it’s scary. The ACA needs people like me to sign up on the exchanges to cover the costs of the really sick and elderly. That’s a great goal, but with people my age already supporting the social security system (which will long die before we ever receive any of it), I’m a little hesitant about paying into a healthcare system where I will essentially be doing the same thing.

If the social security thing isn’t working, why will the healthcare? Yes, I know it originally worked well, but nothing is meant to last forever. A good business person knows when it’s time to change, adapt, and throw away ideas. And ultimately, the U.S. is a business and it’s running itself dry.

Until we can learn to enact programs that aren’t already doomed for failure and are more cost-effective or, dare I say, profitable, then we might as well sit back and watch the federal

Now, I’ve said my piece, so bring on the hate and arguing that always follows with political crap.

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Has your privacy been invaded?

Has your privacy been invaded? Who knows? Without proper warrants and/or approval, your e-mails or phone calls could have been listened to, recorded, collected, and categorized by the NSA….maybe even other branches of government.

Fight for your rights! Tomorrow, July 4, 2013, is a Restore the Fourth movement. Post the 4th Amendment on your blog, FB, or Tweet it. For your reference: Amendment 4 –“The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized”. Hit up a local rally (need a location, look here) and let your presence be known. The government has already worked on censoring our internet activity, on controlling our biological human rights, and now this. Enough is enough! Make a stand! Challenge your congressman and make sure the people in office are actually looking out for The People!

Maybe, for once, the government will do its job and listen to The People of the USA that it was created to protect, not to control and harass.

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Here’s to a Happy Life! Cheers!

I’ve been thinking a lot about life and where I want to be lately. I see all my friends going off and being happy making money at their corporate jobs. They’re happy being just another robot in the machine. But I’m not!

I just finished eating dinner with a friend who recently moved away for one of those corporate jobs. She sounds happy and has money to spend, but her work doesn’t seem to challenge her or interest her that much. Doesn’t she deserve to be doing something she loves? After eating with her, I came home to my Inc. Magazine and continued reading about all of these amazing people and companies and all of the things they are doing in the world. It made me realize that there are so many opportunities, so why am I just standing still? Time on Earth doesn’t last forever.

One of the stories in the magazine even said that they kept pushing off starting a company because they thought there would always be a tomorrow to do it. Then, their friend died and it was like a reality kick to the face. Time is precious and limited, so make the best of it while you’re still alive and kickin’.

After all that, and my desire for my own company, I have made a 2 year list of goals.

MY GOALS IN THE NEAR FUTURE:

1. To be gainfully self-employed (doesn’t really matter what I’m doing as long as I’m happy doing it)

2. To be doing something I love everyday! Whether that be working or taking care of the house, though I doubt the latter would interest me much.

3. To be excited to wake up (day or night, but preferably afternoon) and live with what the day has waiting for me.

4. To still be happily in a relationship! Because what is life without love?

5. To travel often. I have too many aspirations and fantasies to not see the world. A world traveler is a must in my life. I don’t want the boring old tourist attractions, but the real sites of the world, and the real people and places of the towns I visit. How I get there doesn’t really matter. Plane, train, boat, even a hot air balloon would be an adventure in itself.

 

6. To make my customers happy because without them I would have no business, no money, and no happiness in work. Also, probably because of them I would have some aggravation in work too. But that’s just part of the world today.

7. To have financial freedom. As I write this, I’m sitting in my living room on a beanbag chair because I can’t afford furniture for the living room. The wireless driver in my computer is broken, so I have to connect by cable and it is all hooked up in the living room. It sure is silent in here without a tv or radio making all the noise. I want to be able to afford even these small luxuries in life and that’s just not happening when I do things the way the world primes people to work and live.

8. To come up with a few business ideas, so I can have multiple places to go in life. I’m always seeing the potential in my friends and what they could be doing if they just tried, but the majority won’t. They stick to the traditional corporate values that have been pushed upon them since birth. If I can see the potential in people, why not in businesses and in ideas?

Start off simple: a bed and breakfast catered to the area and providing activities and travel to certain locations, an accessory for some new technology, a website that allows employers to recruit strictly students for events or other such stuff, a shot bar, any business where I can work the finances of it, a tour business where I plan out fun things catered to different ages and groups of people for specific areas, write a book (haha, I’ve tried. I’ve made it 3 pages in 3 years), or something extraordinary!

Any ideas? I’m slowly dying at a job that I don’t love, even if I do love my bosses and enjoy the work. It’s just not what I want to do for the rest of life.

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Where do I go from here?

I’m 25 years old just recently. I think I’ve reached a point in my life where I don’t know what to do anymore. I lack happiness and can’t really find it at home or work. So where do I go from here?

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My current position doesn’t offer any growth opportunities and I still have dreams of traveling the globe. Dreams that I currently can’t afford. There’s not really a lot of opportunities in this town unless you are a business owner and I’m fresh out of ideas. Help anyone?

My relationship status? As of this weekend, who knows? I have a guy that I love talking to and spending time with…even when we do nothing and just watch tv all day. But we’re long distance and I’m not sure he’s as invested as I am. I thought he would be considering he spent the past year trying again and again to talk to me and I kept blowing him off. I think I finally figured out why I did that. I knew that I really liked him and wasn’t ready for anything serious til recently. I only wish he could see that and that I knew how he truly felt.

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I want a guy that sends me flowers or balloons or something totally ridiculous on my birthday. A guy that randomly surprises me with his presence. A guy that wants to be around me almost as much as I wanna be around him (and I say almost because I reeaaally like to cuddle).

Is that him? I don’t know.

I just know that I’m getting antsy. I want a change. I want to improve my life. I want to be happy. I want him in it. I just don’t know where to go from here?

I guess, welcome to my quarter-life crisis :/

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