Emily’s Story: Alex

Growing up, Alex and I bickered like every other sibling. We’re the only ones we have. He is 3 years older than me with many of the same ambitions that I have professionally so I’ve always benefited from his hindsight.

Like clockwork, his entrepreneurial journey led to a spiritual awakening that preceded mine by about 3 years. During that time, I was embarking on my own journey of new beginnings.

I had just joined a startup that I was excited about. Our parents gave me the same lecture as they gave my brother for choosing a path that didn’t include insurance or 401ks.

Alex had primed them well, though. Between his announcement years earlier, the resilience he showed through his journey, and my history of not submitting to them in arguments I cared about, my news was easier to break.

The difference between his journey and mine was that I had positioned my career over safety nets.

Alex didn’t have a degree to fall back on. I graduated with my teaching degree. I’d always have the option to apply that credential to the corporate training or communication fields.

The startup he helped build was from the ground up. I joined my startup after it had already been around for a couple of years.

He had no family or friends around him (not even social media to keep up with them). I live about an hour away from our parents and the nature of my job puts me in frequent contact with people.

I had all the external safety nets that would allow me to perform professionally without feeling like I needed to change anything personally. If I was feeling guilty about something in my personal life, I could easily mask it from my colleagues and compartmentalize it from my work.

Alex didn’t have the same luxury.

Through our weekly conversations, he shared with me how he worked through his own challenges when I shared mine with him. We began having weekly calls to catch up on each other’s lives.

Seeing his journey inspired me to strive for my own goals and have the confidence to walk toward my dreams on my own.

Alex is the brother I wouldn’t want to live my life without and the ally who showed me how to appreciate it fully. ”

– Emily, Recruitment Marketing Specialist
Orlando, FL

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