32: Tradesman to Entrepreneur

Tradesman to Entrepreneur | ADHD reWired

32: Tradesman to Entrepreneur

Helping people take advantage of their time and skill-sets to become more successful entrepreneurs is Daniel Bowling’s mission. After working as a talented upholstery tradesman for most of his life, Daniel started out with his own successful small company. Following personal and business fallouts that saw him leaving that company, he now hopes to motivate others like himself to follow their skills, talents, and dreams and to better use their time. Daniel talks of his personal strengths and struggles, sometimes related to ADHD, with which he was recently diagnosed.

About Daniel Bowling:

  • 29 years old

  • Grew up on a farm

  • Found his way into the trade of being an upholsterer at age 19, for which he realized he had a talent

  • Started his own successful small business in the trade, but walked away from it two years ago
  • Now seeks to help other tradesmen expand their reach and become entrepreneurs via his podcast, Middle Class Entrepreneur.

Middle Class Entrepreneur Podcast:

  • It tries to bridge the gap between tradesmen who know their trade and entrepreneurs who know the value of their time and expertise.

  • A “survival guide for the middle class”; he wants to teach people how to be self reliant
  • Tradesmen have skill sets that can follow them independent of job, yet entrepreneurship is different than self-employment
  • Wants to help tradesmen and the self-employed to be more entrepreneurial

  • A lot of business structures are similar between different trades, so connecting the people with the business is Daniel’s goal.

Self-employment versus Entrepreneurship:

  • Many self-employed people are working only for themselves in a similar way as they would at another employer.
  • Valuing one’s knowledge and using it to build a longer-lasting platform is key.
  • Making use of multiple streams of income gives people breathing room to be able to take vacations, for instance, while still making a little money.
  • Eric: parallels to running his own coaching and therapy practice while maintaining a podcast with monetization, sponsorships, and upcoming courses.

Daniel and ADHD:

  • Only diagnosed about seven months ago
  • Struggled in the past with what he thought were anxiety, depression, and even dyslexia
  • Had taken anxiety and depression medication and it never seemed to work
  • Realizes that it seems like there are many others in the small business world who were like-minded

Thinking in 3-D:

  • Daniel says he naturally understood concepts surrounding how pieces go together in terms of designing and engineering furniture.

  • Picked up AutoCAD easily
  • Doesn’t see objects at face value: Daniel will immediately question how an object was built and put together, how would it react if affected in a certain way, and deconstruct and reconstruct those objects in his mind.
  • Thinks through the logistics of uniformly matching different types of fabric patterns, seam allowances, and an estimate of the amount and format of the material needed to complete a job.
  • Eric: Compares this with his intense study and inherent understanding of nonverbal communication and body language.


  • Eric: listen to people that suggest you’re good at certain tasks and take advantage of those strengths; at the same time, don’t mindlessly tell others (kids in particular) that they’re great at tasks they aren’t.
  • Daniel: There are different ways to be intelligent. Find what you’re good at and you’re passionate about. When that intersects with a task you’re good at, that is what you should try to do.
  • Eric: “Focus on the strengths. There are so many things that we are good at and we owe it to ourselves and to other people to really focus on [them]. That’s how we’re going to make our contribution to the world, to our communities, to our families, and that’s what’s going to help us feel good about ourselves.”

Products and Services Mentioned:

Random Question Round:

  • What do you think will be the next “big thing”?

  • If you could have one super power, what would it be?

  • If you could invent something, what would it be?


  • “Success is going from failure to failure without any loss of enthusiasm” — Anonymous (Daniel attributes it to Winston Churchill)

  • Eric: “Success is a simple math equation. It’s getting up one more time than you failed.”

Find and Contact Daniel Bowling:

Other information:

  • 2014 CHADD international conference on ADHD is coming to the Chicago area November 13 – 15th

    • Come see me there!

      • My Session: “Productivity 2.0.Getting Things Done with ADHD. Strategies, Apps & other tools…”

      • 11/15 at 10:30 AM


  • Northern Illinois chapter of CHADD

    • Third Monday of every month at 6:45 PM

    • Geyslake, Illinois

(CHADD does not endorse this podcast)

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