World Tour 2019 Month THREE Overview – Heating Up The Southwest And Texas

I recently announced my plans for a 12-month Founders Live world tour. This post covers the last month and other lessons from my journey and what I have learned from taking the biggest risk of my life to date. Follow along here on this blog and here.

Wow, is it April already? What just happened to the new year? The first quarter of 2019 and my Founders Live world tour has flown by like the roadsign we just past driving on this lonely Texas highway on our way to Dallas. (Yes I am writing this on the tour bus.)

For those following along, I’ve been traversing the west coast of the US throughout the first few months of this year building Founders Live along the way. In January, I spent most of the month in Boise Idaho. February I found myself up and down the California coast, visiting Los Angeles, San Francisco, and San Diego. In between these visits, I flew back up to Seattle for meetings and to host our Founders Live Seattle events. The first quarter of 2019 has flown by like a fun Friday night.

Alas, on March 1st I left Seattle for the rest of the year! That day was both exciting and sad, as I won’t see the many friends and family I care about for many, many months.

Our first leg of the trip was driving through Utah and Arizona for our first tour stop in Phoenix.  It started with a bang! Raleigh picked me up at the airport in Las Vegas and we hit the road. We are now cruising through the western US in a tour bus! I’ll be touring the Western US for the months of March, April, May and June in this bad boy below call VanGough. It has wifi, a work station, table, chairs, sleeping quarters, a sink, and bathroom. We might paint it something other than the bus yellow! Read more about Utah and Arizona here. 

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Being on the bus and spending time with Raleigh feels like an angel was placed in my life just at the perfect time to help transition me to a better place and into a better person. Raleigh, being 9 years my junior, has somehow gained an understanding of the world many people don’t ever achieve. He see’s the beauty in nature, keenly observes people and his surroundings, and shares a world view of peaceful hospitality. He’s an incredible human being, and his many nuggets of wisdom have helped me rethink and reshape myself during this intense transition period. Agradecido por siempre mi Amigo.

Immediate Lessons from Raleigh and Touring on VanGough:  

  • Open your mind to what is possible, most are stuck in their narrow-minded ways
    • Anything is possible. You just need to break it down to manageable pieces
    • Most people are stuck in their boring day to day lives, and don’t budge
    • They are waking up the same each day, taking the same route to work, doing the same things each day.
    • They don’t give enough energy in seeing what else is out there, there are many other cities, places and people to experience in the world. Luck comes to those who are willing to risk the good for the great
  • Working remote is not only possible, it’s fairly easy once you figure it out
    • It’s far easier than you think to work remote. Think differently!
    • A major addition was wifi, so we can work as we travel. Even when the bus is rolling down the road (as I am doing at this moment!) you can work
  • Pay attention to the little details of the world
    • This road trip has taught me to see through the fog and pay attention to details
    • Where to park, where to walk, what time is sunset, what time is sunrise, what’s the temp, where to take a shower, where to get food, where’s the next beautiful national park, look at the flowers, who is around you, why are they there, etc.. just be mindful and pay attention to what’s around you!
  • When traveling, understand the motives of others and be skeptical at first
    • Taking into account who is around you, why are they there, etc..
    • This is something that I don’t do naturally, and I generally take people at their word and trust them quickly
  • Live in the moment – right now – that’s it! Everything will fall into place.
  • You can create a story for yourself that others perpetuate and that grows organically. Who are you and what are you all about?

Utah and Arizona

We spent the first few days traveling from Vegas to Phoenix, touring around Utah and Arizona national parks. I can tell you I have not seen anything like the formations and parks you find in the southwest, and they are beautiful.  

The first night we stayed in Zion National Park and hiked Angels Landing, which is a quick but steep hike to the top of a lookout point a few thousand feet up (and drop off below). The hike was great, but quite busy at the top. Then we hit Bryce Canyon. Damn.

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The Founders Live Phoenix event was included in the larger Phoenix Startup Week, and had a tremendous turnout. We had more than 150 people in attendance and the energy was palpable, I see a growing future for Founders Live in Pheonix for sure. Congrats to Stephanie Schull and Kegelbell for winning the latest Founders Live Phoenix event.  Kegelbell – Most women suffer the symptoms of weak pelvic muscles, diapers-surgery-pills are among the dangerous and ineffective solutions offered, until now, Kegelbell is the most powerful kegel exercise weight set on the market and it works to accelerate results with less work for busy women; this is real women’s health, finally.

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The next city was Austin, but first we had to drive 1,000 miles from Phoenix to Austin. We continued our journey from Phoenix to Austin by stopping in Big Bend National Park, hiking to The Window and taking in the sunset over a quick beer and bite.

Our time in Austin was incredibly fun. We pulled into Austin on Sunday, March 10th and drove to my friend Zach’s place, an empty house in which he is renovating so it’s deadly silent but he offered, so I accepted. I slept on an inflatable mattress in an empty house! We parked the bus outside his house, probably to the dismay of his neighbors. Thanks for the hospitality, Zach. And the introduction to an amazing person!

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During the first few weeks of the month of March Austin is taken over by a large festival and conference called South By South West (SXSW). Fifty to one hundred thousand people come into the city and crowd the streets with concerts, talks, panel discussions, and all out partying. It’s a force. This was my first SXSW so I was a bit overwhelmed with the volume of people and things going on. It did not disappoint to say the least.  There’s too much going on each day to even keep it all straight. The best way to go about it is to make plans for one or two big things in the day and then be flexible and open to new things sprinkled in around those plans.

I attended the Black Girl Ventures pitch competition. Many beautiful and diverse women with great ideas and lots of ambition. That’s what we want to see more of all over the world! I connected with their Founder Shelly Bell and we’re excited to work together on female founder initiatives over the next year.

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I caught an opportunity to see actress and entrepreneur Zoe Saldana talk about her new venture BESE as well as the culture of LatinX.

BESE is a new media platform that represents communities that have been left out of mainstream discourse for too long. Our mission is to broaden and reshape popular narratives by celebrating the untold stories of today’s changing America. We respect all identities and admire the people who have the courage to say, “this is who I am.”

Founders Live is interested to work with BESE and further enhance the LatinX communities around the world. More to come here!

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The Founders Live Austin event was Thursday, March 14th at The Riveter, which is a newly opened cowering community space in Austin. The event went very well, the crowd was good and the energy in the room was solid. I seem to say this each time but the aura around the company seems to build with each month and each event. Founders Live, I can’t quit you even if I tried!

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Congrats to Elyse Vardii and iWinsome for winning the Founders Live Austin event. She is building the CRM for the gig economy, and nailed her pitch that night.  Elyce was so impressed with the Founders Live experience she quickly reached out to me after the Austin event inquiring about starting Founders Live in Houston. We’ve since spoken about it and are now planning the launch into Houston. Elyce, you will do great as a Founders Live City Leader!

Each and every event we hold, people approach and ask if we have an event in a specific city, or if they can help Founders Live expand into a new region. Just in the last few weeks, the below cities are ready to launch or people have reached out to inquire about launching there soon.

Houston, San Antonio, Wash DC, Barcelona, Spain, Madrid, Spain, Gabarone, Botswana, Toronto, and Salta, Argentina.

All in all, we’ll launch another 10 or 15 cities this quarter to end June between 45-50 total Founders Live cities around the world! Not too shabby, eh!

The tour so far has exceeded my expectations. It has been fun, exciting, tiresome, challenging, party, drinks, beautiful people, great conversations, hikes, national parks, long bus rides, work, meetings, planes, and so much more. This is exactly what I needed and wanted. I needed to push myself. I needed to bend the rules of life. I needed to go to the edge. I feel like my life is transcending into a new phase and a new role in the world. It feels good.

I will not go back to what I was, which was a scared person, to be honest. I was scared of not screwing up. I was scared to go all the way to the edge. I was scared of my internal desires, which are at times strange and too ambitious to swallow. I was actually scared of success. I knew how people viewed me and my potential. How they talked about me and Founders Live. I just didn’t want to acknowledge it, because deep down I knew once acknowledged it required me to change who I was and what I was doing. That clearly meant letting go of some things and people I loved, because the life I was looking to live (and the one that I am now living) was incongruent with the current agreement and life we had formed together during those years. It had to happen. Once I overcame the fear of the unknown and acknowledged a better life and greater trajectory was waiting for me on the other side, all I had to do was simply accept it and step into this new world. 

We’re now off to Dallas! If you know anyone in the Dallas/FortWorth area I should connect with, please let me know!

There are way too many to post here, but here are a few more pics:

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Rocking out on the bus!

 

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Peace Pheonix, you were great to us!

 

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Private plane – it’s to only way to fly to Vegas with your friends for March Madness. This was a nice “vacation” from my world tour.

 

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Just a day in the office in Austin. There are so many outdoor cafes and bars to count. I love it.

 

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Visiting Big Bend in Southern Texas.

 

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Just a PSA to stay present.

 

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Austin, you’re the best. But now onto the next one!

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Texas, Big Bend National Park, SXSW, and Austin – How I Am Getting Used To This Life On The Road (More Pics)

I recently announced my plans for a 12-month Founders Live world tour. This post describes another lesson from my journey and what I have initially learned from taking the biggest risk of my life to date. Follow along here on this blog and here.

Ya know… I’m starting to get used to this crazy on the road lifestyle. It’s fun, exhilarating, and constantly stimulating.

But it’s not for the faint of heart!

People ask me what it’s like to be on tour, constantly in the travel mode and having very a little downtime. I usually say something like “ya know, it’s interesting, I recently fell into cruise mode with all the travel… it now feels normal to be in new cities every few weeks and meeting all these new people. There’s a small and constant buzz to it. Like, I can’t wait to see what crazy inspiring thing or conversation is going to happen today?! I feel in the FLOW of it all. And others now see and feel it too. And that’s why it’s working.” 

The biggest lessons I am pulling in right now are about persistence and presence.

Persistence – working at something as long, as hard and as diligent as you can until you reach your goals.

People now approach me looking at Founders Live saying “this is so cool, you’re in 30+ cities and touring the world. Good job!” I like to tell them it’s a great overnight success that took almost 10 years to make happen. Trust me, I have had my full share of tearful, sleepless and worrisome days (years!) wondering when MY TIME will come. Now that it’s here, I so appreciate the work ethic developed in those tough days so many years ago. Stay on track. And stay positive. Your day will come. If you are in those challenging days currently, please don’t hesitate to reach out and chat about them. I have perspective!

Presence – being HERE NOW, here in the moment. At each moment. Undivided. Whole.

I’ve learned this is the utmost (and only way) to live. This tour has already brought so many mind-blowing moments to me – some of them in nature, and some of them with a drink in my hand chatting with a person I just met. But all of them are coming in more frequently and intense now.

Stay with me here… I am trying to put better words to all this. The energy created when you are present, giving the other person your full attention and energy so both of you fully experience the moment is truly fascinating. It’s this energy which flows through both people when you are on the same wavelength that helps to put the outer layer of bliss on top of what you are enjoying. This could be at a bar, at a Founders Live event, or walking in a national park. I’m experiencing it all over the Western US and I’m excited to experience it all over the world very soon!

These lessons are helping me not only get used to life on the road but actually really embrace love all aspects of this tour.

We continued our journey from Phoenix to Austin by stopping in Big Bend National Park, hiking to The Window and taking in the sunset over a quick beer and bite.

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Lovin’ this mobile office!

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Being in Austin and attending SXSW has been fun! There’s too much going on each day to even keep it all straight. The best way to go about it is to make plans for one or two big things in the day and then be flexible and open to new things sprinkled in around those plans.

I attended the Black Girl Ventures pitch competition. Many beautiful and diverse women with great ideas and lots of ambition. That’s what we want to see more of all over the world!

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I caught an opportunity to see actress and entrepreneur Zoe Saldana talk about her new venture BESE as well as the culture of LatinX.

BESE is a new media platform that represents communities that have been left out of mainstream discourse for too long. Our mission is to broaden and reshape popular narratives by celebrating the untold stories of today’s changing America. We respect all identities and admire the people who have the courage to say, “this is who I am.”

Founders Live is interested to work with BESE and further enhance the LatinX communities around the world. More to come here!

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Our Founders Live Austin event was Thursday, March 14th at The Riveter Austin, which just opened. Thanks Amy Nelson! The event was great. Congrats to Elyse Kingdon and iWinsome for winning the latest Founders Live Austin. The CRM for the gig economy.  https://iwinsome.com/

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Be where you are, now.

A Tour of The Beautiful Southwest – Utah and Arizona Parks (Caution, HOT images)

I recently announced my plans for a 12-month Founders Live world tour. This post describes another lesson from my journey and what I have initially learned from taking the biggest risk of my life to date. Follow along here on this blog and here.

If you want to go somewhere in the U.S. where you can climb incredible cliffs, see breathtaking rock formations and experience amazing sunrises or sunsets, you must go to the Southwest. Month three of my world tour has brought me to Utah and Arizona. Below you will see some of the places I enjoyed and the pictures I took over the last few days as we drove from Las Vegas to my next stop in Phoenix. The lesson here is to get the heck out of your city and see the world!

We started at Zion National Park. Here’s Angels Landing. Yes, we climbed it to the top along small ridges and thousand-foot dropoffs!

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This is our ride! I’ll be touring the Western US for the months of March, April, May and June in this bad boy call VanGough. It has wifi, a work station, table, chairs, sleeping quarters, a sink, and bathroom. We might paint it something other than the bus yellow!

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We then drove to Bryce Canyon and saw this…

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Then we woke up early and caught one of the most incredible sunrises at Bryce Canyon the next morning.

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We then drove into Arizona and checked out Antelope Canyon, simply no words to describe the formations of the rock and sandstone in these caves. It’s like a whole other world.

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Yep, I know what you are thinking….

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And this is my favorite. Took it with my iPhone.

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In between these excursions I worked on the bus on the wifi. Life is good. Can’t say enough about everyone taking their own World Tour.

World Tour 2019 Month Two Overview – California was good, but the best is yet to come!

Here’s an overview of the last month on the road for the Founders Live World Tour. Throughout February I traveled throughout California, with stops in Los Angeles, San Francisco, and San Diego. Below are the highlights and what’s up next. (Read my tour announcement post here for more context of this trip.)

TLDR – Regardless of some ‘interesting’ weather, California was great, at times majestic. Next stops are Phoenix and Austin. Know anyone I should meet?

Carlsbad Beach!

 

Los Angeles

I landed in LA to down-pour rain. Geez, I thought. Here I was creating a world tour and thinking I’d head down to Southern Cal to get warm and sunshine. Nope. Wind and rain. For days on end!

I stayed with our previous LA city leader Lucas Capestany in Playa Vista area, close to LAX and Santa Monica, along with his friends and startup cofounders. I was taken back to college memories and the “scrappy startup” living experience. Setting out on this tour I intended to see what entrepreneurship looks like in many different cities and countries. Mission accomplished here. Lucas and his team are dedicated and will do just fine. Thanks Lucas!

My favorite part of this leg of the trip was how close the beach was and being able to go on a nice run every other morning. It’s so refreshing to run on the beach – it’s a zen thing for me – and one morning I even got up before the sun and ran out there to see the sunrise. It was breathtaking. I had one of those (they are more common now) moments of “man, can you believe this? It feels so right and so perfect right now. Hang on to this feeling.”

I enjoyed working in Venice a few days out of the week, camping out at Tom’s Shoes store which has a coffee shop in it and a back patio where you can chill and work. I met a few new contacts in the LA area, which as enjoyable and educational. Another enjoyable aspect of the trip has been the numerous introductions from you all! Keep them coming, please! The relationships which have started just from these early trip introductions will be long and meaningful.


The Founders Live Long Beach event went very well and I have a feeling it’s going to grow into something quite larger in the community.  The winner was Nicolette – Nicolette is a health tech company that empowers patients with visual data, curated education, and engagement tools. Great pitches all around and the FL Long Beach city leader Josh Rencher did very well, We even made it into the local newspaper, which has already resulted in a few new opportunities in Long Beach.

San Francisco

I flew to SF on 2/11, and stayed a few nights in the Hayes Valley area of SF (thanks Brek Goin, Founder of Hammr) and then a few nights in Oakland (thanks Amanda Townsend). It was fun to see the different sides of the bay area, different cultures, and communities. Yes, the bay area has its issues, but by and large, it was fun to be in the tech epicenter for even a short time.

Another event in a new city, yet the same response. It’s fascinating to me how impactful and inspiring Founders Live really is to a local entrepreneurial community. Maybe I am so close to it I don’t see it anymore but the Founders Live event really does have a meaningful impact on people. I love to just sit back and observe people at our events, the looks on their faces, and how much they are inspired to go do great things in the world.


Thanks to our partnership with Google Cloud we held the event at Google Developers Launchpad in the SOMA area of downtown SF. The winner was RWB Canine  RWB Canine Inc. – Advanced Canine Wearable w/ Real-Time Physiology for Pet Lovers, DHS and DOD. Pretty cool stuff! Founders Live SF city leader Stone Strickland has done an excellent job of getting Founders Live up and running in the city. We had a strong crowd and based on the response I can only see an upward trajectory in SF.

Something struck me in Oakland after I had a few lunch meetings with two people who I had just met during the week. The conversations were magical and inspiring, where both people left totally energized and almost floating. When I left the restaurant I walked around the lake in Oakland and was left awestruck with what is transpiring in front of me in my life and business. Most of it I cannot explain, but simply follow what is pulling me in the direction of growth and leadership. I think the best thing about it is seeing how people are impacted and changed when they pitch at Founders Live. It’s a gift that just keeps on giving.

Being on tour has taught me to just live in the moment and take it all in. When on the road, you are perpetually in motion and navigating new and uncomfortable circumstances. There’s no zeroing out, level setting or ‘resetting and recharging’ by chilling on your coach or going back to your 9-5 job during weekdays. On tour, you’re always on. This IS your 9-5, but more accurately your 24/7. It’s constantly moving and the best thing to do is always be present, be in the moment, to take it all in. Something strange and unique set in that day in Oakland – that of which I have a hard time putting into words but the best ones seem to be FLOW, BLISS, GIFT, and ENERGY.  I hope there are many more days of revelation like that one in my future.

San Diego

I stayed with my extended family for a few days when I arrived in San Diego, so I decided to “be on vacation” for 2 days. Monday we went to the Carlsbad beach, walked and had a late brunch and cruised around for a bit. Such a beautiful area. Tuesday I ran on the beach, went down to Encinitas and worked a few hours at a cafe. Trying to not work on this trip is difficult. Partly because we have momentum and you always want to keep it going and not lose any of your edge, but also I hate email build up and aim to stay inbox zero. It’s not easy as the volume is now increasing. I am working to fight the natural urge to always be working. It’s a work in progress!

We had a small launch party for the Founders Live SD event on Thursday 2/21. It was supposed to be at a cool outdoor venue but the weather was terrible on Wed and Thursday of that week. Stormy and rain/hail. Of course… So we had it at a local establishment called Bootlegger. It was a good turnout for being relocated at the last minute. That’s okay, Founders Live SD will flourish in the near term and I have full confidence our city leader Alex Resnick will run a great show.

I finished off the California trip staying with a good friend in Pacific Beach / La Jolla. We hung out Saturday on the beach, played volleyball, went to a few popular spots in Pacific Beach and then out to downtown San Diego. Pacific/Mission Beach is the place to be down in SD. Needless to say, I would have difficulty getting work done in the area, but I feel a strong kinship with the city due to its SoCal laid back vibe. In a parallel universe, it’s my home.

I flew back to Seattle for a quick stop to see friends and host our event on Thursday 2/28. Another week, another big event and back in the spotlight. The event was unforgettable, about 300 people in attendance and doubled as a send-off party for me and this trip – I won’t be back in Seattle until 2020 at the earliest. Equal parts sad and exciting, the last FL Seattle night went off without a hitch. This month’s winner was Melissa Strawn and MyPeopleNow  – Do What You Love. Let Others Help You With The Rest. I am so proud of Melissa, she has worked very hard and come along way over the last 6 months. She is another example of how anything is possible for anyone out there if they want it bad enough.

Up next I head to Phoenix (3/5 – 3/9) and Austin (3/11 – 3/30). We’ll arrive in Phoenix for Phoenix Startup Week and the Founders Live Phoenix event is Thursday evening, at The Foundre Hotel. The next week we’ll be in Austin for SXSW and our event which takes place on Thursday 3/14.

WHO SHOULD I CONNECT WITH IN THESE CITIES?

To say I am excited about these next few months is an understatement. This tour has been one of the best things to happen in my life, and we’re only 2 months into the year-long adventure. Lessons – Don’t let anyone dictate what you can or cannot do in life. Don’t take no for an answer if you feel what you are doing is good for the world. Don’t doubt yourself, you have much more capability and adaptability than you think. You have everything it takes to be great, sometimes it’s so deep down inside your soul you just haven’t discovered it yet. All you need to do is figure out how to go deep enough to tap into it.

See you on the trails.

Gratitude And Love For All Of You

I recently announced my plans for a 12-month Founders Live world tour. This post describes another lesson from my journey and what I have initially learned from taking the biggest risk of my life to date. Follow along here on this blog and here.

Today is Valentine’s Day.

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A new phrase has started coming out of my mouth more frequently: I don’t have the words to describe my life right now and what I am experiencing. It’s that good.  

It’s weird. It’s difficult to be going through an experience and not be able to describe it, to not be able to translate it so others could also understand and feel it.

All I can say is this thing just keeps getting better each day. The people I am introduced to are more connected than ever. The conversations I am having with – strangers, or fast friends – is truly heartfelt and on levels I haven’t tapped into for a very long time. Having the opportunity to take the stage and address a new audience in a new city each week is such an honor.

I acknowledge these experiences are not normal and I am lucky to be right here, right now. But I also have immense gratitude for everyone who has come around me and Founders Live. The support, assistance, conversations, roofs over my head, food, drinks, applause, introductions, teachings, and everything else that comes with this position does not go unnoticed.

Recently I have learned more about Gratitude and Appreciation than I have in a long time. It hit me as I was walking up a big San Francisco hill today. Sometimes it takes falling off the cliff and feeling all the people who are picking you up, helping you to get back on your feet to really understand gratitude.

It’s such an honor to be doing what I am doing and I appreciate all of you. Today, I don’t say I Love You to any one person. Today I say: I Love All Of You. All of you who have supported me and Founders Live, this is for you. And I am so excited to see what no only tomorrow but the next few months bring us!

World Tour 2019 Month One Overview – 1/12 In And Already Feels Like A New Company

I recently announced my plans for a 12-month Founders Live world tour. This post describes another lesson from my journey and what I have initially learned from taking the biggest risk of my life to date. Follow along here on this blog and here.

Don’t Blink. Just like that and I’m 1/12 into this crazy amazing journey around the world. It’s already been one a heck of a 2019, and it still feels like the first inning. I can tell you this – Founders Live will end 2019 quite different than it entered it.

Here’s a brief overview of the intensity of January 2019, which is depicted well with my focus and game face in the image below.

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I left Seattle on Dec 23rd driving with my family down to Boise, Idaho for the holidays and to stay for the month of January. I enjoyed the holidays and the new year but was eager to get started in the new normal of life on the road.

Quickly I joined the coworking space Trailhead where I spent most of the days getting work done and taking calls.  It’s was exactly what I needed and I really enjoying getting to know the Boise startup community.

In fact, it was the venue we used to host the Founders Live Boise event, which took place  on January 23rd and will be the venue going forward this year.  Learning about their growth initiatives and how Founders Live can help accomplish them was music to my ears and we’re honored they want to support our initiatives as well.

bfb-logo-way The winner of the Boise event was ButterFace – Let’s face it, movie popcorn is better with Real Butter! ButterFace Real Butter comes from a farm, not a factory. Join us in an about-face on all things artificial by elevating your popcorn experience with ButterFace, the Way Better Butter.

I also had the opportunity to give a talk at an Entrepreneurship Class at Boise State University. It was invigorating and fun to address the students and describe Founders Live, our vision, and where we are going. I also encouraged them to think big, understand they are not too young to make a positive impact in the world, and to think as they go through their class what type of entrepreneur they want to become. I am sure some seeds were planted in there!

I wrote about a few initial lessons I was encountering during the stay in Boise, you can read here and here.  The lesson here for anyone on the road is multifaceted.

First, I learned about Routines. “whatever daily routine you thrive on when you are at home can be worked into your life on the road if you pay close enough attention and work at it. It does take work. But if done correctly it ties you back into yourself and you feel whole no matter where you are in the world. Secondly, quickly finding a home base or a place you can depend on each day to help maintain your effectiveness and work ethic is key to not losing a step in your business. Lastly – newness, fresh faces, and different daily challenges are refreshing and fun to tackle. Embrace the hell out of them.”

And then I wrote about being more open. The lesson here is: Be Open To Being More Open. “It’s an offshoot of Open The Door Core Value and maybe the distant cousin of it. It’s the reciprocal side of that core value, where as you are more open to new opportunities, new people, new experiences, the more often you will see others Opening The Door to you. You see, the Core Value Open The Door only works when there are 2 people: one person who is opening the door and the other person who is open to the door being opened for them.”

The last lesson I learned was more around how to navigate life when you are on the road and staying with others. It’s nuanced… and takes tact and strong self-awareness, that of which I am improving each day. Anyone traveling for a long period of time will recognize you will need to dive deep on this one!

On January 27th, I flew back to Seattle for a brief week of meetings, happy hours, speaking engagements, and our Founders Live Seattle Event. It felt like a homecoming – even though I was only gone a month – and it truly impacted my view of myself and Founders Live. I have noticed a big uptick in the volume of messages, emails, people introducing themselves to me, and how the community now views Founders Live. Going out on this journey has (been pretty clear already) the best thing for me and the company, and will ultimately be the inflection point in our history.

The Founders Live Seattle event on Jan 31st at The Collective was at fever pitch. We packed the house with close to if not more than 300 people, had a number of special guest in attendance, and practically busted out of the walls. I am so proud of the Seattle community and what we have created in that city. The clear mission is to achieve this growth and inspiration in ALL Founders Live cities. Yours included!

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The winner of Founders Live Seattle was CoffeeBreak – CoffeeBreak is a mobile app where we use your professional goals and give you recommendations of the people who can and want to help you reach them. This was a special winner since I have been advising the CoffeeBreak team since before they launched the concept and have really helped them get aligned on what they are building and the immediate next steps. Very proud of their hard work and it paid off at the event!

Well, I’m now in California and heading into a big stretch of bursts and stops. This week in LA (Feb 2nd – Feb 11th and our Long Beach Event is the 6th), next week in SF (Feb 11th – Feb 17th and our SF event is the 15th) , the next week in San Diego (Feb 17th – Feb 25th, event will be announced in the next few days) , and then back to SEA for last week of Feb and our event. After that, I go to Phoenix for a week, and then Austin for most of March, (little Vegas trip in the middle) and then head to Dallas for April. That’s my next 8 weeks, ha.

If you are in any of those cities, please reach out and we’ll try to connect.

Here we go!

Lessons From The Road: Are You Open To Being More Open?

I recently announced my plans for a 12-month Founders Live world tour. This post describes another lesson from my journey and what I have initially learned from taking the biggest risk of my life to date. Follow along here on this blog and here.

When I announced my 2019 tour the outpouring of thoughts, encouragement, and support was overwhelming and humbling. It amazed me how much people are paying attention to me and Founders Live, and how they were extending their thoughts and words of encouragement to me.

I was on a call today with one of these people – someone who I didn’t know but had attended an event in Austin, TX and then cold reached out to me in an email.

During the conversation, something clicked as I was talking. A new lesson – if you are open to being open – to new things and new people – they will walk into your life unexpected but with perfect timing to answer a request or a need you have at the time.

arms-wide-open.

I described to this person how amazing it was that as Founders Live grows, we are seeing a larger and larger community forming around the world. And I was struck with how lots of these people have reached out to me and extended their support, offering a roof over my head or a connection to someone they know when I enter a new city.

“We’ve created this community and it’s amazing how people are opening doors to me all over the place”, I said to him. “It’s really cool to see it in action. To see people opening doors to strangers in efforts to help.”

Then I said “This is not about me. I didn’t build Founders Live just for myself. This is available and open to ALL Founders Live members. Anyone should be able to post about their travels or needs and others in our community can be there for assistance and support if needed. I know it’s happening already.”

That’s the truth.

You should be able to tap into the Founders Live community and connect with other like-minded people, possibly in other countries and other corners of the world. You should be able to trust them, or at least know they pass one or two filters even before you discovered them.

A quality check for me (as the founder) is if this continues and actually becomes more prevalent as we grow in many more cities and many more people around the world. That’s when we know we’ve created something very special.

The lesson here is: Be Open To Being More Open. It’s an offshoot of Open The Door Core Value and maybe the distant cousin of it. It’s the reciprocal side of that core value, where as you are more open to new opportunities, new people, new experiences, the more often you will see others Opening The Door to you. You see, the Core Value Open The Door only works when there are 2 people: one person who is opening the door and the other person who is open to the door being opened for them.

Be Open. More than you would otherwise. It’s how we grow as humans. And I am learning it’s how you survive when you are on the road!