“But, more on that later.” That’s a quote from one of my previous articles in reference to my employment, so here it is. I am a shipping consultant who works as an independent contractor. My focus is primarily on back end fulfillment or label generation. There is a large technology and software aspect to the job and quite a bit more things to understand. It’s actually rather complicated.

That may be one reason I hadn’t explained it. The other is because I wanted a positive track record in the arena before claiming it as what I do. It’s like the excuse I give to turn down public speaking requests: I haven’t really accomplished anything yet. Eventually, that excuse will have run its course.

Anyway, about the job, I had set my sights on this opportunity for a while. As a felon, just months out of prison, it took some convincing to be given this shot. That convincing came in the form of working on a commission-only basis, but that didn’t worry me one bit. It was easy to bet on myself, I know whether or not I’m going to put in the work to make it.

It’s the same with sobriety. I knew I would be just fine when I was released from prison, but I’m the only one who could; nobody else really knows. They can hope, but in the end they have to “wait and see.”

“Know” is probably the wrong verbiage; I’m talking about faith.

I had faith I would stay out of trouble. Until recently, I would get hung up on this word, so I will explain what I mean. When I eat healthy and exercise properly, I expect returns. In other words, I have faith I will achieve certain results with certain actions. I took the leap of faith and quit my paying job, knowing I would put in the work.

I thoroughly enjoy what I do, so it makes it easy. It also helps that I believe in the product and service. Even when I had looser morals, I wasn’t able to sell something I didn’t believe in. I guess you can call what I do sales, but the product is just a savings on shipping.

Still, it’s harder than I would have thought to simply pitch a savings on shipping. It’s definitely harder than selling illicit drugs, where the customers come looking for you — no advertising necessary. My biggest hurdles are often getting someone to listen and then having that person believe what you are telling them. People are naturally skeptical because of all the dishonest and manipulative companies out there.

Bottom line is I have faith I am going to succeed. I am really happy and grateful for the way things are shaping up in my life. I have had a lot of help and have been given plenty of opportunity in this second chance at life, but I am fully aware that no matter what, I am solely responsible for my circumstances.

Brian Wood, of Layton, pleaded guilty to nine felony charges for offenses from 2011 to 2014, including counts of burglary, drug possession and prescription fraud. He served four years in the Utah State prison system before being released on parole on Jan. 2, 2018.

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