It was early last year when it hit me. What the hell am I doing with my life? Why is it that i feel like something is missing? I asked myself a whole bunch of questions. I realized, I am not where I want to be – career wise.
I went from job to job. I was always placed in a good position of a company. I went from being in the Dental Industry to Pharmaceutical, Clinical Research. Basically the health industry. I was never happy. I thought that because most of the women in my family (Aunts and Cousins) were either Dentists, Hygienists, Nurses, Lab Techs and all that it would make them happy that I would follow in their footsteps. But why?
I quit & got laid off from a lot of my jobs searching for myself. I have so much experience in different fields. Retail, Food & Beverage, Debt Collector, Dentistry, Health Project Manager, Accounting, Administration & Management, Controller, Warehouse Management, Shipper & Receiver, General Labour… you name it, I’ve done it.
Within all those experiences, I worked from the bottom up. I was the little guy who became the bigger guy (well next to the bigger-bigger guy) I had no formal educational background except for a diploma in Dental (which I totally wasted time and money on).
Since I was little, I was always drawing and taking photos, intrigued by technology. A few of my male cousins were extremely good at drawing and it was always inspiring to me. I would copy all their styles. Especially with graffiti. Oh! before I forget, let me tell you who I am referring to. Shot out to Mark Lip, Neil T., Leigh D., Michael G., and my late cousin, Ryan R. (RIP) Now back to what I was talking about, being inspired by them boosted my creativity. In High-school, I always made sure that I took the Art, Photography and Computer classes. I always told myself I wanted to be some kind of designer or graphic artist when I grew up.
It was career day and we all had to start registering for College / University. I wasn’t happy that day. I was told that being one of the girls in the family that it would be great if I took something health related. (The hell! I hated Science and Biology, How the hell would I get accepted in College or Uni for that?) I decided to quietly register for graphic arts at Sheridan, Humber and OCAD. The only school that accepted my application and portfolio was Sheridan. It may not be OCAD but it was something and it was still a good school, I was excited but then I didn’t want to take OSAP and didn’t want to depend on my parents help. I wanted to do it all by myself. So I declined.
I took a year off and worked full-time at Playdium. I didn’t think my parents were happy that I didn’t go to college. So I decided to research some private colleges to take up Dental Admin & Chair-side since I knew all they cared about was the money and not the student so it never mattered if I didn’t have Science or Biology in High school. Went to CDI with the dreading OSAP. Came home and surprised my parents that I put myself in school!
After college is when everything was going up and down for me. Going through all those different work experiences. It wasn’t until early last year when it was really nagging at me! Little voices in my head telling me to quit my day job and follow your dreams! But I needed the money. I had barely any savings. I depended on working full-time at a job.I was becoming depressed. Although I was getting paid well and I had a great position in the company, It wasn’t truly what I wanted. Then those little voices that was nagging at me wasn’t really little voices in my head, it was the voice of my Girlfriend, Lynn.
Lynn had so much faith and belief in me that I have never felt from anyone else. The emotional and motivational support she has given me was unreal. She knew how much I loved fashion and web designing and she pushed me to take the risks. Even though she had no understanding of my love and passion for fashion and web design she kept insisting that I can take my “Hobbies” and turn it into something bigger and if I already love what I do as a hobby, why not make some money along the way. But there was no way I was going to have a full-time job and focus on doing anything fashion or web related.
I had a hard time working at the last job I had, I just kept sucking it up because I knew I had responsibilities, bills. Rent and Car. Things to pay for, to live comfortably. It got to the point where it was like “Fuck it!” I need to quit. I told myself I am going to have my own business and I am going to make it happen!
I told someone about it. They thought my idea was unrealistic. This person told me there is no way you are going to be able to have your own business and run it. This person didn’t think I have what it takes and kept asking me why am I going to start my own business when I have a good “job”? What I told this person was “I want to inspire individuals to follow their dreams and never give up searching for it, I want a lifestyle where I am building something for myself rather than building someone else’s dreams. I want to be able to do things my way without someone looking over my shoulders and throwing piles of crap on me! I want to be able to dictate my own self rather than someone dictating me and I want others who have that same mentality to do the same. Why trade hours for dollars when you can trade ideas for millions?” So I quit my job with only enough for rent and bills for a few months and a little to invest in a small business.
In September of 2015, Hustle Manifest was born. It became a registered business. I created mock ups of shirt designs and created an online shop. Didn’t know how well it would turn out. Hustle Manifest is a Toronto lifestyle brand I came up with, with the help of my girlfriend. It’s a brand that inspires Young and even older Entrepreneurs to work hard so you can play hard. Follow your dreams. And although it has been really hard trying to build after 11months, not only does our friends and family support the brand. We have customers from outside Toronto from Vancouver and Alberta to even parts of the United States from Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Florida, Detroit and so forth! I get phone calls and tests messages from friends telling me they seen someone representing my brand on the streets. I get emails from vendors asking to do business with us because they cross paths with people rocking my shirts at malls and asking them how to get in contact with the owner. We get e-mails and calls from Magazines in the US asking if they can showcase our brand. It’s overwhelming and while I know we still have a lot of work do to and we are still a baby in the business. I’m sure we will do well!
Now, it’s not only Hustle Manifest. Few months ago, I officially registered my web design and social media business Mory & Co. Starting to place Ads on Kijiji and sourcing out company e-mails to send campaigns to my services. Since the beginning of of Mory & Co I had done work for 9 different clients. From Web design to Social Media. That started in January. And was getting a client or 2 every month or so.
Last week was incredible for me. On Monday, July 25, 2016 I had a meeting with a potential client which was referred to me by a current client who then signed agreement with me. She is a Mortgage & Financial Adviser. Then next, I gained another client who was a Long time no see friend, Rigel J. who signed up as a client with me who needed a whole website refresh for her virtual assistant business. By Thursday, I got a few more phone calls from 4 different Employment/Recruitment Agencies and a Hotel for Web Design and Branding Services. Then just this past Saturday got the final word on a Furniture Store plus Canadian Wireless Trade show to work on a full-time basis as their contractor for website design, branding and Social Media Marketing which is my biggest Account so far! 9…. NINE! Brand new Accounts in 1 week. 8 out of the 9 need full-time service from Mory & Co. Good thing Mory & Co has a small team where I can delegate my projects to and focus on my biggest account exclusively!
My advise to you who is reading this! take the risk. Go for your dreams. Make your dreams a reality. Never give up! Do what you love. Keep on Hustling. You’ll never know unless you do it. You may even lose friends along the way. But if they are your real friends, they’ll support you, stick by you and understand you if you don’t have much time because you’re focusing on yourself. They will be there whether your business aspiration goes far or if it fails. I feel blessed. In 4 days from now, I am going to turn 34 years old. I’m not looking for any birthday gifts or celebration. I think Life has already blessed me with my big gift, and gift was my dream turning into a reality. I don’t know what I did or how I did it but I am completely thankful. And if it wasn’t for Lynn being the nagging voice in my head, I’d still be sitting behind a desk with someone dictating me. Now I can do the work I truly love, from the comfort of my own home. I can now have a work and life balance. and even though I seem to be working 24/7 losing sleep. I rather hustle doing the things I love then working 9 to 5 working a job. “Just Over Broke” I charge what I want, get paid how I liked all doing it my way. And I think that is how it should be.