Emotional Investors' Update (2023-05-14)


  • Thoughts: Don’t lose focus on your why… and put your own mask on first.
  • Work: Continuing pursuing BuildMyMVP.co, fractional CTO, and full-time employment opportunities.
  • Life: Everyone’s healthy and happy.
  • Productivity: Still using my Notion system. Rachel Barnard helped me get unstuck.
  • Newsletter: Trying to be more concise (maybe next post).
  • Sponsors: Fathom Analytics, Week of the Website, BuildMyMVP.co
  • Asks: What are you grateful for these days?

Been a wild month. I’m hoping the previous weekly posts have been helpful in keeping up with things, but for those that only really care about the monthly updates, we’ll get into that shortly. Indulge me for a second…


I wanted to touch on some things that I’ve been thinking a lot about lately:

“Don’t lose focus on your why.”

As I’ve been going through this journey over the last couple of months, I’ve been reminded lately how important it is to keep true to why you’re doing what you’re doing. As life continues to move along, it can be easy to lose sight of this as you make decisions.

For me, everything I’m doing and working on right now is for my family. They are not only the root of my joy and satisfaction in this crazy world, but also my motivation and support system. I’m trying to be more ruthless in my decision making and filtering everything through the lens of one question: Is this going to improve things for my family?

For others, it might be more societal or community based service. It’s important that you figure out the why that works for you and your values and goals. Once you know, it’s easier to filter through opportunities and dilemmas by ensuring that they are serving your why.

“Put your own mask on first.”

When I say that everything I do is for my family, obviously, that includes my son and my wife, but maybe not so obviously: it also includes me. While that might sound a bit selfish, I promise you it’s not. Because I’ve learned (often the hard way) that when I’m not taking care of myself, or when I’m fighting or ignoring my own energy levels and wellness, I’m not able to do what I need to properly take care of my family. I’m not able to show up and be the best me and that’s not fair to them. It’s the whole “put your own oxygen mask on first” mentality. And it’s taken on new meaning for me now that my family has grown.

Okay. Onto the regularly scheduled updates…


Now that I’m done with my mini sabbatical, it’s time to get back into the game. I’m two weeks into having released BuildMyMVP.co, which has resulted in dozens of conversations so far (and surprisingly only 1 no-show). Haven’t closed any clients yet, but have a couple of proposals still out and pending. I’m continuing to evolve it as I talk with more and more people and learn from the process. Have run into a few hiccups that I touch on a bit, along with some of the other challenges, in this Twitter thread.

In addition to the BuildMyMVP offering, I’ve also been talking with a couple of companies about fractional CTO work. This is typically either a part-time or temporary contract gig where I come in for a set period of time and help manage or build up a company’s engineering team. I help with sourcing and interviewing, but also help put processes and documentation in place. It’s similar to a lot of what I did at Able.com. Very different from the BuildMyMVP offering, but one I’m confident I can provide value with.

And while I’ve always joked that I’m against going back to working for someone else, the truth is that I’ve been thinking about how much peace of mind (if even only temporary) full-time employment can provide. Building my marketing and sales muscles is definitely something I’d like to continue to do, but might be a bit too time-consuming and stressful for the moment, so I’ve been trying to stay open to the possibility of finding new companies that might still be a good fit for my skills and our family’s needs.


Things are a little work heavy lately, after being lucky enough to have the time to unwind in Ireland. Some weeks have been harder than others for various life reasons, but we are generally doing alright and holding things together. Everyone is healthy and there is no shortage of laughing and singing in our house these days. We are very blessed and eternally grateful.


No real updates to my internal processes lately, but the good news is that I’m still using my system in Notion to track all my tasks, people, and events/meetings. I think that says something about the quality of the setup. There are definitely still some minor pain points or friction that need ironing out, but they are minor and haven’t prevented me from continuing to stick with it.

As you might have noticed, things on the work front have been a little scattered and chaotic lately. After the last couple of weeks of trying to find my next clients, I was feeling a little stuck. I ended up scheduling time with Rachel Barnard (who was also part of the Build In Public Fellowship), who helps people get unstuck through 1:1 coaching sessions where she expertly provides fresh eyes and ears without judgment and gives you direct and honest feedback on your next steps. Honestly, she probably saved me about a week of stumbling and fumbling and weighing options. Highly recommended for anyone looking to get unstuck and get their momentum back.


Hopefully, you’re enjoying these monthly summaries and now weekly updates. I’ve been really enjoying the writing process and am grateful for the growth and clarity it helped provide me. But I’ll admit with everything going on, it has often felt a bit burdensome. I think the consistency is important and I’m really proud of myself for having continued using this as a source of communication about what’s been going on in my world. It’s definitely helping me be a better writer and thinker.

That said, I realize that this all is probably really verbose. I’m grateful for everyone that reads along, but I know you’re busy and probably have a dozen other things to read or do with your time, so I think the next evolution will be an attempt at shrinking the size of each newsletter down to something more digestible in a single sitting. I’m also hoping that it helps cut down on my time spent writing each post, but with the way I write, it probably means more time condensing and editing. We shall see how that goes.

(Unofficial) Sponsors:

Fathom Analytics - an amazing privacy-focused analytics tool from my friend and former cofounder, Paul Jarvis.

Week of the Website - my brilliant and beautiful wife’s company, which helps creatives build a beautiful and easy-to-maintain website in just one week (or more if you’re doing something really fancy).

BuildMyMVP.co - do you have an idea for an app or website but don’t know where to start? I love helping people with domain knowledge in non-tech areas build the first versions of their online tools.


I really appreciate that you’ve read this far. Life has been really challenging for so many of us these days, so I’m grateful that you’re here and I hope you’re not feeling underwater.

Mind sharing if there is anything you’re especially grateful for these days?