Why I gave all my money away. Do you think I’m crazy?
A couple of months ago, I attended an event in Orlando, FL. My friend Dean gave a talk related to being audacious in projects and business.
Dean’s core message casted a spell on me. After returning home, there was this lingering question I felt the need to answer:
Was I being audacious enough?
As hard as it was to admit, the answer was a BIG FAT NO.
Honestly, I haven’t been audacious for a couple of years now. Tough times have helped me create some of my best work, but deep down I know I’ve been playing it safe.
I’m not happy with that. It’s time to be audacious again. No more playing it safe.
But being audacious for the sake of being audacious isn’t my style, either. I need to tie my audaciousness to big enough reasons. It must have purpose. And a grand one at that.
After some long serious thought, I figured something out.
Let me start by explaining the why of my new audacious project, and then what it actually is.
The purpose of my project
I’m tackling this new project with two things in mind:
1. Introverts and authenticity are important to me.
Introverts are important to me because I’m one of them. I’m familiar with the natural tendencies, struggles, and joys of being introverted.
Certain business cultures (like the one we have in the US) have a way of making introverts fall on their face. Everything is built to cater to the nature of an extrovert, which causes introverts to feel trapped and inadequate.Authenticity matters to me. And I’m doing something about it. Click To Tweet
It’s time for introverts to step up, feel comfortable in their skin, and dominate business.
Introverts have way too much to offer. We’re talented, creative, and some of us are even geniuses. Clearly, the world needs us.
It’s time to start painting a different picture of the Introvert. It’s time to pave a way for introverts to dominate business and use it as a tool to live out their dreams.
This leads me into purpose #2.
2. I’m putting two of my beliefs to the test.
Lots of people have dreams.
One of the most common dreams people have told me about is owning a business which allows them to have more time, travel more, and work on super interesting projects.
When I ask about their game plan, I hear words of frustration and doubt.
“If only I were more like this and like that, then I could make it happen.”
“I’m not good at business and I’m even worse at selling. I’ve already tried and failed.”
“I don’t have enough money. I don’t know enough people. I’m not qualified.”
Sound familiar? I’ve thought these things before. I’ve heard these words from introverted freelancers too. We’ve all had these kinds of thoughts before.
They are lies.
Here are 2 beliefs I’m putting to the test:
- What you have and who you know is more than enough to start.
- Who you are helps you win more than what you can do today.
I’ve seen too many introverted freelancers settle for average businesses. If only they could muster enough faith and courage to believe in themselves and create their ideal business.
I’m doing something extreme to really put those beliefs to the test.
I’ll put my money where my mouth is, almost literally.
When I thought about what new project I could tackle, I thought about quitting my freelance development business and start another business from scratch.
I’d build the new business using the principles, concepts, and methods I write about.
That’s how much I believe in the content I create for you.
That should do the trick, right?
Something didn’t sit right with me. Quitting my business and starting a new one wasn’t enough. I’d still be 63.78% comfortable.
So, I decided to up the ante.
In addition to quitting my business cold turkey, I’ll give all my money away too.
Yup, you read right. I’ll empty my bank accounts. Start from almost nada.
(I won’t give away my retirement money, though. I refuse to pay penalty fees.)
Not only that, but I’ll build a business in an industry I’ve never made a single dime in.
New business from scratch? No money in the bank?
Now that will make me 104.59% uncomfortable. It will also put my beliefs to some real hardcore testing.
I can already feel the heat.
My new audacious project
In May 2016, I started writing content sporadically to help freelancers. Four months later, I decided to write content for introverted freelancers.
It’s all been for fun. I’ve made no money from any of it.
But now, I’ve decided to get even more specific by…
Teaching introverted freelancers how to sell.
That’s my new audacious project.
This new project in combination of starting with almost no money makes me feel uncomfortable. It’s scary to me. The fear of failure spikes within my insides just thinking about it.
But that’s why I’ve chosen it.
What I’m starting with:
This is what I’m starting with (all metrics are as of today, March 31st, 2017):
- I’ve never sold anything online.
- 25 articles written.
- 1 simple plain website
- 139 people subscribed to my newsletter:
- 247 followers on Twitter:
- 126 followers on Instagram (most of these followers are in-person friends, not introverts):
- 1,095 connections on LinkedIn (many of these are from the Museum Industry, due to KiwiJar).
- No Facebook
- $20 to my name. I only have enough money in the bank to pay off my credit card this month (already paid rent):
Credit card balance is:
As you can see, I’m not starting with much.
Heck, I had more to work with when I started my freelance development business!What you have and who you know is more than enough to start. Click To Tweet
You could argue that I’ve warmed up to this business, though. True, but not any more than you did for your business or any other job you’ve had.
Do you think I’m crazy?
So, there you have it. This is the audacious move and project I’m willing to tackle for you, myself, and what I believe in.
Am I crazy? Is this audaciousness enough?
Give me your honest feedback.
Mindi RosserPosted at 10:39h, 04 April
What a leap, Luis! Reading this post has got me all fired up to tackle my next audacious goal, and I cannot wait to see where this step leads you.
As a fellow freelancing introvert, I am stoked about learning how to sell better. The toughest part for me is how to handle the initial “discovery calls” with prospects.
Luis VazquezPosted at 02:20h, 18 April
Thanks Mindi. Thanks for the feedback. Just had a conversation with someone about discovery calls. Interesting! Will def create something for it 😉
MariePosted at 12:40h, 04 April
Yes. Yes, you are! But that’s amazing. Our finances are more similar now. That’s inspiring. lol Cant wait to see where this takes you. 🙂
Luis VazquezPosted at 02:18h, 18 April
Thanks Marie! “Our finances are more similar now” made me crack up. lol
Kunal SampatPosted at 13:01h, 04 April
Goodluck fellow ruskusmaker. Lots of love and best wishes! I’m already on your list 🙂
Luis VazquezPosted at 02:17h, 18 April
Thanks Kunal. Hope all is well on the west coast!
AlexaPosted at 13:58h, 04 April
I love it! Get it Luis! I am really excited to follow along with this “little” leap. I did read it and at least started to say “omg you nut..” but knowing your hustle, and after hearing a talk from John Robinson about starting with nothing, I believe more than ever that nothing lights a fire under your tushy more than a blank slate!
Luis VazquezPosted at 02:17h, 18 April
Alexa, consider my tushy officially lit on fire!
Scott G.Posted at 15:22h, 04 April
Ballsy. My hands are sweating – like I’m watching someone hanging off a cliff or running around on a high-rise.
I’ve been trying and failing to build my business lately… coasting on existing retainers and one-off projects while not closing much in the way of new sales.
Will look forward to seeing where you go with this.
Luis VazquezPosted at 02:14h, 18 April
Thanks Scott. Sink or swim time. Is there anything specifically difficult for you in selling?
Constantine 'Dean' CaravelisPosted at 16:11h, 04 April
What! I was only joking about the audacious thing. It was just for emphasis! Luis!!!! All kidding aside, this was very entertaining to read and I can’t wait to see what happens next. You can do it!
Luis VazquezPosted at 02:13h, 18 April
Thanks Dean! I appreciate it. Once again, Dean from Blezoo inspires. Boom!
Jeff JohnstonPosted at 11:49h, 19 April
Luis, if you can teach this introvert employee who prefers to be a freelancer (even a business owner) how to sell, you will win an award from someone somewhere. And if not, my eternal thanks.
Luis VazquezPosted at 12:14h, 19 April
Jeff, I was in the same boat 5 years ago! Here’s a free guide you can download (on my homepage) that will help you start asking the right questions: http://mightyintrovert.com/
Elizabeth BoardmanPosted at 06:53h, 20 April
Hats off to a fellow introvert. Excited to see where this takes you.
Luis VazquezPosted at 10:33h, 20 April
Thanks Elizabeth! Sink or swim time 😉