The Power of a Childlike Mindset: Learn, Grow, Succeed with JerMarco Britton

Brand Intentionally with Friends Podcast
Season 2 - Episode 1

I’m chopping it up with the incredibly talented JerMaro Britton, the multifaceted creative force and mind behind Code and Coffee – St. Louis, on this episode of Brand Intentionally with Friends.

This episode was a LONG time coming. I’ve known JerMarco for almost a decade now and we’ve worked together on a few creative projects over the years. He’s been a personal inspiration for me since meeting him from his creative integrity to the way he lives his life – and I wanted to share that with you.

In this episode dive deep into the power of maintaining a childlike mentality and constantly learning in order to achieve our goals. JerMarco shares his inspiring story of personal growth and uncovers the 3 intentionality principles that have made him a force to be reckoned with in the music and tech industries.

In this Episode of Brand Intentionally with Friends:
  • What Gave Garett the Confidence to Leap From Flyers to Branding
  • How JerMarco Became Part of the Hip Hop Collective MME & How It Shaped Him
  • The Key Ingredient That’s Missing in Today’s Music
  • How JerMarco Failed to Get Into LaunchCode and Later Became a Manager
  • The Mistake of Trying to Do Everything Yourself
  • Powerful Collaborations Over Working for Free
  • How Faith Helps JerMarco Stay Positive and Overcome Mental Health Struggles
  • The Dangers of Not Embracing That Childlike Mentality
  • How Code and Coffee – St. Louis was Founded
  • Why Maintaining Creative Integrity is Essential
  • The Benefits of Being a Perpetual Student
  • How a Brief Stint as a Carpenter Changed JerMarco’s Life
  • Why Creatives Need to Be Gracious With Themselves

Be prepared to be inspired as we explore the electrifying worlds of coding, collaboration, and community building where JerMarco reveals his secret weapon for success – the ability to leverage technology to create art, build businesses, and foster a supportive network of like-minded professionals and intentional success.

Watch the episode below, join the conversation, and check below for the transcript and relevant links.

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  • Click to Expand Season 2, Episode 2 Transcript
    Garett Southerton [00:00:00]:

    You ever heard the saying jack of all trades, master of none? Well, today, we’re gonna debunk that and see how having a childlike mindset can actually help you when it comes to reaching your ultimate life goals. So sit back and get ready to dig deep on this episode of Brand Intentionally with Friends.

    Garett Southerton [00:00:25]:

    I have a feeling this would be a highly inspirational episode, because today, I have an amazing friend who has helped motivate and inspire me to be the best me since earlier on in my career. He’s the mind behind SoulShed STL, the leader of Code and Coffee SEO and was once a member of the legendary hip hop collective, MME, JerMarco Britton.

    Garett Southerton [00:00:41]:

    What’s going on? What’s going on, my dude?

    Garett Southerton [00:00:43]:

    What’s up, man? It’s So great to actually be able to finally do this. I know we’ve been talking about this for really long before there was even a podcast.

    Garett Southerton [00:00:51]:

    Yeah, man. This is this is a long time coming. This is a long time coming.

    Garett Southerton [00:00:55]:

    What’s actually really dope though about, like, doing this together, It’s kind of a full circle moment. Right? We did ThinkDope together. Right? And, you know, you were involved in that. You were, like, doing the music side of that. But Something that you don’t know it was, like, 2011, 2012. And you and our mutual friend, Julian Keaton, Y’all were starting up Blue Light Underground.

    Garett Southerton [00:01:17]:


    Garett Southerton [00:01:17]:

    So that was the time, like, you know, I was doing flyers. I was doing album covers. And I I told a story a few times about, you know, how I felt like disrespected because, like, nobody was giving me, like, any skin in the branding game or whatever. You know, I was just kinda like, do the graphics and shut up. So I did the flyers and kinda like have, like, a a makeshift logo going on there. Right? And after that’s when y’all were like, okay. So now that we have this, what do we do with it? Like, how do we build a community around it? And that’s, like, what gave me the confidence. Like, that was, like, the tipping point for me that I was like, I’m running full with this branding game because I know what I’m capable of, and I know what people want it.

    Garett Southerton [00:01:52]:

    And, you know, it was kind of the full circle moment because, like, that’s, like, where I was just, Alright. This is what I’m doing now.

    Garett Southerton [00:01:58]:

    That’s crazy. I didn’t know that at all. But, you know and we was talking about this on the phone the other day, But I’m a do it. I’m a say it right now again, bro. Gotta give you your flowers. You’ve been a you’ve been a boss for a real long time, bro.

    Garett Southerton [00:02:13]:

    I appreciate that.

    Garett Southerton [00:02:14]:

    What I’m saying, bro. You know what you’re talking about, and you can communicate it in a way that

    Garett Southerton [00:02:22]:

    I found a way to communicate with everybody so, like, it gets right across from different scenarios.

    Garett Southerton [00:02:28]:

    Yeah, man. You taking me back. As soon as you said think dope, I’m just like I’m sitting here like, oh, because it’s taking me to another place. You know what I’m saying? I remember those days. I remember where I was. I remember sitting down writing articles for ThinkDope. And that was the 1st opportunity that I’ve ever had to be a writer for someone. And so You giving me that opportunity, you know, this this is why the story is so funny, was also a step and a pivot For me, owning

    Garett Southerton [00:02:57]:

    you know

    Garett Southerton [00:02:58]:

    what I’m saying? You know, one of my gifts is something I’ve been passionate about for a long time.

    Garett Southerton [00:03:02]:

    That’s actually because I didn’t know that. So it’s like, Here it is. Like, we’re in each other’s journey this whole way. You know? It’s been, like, over 10 years now.

    Garett Southerton [00:03:10]:


    Garett Southerton [00:03:10]:

    And, you know, it’s not like we talk every day or every or even every week. You know what I mean? But When we do, like, when you look at, like, the crucial moments in our different journeys, like, it’s like we still were involved somehow. You know? Yeah. I mean, even, like, a three c. Right? When we were down Atlanta, I was, sponsoring the showcase that Julian did, and so I was there with my boy. And I

    Garett Southerton [00:03:32]:

    didn’t know you sponsored The days?

    Garett Southerton [00:03:34]:

    Yeah. I sponsored the showcase for Julian. So, MME, you’re part of the legendary group, MME. Uh-huh. And, you know, you were singing. Headcrack was there. Right? Bodega Brothers. Mhmm.

    Garett Southerton [00:03:45]:

    I don’t remember anybody else on the on the card, to be honest with you, because, you know, Between the 2 of y’all, you just, like, took it over. But, I mean, it was a great time. And

    Garett Southerton [00:03:54]:

    Man, that’s crazy. I didn’t know you Bro, I thought you were just coming down and kicking.

    Garett Southerton [00:03:58]:

    No, man. I mean, I I did the flyer, and I did a little bit of marketing for it.

    Garett Southerton [00:04:02]:

    You know, I’m also I’m just not surprised. I’m not surprised, bro.

    Garett Southerton [00:04:07]:

    Speaking of MME, so you’re part of this legendary St. Louis collective.

    Garett Southerton [00:04:12]:


    Garett Southerton [00:04:12]:

    I know that’s later on in your your music journey, But, like, how did that transform everything else for you? Where was that stepping stone for you?

    Garett Southerton [00:04:19]:

    So I I got into MME the end of junior year of high school, I met Mvstermind. He was friends, With the artist named Mir. Me and Mir went to the high school together. And so we were kicking it, and I found out, you know, that Mir rapped. He did music with this dude named Moham Trax. He was leaning more so towards and not like their producer

    Garett Southerton [00:04:46]:

    Okay. Yeah.

    Garett Southerton [00:04:47]:

    Dominant stage. And then he later on became Mvstermind. But we had all started linking up. I’m like, well, shoot you around, bro. I seen. Let’s do let’s do some music. That was, you know, a big first, collaborating and doing music, you know, with folks. And we started performing.

    Garett Southerton [00:05:06]:

    We had our 1st performance at this place called the Baden Taste. Baden’s a area here in North Saint Louis. And so, you know, we had the performance and we Killed it. And I knew after that day, I’m like, bro, we are in this. Mhmm. Now I just got on this stage, and I was singing, And we was killing. Oh, man. It was such a confidence booster.

    Garett Southerton [00:05:30]:

    And that that entire journey, with MME was a confidence booster. Like, oh, snap. I can really do this. I’m really good at this music stuff.

    Garett Southerton [00:05:41]:

    Yeah. You definitely

    Garett Southerton [00:05:42]:

    I came in. I’ve been singing all my life. I got around some rappers and then started writing raps. I’m like, oh, snap. I think I can rap a little bit too. You know, getting into it. Just trying a bunch of different stuff, man. We were traveling the country, and just having fun as we were boys.

    Garett Southerton [00:06:00]:

    And just kicking and making a great making great music, man. Yeah. It it really for the first time, like, really showed me, like, dude, You you got something in you. You know what I’m saying? And it it allowed me to start believing in myself a lot a lot more than what I you know, More previous to that.

    Garett Southerton [00:06:18]:

    Was that, like, your 1st jump into music, like, with MME? Like like, before that, like, were you, like, Recording anything, or do you like live performances before that?

    Garett Southerton [00:06:27]:

    So outside of church, which I didn’t really, you know, I didn’t really sing too much in church, so I never I didn’t get that full complete training like a bunch of folks, you know, have.

    Garett Southerton [00:06:39]:


    Garett Southerton [00:06:39]:

    But in 2006, I took this job at this place called Club Chips, and it’s a nonprofit that They, hire these, these team leaders to get tall health care information by medical professionals. And then we take that info and we turn it into plays. And so we would go out into the community after we got this information. We had a play that was about HIV AIDS. Mhmm. So we got that information, spun it up in a creative way, and we’ll go out and perform these theatrical so we were performing music, singing, doing some acting, some theater. That was my first, you know, step into that that world of, like, doing that on a regular basis and out in public.

    Garett Southerton [00:07:27]:


    Garett Southerton [00:07:27]:

    That was definitely a big step forward, but it wasn’t the same as stepping out into m and me, and I’m, like, fully in control of my artistic contribution to what’s going on.

    Garett Southerton [00:07:38]:

    That’s pretty dope. And so where where do your creative roots come from?

    Garett Southerton [00:07:42]:

    Man, that came from my grandpa. My, my grandpa collects a lot of music. And when I was a little kid, you know, he would have his record player. He had is, I don’t know, about 6 foot big chess player, and he will play records on it and, Playing folks like the Dale Phonics, the stylistics, you know, James Brown, or or James Cleveland, you know, From, you know, the blues, gospel, R and B, you know, country. He had all of that stuff. And so I’m just hearing the music. I’m hearing it. I’m like, that’s kinda smooth.

    Garett Southerton [00:08:27]:

    So I started trying to replicate The music that I was hearing, you know, from his record player. And oddly enough, you know, I didn’t listen to so That’s like sixties, seventies, fifties music. I didn’t listen to anything like modern until I got into high school.

    Garett Southerton [00:08:45]:


    Garett Southerton [00:08:46]:

    So, yeah, like, I was in R and B old school. I was in that mode. That shows

    Garett Southerton [00:08:54]:

    in In, like, your own music, people don’t sing like that anymore. It’s all either auto tuned or, you know, you have to follow the sequence because that’s what makes hits, And they don’t sing like that anymore, bro.

    Garett Southerton [00:09:06]:

    No. I can’t even say that because I was gonna say, you know, maybe there’s just a disconnect, You know, because I’m not in the generation that this music is intended for, but I wasn’t in the generation that my grandfather’s music was intended for. And so I feel connected there. So it’s like, something’s missing, man.

    Garett Southerton [00:09:24]:

    It goes back to it. Right? They’re trying to make the music for the money and not because they love making the music. Like, back in the day, like, you know, the sixties, the seventies, even the fifties, they didn’t make 1,000,000 of dollars off of music. They didn’t they didn’t get rich off of music. You know? It was actually kind of more so something that you worked for and you did on the side because, you know, you love to do it. It’s kind of like, you know, that singer who’s up in the restaurant singing while you’re having your dinner. It’s kind of that love. Like, they’re getting paid peanuts, but They’re doing it because they actually love to do it and loves to make people happy and loves to sing.

    Garett Southerton [00:09:59]:

    And I think that’s the the real disconnect because everybody now is like, alright. Well, if I make this hit, I’m a be famous. I’m a get signed. I’ll never have another worry in my life rather than I’m gonna create this because this is gonna This is gonna speak to people. These people are gonna understand what I feel. And I think that’s what the little connect is. Like, I mean, back to Mvstermind, like, the music he makes now. I I mean, he’s always made it, but the music he’s making, like, it all tells a story.

    Garett Southerton [00:10:24]:

    It all it all speaks from his soul, and I think that’s really the connection.

    Garett Southerton [00:10:29]:

    Yeah. His music has always been very personal. To your point, that also reflects in the talent. So if you’re there for money and you don’t love it, there’s no honoring what it is that you’re doing and how you’re doing that.

    Garett Southerton [00:10:45]:

    Certain, like, Set of values you have when you actually care about what you’re doing.

    Garett Southerton [00:10:50]:


    Garett Southerton [00:10:50]:

    Like, you know, you’re not gonna cut the corners around, like, Alright. Well, I can make this track in half the time if I just, you know, use a a loop instead of, like, producing it myself. Now, like, I’m gonna go here and I’m gonna either Chop this up and really sample it, or I’m gonna, like, get a a sax player here, have them play the sax, Cut that up. Put that in there. Have a piano player come here. Record the piano. Cut that up myself. Like, there’s a a big disconnect from those 2 Trains of thoughts.

    Garett Southerton [00:11:18]:

    Yeah. And it’s not just with music. It’s with everything. But

    Garett Southerton [00:11:21]:

    Yeah. A lot of things are formulaic even when people are trying to go viral On Twitter. Mhmm.

    Garett Southerton [00:11:26]:

    I’m trying to

    Garett Southerton [00:11:27]:

    figure out the algorithm. Hey, man. Look.

    Garett Southerton [00:11:30]:

    The algorithm’s gonna do what it wants to do, so you might as well just relax and enjoy it.

    Garett Southerton [00:11:34]:

    Yeah. And you might as well make the best kind of, you know, whatever creative contribution that’s it is that you’re putting out to the world, make it the best of what it’s gonna be, and make sure that it’s authentic. Because because people ain’t gonna keep going anyway if it’s not real.

    Garett Southerton [00:11:47]:

    People might, like, like something real quick or share it because it’s funny or it’s cute or whatever. But At the end of the day, 5 years from now, what is it gonna mean? It’s not gonna mean nothing unless you actually put your heart and soul into it, and people felt that. Yeah. Something that’s interesting I find is that You really got your start in music. Right? And now you’re at this point in your life where you’re transitioning more into the tech side. You’re going into the code, and you’re going to the graphics. Whereas I started actually in the coding and graphics, and I transitioned to music for a while. And, you know, I did the whole engineering thing.

    Garett Southerton [00:12:20]:

    I, you know, I engineered a radio show. I recorded artists, few albums. And, you know, I got sick of the music politics, All the backstage stuff, and I kinda went right back to, you know, you know, that’s when I started, like, you know, going full time with the branding. I’m like, I love the music, But I don’t love the the politics, so this is what we’re gonna do. And it’s funny because, like, now you’re starting to do that transition. So what is the reason for your switch from Music to tech.

    Garett Southerton [00:12:48]:

    2018, I started an organization called SoulShed STL. Mhmm. It was after There are a brief stint in New Orleans where I got to, you know, truly experience the culture, specifically culture of music down there, And I came back to St. Louis inspired. I was working at a music venue here in St. Louis called Jazz St. Louis. I got Also inspired there by their education program.

    Garett Southerton [00:13:12]:

    And I’m like, okay. So what what would it look like to do something where It’s specifically for developing the music scene here. Because I’ve seen the potential of what this could be in another place, you know, referencing New Orleans. Okay. Well, we have something. You know? There oh, well, there are places here in the community that are doing stuff, But they’re targeting, like, kids or or the youth rather. So I’m like, okay. Alright.

    Garett Southerton [00:13:40]:

    I think I’m going to hop into, you know, the business side and development side of music. And so Associates started off with jam sessions and then eventually, grew to offer educational program for professional musicians. Mhmm. And I provide all that context to say, long story short, the educational component and just the upkeep of the organization, it it wasn’t financially fruitful.

    Garett Southerton [00:14:05]:


    Garett Southerton [00:14:05]:

    And so and it was a lot of work, a lot of work. And after the pandemic And then, you know, trying to keep the organization afloat on my own dime, I decided to take a break. And so when I decided to take that break, I had already took a break from performing Music to focus on the organization. Now I’m taking a break from starting starting this music organization. Alright. What am I going to do now. Uh-huh. I think I need to step away from music for a second.

    Garett Southerton [00:14:44]:

    If you love it, let it go type of thing.

    Garett Southerton [00:14:46]:

    Exactly. And so I’m like, okay. Let me do something else, and And then let me get my paper up too. You know?

    Garett Southerton [00:14:53]:

    Yeah. So then you could do the thing you love without having to worry about where your next meal is coming from.

    Garett Southerton [00:14:58]:

    Exactly, bro. It’s a totally different mindset that you can have where you can focus on things in a different kind of way. And so my girlfriend at the time, she was going through LaunchCode, here in Saint Louis. So she was like, you know, why don’t you try applying, You know, for this, have you tried, you know, doing this? You already do some graphic design and you’ve made some you know, I had made some websites on Squarespace and WordPress. So she was like, you can go even deeper into that. You know what I’m saying? Why don’t you try, you know, being a web developer? So So I’m like, okay. Cool. I’ll try it out.

    Garett Southerton [00:15:32]:

    You know, at this point, I’m just like, I’m trying to figure out what’s the next best move. So I tried it out, got into it. I applied for LaunchCode, didn’t get in, but, applied for this other program, with Udacity, that was specifically for my end. And I went through that program, got my 1st certification, you know, in front end development. And, from there, I’m like, okay. Well, Let me continue continue going. So I applied for LaunchCode again and then got into their full stack program.

    Garett Southerton [00:16:04]:

    Okay. And so

    Garett Southerton [00:16:05]:

    I’m like, okay. Alright. We we doing some stuff. Alright. I’m learning some stuff. This shit is still is still kinda hard, but I’m seeing I’m the impossibilities here, you know. I’m learning different things, learning about how how this particular industry intersects with all of these, everything. And so I’m like

    Garett Southerton [00:16:23]:


    Garett Southerton [00:16:24]:

    Okay. Let let me let me let me continue digging in this because this is pretty interesting. You know? Even though I had started off initially thinking about money Mhmm. Once I actually got into it, it’s like, oh, it it’s not really just like Money is is opportunity.

    Garett Southerton [00:16:43]:


    Garett Southerton [00:16:44]:

    And, you know, where opportunity comes money, but there’s so much opportunity that it’s like, Damn. Okay. I gotta get it right around. So since then, I I’ve now become a manager of a LaunchCode program. So the program that I graduated from, I am now managing.

    Garett Southerton [00:17:02]:

    That’s dope. It’s it’s the level up.

    Garett Southerton [00:17:04]:

    Yeah. You know? I was like, okay. This, Let’s get into it. So now I’m helping other people, you know, work their way into the tech industry while I’m still also a developer. You know, my technical skills, you know, they’re Mhmm. There are things that I wanna build, businesses that I wanna start now that I have this, This new insight and these new skills that I’m developing, so I’m like, alright. It’s cool. And, you know, I can Exec this with music.

    Garett Southerton [00:17:31]:

    It’s another tool in your shed that you can actually utilize to do the other things that you love. Yeah. And, I mean, that’s something that goes back to because, Listen. Coding is not something that a lot of people love to do. Right? Like, I did it. I’ve done it since a young age. So, You know, when I learned HTML and CSS, then I got into PHP and JavaScript and all that. For me as a kid, that was challenging.

    Garett Southerton [00:17:53]:

    That was fun. You know? I was bored. I didn’t have a great childhood all the time. You know? My dad left. Didn’t get along in school, so I looked for an outlet. Right? So the outlet I found was coding and creating graphics, and I fell in love with that because it was just so challenging. It kept my mind busy. You know? I’m I’m an overthinker.

    Garett Southerton [00:18:11]:

    So Doing something like that, it gave me the chance to overthink about, okay. Well, how do I complete this? How do I correct this? How can I make it so it’s to standards? Or How can I make this do that? And it became a challenge to me, and, you know, that’s when I got into my my first MySpace business. And As that kept going and going and going, you know, I I got bored with it. You know what I mean? It’s only so much you could do with that. Right? It came to the point, though, that’s when I jumped to music initially because I was bored with the MySpace thing, and I was bored with coding. And I didn’t know what the next evolution from there was. And I love music. Right? And I already had it where I was, like, you know, working in music and coding, but The coding part got boring, so I jumped to the music.

    Garett Southerton [00:18:57]:

    And I came back to coding, and I mixed something else that I love, which was, you know, strategy. It wasn’t it wasn’t about just building something anymore. It was about the challenge of building something that people actually navigate. People can Browse easily. People can take action based on subconsciousness. And that’s where it comes back to, like, you have to love it because if you don’t love it, You’re gonna get bored and go away.

    Garett Southerton [00:19:22]:


    Garett Southerton [00:19:23]:

    What is something you find fun in coding? Because I know there has to be something that had you keep going because it’s too hard.

    Garett Southerton [00:19:29]:

    It is super hard. And what I love about it is that you can write something and then instantly produce something. So I I definitely Love the front end aspect of it more.

    Garett Southerton [00:19:41]:

    I agree.

    Garett Southerton [00:19:42]:

    And then now, more so learning, like, the back end things, man. Just really making things work Altogether, it helps me for, like, my mind just to consider all things in other aspects of my life And how things, you know, work together. And so that’s the benefit that I get out of it. You know? The same way you think about strategy, it, like, it helps mold my mind, You know, to think a different kind of way.

    Garett Southerton [00:20:10]:

    Yeah. It’s like a facilitator for you.

    Garett Southerton [00:20:13]:

    Yeah. I tend to get, like, you know, ideas if I’m working on a, You know, a problem and something that’s challenging, and I figure it figure it out

    Garett Southerton [00:20:23]:


    Garett Southerton [00:20:24]:

    It just gives me it usually sparks an idea of how I can solve I know a problem.

    Garett Southerton [00:20:28]:

    Uh-huh. And you become addicted to that feeling when you solve people’s problems or you solve your own problems, and then you can realize how you could solve someone else’s problems. You become so addicted to that.

    Garett Southerton [00:20:38]:

    Real talk, man. Problem solving is the thing. It’s the thing. I had to realize that about myself. I like I go I go into places and I interact with people, especially coming into jobs. The first thing I’m looking for is what’s not working, and how can we get it to work?

    Garett Southerton [00:20:59]:

    That’s how we do it in branding. If when when you bring me in, It’s not just like, alright. Well, this is what’s working, so do this. It’s like, okay. What’s not working for you? How where is the disconnect? Is it because people don’t wanna trust you? Is it because people see something you post and they’re like, maybe not? Is it because, you know, they see your graphics and they’re, like, instantly put off because they think like, okay. Well, if they’re not gonna invest in themselves, I’m not gonna give them any of my money, especially when the thing that blows my mind the most is you have these these coaches, right, that are trying It’s out of 3, $4,000 programs. And then they’re using, like, a half broken Squarespace website that doesn’t work, And every link you click goes to, like, either a four zero four page or it’s got, like, these janky looking buttons. It’s a vibe killer.

    Garett Southerton [00:21:51]:

    And so that’s that’s what we do. We we see the problems, and then we work it backwards.

    Garett Southerton [00:21:56]:

    I I think for a lot of people who find themselves trying to start business Businesses, some of their earlier mistakes is that they try to do it all themselves. Mhmm. Without a doubt. If, you know, writing isn’t your strong suit Or whatever is in your strong suit, find somebody. Oh oh, no. Better yet, ask somebody to help you with this. I’ve learned, I mean, you know, the quicker you can ask somebody to help you solve a problem that you yourself either don’t have the time to, don’t have the capabilities to, The better.

    Garett Southerton [00:22:29]:

    No. A 100%. It’s funny. I was talking to Julian about this a few months ago. It’s like when we’re younger, right, and And we’re starting something beautiful, and we’re starting something new. Like, we take the hard road purposely so that we could say, hey. We did this. We went through this.

    Garett Southerton [00:22:44]:

    We did that. And it’s like, you don’t have to do that. It it actually it’s counterintuitive because, like, People don’t give a crap at the end of the day. They care about what the end result was. Mhmm. It would have been so much less Months of my own life that I spent doing something else that nobody gives a fuck about at the end of the day. Yeah. That’s kinda like what we do at the you know, we start a business, And we’re like, alright.

    Garett Southerton [00:23:09]:

    Well, now I gotta copyright the website. I gotta create the website. I gotta create graphics. I gotta create branding. You You know, I have to go get a a camera so I could take photos of my product. You know? I gotta go get shipping labels. I gotta get boxes. I gotta Sign up for UPS so, you know, I can mail them out.

    Garett Southerton [00:23:24]:

    I gotta get a PO box now. It’s just so many things like you can’t do everything. You gotta Hire somebody to help you.

    Garett Southerton [00:23:32]:

    And if not hire, don’t be afraid to just ask somebody. You you know

    Garett Southerton [00:23:36]:

    Ask somebody. Collab with somebody.

    Garett Southerton [00:23:38]:

    If you can provide value For someone and you don’t have the, you know, the means to pay them, you know, what they deserve, or what they may not even know that they deserve yet.

    Garett Southerton [00:23:47]:


    Garett Southerton [00:23:48]:

    Having those, trade Trade agreements and those collaborations, you can then really figure out, okay, this is the kind of value that I should place on this work. Mhmm. Because I’m now getting the chance to, like, test this out with this within this particular experience. We both still kinda try to figure out what we do. Okay. Well, this is what we produce when we Yeah. Work together. Alright.

    Garett Southerton [00:24:10]:

    Well, how much time did I put into this? I put this much amount of time in this.

    Garett Southerton [00:24:14]:

    You work backwards from it again.

    Garett Southerton [00:24:17]:

    Yeah. You know what I’m saying?

    Garett Southerton [00:24:18]:

    And I think there’s definitely a balance in there. Right? Because, like, I’m a big advocate for not doing work for free. Mhmm. Whenever somebody does something for free, you know, even if you’re just starting out, you’re learning. When you do your service for free, it devalues your service, and it devalues everybody else’s efforts.

    Garett Southerton [00:24:34]:


    Garett Southerton [00:24:35]:

    But bartering is not for free. Say that you’re, you know, you’re getting started in graphics, and Somebody wants you to create their their social templates. Okay. Cool. So how about a referral base then? You You know, if I create these templates for you and you sell off of you know, you sell in the month that I’m using them because people saw them and say, Hey. I like that template. You know? I I liked that visual. That was a great carousel or whatever.

    Garett Southerton [00:25:01]:

    You give me 10%. Like, even at that point, that’s better than working for free.

    Garett Southerton [00:25:06]:

    You know,

    Garett Southerton [00:25:06]:

    that that’s still collaborating on something. You know, the business gets something, and then you get a referral for helping them sell some type of ebook or something. Maybe, you know, if you’re starting out in visuals, you create the ebook, and every proceed that comes from the the ebook, you get a percentage of it. Yeah. I mean, there’s a 1000000 ways to win. You just gotta be you know, first, you gotta be trustworthy because that’s the problem. People don’t trust other people. But, you know, you you gotta be willing to do the work regardless.

    Garett Southerton [00:25:37]:

    The work gotta get done. Has to get done. One of my my dad’s all time sayings, I I I love it. He says you gotta handle your business or your business gonna handle you.

    Garett Southerton [00:25:49]:

    If you feel like you’re slacking on something, I’m sure you hear that playing in your head over and over and over.

    Garett Southerton [00:25:54]:

    Yes. I do. He used to say it so much when he was kids, and he would like lectures. He still do. He still pop. And, I’ll just be like, oh my god. I’d be hearing that in my head all the time, bro.

    Garett Southerton [00:26:06]:

    I mean, my grandpa had a saying that was like, the second you think you’re the smartest man and you stop educating yourself to progress. You’re the dumbest man. You know nothing. Yeah. And, like, that’s something that stuck with me because, like, it’s like, okay. Well, You know? I’m getting all this clout for branding now. Right? People come to me because they want branding. People call me the impact man.

    Garett Southerton [00:26:28]:

    People you You know what I mean? And, like, a lot of times, like, people take that stuff to their head, and they’re just like, alright. Well, I’m the shit now, so I’ll just keep coasting and do what I’m doing. Meanwhile, I’m still investing in coaches. I’m still investing in my craft. I’m still Spending a day a week, you know, learning new things, researching, reading up articles, you know, seeing what brands are doing what. And That’s just something that stuck in my head because it’s like, okay. Well, if I click on the shit, and I’m just gonna lose and someone’s gonna pass me by because They’re not afraid to approach things with an open mind or afraid to approach things, you know, with that childlike mindset that we were talking about because it’s like something I really admire from you too. Like, you just go into things and, like, you just screw it.

    Garett Southerton [00:27:13]:

    Let’s let’s see where it goes.

    Garett Southerton [00:27:15]:

    You know, I’ve always been getting into different things. And so when people are like, man, you you you doing a lot of stuff. You know? It it, it always kinda felt like you’re not focused. You know, that’s how I was received, but the way that I think about it today, I’m constantly learning.

    Garett Southerton [00:27:35]:

    Yeah. No. That that’s true.

    Garett Southerton [00:27:37]:

    I’m constantly learning new things, and then I also I do what I gotta do To do what I wanna do.

    Garett Southerton [00:27:46]:


    Garett Southerton [00:27:47]:

    Took this, internship at Save the Music Foundation, the the the VA porn organization, and it was for communications. I’m like, okay. I’m finna come in here and do this, make these connections. It’s internship. I’m getting paid a little bit of money, but it’s worth, you know, making those connections, you know? And so I got into the role, and it also required me to do graphics from time to time. And so Got into the role, started they wanted me to be on Canva. I’m like, man, I I need a little bit more than this. I’m a little bit more, You know, I I like to build stuff up from scratch.

    Garett Southerton [00:28:26]:

    You know? Although I’ve been getting to the practice of having, like, you know, starter Started things or looking at inspo.

    Garett Southerton [00:28:32]:

    Time and place for it.

    Garett Southerton [00:28:34]:

    Yeah. But, started getting into it, so I Purchased the Adobe Suite. So I started getting it today, and I’m now in Premiere Pro, and I’m creating videos. And I’m like, yeah. I can create videos too, which I need. Oh, well, we need a video for Amazon Music because they’re coming, and they’re gonna be speaking with us. Okay. Alright.

    Garett Southerton [00:28:57]:

    I got it. Boom boom boom boom boom. Now on my resume, I can say I created a video for Amazon Music. Now to me, that’s valuable.

    Garett Southerton [00:29:07]:

    I mean, that’s huge.

    Garett Southerton [00:29:08]:

    I am, like, now in the process So I constantly, developing better processes to manage my time.

    Garett Southerton [00:29:16]:

    That’s so essential, bro.

    Garett Southerton [00:29:18]:

    Yeah. To not be doing Too many, different things at, at once. You know, I don’t have to be the designer, the musician, the Program manager all at once. I could just focus on 1 at a time, but I know these things are available to me.

    Garett Southerton [00:29:33]:


    Garett Southerton [00:29:34]:

    And it also helps put into my I know I wanna go into entrepreneurship.

    Garett Southerton [00:29:38]:

    Sounds like you have a hell of a creative agency ready.

    Garett Southerton [00:29:40]:

    I’ve always planned to be entrepreneur, always planned to have multiple biz businesses. It makes sense for me to have my hands in different things. You know? And it’s like I’ve been training myself up for that, and it’s it’s it’s getting bounced to that time.

    Garett Southerton [00:29:54]:

    You’re like the opposite of the saying, like, jack of all trades, master of none.

    Garett Southerton [00:29:59]:

    Yeah. Like, I don’t have to be, The greatest musician. I’ll have to be

    Garett Southerton [00:30:07]:

    I mean, listen, bro. I’m gonna tell you this. I tell you this every time we speak. You are hands down one of the best vocalist I’ve ever heard in my entire life. Oh, woah. That’s no exaggeration. Like, your voice is, Like I said earlier, you have, like, that old soul to your voice.

    Garett Southerton [00:30:24]:

    I appreciate that, and I thank you for that. I thank you for that. You know, when you was talking about clout early and not letting stuff go to your head, I like I I can receive and then I also think, you know, I also don’t always want, like, a light on me.

    Garett Southerton [00:30:40]:

    Oh, no. Of course. I get that. I a 100% get that.

    Garett Southerton [00:30:43]:

    Yeah. Because, you know, I’m used to I’m used to playing it in the back. You know? But, you know, when I need to step out into the front, I’ll step out into the front.

    Garett Southerton [00:30:52]:

    What’s cool, like, about all that you do is, like, that you’re so positive. Right? You’re so optimistic about everything. You look on the bright side. And I mean, obviously, life happens. I I know you’re probably going through a lot of shit, but It never shows when it comes to you. Like, you’re always on a 100, happy, spreading love, spreading cheer. It’s something I admire, to be honest.

    Garett Southerton [00:31:16]:

    Bro, I appreciate that. I try to I try to put that on to the world, and I I try to be genuine, you know, as much as possible with it too. Mhmm. And I’m also a very personal and private person. And then if it’s Something that’s going on with me that I need to deal with, I’m gonna deal with it. I’m a I’m a I’m a go ahead and look at myself, ask myself questions, And and deal with that, figure it out, and and move through it. And so I don’t I don’t usually bring the stuff that I have going on that may be negative, you know, But it’s really just real

    Garett Southerton [00:31:48]:

    life. Yeah.

    Garett Southerton [00:31:49]:

    I don’t ever shy away from sharing something that I’m going through with someone if if the moment calls for it.

    Garett Southerton [00:31:54]:

    Here’s a a random question that comes from that. As somebody who’s a creative and and you’re a multipassionate creative, right, do you do you talk to, like, a therapist or anything or, like a support group or something like that to help you because things get overwhelming. You know what I mean?

    Garett Southerton [00:32:10]:

    I haven’t, talked to a therapist. Although although I’ve sought 1, you know, I just never completed that process.

    Garett Southerton [00:32:18]:


    Garett Southerton [00:32:18]:

    When the time comes for that, we’ll try that out. We do that. You know, I’m not against it at all. Anybody out there who thinking about it, you know, go for it. If you’re trying to take some kind of step to better yourself, you know, mentally, do that.

    Garett Southerton [00:32:35]:

    So what do you do to because like I said, It’s something I admire, like, how positive you are.

    Garett Southerton [00:32:40]:

    1st thing I do is ask god, like, hey. What’s going on? I I talked to god.

    Garett Southerton [00:32:46]:


    Garett Southerton [00:32:46]:

    And I tried to really assess where I’m at, you know, and be honest with what’s going on. What am I experiencing? What am I thinking? What am I feeling? Why am I feeling this way? Why am I thinking these things? Why is, you know, these certain things coming up? And really try to work through that process so I can kinda get a hold on things. Because once I can kinda figure out, like, what’s going on, then I can be proactive to take the certain kind of steps I need to to take.

    Garett Southerton [00:33:12]:


    Garett Southerton [00:33:12]:

    You’re a little burnt out. Oh, okay. I’m a sit down today. I’m a I’m a turn my phone off. Alright. Okay. Cool. Alright.

    Garett Southerton [00:33:21]:

    Yeah. Alright. That’s that’s that’s the way to go about it. Oh, man. You’re a little upset with this person. Oh, yeah. I am upset. Alright.

    Garett Southerton [00:33:28]:

    I think you need to go talk a. Hey. Let’s meet up. Hey. Let’s talk real quick. You know what I’m saying? And just try to, like, Handle it, you know, whatever kind of way that it needs to to be handled.

    Garett Southerton [00:33:43]:

    It’s like the easiest thing, but also the hardest thing at the same time.

    Garett Southerton [00:33:47]:

    Yeah, man. And it’s I don’t know. I I try to be, like, extremely honest with myself.

    Garett Southerton [00:33:52]:

    You hold yourself to a high a high, like, no bullshit Ratio.

    Garett Southerton [00:33:57]:

    I try to address it and just be honest. If I mess up with it just just be honest. I don’t like lying, And I I I just cannot lie to myself. It’s I can’t lie to others unless it’s like some little White lie.

    Garett Southerton [00:34:12]:

    I mean, if you lie to yourself, the only person you’re hurting really is yourself at that point.

    Garett Southerton [00:34:16]:

    Yeah. But people lie to themselves, then they go out and lie to others and And impact others, you know, in a negative way, and this goes back to the, positive thing. You know? I try to have personal responsibility With the way that I interact with people Mhmm. That first happens with having, a real a real and positive interaction with myself.

    Garett Southerton [00:34:36]:

    That’s beautiful. I feel like if I wasn’t honest with myself about, like, hey. There’s there’s a balance. Don’t get me wrong, because there’s also impostor syndrome. Right? But, like, There’s times where I’m like, alright. Well, you know what? That could be better. You know, my type game needs a little work there. You know? I need to get better with the color theory.

    Garett Southerton [00:34:54]:

    I need to get better coding this, or I need to get better with, you know, that kind of logo or something like that. And then I go when I practice it because I’m, like, you know, I hold myself accountable with that. Right? And that’s how you get better at things. You know? I’ll purposely go, and I’ll go and take a project that I don’t think I can do on purpose.

    Garett Southerton [00:35:14]:

    Bro, yes.

    Garett Southerton [00:35:15]:

    Not that I don’t think I can help them, but that I don’t think I can do some little a specific thing around it just to challenge myself to get it done. And every time I bet on myself when I’m straightforward to myself of what I need to do, I win.

    Garett Southerton [00:35:28]:

    Absolutely, bro. And that’s why you constantly progress.

    Garett Southerton [00:35:32]:

    That’s the only way you progress. I mean, if I’m just gonna sit here and I’m just gonna keep doing The same logos that I do every time I mean, I know there there’s a point where you have to niche. Right? But if I’m just gonna work with the same exact people over and over and over, I’m gonna do the same moods. I’m gonna do the same audiences. You know? Yeah. I’ll be good at it. But at the same point, I’m not gonna also grow too. You know what I mean? There comes a point where the money, the money, and, I mean, that’s never my thing.

    Garett Southerton [00:35:58]:

    Right? But I gotta have fun with it too. I gotta gotta have fun with it, or I’m just gonna get bored. I’m gonna get burnt out, and then nothing’s gonna happen.

    Garett Southerton [00:36:06]:

    Yeah. And there’s something wrong with a quick pivot.

    Garett Southerton [00:36:09]:

    I mean yeah.

    Garett Southerton [00:36:10]:

    Going back to the the childlike, mentality. You know? When you’re a child, you’re experiencing everything in the world for the first time. And so the learning curve is intense, but you’re so open to receiving it. It’s it is it’s coming. Mhmm. You know? There’s no reason that you can’t be a multifaceted adult. Mhmm. People tend to get older.

    Garett Southerton [00:36:35]:

    They they,

    Garett Southerton [00:36:37]:

    They do what’s comfortable.

    Garett Southerton [00:36:38]:

    Yeah. You know, they they settle into themselves, and this this this is it.

    Garett Southerton [00:36:45]:

    I feel you on that 100%. My my grandmother, I love her. She’s in her seventies, and she needed a new laptop. And she wanted, You know, she wanted what she had, and they don’t make what she had. It it was like a 12 year old laptop. It had Windows Vista on it. I can’t even get Windows Vista for her on a modern computer. So we got her a MacBook.

    Garett Southerton [00:37:07]:

    Right? And I’m like, listen, this is super easy. You literally open it, you put your finger on it to unlock it, and you go to Firefox and you check your mail like you did on the old computer. It’s literally the simplest thing in the world. And she still has a little bit of trouble with that. Like, it’s not that She’s having trouble there. Because if I sit there and I and I ask her, okay. Can you do it? She’ll do it. It’s the fact that she doesn’t wanna do anything different.

    Garett Southerton [00:37:33]:

    Yeah. You know, that slow ass Windows Vista startup.

    Garett Southerton [00:37:37]:


    Garett Southerton [00:37:38]:

    She’s used to waiting for 10 different things to to open up before she can x them out because that’s how Windows is. And then she’ll go to Firefox, take another 3 years to load it up, and then refresh her mail, which doesn’t always load right because Firefox can’t even update, so that takes forever and messes up. And rather than just do the simplest thing, She’s too comfortable in what she knows instead of trying to approach it by something that could be better. Because just because it works doesn’t mean it’s It’s war, king.

    Garett Southerton [00:38:13]:

    Yeah. Yeah. Yeah, man. You gotta keep you gotta keep learning as you as you age.

    Garett Southerton [00:38:18]:

    And not be afraid to try new things either.

    Garett Southerton [00:38:21]:

    Yeah. And just to stay abreast to, like, what’s going on. You know, think about how the world was 30 years ago, and it’s 30 years of change. Things change from one day to the next. Yeah.

    Garett Southerton [00:38:32]:

    That’s for sure.

    Garett Southerton [00:38:33]:

    Those are a lot of days for changes to happen, You know, to not grow and and at least at least be aware of what’s going on.

    Garett Southerton [00:38:42]:

    We talked a lot about, like, you know, Doing what you gotta do so that, like, you know, you have the cash and you can progress on. Like, I know impact’s something really important to you. Right? What is, like, the things that you are doing on the impact side of things for the community and to spread love?

    Garett Southerton [00:38:58]:

    Yeah. So Since SoShea, is not operating right now, which is where I was, you know, primarily doing a lot of impact work, here specifically been in the Music and arts community, I’ve just brought that same spirit over into the tech space.

    Garett Southerton [00:39:15]:


    Garett Southerton [00:39:16]:

    When I got accepted into LaunchCode, I knew that I was gonna need, you know, some help. And so at that time, I was, a community manager at a co working space here in Saint Louis called Tech Artista. And one of, the members I know that she was doing Something within technology overseas, where her husband happened to be a front end developer. And so I, you know, walked into them like, hey. I, you know, I just got enrolled into this program. I’m looking to explore, you know, tech industry, possibly become a web developer. You know, do you have any advice or recommendations, anything like that? He was like, well, why don’t we just start a group For everybody else who has, the problem that you got going on right now, he’s connected With this, guy up in, New York New York City, called Steve Chen who founded this organization called Code and Coffee. And so it’s a web development meetup that he started up there, and, he was like, well, why don’t we start a chapter here? And I was like, well, I got connections to this space.

    Garett Southerton [00:40:29]:

    We could use this space, you know, and we could just start it up and And get it going and running. It’s like, oh, okay. Cool. I’ll get the information from the dude that I know, in New York, see how they usually do stuff, and we can Started up here. And so maybe it took about 3 weeks for us to turn it around. I’m like, hey. I got this event that I wanna do. I’m talking to my my boss at work.

    Garett Southerton [00:40:53]:

    I’m I got this event that I wanna do. I think it’d be a benefit to professionals that you have here because they have business professionals and students. The the coworking space is right in the middle of one of Washington University’s, apartment Spaces for the students, and Washington University is a a very big school.

    Garett Southerton [00:41:16]:

    It’s a big deal.

    Garett Southerton [00:41:17]:

    Yeah. And And so I’m like, I think this would be a benefit to the space, to the community, you know, attract some web development, web developer talent Here to the space, get people all in the mix, and said it like, we agree. Alright? So we got it started at, like, 3 weeks, and started Started doing meetups, and people just started coming. They just started coming. They kept coming, And they haven’t stopped coming, and, it’s it’s turned into one of the the bigger, tech meetups here in the city. And getting a a great chance to, 1, allow people to come together and meet other folks who are doing similar things to them. Mhmm. You know, there are more people like me who’s looking for a community of folks like Leonor.

    Garett Southerton [00:42:07]:

    Hey. I got this project that I’m working on. Can anybody help me with this? Hey. I’m going

    Garett Southerton [00:42:13]:

    I’m going

    Garett Southerton [00:42:13]:

    to class. Does anybody have any, you know, advice on how to track time, You know, every time that the browser loads up, I need it to be this current that is is is still working. Can Somebody helped me figure out this this is a problem that I was trying to figure out. And people were trying to explain this concept to me, bro, For 2 and a half hours.

    Garett Southerton [00:42:39]:

    Oh god. I

    Garett Southerton [00:42:40]:

    mean, this is at the early stages of me, you know, doing this stuff.

    Garett Southerton [00:42:44]:


    Garett Southerton [00:42:44]:

    But The fact that they were there to help and they were dedicated to helping me in that kind of way, That was happening not only with me, but everybody else that’s in the space.

    Garett Southerton [00:43:00]:


    Garett Southerton [00:43:01]:

    And so now I know, okay. People are benefiting from this. People like coming here. Like, we got food, and we’re in this nice space. You know? And I like I know people like that we got pizza every time. So every time we have a meetup and we got coffee And you come here, there’s a parking lot. You don’t you don’t have to park on the street and pay a pay a meter. You know? It’s a central location, But people actually like coming there because there’s a real community there.

    Garett Southerton [00:43:34]:


    Garett Southerton [00:43:34]:

    This is crazy. I’m in a whole different space, but I’m still doing the same kind kind of work. I was passionate about, you know, over on the music side.

    Garett Southerton [00:43:44]:

    It’s like Soul Shed, but for code.

    Garett Southerton [00:43:46]:


    Garett Southerton [00:43:46]:

    That’s pretty dope. How far have you guys grown so far?

    Garett Southerton [00:43:49]:

    All that we have is a meetup pay we have a meetup and Discord. Mhmm. But our meetup page is, like, at 674 6 674 members. We’re getting, like I don’t know what the ratio is now because it has slowed down a bit. But I would say roughly, like, 2 to 3 new members a day. And then we’re averaging, like, 45 to 50 people at each meetup.

    Garett Southerton [00:44:12]:

    Wow. That’s great. Especially because You gotta consider, though, that this is local. This isn’t like an online thing where anybody’s gonna just join because they wanna learn to code. It’s literally Local people in Saint Louis within the vicinity of there, that they don’t have to go really far.

    Garett Southerton [00:44:27]:

    I had no expectations, really. Just to be quite honest, I had no expectations when starting this up other than I need some help. Hopefully, this helps other people, But I know I need some help. I got this space. I’m a open it up. If you know some other folks who wanna come and meet, we have this opportunity here. And then it just happened to just grow really fast.

    Garett Southerton [00:44:50]:

    It’s not something that you’re doing for profit either. It’s something that you’re literally doing because you wanna Have that community around you that you wanted and, like, also help those the people who are in the early stages of their career.

    Garett Southerton [00:45:00]:

    Yeah. Yeah.

    Garett Southerton [00:45:02]:

    And so you guys are are fully, like, What are you sponsors or donations or

    Garett Southerton [00:45:07]:

    So we have we have a a my previous Employer, Tech Artiste, is our space sponsor.

    Garett Southerton [00:45:15]:


    Garett Southerton [00:45:15]:

    And then the co organizer, He used to work for a consulting company, that sponsors all of our food and drinks and and all of that.

    Garett Southerton [00:45:24]:

    Oh, that’s so dope.

    Garett Southerton [00:45:26]:

    We’re working on getting a few more sponsors to cover, some more things. We got a pretty big company that possibly is about to come on and sponsor. So I can’t say too much, but I, you know, I I I really hope it I really hope it comes through. I hope it’s, substantial, And then we can get into doing some more, more things in the meetup that I think would really benefit the tech STL community as a whole.

    Garett Southerton [00:45:54]:

    Yeah. No. That’s that’s so dope.

    Garett Southerton [00:45:56]:

    Yeah. We’re focused on web developers, and so it’s like a bunch of us there where We can have a larger impact, on the greater community.

    Garett Southerton [00:46:04]:

    It’s really such a niche, like, audience. Like, you’re targeting St. Louis Full stack developers within, like, you know, a certain range of radius because people aren’t gonna travel 2 hours to come to a meetup, And you’re growing that fast in less than a year. That that’s that’s amazing. And and you’re doing it without a dime out of your pocket because you’re working with sponsors And, you know, you’re having community come and support the community, and that is the part that’s, like, so dope to have come together.

    Garett Southerton [00:46:35]:

    Yeah. And people offer, hey. I can do this. Should we do this? You know? It’s getting to the point now where people are like, I want to contribute. I want to contribute because I love being here. And I’m like, oh, I didn’t think of none of that. But if y’all want to If y’all wanna take that on, I mean, go go for it.

    Garett Southerton [00:46:58]:

    You know, it’s so dope because, like, when I was learning, like, when I was learning to code, I was, like, 13. So, like, 1, I was a kid, but 2, like, it was back before there was really forms. There was AOL chat rooms was, like, the only thing. So, like, you had to go find, like, some some random website that had, like, A whole stack of codes. Like, this is before, like like, Reddit. This is before any of the forms that you could just pull code off of. Like, you actually had to, like, experiment and Experiment and hope to find, like, some snippet website with some little snippets to help you. Like, there is no knowledge bases.

    Garett Southerton [00:47:31]:

    There was no there was no nothing. Nothing. And, you know, again, I was a kid. My mom wasn’t letting me in, like, random ass chat rooms where I can get, you know, abducted at the time. I mean, now now we hop in Ubers, but back then, You couldn’t just go into a random chat room without worrying.

    Garett Southerton [00:47:46]:


    Garett Southerton [00:47:46]:

    I wish I had something like that when I was a kid. I mean, now they put, like, you know, Youth coding things in schools and everything, and that’s dope to see, but, like, I’m proud of you, man. I’m proud of you, like, the progression of where you’re coming with that.

    Garett Southerton [00:48:00]:

    I appreciate it, bro. I appreciate it, man. It’s definitely been it’s definitely been a benefit. And I can I can solidly say that The developer community has been the most supportive community that I’ve ever been a part of? With the people who Inhabit that space, they have a true passion.

    Garett Southerton [00:48:21]:


    Garett Southerton [00:48:22]:

    But everybody loves trying to help Solve a problem and figure it out. Everybody has their input. Everybody has input. It’s so funny, bro. It is it is hilarious, But everybody’s honestly trying to help.

    Garett Southerton [00:48:35]:

    A cool thing that you pick from coding is that, like, there’s a 100 ways to solve 1 problem. There’s 10 different ways to code something, 10 different, like, methodologies you can use around coding something. You can do the same thing, like, a 100 different ways. Mhmm. I I think it’s like a metaphor for life. Right? Man. Yeah. So, you know, for me, intentionality is a big part of, like, everything that I do.

    Garett Southerton [00:48:58]:

    Right? You know, I I teach people how to brand intentionally. I am very intentional about what I do, what I spend my time doing. Intentionality is a big part of my life. So I love to find out about what other people do intentionally in their life, you know, whether it’s for creativity, their business journey, progressing through life. So what are 3 intentionality principles for you that you live by? I am very intentional About making sure that I present the the truth. Mhmm.

    Garett Southerton [00:49:29]:

    You know? In the things that I create and the things that I, you know, involve myself in and how I show up, you know, within those particular spaces, And being clear where I have boundaries as a creative.

    Garett Southerton [00:49:45]:


    Garett Southerton [00:49:46]:

    It’s been a thing, As of late, people are asking me, hey. Man, I got this song that I want you to get on. I know you ain’t been doing nothing. Who do what do what do what do what do what do what do why? I’m like, yeah, man. That’s that’s all good. As long as the song is positive, you’re not talking about no craziness, no foolishness. Yeah. I can take a listen, and I will let you know how that goes.

    Garett Southerton [00:50:09]:

    Before, in my early music stages, I wasn’t doing that. I was also, you know, a a younger person, and my personal values were underdeveloped.

    Garett Southerton [00:50:21]:


    Garett Southerton [00:50:21]:

    Now this is What’s true for me as a creative, there are certain I have limits, and that’s part of me being, you know, who I am. And I’m communicating with the people who wanna work with me. This is who I am. This is what I stand for. This is what I represent.

    Garett Southerton [00:50:35]:


    Garett Southerton [00:50:35]:

    It has to be in alignment with what I have going on or else I I can’t be a part.

    Garett Southerton [00:50:40]:

    I 100% feel that. That’s kind of, like, part of, like, my big shift in my business too. Like, I used to just you know, there’s a point where, you know, hey. You you wanted branding work? Okay? Let’s let’s brand. And it got to the point where, like, not only was I not loving, like, the type of things they were doing, but a lot of them were, like, Kind of like shady with it. Right? Like, it was like very click funnelsque, very, like, I just want the sales. I don’t really care what I’m putting out. I don’t care about the quality of the product.

    Garett Southerton [00:51:09]:

    And so, like, that’s why I made that change to people who are making an impact, people who are changemakers, trailblazers, those type of people. Because, like, I don’t wanna work with just anybody. I don’t wanna work with people who aren’t trying to put something positive into the world. Kinda like the same thing, like, you’re you’re not trying to put out a bad message. I don’t wanna Influence people to do bad things. I don’t want people to suck their money into something and not be able to progress where they need to progress.

    Garett Southerton [00:51:36]:

    You know what that’s called? Integrity. But the second1 would have to be be a perpetual student. You know, for me, I feel like the different, the the different things that I’ve been involved in, they aren’t they don’t stray too far away from one another.

    Garett Southerton [00:51:55]:

    There’s overlap. Definitely.

    Garett Southerton [00:51:56]:

    Yeah. There’s overlap. And I I I think there’s there’s something to be said there if you’re doing multiple Things in a certain kind of similar wheelhouse, but be a perpetual student. Always be open to learning something new. You know? Mhmm. And all of the different things that I learned, they they contribute to what I whatever that I’m primarily focusing on.

    Garett Southerton [00:52:20]:


    Garett Southerton [00:52:21]:

    I was a carpenter, for, a few years.

    Garett Southerton [00:52:26]:

    I remember that too.

    Garett Southerton [00:52:27]:

    Yeah. I did it for some years and change, so I’ve built some houses. But going through their process of building houses, it it’s going back to, Like, the program thing where I say it it reshaped my mind. Building houses reshaped my mind and for the first time, really made me think about foundation and the important importance of that and, like, developing things From the ground up in levels.

    Garett Southerton [00:52:54]:

    Like the steps that you gotta take to do something the right way or everything else crumbles down.

    Garett Southerton [00:52:59]:

    And that’s exactly how it is. When I When I realized that houses are sitting on a foundation and then you you lay your plates around that the house is gonna sit on, typically all 4 sides, and then all of the studs are going up. And there’s space a certain kind of way, so they’re all dispensing different amounts of pressure. They have a specific kind of task. Okay. Well, this is how things Kinda go, you know. Oh, you gotta say, this is the baseline. Okay.

    Garett Southerton [00:53:34]:

    This is what surrounds this. Alright. This is how you This is what branches off from this. Then we got a roof made of all these different trusses that’s holding up this This isily shaped thing here, and these things are doing what they need to do, go across there, and it’s capping off. This is the pinnacle of what this house is up here at the top. This is the pinnacle of what this particular idea or product is, And it’s the the overview of everything else that’s beneath it. Oh, okay. Well, this is why it’s important to have a vision, a purpose.

    Garett Southerton [00:54:08]:

    Imagine just going showing up to to work one day as a carpenter and say, alright. We’re gonna build a house. Grab that piece of wood. Let’s just throw it up there. That that’s what a lot of people do with everything else. They don’t understand there’s layers to this. There’s levels to this. There’s there’s a time to progress in the right way that you have to do things where everything else is for nothing.

    Garett Southerton [00:54:25]:

    It really is, man. It really is. And the third thing, and this is something that I’ve had to learn, is to Be gracious, with yourself. Because I I definitely I hold myself to a very high standard.

    Garett Southerton [00:54:39]:

    I think that’s a creative thing, really. Like, a true creative thing. I think I think you’re so hard on yourself, and you pick it apart everything that you do and say, nah. This could be better.

    Garett Southerton [00:54:48]:

    Yeah. And then it’s especially when, You know, you also like to produce a certain kind of result

    Garett Southerton [00:54:57]:


    Garett Southerton [00:54:58]:

    Or, like, constantly produce results. And being a creative, sometimes, the process is just Two strokes on canvas. Mhmm. That’s all I needed to get out at that time. I don’t need to I don’t need to do nothing else With this, I don’t have to be forcefully inspired. I don’t have do not this this is what I have At this moment.

    Garett Southerton [00:55:26]:

    Mhmm. And

    Garett Southerton [00:55:27]:

    then in the same kind of way, if you were actually trying to achieve something, a a a full picture, And it doesn’t come out quite looking the way that you thought it did. That’s what you had at that moment. That’s that’s where you at.

    Garett Southerton [00:55:43]:

    You gave it all.

    Garett Southerton [00:55:45]:

    Be gracious with it. If you see something deeper in there, Then that’s where you commit the time to continue to grow and get yourself in a position to actually Produce that vision that you have in your mind, but you gotta you gotta be gracious with yourself or, you’ll be finding yourself the whole journey. You cannot You gotta go through the journey.

    Garett Southerton [00:56:11]:

    You gotta. Good, bad, and indifferent. Every part of it. Otherwise, you don’t grow. That is something that I’ve really been learning the biggest the last year. Like, in this last year, that that’s the biggest lesson I’ve I’ve learned, that you just have to be gracious with yourself. You have to give yourself grace and and and be patient. You know what I mean? When something does come out right you know, I I make I make a lot of videos now, you know, when a video doesn’t come out right and I have to rerecord it or whatever.

    Garett Southerton [00:56:37]:

    Sometimes I’ll just say, oh, maybe that idea wasn’t good enough, or maybe I just didn’t want it Bad enough, and I throw it away because, you know, sometimes it’s not and then sometimes I also push through it. Like, listen. This is what I had. This is what it

    Garett Southerton [00:56:49]:

    is. Yeah.

    Garett Southerton [00:56:50]:

    And those are actually surprisingly some of the videos that, like, people talk to me about. Those are some of the videos people, like, messaged me, but, like, listen. I’m I’m really happy you posted this. I’m really happy. So, like, you know, few of these, you know, podcast episodes, you know, I wasn’t really ecstatic about the edits the way I perfectly wanted them. Right? But people watched them and not 1 person mentioned anything bad about editing. They were like, hey. This is great.

    Garett Southerton [00:57:13]:

    You you really Caught in that amount of information in that amount of time. And even though they’re long episodes, it’s like, you packed in, you know, double worth, and we’re really happy that, you know, I learned this or I learned that, and it’s usually the things that you’re worried about the most that people find beauty in.

    Garett Southerton [00:57:31]:

    Yeah. And it goes back to authenticity. Mhmm.

    Garett Southerton [00:57:34]:

    That’s true. If you’re doing it for the wrong reasons or you’re doing it to be fake, people see that shit right through you.

    Garett Southerton [00:57:40]:

    And don’t mess around and run to somebody Call you out on your shit.

    Garett Southerton [00:57:43]:


    Garett Southerton [00:57:44]:

    I’ve been called out on my shit so many times, and it’s gotten, like, even more brutal in the last Few years because I’m like of course, I’m I’m growing. I’m leveling up, and so I’m interacting with different levels of people.

    Garett Southerton [00:58:03]:

    People that are higher than you,

    Garett Southerton [00:58:06]:

    they gonna let you know what’s going on.

    Garett Southerton [00:58:08]:

    Part of the process, though.

    Garett Southerton [00:58:09]:

    It it is part of the process. And And it’s like either you gotta get with it or it could go. But you can still be gracious with yourself.

    Garett Southerton [00:58:20]:

    I am so thankful that we did this, and I I think, like, you’ve been such an inspiration to me in in so many different ways. And it’s so dope that, like, I could share some of that with my community and let people see, like, who you are and and kind of just get inspired from Your journey, where can people find you to keep up with you in in everything that you’re doing?

    Garett Southerton [00:58:41]:

    If you’re, more interested in making a professional connection, you can find me on LinkedIn Dan at JerMarco Britton. If you’re more interested in, like, creative works, you can find me on Instagram at mister JerMarco. That’s m r j e r m a r c o. And you can also find me on Twitter at that same, or you can pull up to Saint Louis, on one random Sunday and meet me at a Code and Coffee, STL edition. We meet biweekly, at Tech Artista Ucity, come on out. See what’s happening, within the tech, community here in St. Louis, and see specifically, what’s shaking with the web development scene.

    Garett Southerton [00:59:24]:

    And make sure if you’re in St. Louis that you definitely check that out. You are not gonna wanna miss it.

    Garett Southerton [00:59:28]:

    And I can show you some good food spots. Come on over. I’ll show you, man. I’ll show you, man.

    Garett Southerton [00:59:32]:

    What an amazing time it was to rap with to mark about our past and where they’ve gone and how they shaped us today. I hope this episode brought you some inspiration and helped motivate you to take one new step today. And please comment down below what your favorite part The so was, and don’t forget to hit that subscribe button. Thank you so much for watching. And remember, Brand Intentionally.

About The Author

Garett Southerton

Garett Southerton (Garett®) is an Intentional Brand Strategist & Designer that has been a professional creative for over 18 years. He helps passionate changemakers impacting the world with their abilities through intentionality in visuals and strategy as a means to not only scale their brands, but to also cultivate a community where they can truly make a meaningful change while maintaining sustainability - making an impact without sacrificing an income.

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