{big jumps} Do What You Love By Rory

I apologize for the little hiccup in posting these fabulous guest posts. We were on the road back home for a few days and it is just too hard for me to try to format blog posts while on my phone. (I've tried and make myself go cross-eyed in the process. Hehe.) I'm excited to post the last installment of the "big jumps; chasing your dreams" series. Today the President and CEO of the app company Appdicted, aka, my love Rory, is sharing his story of how he decided to throw all caution to the wind and truly pursue his dreams, no matter how inconvenient. I hope you can see how his enthusiasm inspires me every.single.day. He is quite funny too! :)


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I was asked by my lovely wife to be a guest writer on her blog this week. When I asked what it was about she said “big jumps”, taking chances. So I am writing about the time I bought a motorcycle and decided I was going to jump it over a bunch of school buses in order to raise enough money for my step father to get his 50k surgery. This jump was going to be broadcast on AM radio! Once my step father is healthy again, I can prove to him I am a man by beating the living crap out of him....actually this was the movie “Hot Rod” and not my life experience. Is it possible that Andy Sandberg decided to write a move based on my life and just change everything to avoid paying me any money? I think so.
Back to the “Rory Story” (I am Rory, in case you didn’t read the author before starting to read this post). It’s hard to decide what story to tell as I have done many big jumps in my life. I am sure the one Tahnie would like me to tell involves our family and not the big jumps I would build when I was 12 to ride my skateboard on. In fact those were not so much jumps as they were ramps, really awesome ramps. 
June 9th, 2009 - My 30th birthday. Turning 30 is a big deal for most, you are officially a grown up adult. No longer can I be a carefree 20 something, I have to be a carefree 30 something and no one wants to be 30 Something.... that was a terrible tv show. I was 2 months into doing P90X (a crazy workout program, I am sure you have seen the commercials). I had been on a hardcore diet to go with it. I was almost 2 years without a cigarette (sure I had cigars on occasion). This was the first time in my life I was a health nut. I counted every last calorie and lost about 30 lbs in 2 months. The infomercial forgot to mention some side effects; mainly that when you are healthy you are much more likely to make babies. After going to Olive Garden to celebrate my birthday, I stopped at the grocery store to purchase some power bars and a pregnancy test. The lady who checked me out was for sure laughing about this. The test came out positive (as you know if you have read this blog at all). 
Up until this time I had been working as a consultant and traveling 100% (when on projects) of the time. This meant that I would leave for New York on Sunday night, arrive in the morning and go straight to work. Then I would fly home Thursday night and be home for about 2 days and go do it all over again the next week.  I was setting customer relationship management software for financial firms. It was cool to work in New York; I was in the actual 30 Rock building on the 57th floor (take that Jack Donaghy). This was a crazy life to live and certainly not a life for a good father, you know the kind a father the child actually knows. 
So I decided something needed to change. Then the universe decided as well and I was let go from my job. Not because of anything I did, because the market crashed and there was no more work. I started looking for work I could do in my home town or anywhere in Utah for that matter. There was nothing, at least nothing I could support a family on. I was also sick of doing “grown up” work that made me dead inside. I have a strong creative passion and working for large companies does not embrace the creative. They embrace the red tape. After a few months of looking. I decided to take my “big jump”. I stopped looking. This was not my path, to search and fight for a job I did not want. I knew what I wanted. 
I wanted to be my own boss, have my own company, do something I love. Now what is that? I didn’t know what exactly I wanted to do. I have spent years trying to do this on the side and failed every time. Was this because I was a failure? No. I was learning and not fully committing to myself. I loved to make products and ideas come to life. I love creating the branding and all the marketing materials. I loved to create. Now what to create?
I loved my iPhone. I was an early adopter and had the first one. I was one of the people who unlocked and installed “Apps” long before Apple decided to allow “Apps” on their phones. I loved the idea of a computer in your pocket that could do anything that my 3 year old desktop could do (besides watch a flash video, he he). I decided that I wanted to build Apps. There were many people making good money creating apps and I wanted to be part of the gold rush!
Where to begin... how the heck do I build an app? What would the app do? I have to buy a Mac to develop an app? But I am a Windows guy! (not anymore). So I found a cheap used Macbook Pro on craigslist and began my quest. I tried learning as much as possible and wanted to release an app within about 3 months. HA HA HA. Nine months later after hiring a few people to help create my first app, I finally had my first app get accepted into the app store. This was the App that featured my lovely daughter as the icon and on the home screen. This was more to remind me of why I was doing what I love. I want to teach my daughter to not settle with a life you do not like. You can achieve the life you want by creating it for yourself. No one can give you the life you want. You create it. 


The app was called “Wig It” (now it is called “Wig Booth). Two days after it was released, Apple sent me an email letting me know it was going to be featured in the “New and Noteworthy” apps. I had an idea this is big, but did not know how big at the time. I am now on my 18th app in the App Store and have not had another app featured. So this was a good way to start my new business venture. I made some good money the first month. Then was almost broke for 4 more months. 
I never focused on the lack of sales. I could not affect that. The only thing I could do was focus on making the best products I could. I would spend about 70hrs a week to try and keep the dream alive. I would build everything I could. I was working harder than I ever have. I would be the perfect employee, but only if I am the boss. The most important thing was that I was home every night with my new daughter. She knows I will always be around. 
I was doing what I loved, creating... creating apps and creating lives. I believe that is the sole reason my App business continues to grow. I am doing what I love. None of this would have happened had I accepted a crappy low paying job and if I had never took a big jump and left the worry of failure behind. I am not scared to be broke, I am scared to be in a cubicle jail. In the words of Dylan “Success is getting up in the morning and going to bed at night and in between you do what you want to do”. (that quote is from memory, so it may not be word for word). 
So take your big jump and don’t be afraid to fail, don’t be afraid to be broke. You are smart you will find a way. You will love the freedom that comes with letting go of the fear.  I will be rich, I will be broke, doesn’t matter I will be me.

4 comments :

  1. I am glad you are you, it inspires me to be me.

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  2. Found your blog thru Comment Love! Your story is beautiful and I look forward to following your many fun adventures. This post was well written and very uplifting!! You both have an awesome amazing attitude and spirit that comes right out in your writing. Thank you for sharing it!

    Kristine
    www.jandmseyecandy.blogspot.com

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  3. Congrats on your business venture! Even if it didn't work out as planned you have the courage to put yourself out there. Keep it up! Great blog, I'm a new follower!

    http://marleeindebt.blogspot.com/

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