How to Stay True to Yourself in the Midst of Internet Success

Ryan E. Hamilton starts off with a hymn, a little Tom Petty “Won’t Back Down.” He just got back from Italy and wants us to ponder what we might want to do with a wiffle bat during our short time here in Washington, DC. (He has a photo to go with the comment.) Laughter. “Going to Italy as a vegan is kind of like being celibate and going to a strip club.” More laughter.

A little announcement: Ryan just got out of a decades-long divorce that was horrifying, but he’s finally found a wonderful woman to be with, and they’re expecting a little girl! He’s becoming a father again, this time with a daughter instead of a son.

How to Stay True to Yourself in the Midst of Internet Success

So why are we here?

We’ve got side-by-side photos of Ryan from his first Type-A when he was a newbie dad blogger… and a picture of him today after making Life of Dad a success. Life of Dad wasn’t a business entity way back then.

Creating is a function of being.

Be. Do. Have.

There’s a great picture of Ryan’s son in a Super Mario costume. (TJ has totally worn the same costume and has definitely also worn it while playing Super Mario.)

“You can’t be on stage and in the audience at the same time.” – Sterling K. Brown (He’s on This is Us, but Ryan went to high school with him.)

The best/worst day of Ryan’s life was when he had scored backstage VIP tickets to the Jimmy Fallon show when Cedric the Entertainer and the Roots were on. He was making a deal with Cedric the Entertainer and his manager…when his wife texted him to let him know she was leaving him, taking their son, and had a moving company there so they would be gone by the time he got back home. (I think he teared up telling us about it, and I got a little choked up listening.)

Knowing people doesn’t help you if they don’t know you.

[Exit stage right. Put hoodie on. Discreetly slip out the side door when nobody’s watching.] – ?uestlove

“The treasure does not do the hunting.” – Anonymous

The Origins of Life of Dad

We’re looking at pictures of Ryan’s house after his wife left him with nothing but the houseplants. Life of Dad started in a foreclosed-on garage. He was suicidal, wanted to kill himself. He lost his job, his car broke down, and he had the tow truck take him to the casino instead of his house. He turned $200 into $1,500 playing poker. He thought he was going to get rich, walked away from poker, and sat down to play blackjack. Dealer had 21. He left completely broke and had to walk home.

“Perfection is not something that’s sought. It’s something that’s brought.” – Ryan E. Hamilton

Current Status of Life of Dad

If you’ve heard of the Cheerio Challenge with dads stack Cheerios on their sleeping babies, it was Life of Dad that started it. They’ve won awards. They’ve interviewed celebrity dads and everyday dads. They were invited to Obama’s White House. It’s a million-dollar company now.

Current Status of Ryan’s Life

It involves dirty laundry and messy rooms.

“Success is a pretty dumb thing to want, but a pretty smart thing to be.” – Ryan E. Hamilton

What does success mean to you?

Success to Ryan? A member of his community wanted to kill himself, but someone called the hotline for him and got him the help he needed. He posted several days later and thanked that person, whoever they were.

“Radiate love and excellence throughout the galaxy.” – Ryan E. Hamilton

Christina Gleason (972 Posts)

That’s me: Christina Gleason. I’m a professional copywriter, editor, and blogger. My company is called Phenomenal Content. (Hire me!) I’m a relatively high-functioning Aspie who also lives with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS), depression, anxiety, and chronic pain. I am not ashamed to admit that I am in the care of a psychiatrist, who assures me that people in therapy are often better adjusted than “normal” people who are not, because at least we know what our issues are and are working on them. I’m a geek for grammar, fantasy, and select types of gaming, including World of Warcraft and Empire: Four Kingdoms. I hate vegetables. I have an intense phone phobia, so I’ll happily conduct business over email or IM instead.


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