Today we’d like to introduce you to Ed Olu.
So, before we jump into specific questions, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
Like anyone else, I like a little adventure and have many interests. One of those is ocean exploration. My passion for the ocean started long before I ever imagined that I would be a scuba diver. Growing up in Lagos, Nigeria I spent an insane amount of time at the beach but never in the water. I never even swam in the ocean. Even though I wanted to dive, I never thought I would. General fears of the ocean embedded in the back of my mind. Also, I had never seen anyone like me dive. Still, the unknown drew me. Kinda like Outerspace. It’s cool, you know it’s there, you know there are astronauts, but what are the chances of going to Outerspace? Fast forward to years later and I’m living in Southern California. I was spending even more time on the water sailing, and my curiosity about experiencing the depths of the ocean grew even more.
At a rough spot in my life, I was looking for an escape. One Saturday on a whim, I signed up for scuba diving classes. I thought I would just complete the first-level certification and be a vacation diver. But, one thing led to another and I completed the next level of training, then the next. Two years later, I became a Dive Master. I proved to myself that I could turn something that once seemed so out of reach into reality. Now, I travel the world diving and experience the world from a completely different perspective. A perspective of the bottom looking up to the underneath side of those waves that once seemed like a barrier.
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
I gave up many times on my way to becoming a Dive Master. Somehow, I always picked it up again. My training didn’t just teach me how to dive, it taught me how I cope with stressful and life-threatening situations, and then how to address and change my coping mechanisms. For instance, during one of my training sessions when I got in the water with all of my gear on, I immediately flipped onto my back and sank to the bottom, looking up at the surface. My initial reaction was panic. My arms were flailing, I was out of control. After a minute, I was able to calm down and assess the situation, identify the problem.
After identifying the problem, I asked myself how do I fix this. With a solution in mind, I then asked myself can I fix this now. If I can fix it underwater, breathing out of a tank with all my gear on, great. If not, abort the dive, resurface, and try again next time. Being in the underwater environment added pressure to the decision making process. I had to be safe and return to my kids. I didn’t expect my training to be so introspective. I learned about myself, and what I learned as a diver influenced how I looked at my life and what was going on in my life. I applied the same problem-solving process which enabled me to work through and progress in my life, despite what was going on. What started as liberation from a rough spot in life became my salvation.
We’d love to hear more about your work and what you are currently focused on. What else should we know?
This story isn’t about my business, this is about my passion to inspire people to reach for goals that they probably never imagined the could even tackle. It’s about humanity. I share my story, my experiences, my obstacles, especially my obstacles in the hope that someone else will be inspired not by me, but themselves. That they’ll see a little bit of their struggle in mine and realize that struggle is not the end. Struggle shows us where our efforts and attention should be directed to achieve what we want. Even though diving was one of the hardest things I have ever done, I didn’t fall off. I didn’t stop at just being a proficient diver, I tackled it. Mastered it, even, since I am a Dive Master. In order to share my story, I’ve picked up underwater photography and videography. I use my Instagram page to share about my diving in Iceland, Cuba, Bali, and Hawaii, to name a few.
Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
I don’t believe in luck or destiny. I believe in showing up. Commitment. Try, try and try again. That repetition, that action prepares you for taking advantage of opportunities when you see them, and some people call that lucky. Your destiny is in your actions.
- Instagram: instagram.com/ed.olu
- Other: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC4LY12b_exVDjBvPM4QV0UQ