Terminal Value

Doug on Building the Road to Where You Want Your Life To Go

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Janine Bacani

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So for today’s podcast episode, I’m just going to be a little more vulnerable and just kind of just talk to you about what’s going on in my life. I hope everybody likes it. If you do, please comment. If you don’t, I mean, just comment on that too.

Anyway, what I’m at right now is that my kids just started school again, which is awesome. Her daughter, Jada, is starting her junior year and her son Nolan is going into 8th grade. And I’m just so proud of both of them. They’re both doing amazing. But the thing that I just keep thinking about is just how much work it is to juggle everything. And I think we’re not alone this way. But like, for example, their school is a half hour away. Now that Jada drives, it’s a lot easier for her to be able to get to school. Sometimes she can drive Nolan like Nolan does Scouts and I’m the committee chair for Scouts and Jada does dance. And our church parish is almost an hour away. It’s the same place I’ve gone to since I was basically five years old. And my parents live out there. It’s in a town called Gresham, which is on the eastside of Portland. We live on the south side of Portland and a town called Newburgh, and my wife’s family lives nearby as well. But between all the things that are going on, sometimes it feels like a big, giant hustle, which of course it is, particularly because when you have kids, stuff goes all around everywhere. And the thing that I just can’t help but think is that the last couple of years going through kind of COVID coming out the other side in my particular case, where I went through getting terminated from my corporate job and have gone into more entrepreneurial path, is that I don’t think that there is a right way to do things anymore. 

The way that I grew up was you’re supposed to go to school, make sure you get good grades, make sure that you go to college, study really hard, get really good grades, and then you need to get a good job, and then you need to go to graduate school. After that, you need to get your MBA, and then you need to try to get promoted, and you need to try to promote it again and be able to earn more money and all this kind of stuff. And you move into a bigger house, and then you have your family, and then you enroll in school, but we enroll in private school. And then you go into an even bigger house and you go to a more expensive private school, and it all compounds up over time. But the thing that kind of just hit me like a ton of bricks, because in 2020, I got a termination notice because basically I got no, absolutely no reason we’re letting you go, we’re cutting costs. As I talked to some of the people in the department, I learned that basically the new person who was in charge of the department was where I was at because I was in it. I was the program management office director. He did not like the idea of basically having people in the department who talk to executives except for him. So myself and a number of other people who had exposure to the executive committee, we’re all let go. And this really hurt because of course, it was a really good paying corporate job, but I also had over $100,000 of unvested stock that just all disappeared. And so what that really did was that made me think, okay, I need to create something that somebody else can’t take away. I need to create something that I can continue doing as long as I want to, and that’s what I’m in the process of doing. But I’ve got to tell you, it’s not easy. Building an audience is not easy because you have to be consistent. You have to show up, and you don’t always know whether people are going to pay attention. And sometimes people can be pretty harsh critics, and the harshest critics can be yourself. It could be people near you. It could be your friends. It could be your family. It could be people saying, hey, I saw your stuff on YouTube. You don’t get that many views, and that kind of hurts. But if you’re going to go about really creating something for yourself and your future, that is the pain that you have to go through. And I call that the audience creation shuffle or the audience creation hustle, because everybody who’s built an audience has had to go through that. 

Now, there have been certain times when it’s been easier to build an audience. When Facebook was building out, it would create tons of traffic for basically no cost. So a lot of people rode the Facebook wave back when Google Ads were cheap. People could ride the Google AdWave Instagram for a little while. It seems like TikTok may be doing that now. Apologies, the dogs are barking in the background. But anyway, the thing to think about is that as you’re going through, deciding what your own life is going to be, is to just make a decision that you are going to go through the process and you’re going to keep pivoting until you get to where you want to be. Because I refer to that as being one decision away. Because basically the big domino is making the decision that you’re going to design your own life. Once you’ve done that, if you’ve really made that decision, if you’ve really committed to it, that means that no matter how many times you get knocked down, no matter how many failures you have to endure, no matter how many things get in your way, you will find a way to overcome them. And I think one of the things that I’m trying to do with this channel, with this podcast, is share my journey. In doing that, I have some successes, have some failures, and then keeping all that in balance with my own health, my own fitness, with my own personal life, with my relationship with my spouse, my kids, my friends. It’s hard.

 Life is hard. And I think that’s one of the things I think a lot of us have really kind of been sold this idea that life is supposed to be smooth. Those things are all supposed to go according to plan. And that you’re supposed to go to work. Get paid long enough when you retire and there’s a certain way that it’s supposed to work and a certain plan and that’s kind of all been thrown up in the air. But the truth of the matter is that that was all pretend to begin with. It was a fictional, disunified reality that a lot of us brought into because we’re kind of brought up thinking that’s how it was supposed to be. And the truth of the matter is that that’s not how it’s supposed to be. The way that it’s supposed to be is that the life you create is your life. So what I would say more than anything else is to

Decide the life that you want to create for you and go create that life for you. Because if you go on somebody else’s plan, it may feel better right now, it may feel more stable, it might feel like there’s less uncertainty. But at the end, are you going to be happy with what you have done? Are you going to feel like you’ve accomplished all that you wanted to accomplish? And I think that’s one of the issues that a lot of people run into is that they go by the traditional path they get toward retirement and then they don’t really have anywhere to go.

 Because in order to be able to retire on a traditional plan, you have to work really hard. Which means in a lot of cases you have to push away other interests. And then when you finally get to the point where, say, you’re not working and let’s say that you have accumulated enough to where you don’t need to have a regular job, you don’t necessarily know what to do, you might be able to play a little bit of golf or you might be able to kind of socialize a few people. But in a lot of cases, people just kind of don’t really know what they want to do. And so that’s when they become annoying or they develop destructive habits like either.

 Unfortunately, rates of alcohol and drug abuse for people who are wealthy and retired can tend to be kind of high because in a lot of cases it becomes a self medicating antidepressant. And so I think the real moral of today’s video or today’s episode is really to just to decide what you want out of your own life and start going about creating it. And I think

knowing what you’re going to do is less important than deciding because once you’re in motion, you can pivot and change course a lot easier. But if you don’t start, you will never get any closer to where you want to be. 

Just kind of pondering on that a little bit. One of the things to just remembering to think about is the way that you get to success for you will be different than the way that I do it. For me, it will be different than the way Tony Robbins did it. It will be different than the way Gary Vee did it. It’s going to be different than anybody who you listen to. Your path is going to be different from theirs. And I think there can be a tendency. So there’s a lot of people I follow on YouTube or whoever and of course they tell you their success stories. A couple of things to consider that number one is that a lot of people are very upfront about their successes. They’re usually a little more guarded about their failures. Sometimes after they’ve made it, right after they have the big exit or after they’re pulling in millions of dollars a year, they’ll start telling you about all their missteps and foibles and all that kind of stuff. Because at that point it’s safe once you’ve already made it. Talking about all the failures you had to go through is kind of safe when you haven’t made it yet. Talking about your failures feels really vulnerable. But I think that’s actually something that’s really important to do is just to understand that failure is a part of it and it’s a necessary part of it. And I’m fond of saying the path to success goes through a town called failure.

You are going to fail at things because your way of achieving the life you want is going to be different from everybody else’s way. It is a unique story that only you can write and it only applies to you and you don’t necessarily know what it’s going to be ahead of time, but that’s just fine.

I think a big part of life’s adventure is figuring out what that story looks like for you. Just to wrap things up, what I would ultimately want to say is

 Figure out what you want your life story to be and then go start creating it. It may be that it doesn’t turn out the way you thought, but as long as you know where you want to be going and you’re willing to continually pivot to try and get there, I think that it is all but certain that you will arrive eventually. 

And so anyway. Before I sign off. I just want to say. Hey. If you like this. If you appreciate it. At least just take a picture on your phone. Take a picture that post on your phone and then post it on your favorite social and then tag me and let me know what you did or didn’t like about it so that I can either create more of it or maybe I can do a little less of it. I really appreciate your time, and I hope you have a great day. Thank you for listening to the Terminal Value podcast. Please feel free to visit me online at www.terminalvalue.biz, where you can subscribe to find me on social, and then we can connect and just keep the conversation going. I’m really looking forward to hearing from you, and I hope you have a wonderful day. 

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