Thursday, August 14, 2014

4 Year Reflection

My birthday was two weeks ago. It has been 4 years since I graduated from college in 2010. During these 4 years - I was very impatient, I was constantly thinking that I wasn't getting enough shit done, or I was going too slow...  But wow! - I got a LOT of shit done in 4 years. When I look at all the things I've done and the places I've been - I feel so lucky and blessed to have experienced all these things and have met all these great friends. 

2010 Reflection (& 2006-2010 College Reflection)
This was the year I graduated from college. I was very hopeful of life. I had a lot of fun relaxing and going out after college. I reconnected with a lot of old High School friends. I hung out a lot with my artist friend Kalen Chock -  who really kind of mentored and helped me out with "life" after college. He connected me with some dance/ design opportunities with Boogiezone and Movement Lifestyle. During that year after college - I thought I was gonna get a job doing exhibit design and have no problems with my career. My purpose was to get a job and move out.

2011 Reflection
This was a very bitter year for me. I didn’t get the job I wanted. So I started doing freelance concept art for video games - which I thought would be awesome - but I didn’t like it at all. I took a lot of traditional sketching and paintings classes at places like Concept Design Academy, Watts Atelier, & Studio 2nd Street - which was pretty fun. I also started working at Disneyland in July doing name paintings. My motivation and purpose in life at that point was to get better at art. As a result, I didn’t bother to enjoy life or enjoy what I was doing. It was just work work work. 

2012 Reflection
I wanted to STOP taking painting & drawing classes - but decided to indulge myself by taking some fun art classes with Sean Cheetham and Nathan Fowkes at LAAFA - and also met a great friend and artist - Chris Legaspi. I had some of the best times of my life doing paintings during those classes. I was also taking some digital painting classes at Kazone with Mathias Verhasselt and Charles Lee and focused more on digital work and concept art. I was just having a great time drawing and painting. 

I also resolved to amp up my social life. I made it a priority to hang out with friends. I wanted to improve my dating life - and I made it a priority to get good at talking to girls. With the help of my “pick up artist” friends - I treated talking to girls like an “art form” and made it a point to talk to girls wherever I went. I would hit on the hit on the girls at the supermarket, coffee shop, dentist, doctor’s office, airport, San Francisco, New York - anywhere and everywhere I went. I got rejected a lot, and while I was not adept as PUA friends in terms of seducing women - I did end up making TONS of cool new friends and had the time of my life meeting new people and going to new places! My purpose that year was to just have fun and be cool.

2013 Reflection
This was the year of sadness and heartache. Remember how I said that I got really good at “picking up girls”?  Well… that eventually came back to bite me in the ass.  I got good at the pick-up lines and the "art form" - but not very good at "being myself." I kinda wanted to have a hot girlfriend just because I just wanted other people to see how cool I was.  I had a girlfriend during the beginning of 2013 - and it just didn't end well. It totally sucked.

I immediately stopped going out and meeting people. I felt guilty, sad and crappy. Instead I buried myself into books on relationships, love, compassion, empathy etc… in an attempt to find some kind of information that might salvage the relationship. Nothing was able to rescue that sunken ship - but I did learn a lot of new things reading dozens of books. 

Career wise - I started to have a laser focus on what I wanted to do. And that was theme park design! In January - I set that as my goal. By June - I had found my first contract job! I also quit Disneyland job in May 2013 and instead focused on my own name painting business: - and that gave me more flexibility as to the hours I worked. My purpose that year to was become a better person. 

2014 Mid-Year Reflection
This year has been about finding my purpose in life. I started the year off in Guatemala - painting a mural for an orphanage. I grew my name painting business enormously. I garnered many new clients for my theme park work. And I started a youtube channel called "Project Lifecoach" with my friends Jonathan and Bridget. My intent this year is to help more people, embody more gratitude and contentment in my daily life, and experience more inner peace.

These 4 years has been very DIFFERENT from what I could have anticipated. 4 years ago... I would imagined that I would just work some kind of design job and get paid. Instead I...
1) Furthered my artistic education by taking classes with master art professionals. 
2) Created painted for THOUSANDS of customers at Disneyland! 
3) Blew past my comfort zones and learned how to be more confident when talking to girls!
4) Started my own business - and learned a lot about marketing, sales and accounting along the way, 
5) Learned much about compassion, love, acceptance, empathy, and authenticity after experience much suffering and heartache. 

6) Became a professional theme park concept illustrator worked on multiple international projects including... Ferrari World in Abu Dabi and Universal Studios in Japan
7) Went to Guatemala to paint and mural and learned basic Spanish in a week! Como es ta?


1) Help Others
Garnering achievements and money for yourself feels pretty good. But... I get the feeling that I should help other people and just be a more thoughtful and considerate person. I just really appreciate when people are really thoughtful - they also seem to be really easy going and cheerful. I admire them and hope to be like that as well. 

When you are giving your time, energy and money to others, I think it's implicitly saying that "I have an abundance of those things". And the Universe gives you MORE abundance in turn! I feel that giving and gratitude are the keys to abundance. 

2) Put more effort into hanging out with friends and family
I feel that if I were to take just 10% of effort that I spent on chasing GIRLS back in 2012 - and refocus it on hanging out with friends and family - I would be SO happy! I used to spend HOURS walking around talking to girls, buying them dinner, flirting with them on the phone - why don't I spend as much effort talking and spending time with the friends and family that I have right now?!? I'm sure my friends and family would appreciate it - and I would probably really enjoy it too!

3) Exercise More
When I was in San Francisco, or New York or Guatemala walking 3-5 miles a day - I loved it! It was nice NOT to be huddled over a computer 8 hours a day. I like doing some physical activity - it feels very natural. 

To me - exercising means taking care, nurturing and loving your own body. When we prioritize money and achievements above our own body - we find ourselves never having the time to exercise and sleep. However, when we prioritize and put an emphasis on self-love, I think that we will always be able to find time to exercise and do the things we really enjoy. <3 p="">
Hope you enjoyed reading this blogpost. What have YOU been doing over the last 4 years? I bet if you were to really recount that things you've been doing - you will have a lot of blessings be grateful for! If you didn't enjoy the last 4 years (that's okay) - how would you like to change the next 4 years? Your intentions will spark thoughts, and your thoughts will manifest into actions and results! Set your intention today!