Oddly enough, this is one post that is the scariest to write.
I am a big-picture person, and my imagination seems to see no ends. I can see one and imagine 100, or 1000. I can envision futures that are vastly different from what I see in here and now.
Until very recently, I couldn’t figure out what tangible good that can create. It’s entertaining to daydream, I thought, but I need to be a realist. I need to spend my time here and now, and try not to get ahead of myself. What good is it to imagine 10 years from now when I need to reduce my to-do list in the next hour?
But when my father was alive, he kept asking me things like “how do you see yourself in 5 years?” or “what is your vision for the next decade of your life?”
Stephen Covey says, too, that all things are created twice — first in your mind, and next in your reality.
Why is it so scary to discuss about future? Because I know that once I put anything out there, I’m bound to it. I’m holding myself accountable. To quit is to fail. To change my mind is to admit that I was wrong.
And that is precisely why I need to go public with my business plan. Because I finally came up with a vision that I know is close enough to “me” that I feel comfortable going public with. The details are going to change, I guarantee you. But the core won’t. Not if I’m going to keep growing, and follow my desire to be more fully “me.” It’s a business, too, so it will adapt and evolve as I figure out how to make it work. I haven’t figured everything out yet, but one thing I am certain: I will learn.
So, here it is. Ready?
You can read either or both the summary and the detailed versions.
Please leave a supportive comment on the long version page (even if you only read the summary).
I’d like to collect as many supportive comments as I can, so that I can show prospective investors, business advisers and collaborators that a lot of people believe in me and support me.
Are you back? Left a comment there?
Great, thank you. Now, let me share with you what I see for this site, specifically.
What I Learned from OBV
OBV was my pilot blog business. And as an experiment, it was a rousing success. It gave me confidence as a writer, and try some promotion tactics. It’s not a big site yet, by any stretch. But I have good ideas of how to build it. To grow any blog is mostly just a matter of putting the time in, as there are clearly defined methods of how to get it done. Writing good content is hard, so I’m going to hire assistants to do the grunt work on promotion so that I can focus on the writing. Being a web developer in my (soon-to-be) previous life, I’m often tempted to work on my own site. I can’t allow myself to do that, if I’m serious about my vision. I need all the time I got to do the things only I can. I need to get over my fear of being a boss and do some serious delegation, including the things I can do.
The pressure to keep posting despite being fragmented and torn apart, time-wise, is stressful. But I tested myself by briefly creating a situation where I can focus solely on my own business. As I had hoped, I realized that the stress came from the need to create under such time constraints. Once I give myself more abundant time, I simply enjoyed what I naturally do — create.
I am more passionate about what I’m discussing on this site than ever. And as my growing draft list indicates, I’m not about to run out of ideas.
Some of you who know me primarily from this site may feel a bit perplexed about my wanting to be a musician. I admit that I myself have struggled to connect these dots — not just between self-improvement blogging and music, but between being Japanese and living in US, between being a family man and wanting to get into the music industry (which has deep aversion to family-men or women). I have quite a diversity built inside me, so it was a great challenge to come up with a vision that utilized all my major assets.
But here is what I’ve figured out. In addition to creating, I love mentoring. I’m not as good a teacher, as in presenter of information. I’m the one who listens, affirms, encourages, challenges, and perhaps most importantly, who asks the right questions. I love helping people learn and raise themselves. I am a catalyst for self-driven growth. We all teach ourselves, in the end. I’m the guy who can awaken in you the teacher, the nurturer and the parent you needed, the ones you thought you had to seek outside yourself.
I need OBV, because a lot of times, blocks we discover in our music-making is not related to our music-making abilities at all. The obstacles lie somewhere deeper, closer to our core. If you want to be a successful musician or entrepreneur, your best bet is to heal and grow yourself. That’s why I need OBV in my portfolio. So I don’t have to tell those who I mentor “well, you’re having a personal problem, and I’m not the one who can help you with that.” I want to run a one-stop shop, because I needed to deal with these issues in my quest to become a musician and entrepreneur myself.
And while it’s beyond the scope of this business plan, I definitely intend to reach out and be active in Japanese communities. That country needs a lot of help. Disconnected from much of the world because of its language barrier, they are smoldering in their own material success, trying desperately to keep up while ostracizing, suffocating and drowning those who simply don’t fit the collective norm. As long as I have lived in US, I am a Japanese and I want to be with and work with my people.
The Future of Our Best Version
So what all this means for this site? Several things.
First, nothing will change. I will keep posting, keep commenting, keep building traffic and the community, in a way my time allows. I refuse to strain myself, but I will continue working at a pace I can manage. When my business plan fully kicks in, I’ll probably be able to ramp up the activity a bit, though probably not dramatically.
Second, there will be an OBV forum. I don’t know when, but whenever I have money to hire someone else to set it up. I have enough comments now for a forum right now, but I’d rather not spend my time setting it up. The forum will further encourage the community building and discussions that spurn beyond just commenting on my posts. Yes, I’m copycatting Mr. Pavlina — but I’m reasonably optimistic that he won’t sue. 😉
Third, I’d like to find a partner(s) for OBV. Not right now, but down the road. Ideally, I would love to find a practicing therapist with naturopathic sensibilities. Or maybe a practicing life-coach. Hopefully this person can write posts, moderate the forum and lead the next offering, which are:
Two online mentoring/group programs. One is a group life-coaching program, using an exclusive forum and periodic teleconferencing. The other is an online group therapy. I haven’t done a thorough research, but I believe having a forum/teleconference based therapy sessions are better than having none at all. Some people who may have a hard time committing to traditional talk or group therapy may be able to take advantage of 24/7 nature of online communities. Some people may live in an area where there aren’t suitable therapists. Writing can be therapeutic, and to create an online “safe house” that’s guarded from general public, only seen by select few who are sympathetic, supportive and understanding — well, I don’t know about you, but I feel like joining such a group myself, right now! 😉
When will all these take place? I have no idea, but the time span I’m envisioning with my whole business plan is next 2-3 years. I hope to find a solution for my going full-time in the next few months. It’s all very ambitious, I realize. So I really don’t have time to be shy or hesitant.
How You Can Help
Do you like my vision? Great! I need your help.
First, please leave a supportive comment on the main business plan page.
Secondly, please help this site grow. You know what to do — links, social networks, etc. Many of you are already doing that, and I am very grateful. Please keep doing it.
Do you have ideas that seem compatible with mine? Let’s talk and see if we can collaborate. Or do you like some of my ideas and want to use it in your vision? You have my full permission to do so. Just give me the credit for the idea 😉 and share with me what you learn.
Above all, please shower me with your well-wishes. I can use all the positive energy I can get. The more people know about my intentions, the better. Please envision OBV with abundance of in-depth articles, a vibrant forum, and a big community of people growing, learning, and realizing their potential.