Reflections of the Crowd

I’ve contemplated putting myself out there to raise money through the “crowd.” It’s definitely been an emotional ride. I’ve been so busy working on the product and updating the Phroogal Blog I haven’t had time to post any of my reflections on my personal blog.

It’s been quite the roller coaster ride the past 2 months. I finally found myself a co-founder who completely believes in my vision and my ability to make it happen. We’ve gotten a lot done in the past month. I’ve been juggling working with my programmers overseas, building relationships, marketing and now fundraising. It’s a 24-hour ordeal.

I share the highlights with many people on social and share the lows with a select group of people. Keeping motivated is something that I never had a problem with but I’ve never really put myself out there for “public failure.”

I guess building a website for people could totally fail and I could fall flat on my face. But, the “public failure” I am talking about is asking people to help me achieve something such as raising money on Indiegogo. I look at not meeting the goal as completely failing in explaining how I plan to make their lives easier.

I’ve been nervous but in many ways a good nervousness if there is such a thing. I’m learning a lot about myself and a lot about people in general. I thought after traveling the world I knew myself well but that isn’t true. You get tested when you actually start asking people for help. It’s a test because its a reflection of how people see you or believe in you. Of course, I learned in my travels that the only person’s opinion that matters is my own.

Since launching Indiegogo and directly asking people for their assistance, I’ve gotten some really amazing words of encouragement and negative feedback. Everything from inspiring them with my spirit to “trying to make money off friends/family.” The negative comments are far and few in between but they do weigh on me.

I’ve poured my heart, soul, tears, dollars and hours on Phroogal. Much more than people think and so when someone takes the stance or shares their opinion without all the facts, I get pretty emotionally defensive.

I’ve been sending email, facebook messages, tweets and smoke signals to everyone that I have ever met. The overall reception of theses messages have been positive. I have received a few that were offended I was asking for help when I didn’t help them. My response has been pretty standard, “If you never specifically asked me for help, then I wouldn’t have known you needed help from me.” I’m specifically asking for help and whether you can or cannot it’s always better to respond. We all hate being ignored and I think I’d prefer getting a “No. Good-luck.” which I have than never knowing.

I realize that success doesn’t occur in a vacuum. It takes people to believe in me and help me make it happen. In return I hope I help people get closer to their version of success. I am building Phroogal for me there is no mistake about it but I am doing it with a cause in mind.

I truly believe that financial stress is a big issue for myself, family, friends and strangers. This idea has been formulating inside my head for many years and its beginning to take root. I was scared to take a chance and risk it. I could be working at a company right now making $150K+ doing the daily grind but instead I chose to surf through couches and build Phroogal. Thank you family and friends who’ve shared their homes with me.

I chose to hop on this entrepreneurial roller coaster. No one made me do it but I just feel it in every fiber of my being. I see it so clearly. Do you ever just believe in something so much you can’t sleep cause all you want to do is spend the hours making it happen.

The road for Phroogal is still long. I think about all the phases and the path we are taking. I want to take this time to thank all of you who have supported me thus far and all those who remain silent rooting for me.

Jason Vitug

Jason Vitug is a bestselling author, writer, producer, entrepreneur, and founder of The Smile Lifestyle Brands and the financial wellness marketplace, phroogal.com.

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