So I’m going to talk about something I never talked about on this blog, and that’s Asperger’s and why I have it, what it is, and how I work from home with it, and maybe you can relate.
It all started when I was about eight years old. I started rocking on the floor back and forth, watching TV with my parents. They didn’t really think anything of it, they thought I was just, you know, kind of like what you would do in a rocking chair. They thought it was innocent. And they didn’t really bug me about it.
So I started rocking while I watched TV. I didn’t know it back then, but I think I started rocking because I liked the sense of freedom that it felt like. A good analogy is when you’re at a stoplight in your car, you feel kind of anxious, especially if you want to get somewhere fast, and you feel you just can’t stand sitting still, especially at a stoplight.
Most people can relate to that, and I feel like that when I don’t rock when I rock, it feels like I’m going places. You know, that movement is soothing. It’s calming. And I think that comes from having a very controlling father. We we’re a very quiet family, my sister and I, my mom and my dad, you know, they’re still together after 60 years. It’s an amazing, amazing marriage.
So, we had a lot of stability, but also a lot of strict-ness. I had to go to bed at like, 8pm when I was like 14 years old. It was right after the Muppet Show, I had to go to bed. I remember that. I don’t know maybe I wasn’t 14 but I was pretty sheltered.
So I rocked and when I had to go to bed early, I would just rock on my bed and hum songs and create radio shows and I had a huge imagination. I just kept rocking, and I could have friends in school, but my best relationships, and friendships were people one on one with friends.
I was never good in groups. So if they’re like, hey, let’s go hang out over here with these four guys. I was like, no, I’ll pass. I just liked being one on one with friends. And as I got older I discovered music and actually I discovered hard rock when I was 12.
I still remember the day when I heard Iron Maiden on the radio for the first time. Before that I was just listening to my sister’s music, like Prince and Men at Work and the outfield and Depeche Mode, stuff like that. But that was the first experience I had with heavy metal and hard rock.
And I just was mesmerized, and so I would rock and listen to music, and my parents didn’t think it was a problem that I rocked all evening after dinner, my parents watched TV. We were like a TV family. This is in the 80s 90s my dad just wanted to unwind after work. He owned a rental equipment business. It was very successful. We weren’t we weren’t wealthy by any means, but we were well to do and had a nice two story brick house overlooking the Puget Sound.
So I could watch the freighters go by and rock and listen to my heavy metal. So I wanted to be a rock and roll drummer. And so I started drumming when I was 12. The first song that I started playing is We got the beat by the go Go’s Go’s – my sister’s music. I actually started with rulers on a couch arm and then I finally got a drum set.
I was just blown away by music in general and playing drums. You know, that whole tapping thing, repetition. people with Autism and Asperger’s, they like repetition. One of their characteristics is that they can focus on one thing very, very intensely. So I focused on music and drumming. That’s all I wanted to do.
So my grades dropped. My dad was very angry, and I was getting D’s and F’s. Then by my senior year, I had to make up nine classes to graduate. At that point, I didn’t care anymore. Because I discovered alcohol, a little bit of weed, and my music. That’s all I wanted. I wanted to be a rock and roll drummer.
Unfortunately, I forfeited a really cool graduation present, my parents would have paid my tuition to the Music Institute in Hollywood to study drumming. Looking back now, I think I was dyslexic because whenever I had to read sheet music for drumming, I couldn’t do it. I could not fathom the notes and the values of the notes like how to put four 16th notes into a bar with an eighth note and then a half note, and I just like I was just blown away, I couldn’t do it.
I eventually did a little bit of college and I had a music theory course, and they wanted us to clap out loud. The musical notes on the sheet music, and I just was so lost. So anyways, I just kept rocking, and every girlfriend I had, she was okay with it. At least, she didn’t say anything.
And I was in several relationships ranging from two years to five years. I would rock with them and we would watch TV. That was my life. And we would go out a little bit. But, you know, alcohol was starting to become more prevalent. I started drinking in social situations. And then it got to the point where I wasn’t even going out anymore. I was just drinking at home with my girlfriend at the time, and rocking, listening to music or watching TV.
Then of course, I had a job because I had to pay my bills. So I would go to these restaurant jobs and flip burgers make like $11 an hour. I think I got a $2 increase in like 20 years. I mean, restaurant work is just a joke. But my main passion was still music, but it was getting consumed by alcohol and I didn’t really care about music anymore. I sold my drum set, and I was just a drunk.
But I kept rocking, and the rocking was getting up to four hours a day maybe. And then I couldn’t do restaurant work anymore. I was approaching 40. So I started to look for ways to make money online, and I found affiliate marketing where you share other people’s products and you get a commission when someone would click on your website and buy. I thought that was the most exciting thing in the world.
I still remember my first commission. It was like 85 cents from Japan. Because I sold an mp3 I actually made a music album. It was just my girlfriend and I and I played all the instruments. It was really horrible. It was like lo fi just horribly done.
But, anyways, that was my first sale online. I started using Twitter. I started tweeting out my mp3 links. And then I got sober, but I’m still rocking every day. It’s just what I did. I didn’t even think about it. It was just part of my life.
So the next year, this is 2012. I had been sober for a year and I wrote a memoir called the drunk. I put it on Amazon. This is during the E book craze, when everyone had a book, everyone had a memoir. I started promoting that link on my Twitter, started following a lot of people on Twitter and got to the point where I had like 80,000 followers on Twitter, and didn’t know any of them. It was just a sheer numbers game, the more people you follow the more people look at your links.
So I did that. And then 2013 did more affiliate marketing, then in 2014, I discovered network marketing. Now here’s the funny thing is that network marketing is very extroverted, very hands on, you have to talk to prospects, you have to basically share your products and hope that they’re interested. It just felt kind of salesy to me – kind of slimy.
And I was like, I want to do MLM like affiliate marketing, where I just share links and get paid. I don’t want to build a team. I don’t want to talk to a lot of people. I don’t want to get on three way calls. I don’t want to do webinars. And so I started to build MLM like I did affiliate marketing.
So the bottom line is getting enough traffic to your offers. That’s the bottom line. And I felt insecure many many times in MLM because, you know, I blocked my sponsor because they wanted to talk on the phone. Then I tried calling people on the phone to get them into my business. They hung up on me.
So I was like, I’m not using the phone anymore. So over the years, I just started withdrawing more. And I started to rock from morning until night, especially when I started working from home. So luckily, I wrote a couple articles on a blog, I like writing, I love writing, and that’s another sign of autism is they’re very good with words.
And I wanted to be a writer as well as a drummer at one point so I started a blog and it was easy because I liked writing and I learned attraction marketing, content marketing. So I would actually, I would write articles and then at the bottom of the article, I would put my link to whatever I was selling and it started to work. I was like, wow, content marketing. All I gotta do is write articles and people sign up in my business.
In 2018 I’ve been writing for two years on a blog, and I started writing about CBD oil, and this is way before a lot of people knew about CBD. So my article ranked in Google, it was on the first page and I started getting a ton of signups and I was already working from home, but I could barely pay my bills, but at least I was working from home. I could say that I was a full time entrepreneur. But it was all from just sharing my links. Still not really talking to people when they signed up.
So to make a long story short, the blog and my YouTube, I recruited over 1400 people into one MLM business without really talking to them. When they signed up, I would send them a welcome letter, say congratulations, here’s some tools, because it’s all about generating leads, and I taught them how to do that.
But, you know, I still didn’t have a sponsor telling me what to do. If anyone was like, let’s get on a three way call – if anyone told me to get on a three way or anything in person, I was just like, No, no, I have social anxiety. I can’t do that.
So, I want to talk about, I posted a video about rocking on this channel. I deleted it, but I posted it about three years ago. And I hate being isolated with my rocking. And another characteristic of autism is being really awkward in social situations. Like I said, in high school, I always had just one friend, one best friend. I wasn’t good in groups. And then the alcohol took over and I just isolated, isolated with a girlfriend and a TV or a stereo. And that’s all I did.
So MLM was an extroverted world, and I manipulated it to make it more like affiliate marketing but the isolation does get to me because I see other people go out, they go out to dinner with friends and family and they’re just having a great time. And I do go out with my wife and we have a great time but I have never gone out with a couple.
We’ve never had a couple’s date where my wife and I go meet another couple and have dinner. I’ve never done that. There was one time that it kind of happened. But I got wasted, blacked out and I think I walked away from the restaurant. I was just like, I’ll see you guys later.
So whenever I get close to people in groups, eye contact, that’s another thing that Asperger’s people can’t really do that well is eye contact. The only reason I can do this video is because I know it’s a phone. If I really truly thought like 1000 people watching me I wouldn’t do this but it’s just my phone. I could delete it. That’s why I can do videos because people are like, you’re not introverted. You’re great on your videos. I’m like, well, it’s just my phone. If I was with somebody in person and we were at a dinner table, I’d be freaking out. I’d have to get massive Valerian root and just get numbed out as much as possible on some natural supplements, but I’ve never really had that interaction with people.
And so it’s very lonely. And I did a video a while back and surprisingly, I didn’t feel alone anymore because that video got like 200 comments of people like me that rocked. They’re like, Oh, yeah, yeah, I’m a professional. But when I get home, I have to rock. I’m just like, no way. I thought I was the only one.
And that’s the reason for this video is, you know, if you work from home and you rock welcome to this channel/blog, I hope that we can form a relationship here online and do this together because I’m almost 48 I’ll be 48 next month. That means I’ve been rocking for 40 years and I can get all bent out of shape about it and have a lot of regret and say I missed a lot of my life. But in a way, the rocking is magical because it takes me to a magical place. I can daydream while I rock.
The other thing that Asperger’s people do is hyper focus, so I can just stare at my computer screen for hours, listening to music and rocking. I’m really into dashboards and statistics. So when I had my blog, I would always look at my dashboard and see how many visitors I had the previous day, and whenever my wife logs into her blog, I’m like, how many stats do you have? How many people showed up yesterday?
And so if you want to work from home because you have Asperger’s, you can do it with content. You can basically just find a product you love that you can’t live without. It could be a supplement. It could be coffee, precious metals, you know, there’s an affiliate program or a network marketing program for anything you love, just look into it.
So, if you’re a YouTuber, you can pretty much promote anything you want under your videos. You don’t want to be spammy. And you don’t want to do a video just trying to make money. People will see right through you, you don’t want to have an ulterior motive. You don’t want to be like, Hey, I’ll tell my story, but then I’ll sneak in my product. I mean, people plug their products all the time into their content. You do have to make money. Just try to do it in an ethical way, and be genuine.
So I still like rocking. I don’t even know how to quit. I quit one time for six months and it was fine. I got used to it. But it was kind of like missing an old friend. You know, I was like there’s something missing. It’s really deep seated, you know, call it what you want: deep seated disorder or addiction. I don’t even know if I want to quit. You know, a definition of addiction is that it starts taking over your life and it disrupts your life. And rocking has disrupted my life, but it’s so engrained now. I’m like, I don’t know, what life would be like without it. I mean, I’ve done it my whole life.
So anyways, love you guys. Thanks for listening to my story. Hit that subscribe button if you’re new.
Thanks for reading!
Erik Christian Johnson