The I Will Thrive Journey Begins!
So they say repetition is the mother of mastery. We’ll be testing out that theory in a high stakes game with my life. “I Will Thrive” is my new maxim, motto, and mantra. Hey I’m Wesly. I’m a dude guy that’s been pushing for over a decade to pursue a career creating music and film. I have stories that involve some of the biggest stars in history. It’s time to tell those stories. Along with funny accounts of past failures and successes, you’ll also follow me as I build businesses – so I never have to go back to passionless work again. All in the hopes of becoming financially free to provide for my wife and 5 kids, and so I can do what I really love: creating art. Welcome to I Will Thrive!
Holy Welcome! You heard that right Sam and Sally! I full on bless you into a welcome, so it’s kind of holy.
I’m Wesly. I’m totally a dude. I don’t have to tell you my last name because I own the .com of my first name. haha. I secretly probably just want to be Sting. He has Sting.com and I have Wesly.com. I’m so close! Now I just need to lose like 60 pounds, sing a bit better, and have a historic world renowned career as a musician. Easy.
Aside from dude – the most important titles I have attached to myself are husband, father, son, and friend. But inside of this girthy Colorado born bearded silly silly man – you’ll find that my blood and soul yearn to create and be a part of art, mostly in the form of film and music. And holy Mother of England do I have some stories for you.
If you’ve ever seen Memento, then good on ya. I can’t deny a love for Lord Christopher Nolan. Is he a Lord yet? If not, he probably should be. No spoilers here, but it’s a twenty freaking year old movie. This project of documenting my journey is going to be Memento-y, because it’s going to have at least two different timelines that jump around. One – going over what I’m doing right now, and the other starting at the beginning with some of the crazy crap that has happened leading up to this moment… or a this momento. See what I did there?
The Conflict of Passionless Work
Let’s sit down and have cute little chit chat about right now, right now. And to fully understand right now, I need to talk a little bit about before right now. Right now!
I’ve been living in a weird in-between place for a long time. On one side of my psyche there’s messages about life and careers like the classic from Steve Jobs:
“When I was 17, I read a quote that went something like: “If you live each day as if it was your last, someday you’ll most certainly be right.” It made an impression on me, and since then, for the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: “If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?” And whenever the answer has been “No” for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.”
And even Jim Carrey: “I learned many great lessons from my father, not the least of which was that you can fail at what you don’t want, so you might as well take a chance on doing what you love.”
On the other side of the equation is the blunt reality of needing to provide for a growing family and that, as Mike Rowe explains – passion can be too fickle to follow.
I don’t find myself fully disagreeing with either side. Mike Rowe seems more like the reality of life. I’d love to just take the Steve Jobs position, but in all honesty – if I did that at any point in my career this far, I wouldn’t have lasted long anywhere.
Then there’s the quote “If you love sex don’t go become a prostitute.” Reminding us that typically our passions don’t translate into great careers, but that we should still pursue them on the side.
I’d love a pulse check on the conflict between these positions from anyone who wants to share. I know plenty of people that are perfectly happy with a day job they are not passionate about, and then they try and find time for the things they love in their off time. Sometimes I wish I could be like that. I’ve tried to pretend my soul doesn’t ache with the passions I have. I can’t fathom doing it on the side forever. I strongly believe we should never back away from who we really are. Surely a life like that would end in nothing but regret.
Action Plan Man
I have known two things about myself and career satisfaction for a long time now, I have to do something:
1. Meaningful to help people.
2. Create art
I went to school and got a masters degree in counseling because the first option seemed more practical. All along I’ve worked full time at tech companies to pay the bills. Yet ever persistent, my blood and soul cried to create art. The call is too strong to ignore, and I have always squeezed in time for it somehow. The older I got the more conflicted I became. Like, some days crying-in-the-corner level of conflicted. So, for years now I have been investing in and building a media company. An entity that hits on both points of what I know I need to do with my life. Our motto: Entertain and Inspire.
Then came our cute little friend, 2020, who turned out to actually be a vicious beast cake banshee face. If you’ve been begging the universe for an atmosphere to test your ability to thrive in crappy conditions, well the universe sure delivered. I had planned to take a chunk of time off from the day tech job to shoot my directorial feature debut. It’s a comedy I wrote about finding your calling in life. Imagine that! We had a reading with a phenomenal cast at the end of 2019. Shooting was originally supposed to have begun this month.
But then I got to join the other 40 million+ that lost their job because of the pandemic. I can’t deny that it was a little frazzling. Our fifth child was only 3 days old when my boss really wanted to “check in” and see how things were going. Haha. A week before they assured us the company was in good shape. This job was just a job, but I loved the people I worked with, and if you have to be conflicted and have a day job, this wasn’t a bad one. I mean they had a secret room behind a faux soda machine filled with hard and soft drinks. I worked hard for that bloody place.
So here we are. I can either go find some other job, or see this as a chance to work harder than ever and turn my passion and skills into money. I want to take a leap of faith and lean more on the Steve Jobs and Jim Carrey side of the equation. It is going to take the best version of myself to make this happen. I’ve got to be at the top of my emotional and psychological game to take such a leap of faith.
That is where I Will Thrive comes in. I’ve started making that phrase a part of my life. I repeat it, and I believe it. I’m going to be the kind of person that is resilient to any circumstance and find a way to thrive. I even put together an ebook with some stories of an older age that help remind me of the kind of person I want to become, as well as some other tools to help immerse myself in the idea of thriving regardless of what challenges confront me. If you’re interested in joining me in this challenge, head over to iwillthrive.co.
I’m really looking forward to sharing this journey with all. So many stinking stories to come, stay tuned! I Will Thrive!
VIDEO version of this episode HERE
PODCAST version of this episode HERE