I claimed bankruptcy and generated six figures for a new business; all in the same year.
It’s so easy to glorify the headlines we see other’s post “I MADE X in MY FIRST YEAR IN BUSINESS” etc etc. But what isn’t always posted is the shadow side of getting there.
For me, those shadows look a lot like: Clinical depression, crippling shame and fear, moral and LITERAL bankruptcy.
This entrepreneurial journey, business journey, LIFE JOURNEY is full of battles we fight, many of which are not shared publicly.
But being bankrupted; morally, spiritually, and even financially, tend to be apart of the game we are playing..especially as an entrepreneur.
You can go bankrupt and become abundant.
You can experience loss and also major wins.
That is the dance of life.
We all idolize each other. I am guilty of doing it quite often in everyday life. Comparison is natural. But there’s a lot we don’t see, just remember that.
Those that don’t talk about the other side of their wins are only showing you half the picture.
I own my journey and all the roughness that has gone along with it.
And quite frankly, the experience was a huge kick in the ass to learn things and adopt new habits that propelled me into a six-figure and consistently growing business. Usually, the darkest and deepest holes we find ourselves in sprout some epic shit; if only we let it.
No matter what perceived ‘failure’ you have experienced, you are ALWAYS worthy and WORTH continuing forging a path to whatever success means to you. No amount of hardship or failure can knock you out of the game unless you let it. Because the 0-six-figure and 0-a million people, the influencers and the people you idolize; all have shadows and stories about how they got there.
It’s part of how they got there. It’s part of how I got here.
I figured I would answer a few questions about the why and how I arrived at the decision to claim bankruptcy.
Why I Went Bankrupt
Three main reasons:
1: Despite my ambition and fortitude to succeed (having launched my first business at 21 which was profitable), much of my early 20s was dedicated to searching for what I felt was missing; a void that I didn’t know how to fill. I’d attend every seminar, conference, event, and invest in anything that I thought would help me have the ability to feel whole or learn how to feel whole. I was in a constant search for the thing that would fill the insanely empty void I constantly felt. Obviously, this is not possible as it was all mainly related to mental health and trauma.
2: I became clinically depressed for an extended period of time and could barely work and lost my income.
3: While I was clinically depressed and barely able to work/no longer had an income from my business, my cat got deathly sick and it cost a significant chunk of change to save him. I decided I’d rather be depressed and in major debt with my cat alongside me versus depressed with no cat.
The process was arduous in the way that there was a lot of paperwork, furnishing of information, and tracking down information, but it was not difficult or strenuous. I was still growing and running my business in the meantime. There was only one hour-ish long meeting (“hearing”) with myself, my lawyer, and the man who was in charge of mediating the bankruptcy. Plus, working with the right person definitely helps. I had a friend from college who was a bankruptcy attorney, so our bantering and funny friendship lightened the mood and made it more ‘enjoyable’. I was also required to take an online course. Bankruptcy is obviously a “serious” thing, but don’t let it get as serious as people say it should be. It shouldn’t ruin your life; it should help you feel like you’re starting anew. I’d be lying if I said there weren’t many jokes cracked along the way.
Why I Claimed Bankruptcy
Bankruptcy is a tool.
If it wasn’t for the tool of bankruptcy, I am not sure I would have been able to bounce back as fast as I did in terms of launching a business that was becoming successful, or if the mental health issues I was experiencing would have become worse. I was already suicidal. For those that really need it, bankruptcy is a tool that can be used when you really have nothing to lose and especially if it will help lighten the load if you are dealing with health issues and really don’t have any income. It can literally feel like a dead weight is lifted.
I am not promoting bankruptcy by saying this, as it is a tool that needs to be assessed by the individual, but it is not as bad or detrimental as people have made it out to be. Only a year later, my credit is ‘good’; it bounced back pretty quickly. I am still purchasing an investment property and am able to do so by working with partners. My life continued as if it never happened, despite the lessons I have taken from it.
Bankruptcy taught me a lot about myself, shadows I had yet to face, my mental health, where I push my boundaries in a way that negatively impact me, and so much more about my personality and lack of experience. It was a significant and powerful learning experience, as anything can be with the proper perspective.