allthingsdope.com just passed 1,000 all-time views in our second full month of having a centralized hub for the entire @GullySteez network.
This is my third attempt launching a blog for my company in the past 11 years. None of the previous iterations worked out in the long-term but I took some valuable lessons from each experience and have grown substantially from each failure.
They say third time’s a charm and I’ve been on this path for a really, really long time but in a lot of ways I’m just getting started.
February 3rd 2014 was the last time I posted on this site. I was 24 years old and had just graduated college. My dreams were still fresh in my mind and I was riding a natural high from it. I thought the sky was the limit and was sure of myself to a fault.
But just like my intentions when starting this blog – I had a good idea that was stifled by my inability to execute on them. Don’t get me wrong; the dream is still more alive than ever but the road has been paved with a constant battle against myself. It’s a battle against procrastination and a crippling anxiety in a war I haven’t been able to win. Historically, I tend to overthink myself to indecision or find ways to sabotage my progress. I fill my head with thoughts and ideas that overwhelm me and then I end up doing nothing about them.
Honestly, as I skimmed through the last few blogs posts on here I felt a deep sense of shame and embarrassment. Why did I let this slip through the cracks? Why didn’t I prioritize sharing my thoughts as I encountered obstacle after obstacle and failure after failure? I even thought of erasing the first posts and starting fresh as I vowed to relaunch this blog and dedicate myself to blogging at least once a week. However, I decided that the best way to hold myself accountable was to keep them on here to serve as a reminder about how plans fade can over time if they’re not nurtured with action.
I’ve put things aside too many times with the intentions of getting back to them later on only to drop the ball and leaves things undone permanently. Fortunately, the one constant thing I’ve done throughout the last 8 years was keep dreaming. And although I should have been executing at a more productive pace I’ve been able to grow the Gully Steez brand into a digital media network with over 200,000 aggregate followers and a monthly reach that exceeds 1 million people per month. Even though we’re not profitable and I can’t live off our brands yet I’m extremely proud of where we’re at and my ability to change directions multiple times without regrets. We’ve touched hundreds of lives with our projects and I’ve willingly given my time and money to support the creative community.
Since my last blog post I’ve worked multiple jobs in accounting and have accumulated nearly a decade of experience in that field. It’s something that fell on my lap and that I accepted. I thought I was doing the right thing by going into accounting and playing it safe. I worked for a start-up for five years and thought that I’d be able to grow rapidly but ended up stuck in place and eventually laid off. The whole time I worked there I tried my best to impress my bosses and expressed my loyalty by going above and beyond my job duties but it didn’t matter to them. I wasn’t deterred though and have kept the same attitude throughout my journey – I’ll always go above and beyond whether it’s appreciated or not. And I did just that in my next gig for a lovely company that treated me well and who I saw a future with…until the pandemic hit. I’ve been unemployed ever since and am now reassessing my entire career and adult life in the process.
I’m nearly at two years without a job and just moved to a new city with a mountain of rejections piling up in my inbox on a daily basis. And yet, I’m not overly worried. I know that all things come to those who work for it and I’ve been hustling my tail off on the things that matter to me: my writing, my brands, and my growth. I’ve enrolled in coding classes and plan to learn everything I can about Front-End Development with the hopes of switching careers while learning a skill that can help me expand on my vision for the brands. I’m not sure when or if my company will ever make enough money to pay me a salary so I’m willing to take it slow and work 20-30 years while making sure to always work on growing my projects on the side. That being said, I’m completely focused on monetization after 8 years of building out the foundation and running our art projects without thinking about how to scale them or how to make money with the goal of sustainability.
The time for dreaming has come to an end. I’ve reached a different level of awareness while struggling with who I’ve allowed myself to become and the only thing left to do is act on how I’m feeling. I need to give it my absolute best shot. I can and I will grow my brands into a sustainable business. I will support myself with my writing. I will prevail.