A 7-year story
Introducing: Life Itself.
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How do you carve your own path?
This is the question I’ve been working on for the past 7 years.
In 2015, I became a Dad and realized teaching wouldn’t be my life-long career. Call me superficial, but the money and opportunity were not enough. In short, there was no career path. Become a principal? I respect it, but no thanks.
At first, my options seemed limited. With a new baby, I had to keep working at the same salary. So starting fresh in an entry-level role was off the table. I knew professional learning would be required, but I didn’t have the time or money for a degree. So I began to explore options for skills I could learn online that would help me level up.
The ultimate goal was simple: start a new career that offered more money and more opportunity without taking a pay cut.
Along the way, there were many ups and downs.
During that first year (2015), I made a failed attempt at moving into the EdTech industry. At the time, I lacked the required skills and experience but didn’t know it. Then came a satisfying but short foray into publishing professional development content for teachers, which included publishing a book. Finally, I pivoted to freelancing and consulting, which led me to my current career in marketing.
Since then, I’ve answered hundreds of questions on social media from teachers and other professionals about how to learn new skills, launch new projects, and take personal or professional leaps.
As corny as it may sound, my philosophy about work today comes from James Altucher’s 2013 book, Choose Yourself.
The unique opportunity available today is the chance to decide - for yourself - what you want to learn, and to use that learning to make real changes in your life. As the information gatekeepers have fallen, skill acquisition has been democratized. I’m not saying it’s easy, fast, or a guarantee of success, hardly that. Nor am I naive enough to think everyone has the same time commitments, resources, or starting point.
But the information and tools required to carve your own path are more accessible today than at any other time in human history. And they’re often free or low cost.
In Life Itself, I’m going to share lessons I’ve learned by tapping into the current state of online learning, and reflect on projects I’ve launched using that information. This will include stories, tips, and recommendations about:
Learning basic coding
Getting published on industry sites
Launching a podcast
Connecting with hard-to-reach people
Starting a freelance and consulting business
Growing an email list
Networking (as an introvert)
Developing new career skills (marketing)
Managing time and focus
Staying healthy while raising young kids
My ideas on these topics and more are drafted and will be shared in coming weeks. From there, I’ll review stats and reflect on where I can explain more or dive into new territory. Your feedback, in the form of likes, comments, questions, etc. will also guide the process.
Remember that learning is not preparation for life. Learning is Life Itself.