My Six Year Anniversary

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Six years ago today I moved to Brooklyn. It has been the craziest and most rewarding decision of my life. It’s mind-blowing to think how much my live has changed in six years, and how much I’ve learned. As I reflect, a few common themes jump out.

You Are Your Best Advisor

Very few people thought I should move to New York. My parents thought I would only last 6 months before moving back to KC1! There are moments in your life where everyone will tell you what you want to do is crazy, and you have to trust your best advisor: you. I’m not saying to totally disregard input from others, but don’t forget at the end of the day this is your life.

Don’t Be Afraid to “Pivot”

It’s hard to understate how directionless my life was when I moved to New York. I was a college dropout, I had spent the past 9 months focusing on my emo band that broke up a month after releasing our first EP. I moved out here to start a community art collective in a loft in Bushwick2.  I lived in New York for over a year before I got a job in the city as a developer. So often I hear people say,”I’d love to do X but I’ve already spent too many years as Y”. One thing I’ve learned is don’t be afraid to “pivot” your career. Want to learn to code? Do it, there are plenty of resources available for you. Want to totally switch up your career? Go for it. It’s a lot of work, but if you really want to do it the work is totally worth it.

Embrace Your Experiences

We live in a goal-oriented society. I don’t think this is inherently bad, but when I look back on the past 6 years the things I remember the most are experiences. Watching 4th of July fireworks from a Brooklyn rooftop,  getting married in central park, riding a bus with a bunch of strangers to SXSW… my personal list could go on and on. We seem to accept the idea that experiences serve as a tool towards reaching our goals. I see it a bit differently, I set goals as an excuse to create experiences.

Don’t Do It Alone

Basically everything I’ve accomplished is thanks to my family, friends and ESPECIALLY my wife, Hannah. There’s so much value placed on being “self-made”3, but being surrounded by great people makes the highs more exciting and the lows just a bit less painful.

[1] – I must say, my parents were super supportive in the move even though they thought it’d end up being short term. Thanks Mom and Dad!
[2] – In this building, really.
[3] – Like Rick Ross!