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Crowdfunding Obstacles


BretonCompany - Backpack

In the last month, I’ve been a little bit out of commission.  My goal to write a blog post every day definitely did not work out.  In my defense, a lot has happened.  In the last month, I realized I had to push my crowdfunding campaign back to March, I worked a legal temp job, I am currently trying to start a small company so I can keep working on entrepreneurial efforts, and my five-year-old son broke his arm and had surgery.

About a month ago, I came to the realization that I had to push back the launch date for my crowdfunding campaign to March.  Here’s my reasoning: 1.) The samples of my backpack were not coming back right.  2.) Since I didn’t have the completed product, there was no way I was going to be able to launch my Kickstarter campaign by the second week of October.  3.) I felt like I needed more time to build up a bigger campaign.  Coming to this realization was frustrating because I now need to earn additional income to keep everything afloat until March.  

It just so happened when I was wrestling with this decision, I was offered a job by a local law firm to help with a discovery project.  I did not want to do this job for numerous reasons, but mostly because this type of work sucks and is mind numbing.  In spite of my myself, I couldn’t turn down the job because the work is easy, and I needed the money.  So I took the job, and I was shocked at how miserable the work was and how difficult it was to come home after a long day and continue working  on my crowdfunding campaign.  

I realized by my second day of work that I needed to create a company that wouldn’t take up all of my time and left my mind fresh, so that I could work on my crowdfunding campaign.  However, I did not know where to start.  Recently, my wife and I tried to sell things on Amazon and eBay.  We didn’t sell even one measly thing, and we felt like our chance of selling anything online was slim to none.

One of the few good things about the discovery work was that I was able to listen to podcasts while I worked.  The second day I was listening to Tim Ferris’ interview with Scott Adams, the creator of Dilbert.  Scott mentioned that when he wanted to accomplish something, he would write his goal down fifteen times a day.  For example, Scott wrote the phrase, “I want to have a nationally syndicated cartoon strip,” fifteen times a day for a couple of years.  After a couple of years, and with some hard work, Scott did get his nationally syndicated cartoon strip.  

At this point, I stopped the podcast and pulled out a sheet of paper and wrote down, “I will create a revenue stream in 30 days.”  I sat there and looked at the statement, and I realized I had no idea how this was going to happen.  But, I was going to try this system because I had nothing to lose, and I could not keep doing the mind-numbing legal discovery work at this temp job.  Each day, as I was writing this phrase down fifteen times in a row, different ideas would pop into my head.  I tried each thing and would work through them to see if I could turn it into a small company that would generate enough income to keep my family going.  

Two weeks passed by, the discovery project ended, and I was already testing out some ideas.  After some preliminary research, I felt like I found a great business idea in Brazil.  I was working with a Brazilian business partner, and the initial results were very promising.  It looked like I was going to be able to start a business within 30 days!

Then, I started researching Brazilian legal requirements, and I was blown away with the bureaucracy around starting a company in Brazil.  In the end, we found out that it’s going to take about 7 months to start a company in Brazil.  We are still working on our idea, it’s just going to take a lot longer than we anticipated.  

Meanwhile, as I was pursuing the idea in Brazil, my wife found a list that I had compiled of business ideas, and she was convinced that there was promise in one of the first ideas I had written down.  At this point, we think we might have a company that is going to be successful.  We hope to launch this idea by the end of next week, which will be right in line with my 30 day goal.  After the company launches, I will go into more detail and let you know what happens.  

One of the most powerful lessons I have learned from this experience is to write down affirmations.  Through each stage of this process, whenever I run into a road block, I sit down and write, “I will generate a revenue stream within 30 days.”  After doing this, I am filled with optimism, and I am able to keep going.