My journey started with an insult followed by failures, rejections, criticisms and countless sleepless nights.
I had no godfather. I started everything from scratch, the field which I stepped in, I didn't know shit about it, I was new in the field and knew nobody who could help me. There were times when I was at my lowest when I was about to give up when my family members doubted me. I had no proper direction nor resources. I was booed, I failed a lot, I made 100s of mistakes, but I didn't stop. I went on and on. I didn't complain; I didn't blame, I faced each hurdle with an open chest, accepted my responsibilities, accounted for my failures, used the resources I had effectively, and here I am where I am today. So, if I can start from scratch with limited resources and be where I am today, you could too.
SO STOP FUCKING COMPLAINING
My life was very different before the insult took place, and it changed my life for good. The insult ignited a fire somewhere inside me. I initially wanted to learn not for myself, not to grow, but for pure revenge. I wanted to prove him wrong, and I didn’t realize that just by proving him wrong, I would be proving myself right. Somewhere along the way, I created a successful platform for myself. BTW
IT TOOK ME NINE FREAKING YEARS TO GET MY OVERNIGHT SUCCESS.
I divided my story in four parts (i.e.)
MY LIFE PRIOR THE INSULT.
MY LIFE POST THE INSULT.
MY LIFE RIGHT NOW.
MY LIFE PRIOR THE INSULT
My life was going fine before the insult. I was having the most peaceful time of my life. I was a topper in my school; I used to receive fantastic grades. I was a teacher's and my family's favorite. I used to play sometimes and spend my whole day by either completing my assignments/reading or by watching Disney and Pogo channel. Life was beautiful, I was programmed to live a normal life, and at that moment, I actually loved it. I will brief you with some points so that you understand MY LIFE PRIOR THE INSULT well.
- I was a big-time nerd. I was always reading or 'mugging up' to score good grades. I was the topper of the school, and I was the teacher's favorite.
- I had little to no friends. Well, that's pretty much the case right now too. Because somethings never change.
- I was very much shy and awkward in presenting myself. I was CLUMSY.
- I lacked communication skills and I couldn't speak English fluently and I used to stutter a lot while speaking. Even if you gave me a piece of paper with all the content written on it, I'd probably fumble.
- Talking with people was a huge task for me. People used to speak to me only when they had doubts and honestly I didn't even try initiating a conversation because I lacked communication skills and I didn't even know how to initiate the conversation with same-gender itself, forget talking to girls.
- I was scared to take risks and I was never interested in following an unconventional career path and I used to laugh (inside my head) at people who tried. I pretty much believed in order to succeed you need to follow the guidelines which the system has laid for us, which is score good marks, get in a good college, get decent CGPA, apply for a job, rent a 2bhk, get married, have kids, work my arse hard for 30 years for somebody else and retire happily with debts. (I don't think lowly neither I mean to demean it, I respect people who do jobs, it is just I evolved into something else)
- I was never interested in business nor money and I didn't have that feeling of getting rich, I just wanted to make my ends meet.
- I used to read (read- mug-up) a lot. ONLY ACADEMIC BOOKS AND NOTHING APART FROM THAT.
- I didn't have any skills apart from memorization. That's the only thing I was good at. You'd laugh when I say that the only thing I knew at that time was how to ride a cycle and that too with great difficulty and a lot of bashing.
- I didn't know how to use electronic gadgets and honestly, I never liked it. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t dance when I connected my tablet to the Wi-Fi, thinking I’d achieved the unachievable. In fact, I didn't even know how to download an application from the PlayStore.
- Summing up, I pretty much sucked but I was living in an illusion that I was better than others. In reality, I was the supporting character of my own life.
ONE SIMPLE INSULT FROM A FRIEND OF MINE WHICH FLIPPED MY WORLD UPSIDE DOWN
The insult took place in 2011 when I was just 11 years old and was studying in sixth grade.
Things were good, and I loved the way it was, I never complained because that's the life I chose and I was happy.
It was just like any other day, I was getting ready for school, everything was good. The first period was history and I still love that subject, I don't know why people get bored of it. Anyway, the second period was free as the teacher was absent and me being a complete nerd, opened my books and started reading because all my homework was complete, yeah, I know.
My friends were forming groups and gossiping on various stuff. A friend of mine invited me to the group and I was reluctant initially because he was the only guy amidst all the girls in the group and I was very shy, but later on, I accepted and we were having conversations on Politics, Bollywood, Sports, on almost everything . It was going pretty well until the topic of computers came which changed my whole freaking life.
Out of nowhere, my friend in the group started talking about computers and began boasting about how he is a great hacker and was making huge money from hacking accounts. He started saying about how he hacked a girl's account and how she pleaded him to get the account back. Being the naive sixth graders that we were, we bought his story and were in complete awe of it.
I was very weak in computers, I knew no shit, I didn't even know how to download an application from PlayStore, I was that low. I remember once when my father bought a new Tablet home and I thought I am a tech wizard when I connected it to Wi-Fi. I know, I was fool back then. I still am a fool (sometimes).
He then went on to exploit my weakness in computers and threatened to hack my Facebook account and send some lewd messages to girls. Eleven year old me was rattled with fear, and all others started clapping and giggling at my misery.
(Yes, I did have a Facebook account which was created with the help of my friend.)
I cried, begged, pleaded him not to hack my account but he was in no mood to listen as he was getting all the attention he wanted.
I couldn't concentrate on anything else. I could visualize a tainted future of mine where people are labeling me as a PERVERT, DICKHEAD and what not. My mind was not working. I was scared to death. This was a big and a new problem, (at least at that moment) because I have never faced anything like that before.
I went to my friend who created the account, asked him my email and password and how to use it. He explained everything and I was good to go.
I went back home, the first thing I did was turning on my computer to check whether he has hacked or not. He didn't and I felt relieved, but I looked at the clock, and it was just 30 - 40 minutes since we left from school, he definitely has more important work to do, rather than just come home and hack my account.
For the whole day, I anxiously monitored my account, waiting for him to act on his threat. But he never did!
Not because he didn't had time to, just because he didn't knew how to.
When confronted the next day, he just laughed. The same set of girls were present . He said he felt pity for me, and I stood there speechless, the girls present there started appreciating his kind gesture and told me to back off , that I better play safe and not mess with him and go mind my studies. I became subject of mockery for weeks.
His words and the public humiliation pierced right through my heart and it ignited a fire somewhere inside me. My determination levels were touching the sky and I was very much driven. I initially wanted to learn not for myself, not to grow, but for pure revenge. I wanted to prove him wrong, and I didn’t realize that just by proving him wrong, I would be proving myself right. Somewhere along the way, I created a successful platform for myself.
MY LIFE POST THE INSULT
Life wasn't the same after the insult. It changed. It took a 360° turn for good.
Although the journey wasn't as pleasant as the destination but it was fun and a thrilling experience.
I experienced a complete different aspect of my life, which I never thought I would - getting off my comfort zone.
I will not lie, it was not easy, not even one bit. I had to struggle, struggle a lot, because I was just a teenager who was going to school, had a family to answer to and I didn't know what I was entering into.
After the insult, 11 year old me went back home with full energy and determination level touching the roof.
The first thing I did after going home was turning on my computer and did some quick and basic searches till evening and made a list of all the websites I visited.
I then completed my homework, had my dinner. My family runs a medical shop and the office is connected to the house (i.e.) ground floor - the office and floors above was our home. The computer was in the shop and I couldn't use much during working hours. My shop closes at 9-10 PM and that's when my journey starts.
After the shop closed and people went upstairs, I went down, turned on my computer and was browsing website after website but Facebook caught my attention.
The concept of Facebook intrigued me and I loved it and I was in awe of it. I was curious about how it works because it was something amazing - connecting with strangers, with friends, real time chat, man I was just in love with it. I wanted to build one too. I started searching terms like 'how to make Facebook' :p and the search showed that you need to learn programming, I was like what's that? and when I searched that I got to know that it is just like any other languages like English or Hindi which humans understand and similarly programming languages are languages which computers understand and through which you could create marvelous things. (I thought there might be only few but when I searched I was surprised) I then got to know that Facebook was built in PHP (a programming language) and I wanted to learn that.
I was awake till 4 in the morning, very curious, penning down everything I was doing. I couldn't get enough. I thought to stop and go back up and pretend to sleep, so my family doesn't come to know about it. I went and slept as if nothing happened. My mom woke me up at 7 am, because I had school to attend. Damn.
Well, this was pretty much my routine - wake up at 7 am, get ready for school, come back home at around 3-4 PM, rest, complete my homework, have dinner and start my learning process at 10-11 PM and go back to sleep at 3-4 AM. This routine was continued for two long years and I lost a lot of things in process - weight, friends, grades and I gained a few things too - humiliation, learning something (which was not academic), a better me.
I will brief you with some points so that you understand MY LIFE POST THE INSULT well.
- The 'routine' of mine was continued for two long years.
- I started learning new things about programming, blogging, a bit of hacking (as everyone starts with it).
- I used to sleep only for 3-4 hours and had an improper diet due to which I lost enormous amount of weight.
- I became skinny, vulnerable and was prone to many diseases and was ill most of the time. My second most visited place was doctor's clinic. First being my desk.
- Spending a lot of time in front of the screen and not getting enough sleep weakened my eyesight too.
- I went school uninspired. I just wanted to go back home and continue my learning because I was loving it.
- I started hating school because I was learning something real and practical and not outdated.
- I stopped giving much importance to school work due to which I started failing in subjects, incomplete homework, regular humiliation, frequent parent - teacher meetings.
- Relatives/family members (except mom & dad) started taunting because they came to know I spend whole nights in front of computers. They thought I was playing video games and watching porn, they tried a lot to stop me, but I was adamant and stubborn.
- I became a complete mess. I started failing in subjects (I was a topper), the little social group I had in school vanished and no one wanted to talk to me, my relatives and friends used to mock at me, I slept in classes, my parents got very concerned and they tried to talk with me a lot of times and I just used to nod and continue with it.
- My English was terrible. I sucked at it. (Scroll down to know how I improved it)
- I was just learning and learning and I had no clue that I can earn money online, I was just doing because I loved it and I was passionate about it. I did whatever I could to learn. Online, Offline, any medium which I could leverage. I never paid for a single course, whatever I learnt was for FREE.
- I started reading books. No, not academics, but books on Business, Entrepreneurship, Self Help, Personal Development etc. Those days I just cannot go and order a book from Amazon because I was not earning and I didn't want to ask money from my parents, so I used to go to library in bus and read for hours and if the book was not completed then I used to write the book name and the page number where I need to continue reading on the paper I used to carry with me. Those were some tough but golden days.
- I learnt a lot of things and I wanted to share my knowledge with the world but had no platform. I decided to ping a Facebook page and join them as an 'editor' but he rejected me. I was heartbroken and that was my first experience with rejection. The reason of rejection? My age. After that I applied to 17 more Facebook pages and all of them rejected me because of my age thinking I am a FAKE.
- After the 18th rejection I got, I was shattered, heartbroken and started thinking that I wasted two years for nothing. I started crying and slept on my desk itself after seeing the rejection. When I woke up around 6 am, that rejection message was still there and as soon as I closed it I found another similar niche page and randomly texted them with least expectations and I decided to stop my online learning and started focusing on my studies.
- I went back to school and when I came back home, to my surprise , the nineteenth one accepted me. (lesson learnt - always have least expectations) I would have probably given up if they hadn't given me a chance. I worked with them for around a year and got a lot of exposure by being associated with them. They had some 30 odd thousand likes, it was a big deal in 2013 and Facebook organic reach was REAL. I worked with them for an year and for free because I had no clue that I can earn.
- After being with them for one year, I developed enough traction for myself and people started knowing me. Many people encouraged me to start my own page and finally on May 10, 2014, Hackers Den was born. It was just a Facebook page then.
- It wasn't all rosy. I started a Facebook page but I had no audience base, I had no leadership qualities, I didn't know how to make decisions, how to handle a team, how to develop an community. NOTHING. Because before I used to work under someone, there were seniors and I just had to draft and it was up to the seniors who made decision to either accept or reject. It took some time but I learnt. PS - Till then I didn't know I could make money online and also I didn't spend a dime on anything.
- I then turned the Facebook page into a blog, hosting free on blogger.com and getting a free (dot)tk domain. My domain name was welcometoworldofhackers.tk because hackersden.tk was not available. I even got abishiekhjain.tk and that website only had a selfie of mine. I got a snapshot of Hackers Den website.
- Then one day a friend of mine said me that Bigrock is offering free (dot)net domains and I couldn't be any happier. I was ready to get it. Many people told me to shorten the name and not use welcometoworldofhackers as nobody is going to type that big and I took three domains that day , 2 of them which I am still using - hackersdenabi.net and abishiekhjain.net I could easily shift to (dot)com now but I don't want to . Showing my gratitude by this small gesture because that's how I started. It was hosted on Blogger for a very long time and I do have a soft spot for it.
- I faced hundreds of hurdles my way but nothing stopped me.
- I earned my first income 1.5 years after the launch of Hackers Den and it was mere ₹150, but it meant like a million dollar to me and from then on there was no looking back.
My English was pathetic. My vocabulary was terrible. I didn't even know the meaning of the word flop.
I wanted to improve my English and my late uncle Mohan helped me indirectly to improve my English. He wanted me to become a bodybuilder and a fighter for which he used to train me and make me watch Hollywood movies (that was my first exposure to Hollywood). I hated it because I never watched Hollywood and it was boring. He made me watch 'Jackie Chan" and 'Bruce Lee' movies and I was least interested in it, but I couldn't get up since he was sitting next to me. I used to waste 2 hours everyday in doing nothing and that's when I thought why not to utilize the time in learning English.
I started reading the subtitles carefully and whenever I encountered any new or difficult word, I used to write it down and later look up in dictionary and tried to add those words in my vocabulary. When my uncle asked ‘what I was writing’, I said ‘some action scenes which will help me later’ and he bought it. I started watching more Hollywood movies with full heart and observed carefully on how these actor speak, pronounce, their body language, everything. I was excited everyday to watch a new movie with my uncle and he was surprised.
I once read a dictionary for fun. I did it because I challenged myself and Fun fact - I hardly remember any words.
I started reading English newspapers, I started reading English books and noted down new words or words which I didn't know meaning of and then looked up in dictionary and tried to incorporate in my vocabulary.
I started practicing whatever I have learnt. I started talking with myself in front of mirror to understand my body language. I also used to record myself to hear how I sound and learnt and improved every single day.
I started speaking English with a few friends of mine. I told them beforehand that I want to improve my English and they were super happy to help.
And lastly I did not give up. I went on and on every single day and I am still learning, have not mastered yet.
And that my friends was my journey. It looks so easy in texts but it wasn't so in reality. There are lot of things which I experienced but I couldn't express it in mere words.
MY LIFE RIGHT NOW
I won't say my life right now is AWESOME but its GREAT.
Although I do have new set of problems and hurdles currently but that's what life is all about and what's fun without that? If you don't have problems or hurdles in your life then you are living a pretty boring 60 year old's life.
My life has tremendously improved in these 9 years. I learnt many things the hard way which has made me irrepressible.
I cherish each and every moment of my life and if given a chance I would relive it again with no regrets and would not want to change any part of my life because I learnt a lot of things from every aspect and situation of my life and I'd make the same mistakes again because that's what made me who I am today.
I am 20 years old (I am 2000 born, so adjust my age in the year which you are reading) I am a businessperson, writer, online marketer, trader, investor but not an entrepreneur. I am a college dropout and 2 time TEDx Speaker.
I am the Founder of Hackers Den, which is a technology blog which explains technology in simple English.
Also the Co-founder of BLENDnLend where I along with Ashi (Co-Founder) equip youngsters, entrepreneurs, working professionals and startup founders with new ways of career building.
I previously Co-founded a company known as Speak Out with my friend Soorya, it was a blogging event where we held offline events to share knowledge on blogging and digital marketing from the experts. The company got dissolved after the first edition due to some reasons.
I also founded Youths, (in 2017) which was a social networking website. I always had a dream to create a social networking site of my own because I was very much intrigued by the concept of Facebook, but the dream soon faded away as it was not practically viable and it was burning a hole in my pocket. I had to shut it down. We had 300 users before I shut it down. After this, I left programming and have never programmed nor kept myself updated with it and eventually lost touch to it.
I have worked with several startups and running many online blogs, online businesses and ventures and making a living out of it.
I run a YouTube channel with the name Abishiekh Jain
I have been featured on various online and offline reputed media publications like The Huffington Post, Deccan Chronicle, Entrepreneur etc. I have been featured on newspapers as well as offline magazines too.
I am a writer and I write on topics such as Entrepreneurship, Self Help, Personal Development, Optimism , Positivism, Business etc.
I am a speaker too and have spoken at various colleges, universities, schools and events. I am a 2 time TEDx speaker. You can book me for speaking at your college/event too :)
I have a neat username with no fancy words in it, all you have to do is type my spelling right and you will find me anywhere. My Spelling is 'Abishiekh Jain' (without quotes) and you can find me anywhere by searching with the right spelling.
SUMMARY OF MY LIFE TILL NOW
- I am 20 years old with 9 years of experience.
- I was a nerd before the insult.
- Before the insult, I was the topper of the school, I wanted to become an Engineer and live a simple and secure life like everybody else.
- I was never interested in doing business or getting rich. I used to loathe rich that how they are exploiting the poor.
- I was very shy and I lacked confidence in talking with people.
- I pretty much sucked at everything except studies. (I suck at it now)
- I was afraid of taking risks and following something unconventional was not my thing.
- I lacked basic General Knowledge and pretty much sucked at speaking and writing.
- I used to think a lot of what other people thought about me and I never wanted to be in someone's bad book.
- I had a FIXED MINDSET.
- Summing up, I pretty much sucked in almost everything but I was living in an illusion that I was better than others. In reality, I was the supporting character of my own life.
My life tremendously changed after the insult.
- I started hating the education system. I got 2/200 in Mathematics in my eleventh grade.
- I am a college dropout. I dropped Engineering after going for a month.
- I am not afraid to take risks but I am afraid of not experimenting new things.
- I cannot imagine living my life behind a desk and follow the same routine which millions other follow.
- I love talking with people. Talking with like-minded people instills energy in my body.
- I have founded couple of companies and running many other things and making a living out of multiple income sources.
- I am a PUBLIC SPEAKER and I have been invited to prestigious institutes, events, colleges, schools etc to deliver a session. You can book me for your event too :)
- I read a lot, not academics, but non-fiction. Self-Help, Business, Personal Growth etc are my choices. I don't just read but I try to implement at least one lesson in my life.
- I try to read from any medium I could so that I be well aware and informed.
- My English skills have improved remarkably and I am still learning and adding more words to my vocabulary.
- I do not give a flying fuck of what people think of me.
- I have a GROWTH MINDSET.
- Summing up, I am improving myself every single day and I do not live in illusions. I have become the LEAD character of my own life.