I was meandering through my morning reading today when I ran across this amazing article titled, "The Story Of A Failed Startup And A Founder Driven To Suicide"

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/jody-sherman-ecomom-2013-4#ixzz2PdFeXl1V

It caught my eye because I nearly lost my life in 2011 to a severe depression combined with alcoholism. Looking back on it I can barely believe I survived it, much less the fact that I didn't lose my marriage or family. 

Entrepreneurship is like manifesting one's dreams, but it often comes at a very high price.

I've been thinking deeply lately about what I've been wanting to achieve, experience and feel as a result of having "made it". By making it, I mean becoming financially free. Not having to work if I don't want to. Enough assets so I earn $500k/year off interest and dividends. But beyond that, there are a ton of things that I thought I wanted, and I'm going to be expanding on these things in my coming blog posts. The outline at this stage is looking like a book, and maybe it'll become that at some point, but for now I'm going to be doing a series. It basically all revolves around entrepreneurship, what we entrepreneurs really want deep down, and hopefully some sense of how to achieve our goals without tetting to the point where Jody Sherman got (suicide). The destruction that can result for those left behind is very real, and I think responsible entrepreneurs owe it to those who love and support us to consider going about realizing our dreams in a reasonable and non-destructive manner. Good read.

AuthorJohn Skelly

OK, so it's been almost two weeks since I got back to PDX from Austin’s SXSW Festival. I’ve had time to recover from walking about 15 miles/day and the exhaustion. Been thinking the last couple of days what I took away from the experience as my first trip to SXSW.

I left Austin completely re-energized about life. No shit. One living and working in Portland, Oregon, from home can get pretty isolated from the world, not to mention the incredible energy and inspiration that lies in other cities where there are thriving startup communities and bucks flowing. Portland isn’t exactly the Silicon Forest anymore with it’s flatline economy and relatively small startup community in tech/social. Not to say there’s no life here, but compared to the energy and optimism found in Austin.

What I took away is this: Life is what you make of it.

I know that sounds a little weak, but I’ve realized that I’ve been seeing things from the grey Portland perspective for far too long. People come to Austin from all over the world, with their perspectives, and I have to say it’s not all doom and gloom out there. There are TONS of people living their dreams being entrepreneurs, artists, producers, investors and entertainers. We all got to feed off one another’s perspectives, energy and hope for a better future. It was like an energy and hope feeding frenzy, and I recommend it to anyone here in Portland who could use a change of scenery.

So, I’m off to coalesce some great ideas into plans to manifest into reality. I think hope was the greatest take-away from SXSW. I can’t wait to go next year and make a bigger splash than we did this year. Erik Duisenberg, Dave McLaughlin and I put in a ton of prep time for our presentation at the Interactive Accelerator competition (which we didn’t win), but it gave us some great lessons, solid contacts, and hope. Also helped us figure out some new angles on the tech we’re producing, and how to get more traction with the investment community.

Back at it!

AuthorJohn Skelly