My Story

I don’t know if I’ve ever felt more stuck than in December 2016. 

I was fifteen years into a successful career I enjoyed – I loved the people I worked with, and the money was good.

But I had just spent eighteen months struggling to survive an abusive boss.

A co-worker and I were discussing our shared frustrations, and I remember his exact words, “What can we do? Think about it; we’re stuck!” 

I mumbled something in agreement – but inside, I refused to be stuck and decided to do something about it. At that moment, I resolved to create another path and begin my escape from the 9-5.

We talked about jumping ship and going to a competitor. But I had vowed never to leave a good organization and people I care about because of a bad boss.

After all, every workplace has its fair share of crappy bosses. Would another company be any different? 

Things eventually improved at work, but I wouldn’t forget the pledge I had made to myself. After all, the situation could change anytime, and I’d be back in the same place, feeling hopeless and stuck.

But there was one problem.

My motivation to leave the 9-5 was rooted in a bad experience and negative feelings, and I knew it wasn’t healthy.

I needed something positive to propel me forward. 

It didn’t take long to find it.

When my kids were younger, the 9-5 made sense. We were a single-income family, and my wife and I appreciated the steady paycheque. I didn’t care much about schedule flexibility because we didn’t need to go anywhere.

Our pattern was the same. Every day, the kids would get up and go to school; I’d go to work and be home before dinner most nights.

But our kids were getting older. Our son was almost out of the house (he’s married now), and within a few years, our daughters wouldn’t be far behind. 

Our family life was changing.

Having the flexibility to control my schedule was becoming much more important. Looking ahead, my wife and I would want more time to travel, be there for our kids, and visit family more often.

For that, I needed my work to be 100% remote.   

I don’t mean “employee who works from a home office,” remote. I wanted the ability to work for myself anywhere in the world with an internet connection, aka the laptop lifestyle. 

Yet, here I was, staring down another 15 to 20 years of 40+ hour weeks working in an office to secure a pension. 

Life is way too short for that. 

So, how does a 40-something, married, father of three, who has: 

  • only ever worked a 9-5 job; 
  • never owned their own business; 
  • zero online or social media skills; 
  • minimal short-term cash savings; 

build a 6-figure online business from nothing and replace a successful career in the financial services industry?

With the help of YouTube, I taught myself how to build a WordPress website and started a blog. As I blogged, I became a better writer and built a small but engaged audience of readers. Working on my blog taught me the skills I needed to run an online business.

I learned how to create content that ranks on Google (SEO), the basics of email marketing, and how to build digital products. I also experimented with a few side hustles; I did some music production work and helped a friend start a logo design business. But I wasn’t making much money.

So in June of 2018, I started a freelance business, helping other website owners create and develop content. In my first month, I made $200. One year later, I was making $2000/month over and above my 9-5. Every month, I shared my progress with my blog readers, who encouraged me along the way.

In 2021, I added another freelance client, and my income jumped to almost $5000 a month. My wife and I used the extra money to build the emergency fund I would need to leave the 9-5. We also paid off debt and used cash to pay for some much-needed home repairs.

On October 1, 2022, four years after I began freelancing, I left my office at work for the last time.

I had escaped the 9-5.

Two weeks earlier, I had unexpectedly secured an additional $8000-$10000 in monthly freelance work. My side hustle income had surpassed my corporate job, and I could no longer balance the two.

With close to a year’s worth of savings in the bank, I gave my 2-weeks notice.

There were no shortcuts, and I made many mistakes along the way. I also had the support of some incredible people, especially my wife and kids, who were behind me the entire way.

I’ve been fortunate to build a fully remote business and gain complete control over my income and time, and I want to help others do the same. 

Stay tuned as I share the strategies I used right here on my blog. I’ll let you know what works and what doesn’t. I’ll share my best advice and be there to encourage you in your journey.

I’ve experienced how it feels to be stuck, but I’m here to tell you there is a way out.