Its been nearly six months since my last blog or since I’ve appeared on camera to record a vlog and to be totally honest I haven’t been in the right place to share my thoughts and I’ve also been far too busy with the business which is a great thing. 2019 was the best year to date for me personally and for Forty3 Media but I’ve also discovered more about myself than ever before and I’ve realised that my ‘Why’ has changed dramatically which has affected me mentally.
July 2017 I started this journey of a freelance website designer with a clear mission, to be in total control of my own life and destiny and to earn as much money as possible to change my life and to help businesses achieve their goals which in turn will help achieve mine, also to prove a lot of people wrong. This mission was clear but three years on I’ve realised the mission coordinates were set wrong.
Being depressed in my previous job before I went self employed in 2016-17 as I’ve mentioned in previous blogs was hard to cope with, looking back now I didn’t have depression I were just depressed with the situation at that moment in time, there is a massive difference. Despite the difference I didn’t want to feel like this ever again so I took control of my situation and quit my job.
Fast forward to the last six months of 2019 and without any warning I felt depressed again, but why? I couldn’t understand, I’m doing what I always wanted to do but I no longer felt free anymore, the feeling of walking out of my job in 2017 of total freedom the euphoria, it was no longer burning inside me, I had to figure out what the fuck has happened.
I had to slam the brakes on, the business has totally consumed my life, insomnia has a tight grip with no signs of letting go and I’ve done it to myself, I’ve put too much pressure on myself to prove everyone wrong, everyday I were thinking to myself ‘I will show everyone, I will prove to everyone my agency will be the biggest, the best’ I completely backed myself up into a corner and made myself my own enemy, too much pressure to make money, too much pressure to work harder and when certain goals have been missed I’ve been punishing myself. This doesn’t feel like freedom to me, I might as well go and get a job.
All along I didn’t need to prove anything to anyone, the only person I had to convince was myself and in 2020 I realised that I’ve done it, Ive already achieved what I set out to do, for three years I’ve been running a website design agency in Manchester and I’m working with multi-million pound successful companies and making their businesses better with the product I offer. All along my personal achievement was clouded by my pursuit of flipping the bird to doubters, my almost downfall was down to the fact I were caring too much about what other people think, a massive mistake.
This year I have become so self aware of my own happiness and I have gained this by giving zero fucks of what people think of me, I also have zero expectations of others, having too much expectations of others or caring too much what people think clouds your judgement and the quicker you work this out you become so self aware and its a great feeling.
I want to share a quick story, so back to business. Two years ago I wanted to connect with fellow website design agencies in the Manchester area, I reached out to 45 website design agency owners over a weekly period, some of the ‘biggest’ agencies with massive turnovers and hugely staffed, the ones I thought ‘Have made it’. I wanted to pick their brains, at some point theses owners started out in a bedroom just like I did, I wanted to know how they did it, how have they successfully scaled and what hurdles mentally did they face. I contacted the owners of all 45 businesses either by telephone, Linkedin or email and to my surprise over the next 2 weeks I received 37 replies (either by phone conversation or email or DM) Awesome right? Well out of 45 only 1 met me for coffee, only the one gave me advice, only the one gave me guidance, we are now friends and pass work to each-other all the other replies were ‘we don’t have time’ or ‘there is a conflict of interest we are competition’ I didn’t see it like that.
I’ve recently launched my new website and on the landing page it says ‘Manchester’s Leading Website Agency’ others may argue and say how can you prove that? Other agencies have more staff than I do, their turnovers may be more than mine, I will talk numbers I don’t care I’m honest I’ve scaled from 0 to almost 100k in 31 months is that good or bad? Its an improvement, some are churning over millions and have wrote of their journey from zero to hero, wrote about there struggles mentally and how they’ve made it and now its all about Ferrari’s and Rolex’s on Instagram but most won’t stop for a coffee. I recently saw an old friend stood in-front of his new Range Rover on Instagram and his friend commented “All the hard works paid off”….has it? Because of a piece of metal and 4 wheels?
My ‘why’ has changed, my why is just to be happy and I get happy by doing my job well and receiving feedback from clients such as the LLK project, the client relationship is more like a friendship which makes this not a job, I have improved their business for the better with a product thats helps them help their clients. It obviously pays quite well but it no longer about the money.
The reason why Forty3 Media is ‘Manchester’s Leading Website Agency’ is because its the fucking kindest, I bend over backwards and I also do a lot of work for free. I genuinely want to see results for every single client, its no longer about Forty3 Media its about them I want to see everyone succeed and I genuinely believe all together we can, I’m still open to buy all those agency owners lunch and chat about how we can help each-other. Being kind at all times even when we’re at our darkest points is the new mission. I’ll never be perfect but true perfection has to be imperfect.
Kindness is the strategy for 2020 everything else will fall into place.