Nobody likes online scammers.
Especially me. Why? Because they make it harder for legit people to run their businesses.
Like me! I’m one of those legit people, and all the non-legit people cause many folks to be skeptical when they meet me and learn about the programs we offer. Some folks totally miss out and turn away immediately because they assume I’m just another scammer.
But y’know something? I get it. I would be skeptical too. You can never be too safe these days.
Because of your skepticism — and mine! — part of my mission as a blogger is to help you sift through all the garbage online. It’s why I recently posted on how to avoid work-from-home scams.
When I published that post a few weeks ago, someone from my past sent me a letter in response.
It was my ex-neighbor, Rick.
(Dun, dun, duuuuunn!!!)
Rick and I were neighbors from waaay back — before I married Ben in 2011, before even a thought about Proofread Anywhere ever existed, and while I was still working my awful 9-t0-5 job.
And now — all these years later — he’s one of my students!
When I read Rick’s email explaining exactly why he trusted me and my business, I knew I had to share it here. One of the ways you can be sure my courses are not scams is to hear from people who know me, and Rick’s letter is certainly a unique way to do that.
So here’s Rick’s letter. Enjoy!
How I Know Caitlin
I first met Caitlin while living in downtown Orlando in this funky little bungalow with a crazy glass and tile mosaic on the outside wall; a landmark known by nearly everyone in Orlando. Let’s just say that anytime I mentioned where I lived, I didn’t have to give the address. It was the kind of funky that only a flower child from the ’60s could have conceived and perhaps two people like Caitlin and I could have appreciated.
Edit by Caitlin… I dug up an album of photos of our old bungalow and my old apartment! Here’s what the front looked like:
I was leasing a two-bedroom apartment in this house and Caitlin moved into the studio next to me. We were separated by a single door that adjoined her kitchen and my foyer, and we shared a common entrance where the washer and dryer were located.
It was through these portals that we shared some lively conversations and a laugh or two. Most mornings around 5:30 or so, I would hear her working out next door, pushing through the moves in the workout video and probably hating every minute of it. I mean, does anyone really like the actual workout, or is it the “getting done” part that we truly look forward to? Yeah, definitely the “getting done” part. At least for me!
I was going through a difficult time in my life with a major career change and school, as well as a pending divorce in the works. She was just getting started, having just finished school and starting a new career, working as a marketing professional for a busy court reporting agency downtown. Caitlin was a breath of fresh air with her beautiful smile and upbeat personality. She reminded me of my own daughter — optimistic and full of energy. I instantly took a liking to her, as anyone would. If you knew Caitlin, you’d agree — she is all things lovely.
Why I Completely Trust Caitlin
So let me tell you why I trust Caitlin and why I enrolled in her proofreading course without reservation.
1.) She helped me through a rough time.
First of all, I had the pleasure of getting to know her a little bit in a previous life not so long ago and she helped me. She knew I was going through a rough time and tight on money, so she offered me a temp job at the court reporting agency where she worked, helping out with a rather ambitious marketing project that had to be completed before Christmas. The logistics of the job were horrible, but Caitlin made it fun and I was able to make a little money going into the holidays. If I never said it before, thank you, Caitlin! From the bottom of my heart, thank you for thinking of me. Your kindness and thoughtfulness were the most perfect gifts I’ve ever received.
2.) She always had time for a lonely soul.
Secondly, I’m a bit older than Caitlin. One would think there’d be little interest in topics of discussion between us, but somehow we managed to relate and share some laughs and good stories. She always had something nice to say and was never too busy to chat or just listen. Caitlin often cooked and was always making something good and healthy in her small kitchen. I’d comment how wonderful it smelled and she would open that door between us so we could talk and she’d describe what she was making. I even got invited over for dinner a time or two with her and her boyfriend, Ben. Good times for sure; at least for me! You see, I was lonely and Caitlin knew it; testimony to her true nature of charity and love for people in general. A really good person, wouldn’t you say?
3.) She loves animals (yep, I’m serious!).
And thirdly, as you can clearly see from her Facebook page, Caitlin loves animals. She would often leave that kitchen door open so her cat, Dipper, wouldn’t be lonely while she was gone. Dipper was a bit skittish and I think it served to help her get over her shyness. I’m also an animal lover and the cat kept me company during long hours of study. In this short time we were neighbors, there became this sense of mutual trust and vulnerability between Caitlin and me. And in my book, a person who trusts is usually trustworthy. Something I think served us both well.
From Neighbor and Friend to PA Student
As time often does, it led Caitlin and me in separate directions. But I didn’t forget the lovely young woman who befriended me at a time when I needed a friend. Over the years I would see her on Facebook as she pursued her personal training business and did her proofreading, although I don’t remember seeing very much about the latter. She and Ben married and then, bam! Proofread Anywhere popped up and here I am enrolled in the transcript proofreading course and writing this story.
Yeah, I trust Caitlin — and so should you! As you may have noticed in her posts and videos, she is transparent with her business. She responds quickly to your emails and comments and she has been forthcoming with her struggles in getting this business off the ground so you can make a decent living doing something forthright; something you can be proud of. She pulls no punches, sugarcoats nothing, and tells it like it is. I appreciate her candor, and it’s certainly refreshing in light of all the BS online scams you’ll find elsewhere on the internet.
Caitlin is the real deal for sure. I am proud of her accomplishments and the fine young businesswoman she has become. I appreciate all the hard work she’s put into PA because I’ve started up and owned four businesses of my own, including a nonprofit. It’s no small task and takes a lot of hard work and dedication. Keep at it, Caitlin. I can’t wait to see what you and Ben come up with next. Whatever it is, count me in!
How cool is it to reconnect with Rick after all these years?! He knew the “me” I was wayyyy before starting this blog, and I’m so glad he’s back in my life. And while I definitely didn’t realize I was making any kind of impact on Rick at the time, this story proves that the little things can make a big difference.
What makes you trust someone? Are there certain qualities or actions you look for in a person or business? Have you ever had a friend pop back into your life when you least expected it? Lemme hear about it in the comments!
What I look for in people is authenticity. I know that sounds a bit trite, so please allow me to explain. I am outgoing, sometimes talk too loudly, and am generally an exciteable person– the more excited I get, the louder I speak — I’m sure everyone has met someone like me. But the big thing is I say what I think. Not everyone likes that, but that’s ok. 🙂 Now I look for other open-book or “authentically themselves” types. I find it very hard to trust a person who always has a secret or won’t share their thoughts on anything. How can you know what a person is about if they don’t speak up? (My mom always said perhaps not everyone wants to know every thought that pops into my brain, but that’s another story ;))
HAHA! It sounds like we’re birds of a feather!! My mom says the same thing. I also “think out loud” a LOT, and I find that it helps me write clearer.
This is so beautiful! And that bungalow is awesome!