Sounds like we’ve been walking the same road, brother. Your books have gotten me over more than a few seemingly insurmountable hills. Thank you. Keep walking. You’ve never met me, but I’m walking right beside you trying to balance business with making the world a better place than I found it.
I’m a bit younger (30, not to rub it in) and currently questioning employment, and in general, how I earn a living as a software developer. I love developing software, but I’m terrible at a lot of social dances employment require. I’m neurodiverse, so the hydrogen analogy was both beautiful and sad. I don’t currently have answers, although even finding out I’m neurodiverse has been helpful in understanding that everyone else’s’ “nature” might not be my own, and there’s power in that.
I don’t really have anything to say, just ramblings, but I always appreciate a voice of vulnerability from someone who (at least externally!) looks to have their shit together, as it feels like it validates my own vulnerability. It sounds kinda selfish put like that, ha, but really, thanks so much for sharing.
I wonder what sort of content those 20x Substackers are writing? I know from some of the other authors I support here (most of whom are not even in the "new car every year" income range), that some of the biggest earners on Substack appear to be "political" to some degree and are often purveyors of "outrage" material.
There was a recent poll on Mastodon about how much folks are spending a month on Patreon. It made me count what I'm spending between Patreon and Substack and it came out around $27 and $63 per month respectively -- which was a lot more than I realized. None of that is spent on those big earners!
Thank you for your vulnerability, Kent. And congratulations on facing your fears, this is no small feat. ( Personally, I can’t imagine where I would end up in my career if I had not been so lucky to be coached by you almost a decade ago; I hope I can repay this some day. )
One thing that strikes me in reading the above and thinking about your path is that you have taken a non-traditional path: a path of a change agent, a disruptor. Carving your own path makes you similar you grandfather, even if your ethical standards are dramatically different. However, I wonder if it is your standards and your reputation that have helped your land the opportunities at Gusto and Mechanical Orchard.
In other words, carving your own path is a high risk/high reward endeavor. And that means you can lose big too. The upside is that because of your reputation and the good you have done, you were able to recover from the bad events. So, maybe, in some way, the nature did provide?
I wanted to take a moment to express my heartfelt gratitude for the incredible impact you've had on the world of software development and engineering. Your visionary principles and innovative contributions have not only shaped the industry but have also inspired countless individuals, including myself, to strive for excellence.
The unmeasurable value you provide is truly extraordinary! Thank you!
Well said. Your openness is moving.
Humbled by your extreme candidness. You must feel glad that it is out now. Wish you more of such reliefs.
Reminds me of Pink Floyd‘s The Wall » The Trial:
…Since, my friend, you have revealed your deepest fear
I sentence you to be exposed before your peers
Tear down the wall
Keep doing this "natural"! I changed my plan and hope others would do it! The value you gave us is hard to measure!