Before I begin my story, I want to share with you the most important term when it comes to achieving success. It’s a buzzword you’ve heard many times, but I will preach it until the day I die. That word is “hustle”. Taking every moment of every single day to give 100% of yourself to a certain task, led by undying passion and determination, is the one and only way to guarantee success. It’s a competitive world, you know that. To even make an appearance on the leaderboard you have to work harder to become a freelance worker than 90% of the people around you. Everybody has the same 24 hours in a day at their disposal, lack of time is not an excuse.
I received my BA from the University of Washington in Technology Innovation Management (TIM), which is a relatively new study in the world of education. TIM focuses on finding innovative ways to utilize emerging technologies in the workplace which, at the time, seemed like a relevant topic to study, given the rapid evolution of technology. My true passion however, has always been music. I justified a business degree on the grounds that my ability as an artist was already solid and did not need further refinement outside of that which I could provide for myself. I do not regret this decision.
After I received my degree in 2016, I was hired immediately by Apple Inc, with the help of a referral from a fellow musician that I had been collaborating with at the time. I was a young kid (graduated just before I turned 21), and working at a tech company like Apple really helped me understand the ecosystem of a corporation. Although I worked a steady 9-5, my 5-9 was never wasted. I spent hours each night working on music, learning about the industry and connecting with other musicians that were further along than me, in the sense of their “careers”. This hunger for involvement in the scene led me to an internship at a music event company called USC Events where, after some time, I was promoted to management and am still working to this day. Although I work as in independent contractor, I am an integral part of the team and handle all artist related servicing of hotel accommodations, transportation, hospitality and much more. I’ve had the pleasure of working with celebrity talents including Martin Garrix, Tiesto, Marshmello, Skrillex, and many others. As you can imagine, working this closely with industry top players has had an extremely positive effect on my own music career- earning me travel opportunities for performances, collaborations with notable celebrity artists and much more.
Shortly after my promotion at USC Events, I accepted a job at Amazon Web Services (AWS) and made the decision to move to downtown Seattle. At AWS, I elevated my technical knowledge to newfound levels, working closely with large corporations on services such as EC2, Route 53, S3, RDS and many more. I learned cloud computing inside and out, and became a go-to for many of my friends seeking help with their cloud related needs. I also began building websites for my friends, which led to referrals for other web development projects.
Between my music career as LOWSH, USC Events, AWS and freelance web development jobs, my schedule was pretty full. Many nights I only got a few hours of sleep, forcing myself to complete a project and start the next. To me however, this didn’t feel like work because I loved everything I was doing. When your hustle becomes doing something you love, the chances of success are so much greater. I personally like to interpret the “hustle” as a means of exercised strength, just like the muscles in our bodies. You start small and as you get stronger, you add more to the weight. By this time in my life I was feeling pretty good about my careers, so I decided to pursue another one- public writing.
Harnessing my technical knowledge, I created a blog called Millennial Moderator and started writing articles for it daily. The articles cover a variety of topics including technology, self development and pop culture, which are all things that I enjoy to study/talk about. The response from readers has been outstanding, and in July 2018 I became the CEO (just a title, really). Since then, we have seen ample growth and are in the process of hiring a team of staff to increase our productivity.
I still have a long way to go in my professional careers, but I’d be a fool to not be grateful for all that I have achieved thus far. Every single day I push myself to perform better than the day previous, and I never skip a day. Whatever success you hope to have in your life, I hope you too start today, and never ever stop.