Don't Just Live Your Life, Love It!

My Story


Welcome and thanks for stopping by, I hope that what you’ve seen of Your Life To Love so far has been educational and helpful if you have aspirations of leaving the rat race and building a life that puts you in control of your destiny.

I’ve put together this page to provide some context about who I am and why this site exists, be warned it’s not a short story, but it’s worth reading if you truly want to know who I am and what I am about.

So let’s get started shall we…

Why Am I Here?

If you’re anything like me it’s likely you’ve grown up thinking that there’s more to life than going to school, getting a degree and then heading off to work for the next 40 years before retiring to live quietly somewhere until the day you die. I’ve always felt that there was more to it than that and as a result I’ve been searching, consciously (and subconsciously) for something different that means I can either make a difference through my career or have the time to make a difference in other ways.

My biggest problem was I didn’t know what ‘make a difference’ meant in a specific way and honestly I didn’t have a ‘save the world’ vibe or a desire to head off and work in a third world country or with the underprivileged… does that make me a bad person? I didn’t think so, but I still couldn’t put a finger on what my contribution was going to be, so I kept looking.

Over the years I found many ‘opportunities’ (that’s in parentheses for a reason) but they never really took, not because I think they were all ultimately scams or old techniques wrapped up to look new. Rather, and this wasn’t something I figured out until recently, when it came to affiliate marketing or product development I always felt there was an undercurrent of profiting off of the failure of others or promoting things that I didn’t truly believe in for the sake of making a buck or two.

So I stuck with the J.O.B, albeit one that evolved until I found myself doing customer experience (championing the needs of the customer and designing processes and websites that meet them) which is incredibly rewarding when I actually have an impact on business decisions. But at the same time I still had that feeling/desire to have more time and control over my destiny which meant I kept trying things, failing and moving onto the next one, much to my own frustration.

In amongst all of this I experienced the joy of getting married and welcoming my two kids into the world and unbeknownst to me that is when things really started to change, slowly at first, but ultimately leading to me discovering WHY I wanted to do things differently. If you’re a parent then I imagine you will relate, or maybe you’re lucky (depending on you look at it) and you don’t think the same way I do, but let’s see shall we…

They say having kids completely changes your perspective on life and I’m not one to disagree (entirely)…

…however what I will add to that is once that is combined with some experience and wisdom it can have a profound effect on one’s perspective. After all, there are plenty of parents out there who don’t experience a sudden shift in priorities on the day their child is born, but I’d be very surprised if it doesn’t happen at some point.

For me there was a definite realisation that my life was different, I thought that I wanted to make more money and have more time to be with them and support them through their lives, but the reality was it wasn’t about buying them more stuff or even necessarily seeing them more often that was starting to gnaw away at me as time went by.

What I began to realise was that no matter how much I enjoyed my job and how flexible I could be with working from home or even how much money I made, the fact was I would inevitably let it affect my personal life, regardless of how hard I tried to ensure it didn’t. I can’t tell you how many times I found myself exhausted after a long week of meetings and fighting battles to try and give customers the best possible experience, only to come home and not have the energy to enjoy my family.

Not only that, I could see and recognise bad behaviour on my part towards my family (in particular my kids), frustration and yelling, getting upset at stuff that in the grand scheme of things meant absolutely nothing… and then the horror of seeing my kids’ faces when I lost my cool and they had no idea why, and no matter what I said they would never understand why Daddy made them cry.

To make matters worse, all I think most parents ever want to do is ensure that the best of them is brought to life by their kids, but all I began to focus on was seeing the worst of me coming to life. The overreactions to small things, the disappointment in themselves, getting down in the dumps and not letting things go, stuff that kids shouldn’t be worried about at all.

I mean, my job as a parent should be to learn from my past, recognise what I’ve done wrong and ensure they don’t suffer because of it. Figure out how to handle my sh*t, teach them how to deal with things in a better way, grow up to have incredible lives and go forth to carve their own path through life. Give them all the good things, help them survive the bad, experience the world, go travelling, enjoy the toys, get the girl/boy, be better and pass that on to their own kids etc.

But even now, while writing this, I can feel my heart racing, the feeling of my body temperature rising, the emotions and the tears in my eyes when I think about those moments when I wasn’t at my best and my kids bore the brunt of it. That feeling of coming to the realisation that deep down I was terrified by the idea that maybe I wasn’t cut out for this, what if, when it came down to passing this test, of being the best father that I could, I failed and ultimately screwed up my kids’ lives?

Scary right, even if you don’t have kids yourself I expect you can imagine what that might feel like…

But here’s the thing, a twist in the tale as they say, it wasn’t this realisation that helped me to find the solution to my problem. It was a leap of faith, having looked and attempted so many other training or so-called money making systems, to invest in a different sort of educational system that actually helped me to fully recognise and come to terms with it in the first place (and in a rather public way).

After many years of looking, I stumbled across a Facebook post from a friend which lead me to read a story about two guys who had a vision, which then lead me to take a look at what they were offering and so on and so on. Now I’m not afraid to tell you I was cynical and honestly some of the onboarding and training they offered did nothing to quell that cynicism, but on the flip side there was a voice inside my head that was asking… what if they are what they say they are?

Maybe it was luck, maybe it was timing and a dawning realisation that my lack of success in the past was actually my responsibility, or a combination of these and other things, but I felt that these guys (and the community of people they had grown around them) were the answer I was seeking. So I decided to invest in myself and commit, it wasn’t cheap (so if you’re looking for a $27 solution to your problem, this isn’t it) and I was equal parts excited and terrified, but I am very glad that I did.

As soon as I made the decision and I began to get exposed to the reality of what the vision was and what I now had access to I knew I had made the right choice. Don’t get me wrong it’s not for everyone and the voice inside my head raising doubts hasn’t suddenly disappeared, but having had a chance to get to know many of the people who have also made this decision and those that are leading by example, I can tell you it’s very much for real.

And before I forget, that ‘public way’ in which I came to my realisation I mentioned earlier… that came about when I attended my first live training event, a small gathering of like-minded individuals who got the pleasure of being in the room with one of the founders of the company to talk about branding (not that it was really about branding as I had imagined it, but I digress).

The very first morning we got to stand up and share our stories with each other, why were we there, what our past experiences had been and when it was my turn, well let’s just say I lost it (in front of 20 odd people I’d just met no less). As soon as I started to talk about my kids and how proud I was of them my emotions came tumbling out… joy, pride, fear… what if this, what about that and on and on, tears running down my face as I ploughed on (I couldn’t sit down fast enough!).

Something like that has never happened to me before, but I felt safe in that environment to let it out, not only because everyone else in that room had their own story to tell, but because the people who had come out to train us has bared themselves for us to see as well. They were also fathers and husbands, wives and daughters, who knew and could relate to what I was feeling right then.

And it was after I sat down and over the next few days that I really got to know the kind of people I was dealing with. They weren’t giant cheque waving, giveaway a car for promoting my product, manipulative marketing gurus who were only interested in teaching me how to make money online at the expense of anyone and everyone.

No, these were people like me who had come to the realisation that they wanted more out of life, these were people that had their own moments of emotion as they shared their stories of how they had realised they needed to do something different with their lives. I mean, even when talking about the success of their students it wasn’t about how much money they were making, there was a genuine emotional reaction to how much those lives had changed and the impact they were having.

It’s an incredible feeling to be amongst people like that on a regular basis.

And this is the purpose of this site, to help others like me find “their people” regardless of what the program is that floats their boat. Afterall, I have worked with a wide range of training programs, some good, others not so much and in doing so I have come to realise that the truth is…

Some programs are just not right for most people… but once you find the right one, there’ll be no stopping you!

My goal is to share my experiences, what I’ve tried and who I’ve worked with, so that you can check them out for yourselves and decide what is going to be the right match for you as you work towards getting out of the daily grind and into something that you can be excited about doing each and every day. In all likelihood, most of the things I have done may not be right for you, but if you can find the gold nugget amongst everything and it changes your life then that’ll be amazing.

So take a look around and check out my favourites, evaluate them for yourselves and if something sticks, then let me know… I love nothing more than hearing about how someone has changed their lives from a recommendation I have made. And don’t give up, it’s incredible what you can achieve if you push through when it feels like you’re at the end of your road, the point at which you feel the most challenged is probably right before you have a breakthrough.

Don't Just Live Your Life, Love It!

Who Am I?

I'm Stefan, a digital consultant / jack of all trades that has spent over 25 years working with companies, big and small, to deliver great online experiences for millions of customers around the world.

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