This post is a little off topic for me since I’m normally posting my comic strips and activity pages. But when I saw the video at the end of this post, I had to share it with all of our dads. This post is a recount of some pivotal moments in my life to follow the theme of Thanksgiving.
Although I ‘ve been drawing all my life, there was a time when I thought that I had to conform to what the real world said we needed to do as dads. So newly married and a daughter on the way, I needed to find a “real job”. That landed me the role of an Account Executive in the cut-throat business of mortgage origination and refinancing. Pretty odd for a guy that just wanted to draw. But over the span of about 3 years I was very successful and climbed the “Corporate Ladder” to become a Team Leader, and eventually a Branch Manager. Although the hours were long and exhausting, I learned some valuable lessons during this time which also developed the weaker sides of my personality which were phone conversational skills and sales.
I chose to walk away from this very successful profession after realizing I was spending far too many hours at work, and not investing my time where it really counted- at home. Speaking of investing, my next transition was into the Financial and Insurance Services where I had the pleasure of getting “off the phone” and working with clients face to face. I also was our presenter and public speaker, getting up in front of 30+ prospects and explaining the benefits of our firm. During this time I refined my presentation skills, learned how to manage our company website and began writing for our blog. More experience and skills that strengthen the weaker sides of my personality. But it still wasn’t what I know I was born to do.
I was once told that “Fruit grows in the valley. Not on the mountaintop.” And I didn’t really understand what that meant until the epiphany came during the economic downward spiral we have struggled through over the last 6 years. I had to leave the financial firm, and out of necessity, found a job in a manufacturing plant doing anything less than creative work. But it kept a roof over our heads, food on our table, clothes on our backs, fuel in our cars and health insurance to cover our doctor visits.
It was during this time, while I was working a 3/12 Graveyard Shift from 10:00pm to 10:00am Friday nights through Monday mornings, that the idea of VoogDesigns was reborn. I realized that I would do what I had to do for my family, but that manufacturing was not the calling I was meant to follow. I was put on this earth to be more. To do more! So I strategically began planning out how I would take an idea that began in my late teens, and make it a reality. Every quiet moment I had in a dull and mundane job, was used to “take me away” to plan and launch my company. I bought a Composition Book and began writing EVERY idea that popped into my head. And then I started prioritizing my list.
Life has a weird way of not revealing to us until much later, the treasures of our trials. And in the end of 2010, VoogDesigns was officially launched. I took all the experiences and skills I learned from my previous professions, and harnessed that knowledge to create my website, write my blog posts, fuel my marketing and develop hundreds of new relationships through Social Networking.
Now I am fulfilling my dream. And although I still weave a manufacturing job into the mix to help supplement our family income and insurance benefits, it is only a matter of time before VoogDesigns becomes self-sustaining. My dream was always to work for a big creative corporation like The Walt Disney Studios or Warner Bros., but I am truly loving the freedom and creative rewards of being self-employed.
I always envisioned my adult life like that of a big kid, and when I saw this video on facebook, I had to share it with you. It reminded me that we all need to have fun, be kids and remain CREATIVE. How many of you would actually produce a video like this? Many wouldn’t. But look what happens when creativity is unleashed! Imagine the time it must have taken to write the lyrics, record the footage, add the graphics, and edit the shots, while synchronizing it all to a very catchy and memorable beat. For me this is a wonderful example of working together and having FUN. And when you can do that, you laugh and smile, and that helps keep your marriage strong and your family together. Happy Thanksgiving!