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Buying Leiki Chapter 1: What in the MidLife Crisis?

I bought a board shorts company last month. If you, like my hysterical friend, are thinking in your head, "What in the mid life crisis??", this blog series is for you.

I laughed for days every time I thought about my friend's question, because first of all, it was hilarious. But second of all, it echoed what I already knew everyone in my life would say: You have a real estate team. Why in the hell are you buying a board short company? Are you nuts?

I broke it up into 5 chapters, each around 500 words, to tell the full story, but if you're someone who wants the bottom line, click below to be taken right to Chapter 5!

If you're ready for the full deets, here we go....

I have come to learn so much about myself on my journey toward personal and professional growth in recent years, and that has enabled me to understand how I operate, what makes me tick, what I'm good at, and what I absolutely suck at.

Two of the most important things I learned about myself are:

1. That I am a visionary in every single sense of the word, which carries with it certain characteristics, one of which being #2....

2. That I have gone my entire life constantly feeling guilt, shame, and disappointment in who I am because I have been living undiagnosed with ADHD my entire life.

Learning these things about myself would eventually lead to me gaining the confidence to buy a company.

You see, I lived most of my life thinking I was stupid. I really did. I got in trouble constantly for behaviors that I truly could not control, like forgetting EVERYTHING, or over-talking. Even as a ballet and hip hop dancer, trying to remember choreography, took me (what seemed like) 6x as long as it took the other dancers.

The only way for me to remember was to practice at an extreme level to get the movement into my body, so I could disconnect my brain, and just let my body do the work. I would perform solos on stage and end up improvising said solos, because I couldn't get out of my head & into my body (due to nerves), so I couldn't remember the choreography. I didn’t know I was neurodivergent. I thought I was just... stupid.

I tried so hard for my whole life to change who I was, because I didn't understand how my brain worked. I felt like no one understood me, and like I was weird & broken & not worthy of friendship or love, so I became withdrawn. I would be extroverted in front of people, but would quickly clam up and disappear.

(Side note: I recently read that social withdrawal is characteristic of people with ADHD, because they face constant rejection from an early age, due to their behavior, so they find solace within. Wow. How absolutely fitting. I identify completely with that.)

It smashed my self confidence. I tried to dial down my energy & emotion, not talk so much, learn social skills that would help me blend in more, make plans for answering texts and calls, take fewer clients so I could remember things, etc. I found as many "workarounds" as I could. It made me so …tired… and dull, and depressed. Not to mention, I felt like a total fake. Surely, everyone would eventually see who I really was and reject me, so why even make deep friendships?

Discovering not only that I had ADHD, but also what that actually meant was a total game changer. I began to understand myself so much more. I saw that my brain wasn’t broken. I wasn't stupid. It was just powerful in different ways from a neurotypical brain.

That’s where things began to change.

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