Mitchell McBrayer, Phoenix Planner Founder
Two years ago, with what felt like the whole world watching, I mustered up the courage to drop out of college and move in with my mom to try and start a business.
I was broke, scared, and had very little confidence. I mean, who was I to think that I could go against the grain and win? It’d be one thing if I were a genius or had shown a tendency to do great things in my past… but the last thing I could remember doing well was playing soccer - and that was when I was twelve. Since then I hadn’t done anything but play video games and watch anime.
I had no accomplishments, my grades were average, I had no direction, no discipline, and no indications that I would ever be even slightly successful.
The only thing that was certain was that my current mode of existence wasn’t working.
For years I had been on a rollercoaster of starting new things and never committing. I was inconsistent in the gym. I started several YouTube channels, attempted to start two different businesses with two different friends, and came up with a list of business ideas that could sell for $30 on craigslist. I did all of this and continued reading self-help books… telling myself “today is the day that everything changes” - but nothing lasted.
I was stuck.
So, six months out of college I made myself a promise: “If I don’t earn any money online before 2018… I WILL go back.” At the time I would have preferred Chinese bamboo torture, so I was going to fight like h*** to avoid it.
If I was going to pull this off, I needed to be clear-minded, focused, and relentless. I needed a structure to leverage my brain’s faulty reward system and get me in a state of momentum. So, I did what I always did: I hit all of the books on goal setting, habits, and success I could get my hands on - and there were many. Too many.
But this time I went at it differently. As I went through each book, I wrote down all of the main principles and actionable items. I slowly separated signal from noise and started listing everything in a journal that I would review and update each morning. At the time, I was calling it my achievement journal, and within it was a roadmap to my dreams.
Using my “achievement journal” and making daily updates, my life began improving dramatically. I was sticking to my workout plan and tracking my calories. I stopped wasting time on Reddit, YouTube, anime, and video games. I stayed focused and worked 12+ hour days, every day, and I enjoyed every minute of it. All of the sudden I was feeling excited, motivated, and I finally felt optimistic about my future.
Then it dawned on me: the solution to my lack of focus, direction, clarity, and discipline could also be the solution to my other problem: starting an online business. So, using my “achievement journal” as a blueprint - I endeavored to create a system that could cut through all of the noise. Something simple and transformative, based on the already existing teachings of the world’s best mentors.
Thankfully, at 21, I didn’t need to be an expert with an overwhelming amount of knowledge. I just needed to perfect the framework that I had distilled and then find a method of delivering it to other aspiring entrepreneurs like myself.
For several months I toiled away: Working 16 hour days, creating draft after draft, sharing it with my friends, & using it on a daily basis - all with the goal of iterating as close to perfection as I could get before bringing it to “the market.”
Finally: I got samples from manufacturers, started up an Amazon account, scrounged together what money I had - and took the risk.
Today, Phoenix Planner has served thousands of entrepreneurs and creatives just like yourself, and true to its name Phoenix Planner comes out more powerful every time new inventory is rolled out.