Coming Back From The Dogs, New Location, New Year

Greetings to one and all at the beginning of a bright new year, full of positive energy and potential. We are hopeful and optimistic about 2018 in that some sort of emergency situation won’t disrupt our entrepreneurial effort, stopping us dead in our tracks the way it did half way through 2017. But to quote some of our favourite comedians, “We’re not dead, just restin’”. In fact, we ended up about as far from “restin’” as we could get!

At the end of June, we got “the warning”. Some of our wonderful American Guide Dog School friends alerted us about a human rights-threatening process happening within our federal government – the establishment of a national service dog “STANDARD” that, if implemented in its current form, would render many American schools unable to provide dogs to Canadians.  Learn more at www.hooh.ca.

Thus, for the next few months, we found ourselves completely diverted from any kind of serious entrepreneurial endeavors, as we busily created a mailing list, blog, Facebook page, and Twitter resources to ensure that the importance of this political action would be widely known and supported, and that people would become informed advocates for their rights.

Also, over the spring and summer, downtown Victoria proceeded to come into full bloom as a booming (literally) construction zone – roaring machinery, rock blasting, hammering, banging, yelling construction workers, poor street people freaking out at the top of their lungs, etc.

Considering that the core of our entrepreneurial process was to get a lot of good video/AUDIO content put together, well, we pretty much gave up, at least for the moment. Furthermore, we weren’t getting much sleep at night either. I mean, the only difference in the night-time noise scenario was that construction activity was replaced by drunken yahoo neighbours on their balconies at all hours, in an eight to 12-storey complex, where the concrete courtyard formed a veritable megaphone for the racket!

So, in August, we focused our consciousness and reached out with the desire and message: “Dear Universe, please get us out of here to a place where we can function!” And literally, within three or four days of putting it out there, it came to pass.

Suddenly, we found ourselves preparing to move into twice the space – without a rent increase – including a patio where it’s so quiet most of the time, that we can hear the ocean waves arriving on the beach just across the road. It’s a very cozy space with great acoustics which make for an excellent recording environment.

Now, with each day, things are getting done. We have a new camera, a couple of cool mics, some live streaming software, and even a green screen that comes across the office/Laundry to make the perfect background for videos. The washer and dryer look fine, but authenticity has its bounds, I suppose.

Of course, some of last year’s “incompleteness” also lay in the fact that we ran off far too often to enjoy the beautiful weather and take the dog to the beach. After all, we were “semi-retired”, right? Obviously, if “semi-retired status” is ending this year, we’ll have to do a better job of time-management.

The latter is especially true, since we have made quite an investment in hiring some experts to guide us through the process of course development and marketing. We’re paying them to coach us, so we’ll obviously have to be busy and do the required work.

Most important will be the support of the folks who have been there for us and encouraged us along the way, as they wait patiently, wondering when we’ll actually get it together. Fact is, we’ve been “tinkering with retirement” since 2014 when we left the Toronto day jobs and came to Victoria. First, there has been a certain level of day job burnout to recover from. But ultimately, it turns out that being retired gets quite boring in the end. It’s like, what’s the point? Turns out that the reason for feeling a bit depressed and miserable is because We Need To Do Something Purposeful!

Our concrete accomplishment for 2017 was definitely the creation of our little six-lesson pilot course on how to navigate the iPhone without having to look at it. Totally free, so people can explore and give us feedback as we plan the courses for our online school with its courses and coaching, and live appearances on Facebook, YouTube, etc. We’re waiting to see what our coaches suggest.

For now, you can check out the sample by visiting www.ihabilitation.com/eyesfree/

Also, on November 1 last year, the iHabilitation Man celebrated the first anniversary of his weekly appearance on AMI.ca’s Kelly and Company show (http://www.ami.ca/kellyco), plus the posting of a bunch of app walkthroughs on SoundCloud. So, a bit here, a bit there! It all adds up and we look forward to a much higher “bit rate” in 2018.

Here’s a big thank you for being a part of it, even if just by following along as we progress. Despite a recent lack of output, we have been doing a lot of reading and participating in webinars, all of which advise that frequent and diverse blog and social media posting is great for business. I think we’re now pretty much poised to make good on that advice. So, be on the lookout, we’ll be back soon – and more often.