This past year has been relatively eventful:

  • Moved back to California after spending 3.3 years in Boston
  • Sold my AMG and bought a Civic for the gas mileage and reliability (*single tear rolls down cheek*)
  • Quit my job
  • Started working on my own venture and ideas
  • Got engaged to Ada
  • Went to Burning Man, and had some really eye opening revelations
  • Etc..

Based on these life events, how I feel now, and my past 3.3 years in Boston, I want to share some things I think are important to overall happiness. The teachings hold true for me, but your mileage may vary. I’m definitely not claiming to be the first person to come up with these ideas.

  1. Push your boundaries, do things that are challenging for the sake of the challenge. Life should always feel slightly uncomfortable.
  2. Do what you love – You won’t be able to do your best work unless you love what you do. In the immortal words of the messiah Steve Jobs “Keep Looking. Don’t Settle.”
    1. Corollary to the above. Discovering love takes time and investment-  It’s very hard to determine what you love just by intellectualizing about loving it. Take the time to learn the basics, and get past the hump. You won’t know if you have a knack for something until you can perform it proficiently.
  3. Sometimes, it’s okay to let go – You can’t fix everything. There are certain things that no matter how hard you try, you can’t fix. Try to not be bogged down by things outside our control.
  4. Have a strong support network – It’s okay to need help. Especially if you are into startups and are just starting off, it can be lonely. For me at least, It’s been extremely valuable for me to have people (and cats) I can fall back on, when the going gets tough. Who are the people around you that actually care about you?
    1. Appreciate your friends –  When I moved to Boston, I realized that I had taken my friends in California for granted. In Boston, it took me over 3 years to build a support network of friends. You don’t know what you have until it’s gone. It really made me appreciate what I have here. Some ways to appreciate friends:
      1. Make time for them. Invite them out to things — don’t always be the invitee
      2. Dinner parties are always fun. Lunch, if you are short on time.
    2. You don’t have to be friends with everyone – Pretty self explanatory
  5. Be Financially Responsible –  Money buys you optionality. Debt shackles you. Once you are no longer slave to the paycheck, you start to naturally think about the things that are actually important to you. At least I did.

New Years Resolutions:

  • Become a better game designer – Design 50 puzzles/non-digital-games/digital games in aggregate
  • Become a better developer – Code at least 5 out of 7 days a week.
  • Get better at game production – Get an indie game green lit on Steam
  • Get more energy and be more healthy – Do 45 minutes of exercise at least 4 times a week
  • Improve Collaboration and Leadership – Get out of my comfort zone and collaborate 10 teams on 10 separate projects.
  • Learn Game Rendering Pipeline – Learn the basics of 3D modeling in either Blender or Maya LT.
  • Be Happier – Be kinder, nicer, and more there for friends and family.

Are there any life lessons you’ve learned that you can share with me? I’d love to hear it.

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