Geraldo Alken: ‘Up until today, I was afraid to share my Story .. But here it is.’
The REAL Reason I quit my 9 – 5 and Started my Online Business.
A few years ago when I (Geraldo Alken) graduated from my Bachelor in Applied Psychology I was desperately, DESPERATELY looking for a job. Until that time I’ve been working a job in a restaurant which I gave up to put ‘pressure’ on finding a job within the niche I graduated for.
Unfortunately after sending about 100 different letters and being rejected EVERYWHERE where I was invited, eventually I was left without a job, a worthless degree, a low self esteem and NO MONEY.
‘Me back in 2016. Not knowing what I wanted to do, but a big passion for freedom and traveling the world.’
At that time I needed to pay my bills so I’ve managed to get myself a job at a callcenter which, paid the bills but brought no real excitement for me, it was just the same thing, every day, over and over again and I started feeling miserable.
I wanted more out of life ..
At that time I wanted more money, more responsibilities, I wanted to run my own business, be my own boss, live life on my own terms, more freedom and not having to work 45/50 hours a week just to make a proper living.
I did not want to work for a boss for the rest of my life. The thought of having to show up at work at 8AM every single day to work for someone elses dream just didn’t fit in mine. AT ALL. So I started thinking ..
Thoughts without Action ..
At first I simply had an idea. I needed to work Online as I wouldn’t be bound to a single place (I wanted to be able to work from anywhere in the world!).
Obviously weeks passed by, just thinking about this idea. No idea at what I was going to do, not knowing what I was going to sell, not knowing which direction I should go, totally confused and NO ACTION.
I just kept going to my normal 9-5 feeling uncertain about the next steps I was going to take when the following happened..
The Epiphany ..
We were at a team dinner and I was discussing the urge to start my own business and working for myself with another guy named Juhwen. He was intrigued by personal development and business just as I was so we always had good conversations.
All of a sudden he told me this: Geraldo, you have Charisma. Why don’t you simply start building a network and see where that ship takes you. Don’t stress about it too much. Just start building and the opportunities will come.
This advice, of this totally random guy which I met at work. Turned out the be the best advice someone has ever given me..
Action Without Knowledge ..
So as impulsive as I am, I got home and I created my first business Instagram account, named @Yr.charisma and started created all these motivational quotes which, as a matter of fact took me hours a day to create and just started posting.
I started watching Youtube videos all over the place and learned the basics of Online marketing and Social Media marketing while creating the content for my freshly made Instagram account (which btw, I told no one about in my personal life). ?
Obviously, no one even saw my content. I had 0 reach and invested all this time to create this content to have ‘an IMPACT’ on the world while no one even saw what I was creating.
Also I was blown away with all the information I found on the internet about Online marketing as there is just no end to it, so I just started .. doing something..
Me reading ‘The Four Hour Work Week, Tim Ferris’ trying to get a grip on that passive income stuff May 2016.
Work, Work, WORK ..
At that time I was still working my 9-5 at about 45-50 hours a week and when coming home at 7PM at night I worked until midnight to ‘Run my own online business’ which,
1. Wasn’t a business
2. Didn’t get me any money
3. Robbed my of all the personal time I had left
Scared of Rejection ..
I didn’t tell anyone about it at that time too as I was afraid of the ‘rejection’. People telling me to stop dreaming, it can’t be done, nay sayers and for me (in my mind), basically everyone at that time.
At first I didn’t even tell my friends I had created an Instagram account which I was growing and didn’t add them until I was four months in and actually had something to show them. I think only my girlfriend knew at that time (Yes, I was that afraid of rejection from my peers).
I remember one day, about four months in, a close friend of mine (Raymon) told me, hey .. This Your Charisma account .. Is that you? And I was at like 4k followers at that time and I told him yes. That’s me man.. And I think he was one of the first people I told about the account as he ‘caught’ me haha.
It was kinda lonely at first, but I was determined. I couldn’t and wouldn’t give up as I saw all these other Online marketeers succeed so I was like, if they can do it. I can too.
So I kept building and building and building and started writing everything down into a an e-book as I read somewhere that was THE WAY to generate potential leads for a business (Without even having a product to sell). I just knew 2 things:
– I’m becoming this ‘Expert’ in Instagram
– I’m learning more and more about Online marketing.
My first E-book cover. LOL it looks horrendous, but means SO much to me.
So I just kept at it, working about 14/15 hours a day as I was still in my 9-5. (Bless my Girlfriend who coped with me and still does even when I gave her little to no attention because I was working and working and working and working. Not once, has she ever questioned my ability to make this thing work. Without her deep understanding, I wouldn’t be able to pull it off like I did and I am so, so grateful for that!)
At that time I was DMING people from 10 different Instagram accounts from two phones asking if they wanted free Instagram Growth tips and that I had an ebook containing them and If I could get their email I would send them the book.
Still on the low, as I was still too afraid for rejection. I think I told a small group of 5 friends at that time.
My FIRST SALE! ..
I did that for about 8 months, created a base audience and then in January 2017 I sold my first Social Media Management service! I think it was for about 20 bucks and oh how we celebrated that first sale!
From there we started growing, and growing and growing and growing and next to helping people grow their Social Media profiles I started helping people walk the same road I did by giving them access to everything I’ve learned throughout the years, which made the business explode!
Ever since that first Sale my company Your Charisma has now crossed the 7 figure mark in a 2 year time-span, has over 500 representatives, is providing Digital services in over 35 countries worldwide, is consistently making close to a 6 figure Monthly revenue and our Top Affiliate who had NO PRIOR experience with computers WHATSOEVER has earned well over €100.000 in affiliate commissions just by reselling our services! (So, SO proud!)
This is where it gets horrific… Two years into my freshly acquired wealth have passed and I’m celebrating my wins at a Holiday in Tenerife with my family. Suddenly I found this urge to open my Instagram and guess what ..
I was logged out.
I tried logging in again and found out that my account was disabled.
I went on to Facebook and found out that there too, I was logged out.
I tried logging into any of my other Instagram accounts and found out that everything was disabled.
After that, I went into my inbox and found a cease and desist letter from FB with the demand to immediately stop selling any services that were not directly in line with their terms and services. At that time the majority of the services that we sold were focused on Instagram growth and a big part of those includes services that were not directly in line with their terms.
I lost everything…
Overnight I lost all my social profiles, my revenue streams, and the complete foundation my business was built on. Leaving me with nothing but the taxes left to pay of my flourishing years.
I was back at square 1. and had sunken deeper than I could have ever imagined too.
At this moment I was at the edge of depression, didn’t know what to do, ashamed, defeated, scared, and was looking at a possible lawsuit with a giant. They say it’s at your deepest when you really find yourself and I truly believe, this is where I found who Geraldo Alken really is.
I was lucky enough to like the person that I found.
My commitment to Elevate…
I committed to making the best out of a horrible situation and completely revamped my social media agency in a marketing agency. Learning a new craft called ‘Inbound Marketing’ and learning how to do marketing ‘The right way’.
Next to that I started jumping rope and found a new passion in where I could work on my mind, body and gave me a vehicle to keep my head up and forget about all the crap that was going on. I entered the jump rope community and found a community more beautiful, loving, and engaging than I have ever experienced before.
This is where this new dream of mine started to unfold. I wanted to build a fitness community where equality breaths, all sharing the same passion for jumping rope, no matter what country you’re from, what the color of your skin is, what language you speak, or what your level of skill is. I wanted to create a place to come home to and share your progress, create that digital family to laugh with, cry with and elevate with.
This is when I founded the Elevate Rope brand and The Elevate Family, with the goal to help people get fitter, faster and stronger, having fun while at it.
Time warping to today the Elevate Rope company has crossed the 6-figure mark within a 16-month time-span. Has over 400 proud Elevate Family members and is recognized as one of the biggest and influential Jump rope communities in the world.
My company Your Charisma has fought its way back up to 6-figures as well and is providing Digital services in over 24 countries worldwide using the concept of Inbound Marketing, focused on doing marketing ‘The Right Way’.
The Person I’ve become ..
Now of course that’s AWESOME, but what I’m most thankful for is the person I’ve become along that journey.
I remember wanting to tell no one about my dreams ..
I remember wanting to tell no one about my business ..
I was scared to tell people around me what I was doing on my phone all day…
I was afraid to share the dreams and vision I had …
And I finally learned to neglect those feelings and go ALL IN.
And going all in has brought me more than I could’ve ever wished for.
The transformation of this little insecure kid.. To master of my own Kingdom.