I am sitting at my laptop. Like any other day, I have had too much coffee for my own good. I have a notepad with a handwritten list of things that I need to do. So many of them now beyond late, screaming at me from the page. My inbox just broke 9000 unread emails. I’ve been biting my nails again. I forgot to eat today. Did I shower? I can’t remember. I am so focused on trying to… What am I trying to do? I wanted to be perfect.
I wanted to be the media mogul who never falters. The outlet that never misses a deadline. I wanted to be the success story. The boy who came from a rough life, who made something of himself, that people idolized. The newly blonde bombshell. I wanted to feel sexy again amid a schedule and lifestyle that doesn’t leave me much time to live at the gym for that end game. I wanted to be praised for all of this. I wanted to execute and run a business that made a million dollars in the first year. I wanted to be real with all of you. And to be honest, right now, I don’t think that I’m okay. My birthday is looming and all I can think about is what a failure I feel like. I am not fucking perfect.
Lately I’ve been having a lot of discussions about what Do The Daniel “is” and where I want it to go. For those of you who have watched us grow over the years, you’ll have seen that we are continuously evolving. I think that is a healthy way to look at this industry. There is nothing finite about what I do and where I am headed. It’s a strange feeling, because deep down I also crave stability. Both in my personal and professional life. Lately I have been lacking in that department to say the least. Feeling as though the busier my life gets, the less stable I am. I think there are a lot of factors that add to this. I am not one to hide from my flaws. In fact I believe that honesty can help me cope with them and grow as a human being.
Because that is the problem today. I don’t feel like a human being. In this age of portrayed perfection where you are told not to show emotion or flaw, I am battling to reconcile Daniel and @DoTheDaniel. I never thought they would be separate entities. I wanted you to get the full me in every respect, but as I have grown, I have come to understand that there are certain things that are mine alone as a person. For Daniel to experience and deal with, and maybe not @DoTheDaniel… It’s funny. To admit that feels as though I am being selfish. But maybe I need to be a bit more selfish.
I think that sometimes it’s like I am going through the motions, but not feeling anything. This uncertain numbness and insatiable desire for what is coming next. Patricia, my therapist, tells me that I am “addicted to the stimulation this ego driven industry brings.”
Not so nice to hear, but I can see where she is coming from. Yes, it is beyond exciting to live this life. To accomplish so much with the team and to continue on our path to greatness. But why is it that lately I can’t just focus on the greatness we have already? At what point did today become not enough for me? And what does that say about the person I am? Lots of questions. This is how I think behind the scenes. The things that keep me up at night. Now, before you go casting proverbial stones, I am not looking for any kind of sympathy. Quite the opposite actually. I want you to know what it takes to do this. To live and breathe something of this nature. To work in an industry that has equal parts benefits as it does flaws.
I wanted to be perfect, but in accepting that I’m not, I think I finally figured out what makes us different. The entire team is human, has problems, issues, secrets… and I want that. Because I am not just an Instagram account. I am not just a business. I am not just the things we share here with you all. I am so much more. And so are they. And THAT is the part of us that I am excited to explore more in the coming years. The realness that makes us human. There is work to do to get back to reconnecting on a deeper level. Both personally and professionally. But just like all great things in life, it will take time. Rome wasn’t built in a day.
So today is October 3, 2017. In two weeks I turn 34 years old. I am actively seeing Patricia on a weekly basis because she helps me. I am struggling with the growing pains of a small business. I am trying to be the best husband I can be. I am making time for family again. I am putting more value in the way I see myself and trying to put less in the way others see me.
I’ve made mistakes this year, but I am human. I am allowed to be human. And while I work towards that ultimate goal of kicking back and watching as something I have put blood, sweat and tears into thrive, I need to be less harsh on myself. Existential crisis or not, today is tough. Tomorrow will be better. And I can hope that for those of you who have been having similar feelings this year that you give yourself a bit of credit. You’ve got this.
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again:
Be kind to one another. You never know the battle that someone faces behind closed doors.
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Photos: Daniel Reyes
Mobile photos are always taken on my NEW Huawei P10 Plus