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- My name is Marc Ecko. I created a clothing company about 20 years ago called Ecko Unlimited and have built many different disparate consumer product companies off of that. If someone's throwing punches at you, you kind of figure it out. You take a couple of shots to the head. You stand back up. You try not to take them so much. You try to figure out ways to evade them and to return. Right? I think the spirit of realizing your side hustle, and your passion, and pursuing your passion is less academic than we paint it. You just have to be prepared to know that the learning is just never, ever gonna end. I remember a moment when I started to go from just T-shirts, where it was just my art, screen printing, where that production cycle was kind of very tactical. I knew it. But the minute I wanted to go to cut and sew, or outerwear. Now you're dealing with seams. I remember sending my first drawing over to the manufacturer for the first piece of outerwear. And I remember I based it on a prototype of a jacket that I had bought for, let's say just for conversation sake, 50 bucks. I get back the quote from the manufacturer, based on my drawing, and the price is like $35, like the cost. I'm the wholesaler that's gonna sell it to the retailer, so 35 times four is effectively what it's gonna cost at retail. So, what's that 140 bucks, right? So, I'm think to myself, I based it on a jacket that was 50. What's going on? Why is it so expensive? He said, all the consumption. It was a learning moment. Consumption? Consumption, isn't that something you do when you eat, what do you mean the consumption? Well, you're sleeves, the way you designed the sleeves, you don't want a seam here. I'd drawn, effectively, a jacket that had no seam here. And it was in my naiveness of designing it, I just forgot to put the seam. So it turned out that the way that they were gonna have to cut the fabric, in the paper pattern, was gonna consume more of the yardage. So it made production more wasteful. Designing something without fully comprehending the limitations on the production side, suddenly that became the rabbit hole to learn production. If you got a dream, go realize it, alright? And be prepared to have it hurt. And be prepared for the dirty secret, which is, it's gonna be lots of little failures that make success. How can you realize your voice, your passion, and what can you glean from these lessons? And I tell you the gateway, the pearl to true education is tolerance, and acceptance, and the embrace of failing and knowing it's gonna be painful. What's there for you? What are you gonna make of it? What's your brand? Look in the mirror, why don't you ask yourself? So you're not unique in having those questions. You have to discover that path. It is a self motivated, self directed journey. And if you don't know, figure it out, even if it's just 10 yards in front of you. And work to get to those 10 yards. Then figure out the next 10 yards. And then the next.