056 - Preston King
Updated: Aug 26
“Just because you get sober, life doesn’t just get easy.” Preston King joins us from Underdogg Marketing to tell his recovery story. He talks about getting lost in the jail system and gratitude for being held accountable by the drug court system. He says he wanted to put in half effort and get full results and is grateful for mini-success like an apartment, furniture, job and the lessons he has learned in sobriety. Enjoy.
The Illuminate Recovery Podcast is about Mental Health, Mental Illness, and Addiction Recovery. Shining light on ways to cope, manage, and inspire. Beyond the self care we discuss, you may need the help of a licensed professional. Curt Neider and Shelley Mangum are a part of Illuminate Billing Advocates (illuminatebilling.com). They are committed to helping better the industry and adding value to the lives of listeners by sharing tools, insights, and success stories of those who are working on their mental health.
Transcript (no grammar):
just because you get sober life doesn't just get easy preston king joins us from underdog marketing to tell his recovery story he talks about getting lost in the jail system and gratitude for being held accountable by the drug court system he says he wanted to put in half effort and get full results and is grateful for many successes like an apartment furniture job and the lessons he has learned in sobriety enjoy welcome to the illuminate recovery podcast we shed light on mental health issues mental illness and addiction recovery ways to cope manage and inspire beyond self-care we will discuss you may need the help of a licensed professional my name is kurt neider i'm a husband father entrepreneur a handyman and a student of life i avoid conflict i deflect with humor and i'm fascinated by the human experience and i'm shelley mangum i am a clinical mental health counselor and my favorite role of all times is grandma i am a seeker of truth and i feel like life should be approached with tremendous curiosity i ask the dumb questions i fill in the gaps the illuminate recovery podcast is brought to you by illuminate billing advocates make billing and collection simple with leader in substance abuse and mental health billing services verification and analysis of benefits pre-authorizations utilization management accurate claim submission and management denial and appeal management and industry leading reporting improve your practices cash flow and your ability to help your clients with eliminate billing advocates today kurt and i get to talk with preston king preston is the owner of underdog marketing he went from addiction to business owner and he has a powerful story to share um i'll also mention that uh kurt and i got to meet um preston at a um at the alema harrington fundraising golf event which was kind of that was a fun event that was really fun to be out there and that was a lot of fun yeah be with everybody so preston thanks for willing being willing to come on here and and um and i know that you do marketing but you also have a a pretty good story give us a little background of how you ended up where you're at now man what a loaded question i don't know how i ended up winning i just went with the flow of things you know um yeah so how much time do we got because i can talk you guys ears off i gotta limit myself here um let's see so yeah i i i use for a long time um we'll kind of breeze through the beginning stages because um that's just so much there right so i have a lot of trauma from my past i i really justified using drugs for a long time because i thought i was using heroin like a gentleman and i was still working so it's okay you know i was actually in the army for almost six years and um i was hooked on painkillers back in high school um i did them recreationally which i thought was uh um okay to do is just kind of like yeah do them on the weekends or if someone has them and it's just it's it's crazy because you always hear um how progressive addiction is and for sure when i look back at that like 15-year span i'm like holy [ __ ] like that that is that is it exactly um and so that really took off when i got in the military it was um very easy to get painkillers especially when you get hurt um so that that really took off with that and then when i switched from active duty over to the national guard um and was stationed here in utah i joined the utah guard for the last three years of my like service if you will and um i was still living in uh elko nevada which i don't know if you guys know that place but it's uh solely all about mining it's a mining town hicktown uh so there's not a lot there so um the big step up for me was one day wanting you know painkillers and not and not having them and someone offering you know heroin instead which um i didn't even know the the slaying terms for him you know it's like we've got this and i'm like i don't know what that is you know and so as soon as they said heroin i'm like whoa like i'm not a drug addict here i just do painkillers man which was really sad that i viewed it that way and i mean it was probably a couple hours span from when they told me about that to when i was like is it that good though like you know oh yeah come over and try it and honestly i can still to this day you know what 13 14 years later of uh recalling that feeling um of things clicking in my head or so i thought they were clicking in my head i was i wasn't happy in life and so when i went over there in and partook in that uh man what a wave of like comfort and this is the solution that this is the solution for my problems whatever they are this is great um and i have been chasing that high the entire time of my use because i thought it would be like that every time and it surely wasn't um so fast forward with that you know now i've got this uh heroin addiction that i was still using like i was painkillers recreationally when i could it was expensive it's fine but then it was every other day and you know then i was timing it up for when i had to come over here to utah for my weekend drills and it's just like well if i do the last time i do it is a week before it'll be out of my system then it turned into well i can do it on monday and just drink a lot and and it got closer and closer then i'm doing it on the way here for drills saying i'm just going to give them fake piss and like we're okay and like it's crazy how much you justify things because i i enjoyed being in the army it gave me purpose it gave me goals you know i was i do well with structure and um and i threw that away which was really hard um i was close with my unit here they they tried to help me um but i just couldn't be honest about it and so when they finally like brought that up that i had a bunch of failures for you know comes coming up as morphine and um they they tried to go to bat for me but it just wasn't a go and so i remember sitting down with the battalion commander my company commander first sergeant so i got to experience that and the best part of that um was i called who i was with right when we like took a break and i said you need to come down to the camp williams and i need some i need some heroin so i mean i'm going from man my life's gone to okay i'm all right you know and and so that's how progressive this thing got and and since that happened it turned into daily use i couldn't keep a job um pushing family away you know just the typical thing that you you hear with people of uh just really isolating um i tried to get sober several times i went to several different rehabs i was really really good at the 30 60 90 just let me get my [ __ ] together for a little bit and then try it again um but it just wasn't just it just wouldn't click for me and so this last go-round um before i got so sober um almost four years ago i've been four years sober which is just crazy to me you know um i really hit the ground um running with it because i was i didn't really care i didn't have any motivation i didn't know what i wanted to do in life i had all this experience in a lot of different areas i didn't know what i wanted to do but i knew that now that everybody's out of my life this is great because now no one can tell me what to do and i'm gonna isolate my room and i'm gonna do my drugs and it's fine so um got to do that and um you know i was with um with my my uh ex-fiance now she's still a really good friend so it's so weird saying that but you know we have two kids together and uh man put her through the ringer with that and um the big wake-up call was you know she got pregnant um i was still using i was stealing from her she didn't know and that all surfaced and she tried to help the best that she could and um i was i was really good at pushing people away so you know i pushed her out of this state she moved away we were getting kicked out and i didn't know what to do so uh but i was so okay with that i was okay with losing my best friend who's pregnant with my kid i'm okay that my family literally had cut me off entirely um i saw this as an opportunity to just go have some fun by myself for a couple weeks homeless or something i don't i don't know i i don't know what i was telling myself but i remember that i was okay like i was sad i'm like oh no like please don't go and i didn't want her to go but that feeling of wanting the drugs more was a little bit more overpowering and so she did she left and we i we i stayed the couple days that i had left in the place we were renting before they kicked me out left all my stuff and i just was hopping around for two weeks um and the craziest part is just the desperation in those two weeks of of being homeless and not caring about hurting other people um i was okay with giving up my morals i i did a lot of things that i would never do now and um it was a really dark place man it it man i whoever's whoever listens to us probably like yeah like i know what he's talking about it that was by far the darkest it's ever gotten and um i wanted to kill myself but i didn't want to kill myself i didn't know what i was doing but by the grace of whatever's out there god universe like aliens whatever um i was fortunate enough that the law picked up on me and caught up with me and they they broke into uh the hotel i was staying at that was paid from a credit card that i stole and it was fine right and uh a bunch of them came in they they they came in they took me away and i was like this sucks because now i got a detox in jail right and i was really used to the whole we're going to book you you're gonna be there for like nine hours and then we're overpopulated we're gonna kick you out um i was not fortunate with this time which if they would have done that i don't think i would have been sober i probably wouldn't be here but um the crazy thing is is uh for those who know about salt lake county jail right you get put into quarantine and you're only supposed to be there a couple days until they figure out where they're gonna put you what pod um i was there for 11 days this schedule's different you're on lockdown more there's people always changing so you can't even like make a friend that's going to stay 11 day i fell through the cracks and they didn't realize it and i didn't know what to ask and um once they finally realized that then you know like they're like well we'll get you in a pod tomorrow and that night i remember sitting in my bunk um i guess it wasn't at the end of 11 days but day three i remember just laying in my bunk and so i'm i'm 6'2 i'm not a huge guy right but going from the army weighing 210 220 like that's what i should be at so when they weighed me in there i was uh almost 130 130 pounds i i have some pictures that i don't recognize me and i was sucked up and i just remember laying in the middle of the night on this uncomfortable bunk and i just looked down and like just my hip bone just was like sticking out and i remember i could just grab the whole thing and i just started crying and i went and looked in the mirror and i was like i don't know who i am you know then all these things are rushing you're the your fiance's in them two states away pregnant scared by yourself you always talk about how bad you know those those people out there that are bad parents or anything it's like you're that guy right now man and um man i bawled so much that night it was it was such a spiritual moment because i couldn't get past day three for over a year and i don't know what switched but something did and it made the rest of the state a lot easier and i'm so grateful that i got to go to jail for that and so that stay was about three three or four months i got to stay in jail but what made it really hard was that every week they'd say hey you're actually going to get released um you know this week at this time because i'd go to a go to court from jail judges say plea in advance let's do this you're getting released tomorrow right cool then tomorrow would come and the day that time would go past and then i was still in there and i you know i'd ask what what's going on and they're like well more more charges were filed buddy [Laughter] this is what i mean by uh my it was finally catching up to me like you i don't know how often you guys hear but it's like thank god life isn't fair because if it was i would have been locked up long ago i would have been dead long ago or just just how much it is right but i think it has this mercy limit too of you're gonna get what's fair and like working like changey right and so this went on for three months every single week i got told i was being released and then not so it was a really bad mind mess up right and so um [Music] finally when we're getting up to i think it was 17 or 18 charges they're just my public defender came in and she's just like this really isn't good like now we're really racking stuff up and because right now i think it was two uh one two fives or one something like that but it'd be consecutive and it didn't really hit me in there either then i'm like you know i'm just a drug addict and i'm gonna be going to prison you know i mean that was big and so they're like i was like well what can we do you know i didn't want to go to prison for that so um they're like well we're thinking we're trying to present to this this judge in salt lake that we want to globalize everything and put you in drug court i don't know why nobody's put you in drug court before with your history for the past five years you know and i just thought that was treatment and i was like i can do treatment that's easy so felony drug court here forever is listening is no joke it's hard if you don't want to get sober it's easy if you want to get sober it took me 18 months to finish it um rough i think it was a little bit more than 18 months but it was hard and i learned that the hard way with that i had i was fortunate enough to have judge skanky in salt lake um he was very strict with things he i tried to bend on uncertain stuff and he wouldn't allow me and that's the [ __ ] i need and and so when i when i globalized everything i said yeah i'll do whatever you guys want um they're like okay we'll let you go but you need to you need a place to stay and i'm so glad that i knew people uh christian smith um one of my best buddies i freaking love that man i the fact that he will pick up when i called him from jail um yeah he helped me get a bed at renaissance uh sober living i didn't have insurance i don't have money either mind you which is why i what you guys are doing is so huge because i just got lucky that i knew somebody right and uh so they said they would let me in i could be released there he made that all happen and so like it all just lined up great and i got out and i was able to like really put in the hard work to get my fiance back um i wanted to be sober before my kid was born which i have my kids will you know haven't seen me ever be on drugs i've got two beautiful kids uh daisy and wayland um they've been my motivation and these last three years have just been just crazy like it's the best way to describe it um but i do wish someone would have told me that um just because you get sober life doesn't get easy i i really thought that was my only problem and i don't know how many times people told me drugs weren't your problem that was your solution i'm like i don't even know what that means dude they were my problem right but no they were the solution to not feel [ __ ] and uh that took me a while to realize that um because i really thought once i stopped doing drugs then i can enjoy life which is true i get to enjoy the little stuff um i get to feel things i'm one thing that was hard for me to accept is i am a super sensitive guy which before i was like don't call me sensitive you know but now i'll be the first to tell you i am so sensitive i can cry and at anything you know i'm just i'm full of emotions and that's okay and so um yeah i really thought life would be easy and it is to a point but it's just you're experiencing what everybody's experiencing right and you don't have that coping mechanism that you well you do have it but you shouldn't use that coping mechanism of using drugs to deal with it and man once you develop some things that really help um it's worth it but uh yeah i mean i'm almost four years sober and i'm i still life's hard you know um it was it was a grind and the the biggest saying out of all the sayings i've heard is it works if you work it um it honestly pissed me off for a long time because i want to put in half effort get full results and i learned that the hard way and i really put in everything i had you know i i'll work being a felon i worked any job i could and they're not very good jobs and they don't pay the bills and you know i was able to have my daughter i got to be there for the birth of my daughter um i got my best friend back she came back from california she put all this trust in for me uh shout out to dawn love you dude and uh dude we just went through it you know when we i got an apartment like what i got a car uh the only furniture that was in there and this was when i was like i think i was six or nine months sober by the time my daughter was born and they moved over here um the only furniture we had in our little one-bedroom apartment downtown in salt lake was her bassinet we slept on the floor uh i went to di i got four plates four bowls four forks you know like that's all i could spend i was donating plasma i was charging electric scooters like anything to make this work and then it's just like i don't know what it was but it's something that's super motivating that it's like holy [ __ ] i'm doing the work and like look at these results right and then i was able to buy some furniture and then we got to get a new car it's like every year has been this progressive thing because i know what i want i'm not saying i have everything now but there's no i have to say it because i'm really trying to um filter there's no [ __ ] way that i would have ever thought uh if if you told me downtown that i would be living in this town home and i'd have the cars that i have and i'd be owning a business with two kids and paying the amount of bills that i do you're crazy there's no way i couldn't pay 700 a month what are you talking about you know so that's where the hope is the hope lies with the work that you want to put into it how bad do you want things and it's not easy it is not easy i'm still i still struggle with things um yeah i mean even now like i said my ex fiance that's still pretty recent and i've been really open with that because i think there's a lot of growth to really own stuff um but she's my best friend and we just i just didn't catch on to certain things sooner and that's okay because uh it's a learning process with this whole life thing so um anyway that's that's an incredible story preston i mean i'm listening to you one thing i heard you say is that you've got a lot of a lot of trauma in your childhood right that you're growing up was traumatizing especially as a sensitive person right i think that that was probably a hard thing to come to as this you know you're this military guy and you've done all the tarp things and and someone tells you you're sensitive like no that would be wrong that would just be wrong but the fact that you can you know you can connect with that also is probably some of the reasons why that that that trauma was so influential to you as you know as a young person growing up i'm curious about what part of that you had to look at going through recovery that helped you i mean you said something clicked for you and it was a real emotional time as you were in jail and some of those pivotal moments that you know that took you from one one place to another um but did you have to go look at that trauma and did you have to deal with that trauma what what what did that look like in treatment oh for sure so which is funny too because there's a lot of this trauma stuff i'm not gonna bring up in treatment that that's how i viewed it there's there's no reason to talk about it because it's not the problem um the only reason why i'm so open about it now is because i kind of tested that i'll give you a little bit right this is over the past several years i'll give you a little bit and we'll see how that that handles and what have you but honestly um as soon as i was able to accept um that it's okay to not be okay with things um and then i have some trauma and that's okay you know i i had this thing this toxic masculinity of like bro buck up cowboy up like stuff it down and like move on and um i think that's where a lot of my trauma came from um within my life and growing up which uh this isn't me bad mouthing any any religion by any means but my experience with a certain church was very hard um it was very difficult being shamed with certain stuff and so i bottled that in for a long time and that's what made me an angry per that made me think that i gotta be mr macho man um and i'll tell you what i i actually uh even though how hard [ __ ] is right now to deal with everything man i love who i am now because i will be emotionally honest with you i will freaking cry i'll tell you any traumatic [ __ ] you want to hear um i don't know it's such a freeing thing so really trusting the process and leaning into it um it's scary it's scary though i'll give anybody that it's not easy yeah no that's a lot of work because because it's the one thing we've spent you've spent your whole life avoiding right is avoiding all of the pain and all of that and and and now they want you to sit in it like yeah yeah you can sit in that for a second like what does that mean i hurt right now and i don't like this but i mean even yesterday i did a post um i did a post on my personal page about mental health awareness and just the struggles with people have with that kind of stuff right being bipolar or borderline personality disorder and just up and down with emotions and i feel emotions like i feel extreme you know and so um being able to sit in something like that and and kind of seeing the good because uh i mean yesterday i was i had a great day work had a great day with the kids and then all of a sudden i was just like sad at some stuff that i'm stressing out about that is gonna be okay and uh i just was i just started crying and i'm just like man this sucks and then it just kind of again these things just kind of click for me but um i was like this is actually really cool that i get to feel this any time before it's like i'm gonna use drugs and then it just all stopped right because i don't know what it is therapeutic what like having a good solid cry and then afterwards oh man like just talk about it's just so relieving right and waking up today and i feel great today and i'm just like i'm really glad that i got to sit in that [ __ ] right no one wants to sit in it but that hard stuff's what's worth it well it's interesting because i mean you're this you're this this tough guy i mean you know you're this tough guy that has a tough background and you know you've got all of this and you know and well and your live feed can see but you know you got tattoos going on and and sometimes i associate that with you know sometimes i've seen people that they'll they'll tattoo for because of the pain right and i don't know if that's why you tattoo but they'll tattoo because it's about pain and um you know and so you've got some of that stuff going on gauges are definitely painful and i can see that you've got some some pretty sweet gauges going on there yeah yeah thank you and then but then that you're willing to say look if if i can if i can go through and sit in that emotion and be okay crying then i can feel better the next day because i was able to process that emotion and let it go instead of bottling it up and it does it feels better but it feels so darn scary that you know and so unacceptable because who says oh yeah preston it's okay to cry do it man nobody says that right i mean least wise outside of treatment right yeah yeah don't cry it's okay that i mean even my even my daughter when she seemed crying oh don't cry dad and i i i tell her time it's okay to cry like this is okay you know and so yeah that's not a social norm don't cry it's okay it's just okay right so absolutely there's hope in that just like trust in the process that if you lean into that and feel those emotions i mean even just 24 hours you know don't don't use today tomorrow i'll re-address it if you really want to go use yeah just do that okay let's just try this option first and and then tomorrow let's readdress it and see if that's really what you want to do that's always an option i i need options don't tell me i can't do something okay don't tell me i can't do something it's just i i mean when i was a recovery coach i told my guys all the time i'm like using is always an option don't come in here and tell me yo i just can't use anymore like [ __ ] man you i don't care if you're facing prison time you can go use you have that freedom and that power to make that choice and that's where the empowerment comes from i chose not to use drugs today not because i couldn't there's that's not cool right i i chose that i chose that it empowers me so then the next day it's a little bit easier it's just like well i didn't do it yesterday yesterday turned out pretty cool you know you got to build those habits so um yeah i like that though because you build on choice and being able to make those choices consciously consciously is power i mean that's power and and so often in in society we think that showing those emotions is weakness and and and i i don't think i mean i don't think that's true and i know you don't believe that's true anymore but there's so many people out there that go yeah no there's no way i'll ever show emotion because that's weakness and i don't think there's anything more powerful than somebody that's able to show emotion and be authentic yeah which man i heard that all the time and it's just like i i don't know what it was it just that didn't click for me it's like what do you mean you want a sensitive guy that's going to open up and cry to you like that's not brave or courageous or anything like you need a mod to land with this stuff but absolutely like if i can if i can be vulnerable with who i am and be true to myself and just uh like connect with people because that's something i do believe like this whole purpose thing on life is connection with people we're meant to be around each other i mean that's why they put people in isolation because that's not normal we're not supposed to do that that is the ultimate punishment is to isolate someone right so it's like how do i really connect with you guys i can i can connect with you by being emotionally honest about something and i hope you can feel the the genuineness behind that especially if i show emotion and man i have put that to the test so many freaking times and it comes back uh in a positive way every single day i can't remember any time that i've like cried or like opened up to somebody and it had a negative backlash never well the interesting thing is as human beings we pick up on people's body language we know when they're emotionally lying and we know we can't trust them and so if you think that that's somehow power in that and that you're gonna you're gonna create these relationships that are so real without being you know authentic and vulnerable it's just it's a lie and it's not true right because people can tell it's not you can't keep that a secret well and that's with with any type of relationship you got you have your friendships you have your coworker relationships too but i mean even like your your personal relationship um and that's part of like the the the learning experience looking back you know it's something that didn't work out and it's like man i really wish i was a little bit more emotionally honest with where i was at with things maybe we would have been a little bit more connected and for sure right and um i don't like to get hung up on the past for sure and and it sucks but that's that's also the the positive thing with this is that i can look at a at a mistake made in the past losing a best friend losing fiancee like all this stuff that's just was supposed to be so traumatic and it was i'm still going through that but i get to learn for the next next whatever's coming in my life that it's just like all right that didn't work plain mr tough guy don't talk about your emotions don't communicate like what and i feel bad about it but man i'm so glad that this is all happening so that i can be a better you know example for my kids and i will always tell them like share your emotions share what you're feeling i'll be vulnerable um because when you have that kind of vulnerable connection with somebody man that i mean you guys both know what that feels like when you you've i mean you got something that popped into your head exactly of yep i have that one person that i can just be completely vulnerable with and i can cry with and and that's special so um well i wanna i wanna make a point of pointing uh pointing something out that is fairly rare i mean we've got here in utah and across across the world is huge high divorce rates and you know people going from relationship to relationship um but what i heard you say is that you have this fantastic relationship with this you know with the mother of your children and your best friend and that you know you've chosen to make that an important relationship and not let all of the pain and the hurt involved with it affect the way you parent and the way you relate with each other and and i think it's worthy to talk about that because i think that's something that we need to learn to do we get so busy holding resentments and holding other people accountable that we keep ourselves trapped in that you know it's painful to us more than anybody else and we keep ourselves trapped so i also noticed that that you know that's what you're trying to do and that takes a tremendous amount of courage um yeah that's that struck a chord too um that it's hard that that has been the hardest thing social norm is you got to hate your ex right get away they're terrible and like i've never wanted that and it still isn't easy this hasn't been some perfect process which we can all you know appreciate with that but i think overall the direction that it's going is really cool you know like that we can look back and be like yep like this is where i [ __ ] up this is where i wasn't good as a person um on both sides and then just like both want to grow from that and then like both support each other for that so um i don't know that's another just social norm that i i hate that it has to be that way i love that we can um not fight over the kids and we don't got to go to court for this stuff like that's where i can try to look at this shitty situation and see a lot of positive things because i have worked with a lot of guys that that is not the case they're going to court they're spending times on lawyers and this and that it's like no but like you know we're not going to do that because that's not cool for the kids we're here for the kids let's make this work you know yeah and it's harder i could tell i can tell that it's you know it it jerks at the heartstrings because obviously you you love her she's your best friend right um and so and i like that you can own when you've made a mistake and say you know i probably didn't show up the way i wanted to yesterday and you know and i see that and i apologize and and you've got that kind of an open relationship which just it just builds character and it and it shows your kids how to do hard stuff too so i love that example you're set and that's pretty powerful well thanks it's it's still working progress we're we're doing the best we can so thanks so let me ask you this how do you go from you know go from recovery and and homelessness to you know creating the underdog marketing organization and and how do you even get into that from where you're at oh man it's it's it's still such a weird crazy story i love how life just happens um so reason through these last couple years uh so i worked at renaissance ranch um uh right after i hit my one-year sobriety they're like hey come back and work and be a recovery coach i loved it i freaking loved that job i loved talking to guys uh everything i had a little bit different approach because i was so stern and it's just like well if you want this you just you just do it i don't care you got to walk 10 miles just do it you know and it worked for some guys and it pissed other guys off and so i was a good worker i do pride myself in my work ethic because for so long i was not a good employee i'm gonna rob from you whatever i can and then you'll fire me and it's whatever um and so the ranch actually wanted to start a work program it's called was called team innovations i don't know if you guys ever heard of them a couple years ago is when they were active with that and i had an opportunity uh that they offered me because i was trying to make more money um and so like we'll come help with this work program right and so i got to be a part of that i was the administrative director which i had no idea what that was uh but basically i was an assistant to the you know the the owners and just did whatever um but man we we were on to something with team innovations we grew that uh to where we were connecting with all the rehabs around here and just saying hey we can get we can fill your beds i can make your sober living profitable and we can give anybody a job if they're just just show up to work and so basically they'd show up to work we'd have their rent com or for sober living that money come out of their checks and then they were paying for their outpatient themselves so they didn't need insurance it was kind of a test run with that but i mean we literally pulled guys off the street who had nothing no money no insurance no family nothing the people who actually need the help basically is what i'm saying and we made themselves sufficient efficient and it worked and it was so cool and so in that process that we were growing i think we got up to almost 60 people at this like call center um i got i just got a lot of experience in a lot of different areas with some marketing with sales with payroll with admin stuff with like where do i got to go to buy office supplies just like everything and i got to like be that um and and so when team innovations had closed down um two years ago uh it was kind of a hard thing because i was finally making some good money and working hard for that and my brother-in-law actually owned uh he owns all hours plumbing and so that that went under right before my second kit my son waylon was born he was born on veterans day in two years ago and so um that was hard and so he reached out and was just like hey just come help i need help my marketing director needs to need some help here and i was like okay so i knew some i didn't know a whole lot i knew some right i know how to talk i know how to sell i just i don't know and so i got to go do that and i got just a dove head first into it i was hungry i was motivated i wanted to make it work fast forward two months and i was the new marketing director right right i i love statistics i love data and they didn't do any reporting so i was just like i was nerding out over this large plumbing company that had a lot of revenue and there was no reporting on you know this or that and so uh i was able to do a lot of good for him and you know oh man i learned so much with marketing dealing with agencies really was teaching myself stuff i was putting through myself through some courses online all that stuff um and then last year at the end of the summer um that relationship didn't work out working with families hard that's all i'll say about that and uh um i was just like well what am i gonna do now because again that was another step up now i've got a bigger house it's more expensive like all these things and now it's like it was a huge step back i thought we were gonna lose everything and now i've got two kids and a fiance at home i was scared [ __ ] with this i didn't know what was going on and i was still sober i'm like oh god and so it's actually funny with underdog that year before that when uh team innovations was still around me and a friend there were like we want to replicate this so we registered the name underdog with two g's and we're like we're gonna do this we're gonna do this that was still the plan and i i had things lined up when team innovations went under i was only supposed to stay with my my brother-in-law for a couple of months because i had all this stuff lined out so underdog was supposed to be a recovery uh call center workplace okay and then coven hit really hard uh last spring and all the campaigns i had going shut down and i was just left here with this business and i'm like okay well i guess i'll just stay in all hours right so that that sat on the shelf so then when all hours went where we had our separation i remember i got a something in the mail it was almost that one-year mark that's like hey you need to renew your business name with the state and all this stuff and i'm like i need to do something with this and at that point a lot of people are hit me up for some side work on marketing right and i was just like [ __ ] it sorry but let's just i'ma just do this okay so i switched it over i got everything i branded it finally it was like all official and and i started last fall and that's i've been doing it since then and um i still do my my i have another job that i do during the day but um like i'm at that point where i'm making more with my business and my day job and it's like these last couple weeks right we got all these changes going family dynamics is changing i mean i'm like who am i what am i doing so i'm like i think i'm gonna dive head first in this like and finally just do it fully because i've been able to do it enough with my clients that i have and everything that um i can i think i just want to do this full time and and so that's where we're at right now and um i've been fortunate enough that the word of mouth has been really good um i everybody that i've been able to help we've gotten awesome results for um and my niche is small business because last year a lot of my family are business owners but last year with kovid small business got hit hard and i hated seeing that and so having that experience at all hours of working with so many agencies and seeing how they did things i saw what i liked i saw what i didn't like and i said you know i gotta cookie cut this but uh my niche is small business for people who have never um had any experience with an agency or have had a bad experience with an agency um i don't do long-term contracts i we can build whatever you're wanting out of this because digital marketing is the easiest thing that you can do for your business to really take it that next level and that's what's really cool is like the businesses that were able to work for and had that i do work for like they're seeing a success with it that and you know i i hated that there was no standard price for stuff so i'm literally like half anybody else because i think that's what's fair stuff you know i don't want to just try to make a dime off someone i want to make a relationship off somebody and like grow together so that's been working for me so far very cool very cool do you plan on um you know you did the call center you know associated with people in recovery are you gonna do stuff like that again are you gonna try and incorporate that or really just focus on on underdogs man perfect world i would love to figure out another way to have a campaign that's a catch-all right like i can't just have a sales campaign and you come in and you're just cold-calling people right that's not the best for everybody that's in recovery but i'm telling you something was special with that and and i would love to have my company be involved in something with that to where i don't i don't care what your background is what felonies you got if you're trying to get sober and you're going to treatment like let's give you a job and like make this happen for you um and i do see that down the road when i can put some more focus into that on uh being of service at least for a workforce standpoint to give guys that they're coming out of jail or prison or off the streets and are wanting to change because uh addicts and alcoholics can run this this planet and like if you're able to feed a hundred to two hundred dollar habit with no job no home you know how to you problem solve right and that's where like i will pride myself in i'm so glad that i'm an addict in recovery because i would have never been able to like overcome some of the [ __ ] that i have financially or anything it's just like okay this is a lot of money i don't know how we're gonna do this but i'm gonna figure it out and then i'm able to and it blows my mind and that's why i'm just like dude i will hire an addict not alcoholic any day if they're wanting to stay sober because that like power that they have man when you put that to good it is so crazy to see what these people can do i love that you say that too i was talking to somebody about that just this morning that the people in recovery that i know are some of the most incredibly talented people i know and they've got they come with this whole skill set they think it's all negative but you tweak it just a little bit and it's pretty powerful same with even gang members right there's a whole society and culture and they learn all sorts of skills if they tweak that just a little bit they become very powerful influential people in in the world and and can make things happen so i i agree with you 100 percent yeah yeah it's that's the cool thing is seeing that the positive behind the ship that they're in um yeah people gave me a chance and it was able to kind of like prove myself with things and that's all i want to do with other people so great question i think eventually um i could put more focus into that and make something happen but who knows i i have no idea what's going on nice very nice well preston i love that you've shared your story i mean we could talk for hours and hours i'm sure um but let people know how to get a hold of you if they want to connect and you know and touch base more yeah um so you can find me on on facebook it's just underdog marketing it's with two g's so just think snoop dogg i know that's corny as hell what's the best way to do it um the underdog with two g's marketing um and then same thing with the website underdogmarketing.com it's got all my contact information i'd love to be of service with anything else this doesn't just have to be business related um but if you got a business or you need a website or you want social media help or anything like that like hit me up and let's let's get something going very cool uh very cool all right well preston it's been fantastic and uh we'll have to connect with you here in a year or so and see where things are at please do that would be really cool to see so i appreciate the opportunity thanks preston