DailyB Ep 8 How I built a life of freedom #DailyB


In this episode of Daily B, host Burhaan shares the inspiring story of his transition from an unfulfilling corporate job in South Africa to a successful career in digital marketing freelancing and running his own agency.

Overcoming challenges, guided by influential books like 'The 4-Hour Work Week' by Tim Ferriss and lessons from thought leaders like Brendan Bashard, Burhaan explores his journey of personal development, launching a business, and working with over 200 clients worldwide.

He provides insights into setting ambitious goals, leveraging online platforms like Upwork, and underscores the importance of continuous learning and adapting in the ever-evolving digital marketing landscape.

00:00 Introduction: My Journey to Digital Marketing Success

00:18 The Early Struggles and the Desire for Change

02:19 Discovering a New Path: The Bucket List and Tim Ferriss

04:44 The First Steps into Entrepreneurship and Digital Marketing

07:57 Deep Dive into Digital Marketing and Finding My Niche

10:28 Achieving Expertise and the Leap to Freelancing

12:27 Reflections and Advice for Aspiring Entrepreneurs

13:40 Conclusion: From Inspiration to Working with My Mentor

Show Notes:

[00:00:00] Welcome to another episode of Daily B. My name is Burhaan. And I want to tell you my story of how I actually started my digital marketing freelancing career and my agency and how I've been able to work with clients from all over the world, over 200 odd clients now, and, uh, I've made a bit of money doing it.

So, I don't know, many, many years ago, maybe like 10, 15 years ago, I had this feeling, I had this need to Live life a little better to live life a little bit simpler to live life a little bit more I don't want to say on an easy in an easy way. Like I knew that life was tough I was back in South Africa things were not safe.

It wasn't easy living at some point I was eating peanut butter sandwiches Because I couldn't pay for stuff like life was tough, right and I had I had I had this corporate job and I hated going to work and I had to dress in a suit. And even though like I had a nice car and I was living in a, in a decent apartment, [00:01:00] I wasn't fulfilled.

I wasn't feeling happy. Right. It was like, uh, not, not because I like the money wasn't good enough, but I, I just always had this feeling that I could do life better, not, not to be like super rich. Of course I do want to be wealthy. And there are goals and there are things that I want to do. in my life, but, and I, and I wasn't like hungry, like I'm still hungry for that.

But it was one of those situations where I knew I needed to change something. And I knew that the job wasn't going to give me that. And, you know, I started reading books. I've been reading books about personal development for ages, Tony Robbins, all of these people. And I was living in South Africa. It wasn't safe.

Okay. You know, like people were getting mugged and murdered and, and things like that. There was lots of politics around family and lots of drama around all of those things. I was married. I was unhappy. Um, you know, all of, all of these things. [00:02:00] And I remember like just having this situation that like, I had no idea how I was going to achieve the dreams that I wanted.

I had no idea how I was going to do all of the things that I wanted to do. How I was going to go traveling. Like I knew that I wanted to be outside of South Africa at some point. And I watched a movie called the bucket list, which is now pretty old. Uh, Morgan Freeman and I forget the other guy's name. he was in Hannibal Lecter, but yeah, famous movie.

You can look it up. And. I was just fascinated by this idea, this concept of a bucket list. A bucket list is a list of things you want to do before you die. Basically, it's like if you were to die, like next month or two months time or two years time, whenever, like whenever you die, it's like these are all the things that you want to get done or things that you want to see or do or whatever, eat, whatever.

And for me, I made that list like while I was working with my dad in the retail store, retail hardware store. [00:03:00] And that's it. I was kind of like, okay, fine. I just made this list. There was 101 odd items on that list. Some of it was religious things. Some of it was travel. Some of it was things I wanted to own cars and maybe a home.

And you know, a couple of things that maybe when you're younger, you think about, and I just knew that I wanted like my life to be better. Essentially that was what that list was representing. Not long after that, I came across a book, which I've spoken about multiple times. Tim Ferriss, The 4 Hour Work Week.

And in that book, he talks about how he set up his business, and he was traveling, and he was earning money while he was doing these things. And he gave advice around money, and advice about how you can afford things, and how you can, you know, basically hack the system, hack your body, hack a lot of things in your life.

And in the book, he, he basically inspired me and a ton of other people to flip the switch on my life. And from [00:04:00] that, I went down this rabbit hole of finding ways to not only make money online, but also just ways that I could research and figure out what the cost of living and how things worked outside.

Obviously, the internet was growing at that time. There was a lot of content on YouTube, different studies. There was websites that we could reference like nomad. io on like what the cost of living was. There were communities that were forming in Facebook groups and outside that spoke about travel and this digital nomad sort of concept or this digital nomadic lifestyle was in my feed, obviously because of the research and stuff and around also around the same time.

Well, just before that I was making furniture and I basically found clients using Facebook and gum road, right? Gum road was a, sorry, I think it was gum tree. Gum tree was this basically Craig's list, equivalent [00:05:00] to list things for sale. And I said, I listed my services as a, as a carpenter, as a somebody who was wanting to do custom furniture.

And I got a couple of clients and I grew to eventually hiring a few people and And made a little bit of profit. It wasn't a hugely profitable business, but I enjoyed doing that. And that gave me my first sort of sense of freedom, like my own business that I knew that I could operate. I was living on my own.

I was hiring people. I had a van that luckily my dad helped me to buy. And, you know, I had some support, but most of it, all of it was, was pretty much on my own. Then I realized, like, okay, the recession happened, and my dad asked for help with the retail store. As I mentioned, I worked for him. I closed the factory, and I went down to work for him.

And during that time, that gave me sort of space and time, three years of my life that I gave to him in that business, and it gave me the space to think about, like, what I wanted. And that's when I [00:06:00] watched that movie, right, The Bucket List. And in doing so, There were a couple of things that happened subsequent.

I read Tim Ferriss's book. I came across this gentleman at a success resources event in South Africa by the name of Brendan Rashad. Now he came on stage, he was talking about this online business that he was creating, how he grew his followers on Facebook and how he was making a living coaching, essentially online.

Now, obviously he was on stage and he was looking for clients. Clients, he was selling a program or something at the time, but he, he blew my mind, he was like, Yeah, you can do this. You know, you can generate leads and you can build a funnel and you can advertise and you can make content. You can do all of these things.

Now, this was like 14 years ago at this point, something like that. And it was a totally current foreign concept. I could see in the audience like a lot of people were kind of like, What is he talking about? But I was fascinated. So I went and I did research and I did [00:07:00] to try to figure this out. I bought his books.

I bought like a bunch of things that did more research. I And then I was like, okay, so I essentially managed to sell furniture and do all of these things online. I found my customers. I made the things when I was with my dad at the retail store. I was like, Hey, we need to run Facebook ads. He didn't want to do it.

He thought it was risky. He had no idea what this was skeptical as always. And And so I was like, you know what, if I need to ask for permission to do all of the things that I wanted, as if I was in a corporate job, like I was when I was in a corporate job, I would never be able to do the things that I wanted to do.

Like I wanted to travel, I didn't have enough money, my dad wasn't paying me enough of a salary. It was a thing, it was like really, and I was married at the time, going through some struggles with her, and it was just one of those situations where I just knew I needed to make my life better. easier, make my life better.

And through learning some of these digital marketing [00:08:00] concepts, I came across a website, fully at marketing thing, a network marketing opportunity. And in that group, they taught Facebook ads. They taught landing pages. They taught websites. Now I knew some tech from building websites. When I was younger, I was always fascinated with the computers.

I was always thinking or tinkering around. I thought it was going to go into hardware because it was fascinated by how the hardware worked. But software was also like kind of intriguing when I started building websites and I built Excel spreadsheets and I built, um, I wrote JavaScript at university.

Like I did, did a bunch of these things. And I remember like, Oh, I was sitting down and I was trying to figure out like, okay, how do I put all this together? And I think I came across a YouTube video. I came across something where they were like, okay, you need to write down all of your passions and write down all the things that you're good at and like figure out where the intersection of that is.

Right. So you have things that you like. Things that you can do, skills that you have, personality, all of these things. And put this together where there's this overlap, where there's this, um, merging of [00:09:00] stuff. And I was like, okay, well, I like tech. The internet has, is basically built on tech. There's software and there's services that are available out there, like Facebook ads, like, you know, websites.

ClickFunnels, I think, was just coming up at that time. Where we can actually make money. PayPal was a thing, we could collect money. And so I started down this whole journey of like, how do I collect money online and what type of services do I offer? Now through that network, network opportunity, I learned a couple of things.

I took those skills. I said, okay, I am going to piece all of these things together, combine those skills and I'm going to learn. And I obviously Kevin Kelly's article on how, on a thousand through fan true fans and how you just need a few people to trust you, how, how you need a few people to. And then there was also another article of like, you need to put in a thousand hours to be able to become a master.

I think it was the same article. It's in Kevin Kelly's article. And then I was like, okay, [00:10:00] so I need to figure this marketing thing out, this online marketing, digital marketing thing out. So let me spend a thousand hours. So I did a calculation. I took a calculator and I was like, okay, 10, 000 hours. If I work eight hours a day, it's going to take me like seven, um, Years or six years or something like that.

I was like, okay, if I work 16 hours a day, seven days a week, I could probably reduce that to around three. Then I could call myself an expert. I basically gave myself a hectic schedule and a hectic timeframe. And so that's what I did. I found Upwork, a friend of mine said, Hey, like there's this Upwork thing.

You can go become a freelancer and start working online. And that's what I did. I found my first gig after two weeks and that gig, um, was probably like a 12 or 13 month engagement. And it was great because that guy, the owner of that business basically gave me all the things. Like I set up a sauna for him.

I built websites. I designed websites. I helped him with affiliate marketing. I managed his affiliates. I did so many things. I even looked into [00:11:00] his ad accounts on Google to like help him optimize and try to get more leads. Like there were so many different opportunities that he gave me that I just felt like so empowered.

Still eating peanut butter sandwiches, didn't know what, what was going on. And then I flew to Thailand, right? So there's the story on my channel. You can go check out that, that video, um, on how I, how I transitioned to move, to move to Thailand. But the point I'm trying to make is I, I made the decision. I took the leap, right?

One of the other things that I did was while I was working with this gentleman on, on Upwork. I also experimented with my own things. Like I built my own websites. I built my own landing pages. I tested ads on my own. Um, this was all through like the MLM period and also working as a freelancer. And anytime I came across a new tool, I'd like go register for a free account or maybe, you know, use [00:12:00] it through some client's account and figure out how it worked.

Like basically that was it. I was just experimenting and learning and trying to. Figure things out as I went. I learned Google ads. I learned Facebook ads. I learned so many things in such a short space of time Just to get to that expert status now when it comes to You know What you can do today, obviously my story is a little bit old by now.

I'm you know, 10 years into this marketing journey But I would say the advice is pretty much exactly the same right figure out what you want to do You Figure out who you want to be. How do you want to feel in your day? There's lots of people that talk about like, what would your ideal day look like and work backwards?

Like, oh, you don't want to just sit around and do nothing. If you're an entrepreneur, if you're somebody who wants to make a decent amount of money, you want to travel, who has these dreams, who has these Uh, an outcome that you want for your life, then you've got to be doing something. You've got to provide some sort of a service.[00:13:00]

And then work back from your skills, right? Do that whole exercise to figure out what you like, what you don't like, what you're passionate about, what you're interested in. And, and figure out where those things intersect. And then figure out how you can make money from that. There is this concept called Ikigai, which essentially is that.

And so, what's the moral of the story? Well. If I can do it, you can do it. You've probably heard that a thousand times by now. But I think it's true. It's like, I'm no special human being. I'm not fancy in the way that I dress or the way that I do things or, or anything, but here's the outcome. Here's an ideal outcome that I can tell you is the man who I saw speaking on stage, 14 years ago who introduced me or who opened my mind up to this whole situation of earning money online and being able to generate leads and sell courses and do all of these things.

I know work with [00:14:00] him. I actually work with Brendan Bashard on a daily basis, helping him with his funnels, optimizing content, optimizing, you know, his landing pages and a couple of things inside of his company. And it's been an absolute pleasure. It's kind of like, um, you know, climb that hill. I wouldn't say I'm at the top of the hill in terms of my own success and my own dreams and ambitions, but working with him has validated all of the experience and all of the learnings, all of those hours that I spent night and day learning this craft.

And you can too, if you have ambition, if you have something that you want to go for, it could be anything. It could be like you want to lose weight, or it could be that you want to. meet the girl that you always dreamed of, or, you know, get married or whatever the thing is that you call success, figure that out, figure out how you want that life to look, and then work backwards, research, ask questions, put a comment below, ask me, [00:15:00] there's maybe something I can help you with.

Feel free. I'm, I'm here. And so, yeah, that's the purpose of the video. That's the purpose of today's talk. And I really, really encourage you. I really hopefully that this talk was inspiring. If you learn more, definitely subscribe and hope to see you on the next one.

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