Mine was pretty grand when I look back at it. 10 years ago I had graduated high school and at the time I thought I wanted to maybe a lawyer, a diplomat, an entrepreneur or a beach bum. A lot of unknowns and uncertainty but what has transpired is nothing what I had envisioned and it has been quite an adventure. Here are my favorite discoveries from the past 10 years.

Major learnings of the decade:

  1. Money cannot buy you good health.
  2. I have a passion for storytelling, building experiences from scratch using technology, and problem solving.
  3. The better question to ask is not “What do you want to do when you grow up?” but rather “What kind of person do you want to be when you grow up?”.
  4. Being part of a fun and collaborative team can matter more than the actual task at hand. Being a one-man army rarely yields success.
  5. Success and happiness are two different concepts, and that happiness is something we have to work for.
  6. Finding your own personal mantra can keep you grounded and that vision boards really do work. It doesn’t have to come from a guru in an exotic place, I found mine in a newspaper article.
  7. It’s okay to ask for help, being brave is better and more rewarding than being perfect.
  8. I have an entrepreneurial mind but need to be better at bringing a few selected ideas to life.
  9. Being your own boss can be mentally exhausting and something I thought I was ready for but turns out I am not.
  10. It is perfectly normal to not know what kind of career you wanted to create or feel like you have no idea what you are doing.

Best Experiences of the Decade:

  1. Backpacking across Latin America, it unlocked my wanderlust.
  2. Staying with Buddhist monks in Japan.
  3. Living in Spain and Australia.
  4. Starting and failing with a startup.
  5. Becoming a scuba diver and discovering the stunning beauty beneath our ocean surfaces.
  6. Working in the urban slums and rural villages of India.
  7. Being admitted to an Ayurvedic clinic and trying the most obscure and ancient healing practices.
  8. The feeling you have when you figure out what elements of work energize you and happen to have a job that provides that.
  9. Watching the Denver Broncos win a Super Bowl.
  10. Watching my grandfather become an adventurer in his old age and being a part of those adventures: go down water slides, swim with dolphins, jet skiing, try to golf, see the Grand Canyon, hobble to a waterfall and taste amazing gelato in Italy.

Favorite Products/Platforms of the Decade:

  1. Slack- it’s elevated a co-workers’ personality, humor, and productivity all at the same time.
  2. Canva- it’s given me the vision of a designer in the most effortless manner.
  3. WhatsApp- it’s helped me strengthen bonds with best friends in all corners of the earth.
  4. Podcasts- this medium of knowledge sharing has delighted my curiosity.

Favorite Words of Wisdom I discovered this Decade:

  1. “All growth is a leap in the dark, a spontaneous unpremeditated act without the benefit of experience”- Henry Miller
  2. “Being kind is harder than being clever”- Space Barons, Jeff Bezos’ grandfather
  3. “If you go into a business with too many preconceived notions, it’s a liability”- Reid Hoffman
  4. “When a person really desires something, all the universe conspires to help that person to realize his dream”- Paulo Coelho
  5. “I think some things are meant to be broken. Imperfect. Chaotic. It’s the universe’s way of providing contrast, you know?”- The True About Forever, Sarah Dessen

Consumer Product Manager at HomeAdvisor. Former startup founder, management consultant, and int’l development fellow. Lived, worked and studied on 4 continents.

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