It’s 5AM in the morning and I know if I don’t sit down to write this then I never will. When I first started this blog I wanted to give tips that I had learned for myself on combatting mental illness, tips I’d gained from programming and learning as I went along, and more. But somehow I ended up having just enough time to focus on development, and getting through the ups and downs of leading a start-up and building the initial foundations of a dream.
It’s been an intense and crazy year and we’re now in October, one month away from November when I initially came up with the idea to begin, and two months away from when I first stopped researching and brought my domain, building this site. I am truly excited. I have just spent the entire of September going through with the project that initially began as “Project Graveyard”, I took that concept and created “Project Hero”, inspired by the one million dollar homepage, and is a campaign called “One Million Heroes“. It is probably the one most significant example I have of my vision in action, and is the essential foundation for how my entire company Zenratstudios will be run. Using profits to build a better platform and redistributing the rest of the earnings to our Heroes in the worlds, the non-violent activists, the not-for-profit companies, the start-ups in this world.
One Million Heroes isn’t just for Bitcoin companies, it is for anyone willing to apply with BTC. I imagine that will be a lot of young people and early adopters. The entire gallery was built with React.JS, and is currently only built for displaying ads. My goal right now is to get enough applicants so I can hire someone to help me build a gaming system, and ID system with the features I wanted.
Without further ado here are things I learned recently.
You Can’t Build Rome Alone
Start Where you Are
Every Great Leader needs help. I live on $700/month, after bills I am left with $150 sometimes not even. Initially because I had limited funds and at one point was even homeless my only and greatest asset was figuring out how to make money so that I could do what I loved, while also learning the skills I needed to build as much as possible on my own. I spent almost an entire year just trying to learn new skills, expand old skills, and gain more confidence. I spent 1-2 months learning wordpress and building theme after theme, adding a new feature and concept with each new theme. I spent another month working with Android and then Unity and then Phaser and then React.JS, with 500 pages worth of NOTES in my physical notebook and in my word documents. I fought depression and mental illness, ups and downs. I even took a moment to explore blockchains and communities, and started swing trading hoping to raise enough money to live this dream. At some point towards the end of August I began making a list of all the knowledge I had and could share with others, and then decided to build a workshop only to end up round-circle back to the same place, here.
I took a list of my skills and abilities, all the things I could do and all the things I couldn’t yet do or wasn’t so great at. I had spent so much time investing in myself and growing my skills, knowledge and ability that where I was now while not great was just the right amount of tools to get the job done. I had all the tools I needed right here, right now to build something in 1-2 weeks and begin marketing. I didn’t have to make money so that I could have money to do what I loved so that I could make money to do more of what I loved to do. Problem solving and saving the world. I could cut out the 3rd wheel and just focus on what I love, the vision and spreading that, building a community.
I simplified everything and One Million Heroes was born. It was the most simplest thing I could build, the most simplest service I could create that could still give back to others, while also allowing me to raise revenue for my work, and at the same time showcasing exactly what Zenratstudios is about in action. My Start Where You Are was simple, and yet profound.
Outsource, Delegate, Hire
Because my funds were limited I had to build a lot myself in some areas, and had to view what I did purchase as investments. During September I went to Codementor and I hired a mentor to help me figure out how to do a specific thing using React.JS, I gained knowledge and was able to build my gallery. Outsourcing and getting help from someone in real time was the best thing I could have done. It was $20/15 minutes and cost $60 for the help, but it was the best help I had ever received, and an investment that would give me all I needed to build my showcase of heroes.
I began looking for help on Fiverr but my issues with that and some of their deceptive practices are for another day. There are some things they are good to reach out for help on, but there are better places to seek help. So I made a commitment to setting aside money to outsource help on projects to get things up and done quicker and more efficiently and to do so in a price effective/strategic way.
I decided that I needed to hire a Virtual Assistant, Programmer, Artist (UI/UX & Graphics designer), and a Business Mentor. So September I hired a coder for help, October I hired a Business Mentor, and next month I plan to hire a Virtual Assistant, and use money set aside for a Programmer to help build the voting system and add unique “IDs” to my react.js gallery. Last on my list but necessary is an Artist who I want to hire and bring onto the team, for the starting team.
Initially I sought a mentor. One of my desired Mentors was Jane Mcgonigal, one woman who shares many of the same visions that I do. I tried everything! Facebook, Twitter, Email, applying to her hero site but I didn’t hear back. I purchased a mentor from Fiverr for $50 ($45 after my discount with Honey), and his emotional support was great.
I applied for Score and shared my vision and essay, and received the reply, “I’m not the right coach for you, I only do sales”. I thanked him kindly and waited for another mentor to come along. So I haven’t had as much support in the way of business mentoring, but I’ve set aside the time to search for mentors while also meditating and seeking my own inner wisdom and strength while I steer these ships in unknown territories and waters.
But even without business coaches, being surrounded by successful people whether it be in business or in their life (people who are employed), and being able to post on facebook and share the ups and downs and struggles and receiving feedback and warm comments has been great for me. Family & Friends at least cheering me on even if they are tired of listening gave me a great boost to my confidence.
Therapy and crisis hotlines during times when I needed emotional support the most and just talking about this reignited my passion and reminded me why I was doing all that I was doing.
I want to write more but it’s 5 in the morning and I want to go to sleep before I get up to begin my day working and so on. This blog post has been long overdue but I am truly excited to have One Million Heroes up and so ready to test it, and begin receiving feedback from as many people as possible, marketing and campaigning. I’m excited, I’m nervous, and ready with all my heart.