6 years ago, my life nearly came to an end. No, I wasn’t involved in an accident, I wasn’t shot at, nor was I battling cancer. I was, in my eyes, at rock bottom, and I wanted it to all just go away. After falling into a disgusting online gambling addition, and losing pretty much everything to my name, and then some, it got to the point where I asked myself “What reason do I have to keep living?”. When you’re in a situation like this, the natural reaction is to pile up the negatives, while ignoring the positives. Thankfully, I was able to find the strength to keep going and turn my life around.
When I first started uploading Photoshop tutorials to YouTube back in 2007, they weren’t anywhere close to what they are today, and the comments certainly made that clear.
“Sorry to say but this is horrible tutorial.”
“is there any way you be less…boring?”
“stupid. shame i expected something good for two mins.”
And while the negative comments were quite overpowering, there were the occasional comments of encouragement, which was all it took to keep me going. I always told myself that as long as someone is enjoying my work, I’m going to push on forward. It reminds me of one of my all-time favorite quotes:
“If I speak to a room of 1000 people, and I affect the life of one person, that’s all that matters to me.” – Lizzie Velasquez
The few positive comments that I received during my first few months on YouTube pushed me to better not only my content, but made me a better person in the process.
This mentality didn’t only push me to become a better educator, but it also pushed me through one of the hardest periods of my life. Even though the negatives in my life were drastically outweighing the positives, I was able to overlook the thought of suicide and focus on one of the few things I had left; Photoshop. Luckily, as a kid, while most were out drinking and getting into trouble, I was at home designing. It’s this that allowed me to shift gears and start creating Photoshop tutorials for YouTube, which to this day have received over 70 million views, and have helped millions of people in their day to day lives.
6 years later, my business is growing, my content is better than ever, but more importantly, I connected with the most wonderful woman in the world, who I’ve now been married to for three amazing years.
All of this would have never happened if I didn’t search for that one “positive comment”. I encourage you to all do the same.