Hello friends! I’m excited to share the transcript of an interview I did this morning. I thought about waiting until I open the doors to Whisker Life and when launch my book and audiobook, “Ryko” in August, but why wait?
Here it is. Enjoy!
Sammy: Today we are excited to sit down with Ryko, who is the Founder of a new company that will be launching within the next few weeks. He’s shared his journey with me, and let’s just say you are all in for a treat today. Ryko, welcome to the show.
Ryko: Thank you, Sparky. I’m really excited to be here today.
Sammy: Absolutely. So to begin, can you tell our listeners a little about yourself?
Ryko: Sure. I was born and raised in New Hampshire and I’m an only cat. From a young age, I’ve always been told by my parents that I was here for a very large purpose, and that feeling and knowing only grew stronger as time went on. Not too long ago I left for my journey, like all of us cats do, and it put me on such an unbelievable path to finding my purpose.
Sammy: I know we had a chance to chat for awhile, Ryko, before we went on the air. And I have to admit, you have the most interesting journey story I’ve ever heard. What can you share about your journey with our listeners?
Ryko: Well, I documented as much as I could in my journal and recently went through everything I wrote and turned it into a book, which is called, “Ryko” that will be available in August. So I don’t want to share too many of the secrets yet. But what I can tell you is that I am very proud to say that I really did find my purpose on my journey, and it is millions of times larger than anything that I could have imagined.
Sammy: So is that why you started Whisker Life, or was that an idea before you began your journey?
Ryko: Actually, when I left New Hampshire for my journey, I really left without any idea of who I was, what my purpose was, or anything, really. Starting a business wasn’t even a thought. Never was. The best way to describe it, is that Whisker Life found me. But there was a lot that I had to go through and learn to get to that point. I went through a lot. A lot of tears were shed. I met amazing cats. My journey was not so much to find my path, I ended up making my own path because of a pretty wild series of events. And I guess I was ready for Whisker Life to find me, or choose me, I guess you could say.
Sammy: That’s amazing, Ryko. So what can you tell us about Whisker Life?
Ryko: Meow, I don’t know where to begin! I guess I can start with the mission. And that is to spread love, happiness, and smiles. To leave tiny paw prints on the hearts of many. To help cats get rescued and adopted. And to be an inspiration for others to find their purpose and follow their dreams. Oh, and to save the world.
Sammy: Save the world?
Ryko: Yeah, I know that sounds crazy. And I feel funny saying it out loud.
Sammy: What do you mean by that?
Ryko: So this is the area that I cannot talk too much about publicly. It’s all explained in my book. But let’s just say that there may be someone, or a company that I’m sure would not like Whisker Life or what we stand for. And I can’t help but wonder if they are behind all of the crazy issues I’ve had trying to get Whisker Life up and running. It has not been easy at all.
Sammy: Wow. That’s interesting. What issues have you faced?
Ryko: Well, when starting my company a couple months ago, it took a few weeks to get my bank account set up because of countless issues at the bank. Normally you can walk into a bank and set up a bank account. I had to go no less than six times, be on the phone for hours, deal with many people, and it took weeks. And then my book cover, which I shared some of the story about on a blog post I wrote. I shared about one percent of the story. It was unbelievable. I’d send the designers what I had in mind and I would get something back completely different. This happened about a dozen times. I had issues getting the Kindle version of my book formatted. And then many issues with the inside of my book. Thankfully, I used someone else for my audiobook and that went smoothly. Then software issues, website issues, you name it. It has not been easy, but I will never ever give up. My dreams and mission are far too big to ever give up on. Come catfish or high water, I will see Whisker Life through.
Sammy: Well it sounds like you’ve been though a lot even after your journey and you have the right attitude, Ryko. So I want to go back to Whisker Life for a moment. What will your company do?
Ryko: If we had three days, I’d be able to share all of my dreams that I have for Whisker Life! (Laughs) But the very quick version is initially I will have products that I designed on my website that others can get to help spread love and happiness. I will also do all I can to help inspire others to find their purpose and live a Whisker Life. While that’s I going on, I have a lot of books to write. A lot. I won’t even share the number of books because no one will believe me. Once those are written, hopefully I will be ready to move into the next phase, which, for now, I need to keep under wraps. I’ll just say I’m thinking big. Really uncomfortably big! (Laughs)
Sammy: I understand. So before the interview, you and I got a chance to talk about catnapping and how much it has changed your life. I know for me, it’s really helped calm my mind, I sleep better, and I have much better focus. What has catnapping done for you?
Ryko: Thankfully my parents taught me how to catnap at an early age. I’ve always loved it and it feels like the more time passes, the more I’m getting out of it. For me, especially when there is a lot going on, or things are not going right, catnapping helps me feel centered, happy, and I get that feeling of control back. But it’s also where many of my ideas come from, especially lately. For me, it’s just a way of life because I try hard to be a mindful cat.
Sammy: Can you elaborate on that?
Ryko: Well, sure. I’ve always been a curious cat. And…
Sammy: You know what they say, curiosity killed the cat, you know!
Ryko: (Laughs) It’s funny you mentioned that. That actually tied right into what I was about to say. By the way, have you ever wondered if that saying was invented, well changed, to keep us cats from being curious? To scare us into not seeking or going on journeys to find out who we truly are and learn what we are capable of to reach our highest potential?
Sammy: Ummm, well, I. . .
Ryko: So I’ve always been curious. About a lot of things, really. About how the world works, about how things are connected, and about how other cats think and live. We live in such amazing worlds and there’s so much to learn. And by worlds, I mean both our inner world and our outer world. We spend a lot of time in our inner world. We think. We get happy. We get sad. We worry. We wonder. We have fear. We have excitement. We have so many emotions that run through us everyday. But for me, even when things are bad, I try my hardest to be happy. Or at least get back to being happy as soon as I possibly can. And here’s an interesting fact. The saying, “curiosity killed the cat” was originally said as, “care killed the cat”. And by caring, that meant having sorrow or worry in your life. It is worry and sorrow that we need to be mindful of. It’s easy for us to worry, about anything. Our minds like to worry. But if you work on yourself and move from worry or sorry to being grateful and happy, your worlds change.
Sammy: Wow Ryko, that is some really amazing stuff. I can’t tell you how excited I am to see what you do with Whisker Life. This is all such a different tone than everything else out there right now.
Ryko: For sure. Believe me, I know far too well. You’ll see what I mean when you read my book.
Sammy: I have one more question for you and then we will move to some questions that listeners have sent in via email.
Ryko: Sounds fun!
Sammy: So I’m going to put my business hat on for a moment. With Whisker Life, being that it is a new business, who is your target audience? Who would get the most out of Whisker Life?
Ryko: That’s a great question. When I started writing my book, “Ryko” it started off as a book for kittens and children to tell my story. But I quickly realized that my journey story needed to be told in detail. So I scratched that entire book and started over. So my first book is for older cats and adult cats. Maybe cats who are in their teens and up, if I had to guess. Ultimately, one of my many goals is to have books that are for kittens and children as well as books for teens and adults. But Whisker Life as a whole, is for anyone and everyone who wants to be happy and live a happy life. After all, who doesn’t want to be happy and find their purpose?
Sammy: Well that’s a great point. I certainly want to be happy and happy I found my purpose! So let’s get to the questions listeners have been emailing in. There has been a lot of them, so let me choose a few here.
Ryko: Sounds good to me.
Sammy: OK, so Bella in California asks, “Who has had the biggest influence on you?”
Ryko: My parents. My mother and father have taught me so much. I just wish. . . [long pause]
Sammy: Ryko, are you OK?
Ryko: Yes, sorry.
Sammy: It’s OK. Moving on, Lily in Montana asked, “Do you have a crush on anyone? If not, you have my email!”
Ryko: (Laughs) Actually, I do. Quite a big one, in fact. And who that amazing cat is, I will never tell. Well, I do tell in my book, actually!
Sammy: (Laughs) I guess we will have to wait and find out who the luck lady is! Next we have Smoky in Georgia. He asks, “What are you most scared or excited about in the future?”
Ryko: Whisker Life! I mean, I’ve put my entire being and my soul into this company. I feel like I’ve only taken one step on a billion-step journey sometimes. So if I let it, that can scare me because I feel so far from where I envision Whisker Life in the future. But I quickly get those thoughts out of my head when they creep in and instead focus on what I’m excited about. And that’s making a positive impact of the lives of others. I’m excited for the day when I’m outside somewhere, maybe at a coffee shop, and I see someone walk by wearing a Whisker Life t-shirt. And then someone else sees the shirt and they smile. That would make me so happy. I’m excited to make differences in others lives. Whether it is only for a brief second, or much longer. And really, isn’t that what life is all about? To me, it’s about learning who we truly are, learning how to be the best we can be, and then helping others do the same. And of course, to be as happy as we can be on this journey.
Sammy: That’s a great answer, Ryko. Next question is from Jake in Florida. Jake says, “Ryko, thank you for being an inspiration to others. I’m still struggling to figure out what my purpose is. That makes me sad sometimes. For someone like me, who already went on a journey but didn’t discover his purpose, what do you suggest I do?”
Ryko: Great question Jake. I have so much I want to say, but I will try to keep this short. First, please know I’m no expert. I feel like I’ve been fed a lot of ideas, wisdom, and knowledge over the last few months through a firehose thanks to a lot of other cats I’ve met on my journey. But I can share a few ideas with you. For one, I know of a cat who has gone on her journey four times. And each time she goes, she discovers something new about herself. She has found not one, but three tracks she is running on, all leading to her one big purpose. I wouldn’t get sad if you don’t know what yours is yet. It’s totally OK. I encourage you to get back out there. Make your own path. I promise you will find yours. Often times it doesn’t happen as fast as we want or how we want. Trust me on that one. Most importantly Jake, keep your head up. Enjoy the journey. You’ll find that finding yourself is the most exciting part of the journey. You just don’t realize that until after the fact. You got this, buddy.
Sammy: I fully agree with you Ryko. And Jake, let me add something. I had no idea what I wanted to do with myself or what my true calling was on my journey. I know how you feel. But like Ryko said, sometimes it can take a little time. I got into radio by accident one day because of a cat I met on my journey a couple years prior was hiring. I took the job and fell in love. I impact of lot of cat’s lives in a positive way and I’m having a blast. So hang in there and like Ryko said, you got this!
Well Ryko, we are out of time, but I would like to invite you back to our studio once your book, “Ryko” launches and you have your company, Whisker Life up and running. I’d love to check in and see how things are going for you. Sound good?
Ryko: Yes, I would love to.
Sammy: Great! And remember folks, todays episode is sponsored by Hiss Litter Boxes. If you gotta go, there’s no better place to go than in a Hiss Litter Box. Use discount code SPARKY at the checkout at your local HissMart and save 20% today. We will see you next time, bye for now!
Ryko: Bye everyone!