As a child I daydreamed a lot. Growing up on an old converted farm, miles away from any other children I spent hours alone with my own thoughts.
Consumer technology hadn’t really wrapped its addictive claws around the world by the mid-90s so we still had to find stuff to do to keep ourselves entertained. For me, that was mostly outside playing football, going for long walks with my Grandad or chasing chickens that had escaped from a nearby farm.
Although the beginning of my life was rather sheltered, I never struggled for ambition. Here’s a chronological timeline of my life and work starting at age 5.
- 1995 – professional footballer. My obsession with (the original) Ronaldo begins.
- 1996 – we travel to Spain. Now I want to be an airline pilot (a dream that’s never left me).
- 2000 – I get quite good at football, the dream feels like a reality so I start pursuing it again.
- 2004 – my Grandad buys me a guitar for Christmas, I learn really fast, something about it feels natural and of course this means I’m going to be a rockstar.
- 2006 – I’ve been playing Rugby and Football for a few years now, I prefer Rugby but Football is something I seem to be really good at. Sheffield Wednesday invite me to a trial, I go but don’t get picked.
- 2007 – back to being a rockstar again. I’m in a band, we’re shit but people seem to like us.
- 2010 – I’m 20 at this point, the band hasn’t taken off and I’m aware that I need a grown up career so I decide to become a pilot. I start having flying lessons, apply to a commercial flight school and get in! Find out the fees are close to £100k and politely decline the offer.
- 2011 – I manage a small café. I loved that job, but my ego stops me from taking it any further.
- 2012 – I start a business with my best friend from College. All we really care about is making lots of money, buying mansions and driving around in Porsche’s.
- 2012 – 2016 the business works! I’m actually good at this. We grow, hire employees, work with massive clients and seem (from the outside) to be successful.
- 2016 – I wake up in hospital, ten minutes after a lumbar puncture to my spinal column, after suffering five major stress-related seizures.
And that’s what it took for me to realise that something wasn’t right.