Between celebrating my 33rd birthday and looking at the calendar seeing I had been doing this for 6 months, I had to take a second to look at the big picture of what I am up to in this new “career move” It is pretty crazy for me to think that I have been doing this fish tank thing full throttle for 6 months.
As most of you know. August 1st of last year was my last day of selling phone systems for a pretty solid company. I had been doing that for the past three years prior. My job consisted of chugging coffee and cold calling early in the mornings, (which I actually miss doing) and then running as many meetings as I could during the day to close or move business forward. I won’t lie, at times I do miss the B2B sales, sizing up a customer, drooling at how big of a commission I could get if I landed the sale. I also had a pretty gross gut check when I heard that someone at my old company had been able to close a few of the deals that I left behind in my pipeline. No one put a gun to my head and said- “Quit your job and go do the fish tank biz.” It was obviously a choice I fully made on my own, but that doesn’t mean I wouldn’t mind snatching a $20,000 commission which I was used to pulling off periodically. I got some great advice from a mentor of mine named Les, he said whatever you do, don’t look back.
Here is the other side of it with the big picture in mind. 2 years from now, no one is going to remember that Dustin was the one who sold Blue Grass Family Health their phone system, or XYZ college or who ever I ended up closing…… I got paid well and moved on. For me, it is about legacy. One of my favorite quotes is, “Legacy is stronger than Currency” (that is a Gary Vaynerchuck quote FYI – who is a bad ass in social media) Seth Godin talks about how it is not whether your succeed, it is whether you matter. He says, “If you stopped doing what you were doing, would people miss you?” I don’t want to sound too self absorbed, but I would like to believe that I would be missed if I took my foot off of the gas.
Here is the fun part, I want nothing to do with stopping.
This last 6 months has been a great and exciting ride. I can’t fathom doing anything else. They say that you need to do what you love so it isn’t really “work.” I can assure you, it is work, it is labor, but it is a labor of love. (If you think building and retooling this site and getting everything off of Aquatic Jungles was easy- you are kidding yourself) I caught myself in it last night.
I was working on editing the aquarium plant categories on here, nothing big, basically writing a little intro for each genus of aquarium plant. I have to do like 18 of them. It was 9pm and I was just plugging along working, not realizing that I had been soaked up for an hour–was that working?
I woke up today to see an order from Rick D in Calli, the guy spent almost 200 bucks with me. A repeat customer who appreciates what I do and is hooking up and allowing me to hook him up. THANKS RICK! (He also got my last Madagascar Lace)
The new aquarium fertilizers I have out have been a riot to both learn about and experiment on my own tanks with. I have been selling way more of them than I would have imagined.
The Aquatic Experience in Chicago was unreal. I’d be talking with someone about a certain plant and a complete stranger would come up and say, “Whatever this guys is telling you, you should do, my tanks look great because of him.” Or even better, just a random fish tank person walking by who’s eyes lit up when they looked up and realized that I was the dude from the video. (I had a blast yelling, “What’s up Fish Tank People!?” at these folks.
Oh- and the Dirted Tank Guide has been a knock out for me and is one of my biggest accomplishments of 2013.
So what is the bottom line? I have had a blast over the past 6 months and am pretty jacked about the year ahead.
I appreciate all of the support everyone had given me and your positive feedback. I’ll be setting up a photo gallery on here so YOU can show off YOUR AQUARIUMS.
…so TANK ON!
PS- Here is the video I did yesterday with 6 tips on buying aquarium fish