Every twist in our story, challenge we face, and obstacle we overcome is an important part of our story. These difficulties make us stronger and wiser and prepare us for what’s ahead. As we grow and succeed we may imagine that soon the challenges will fade away, but in our conversations with business owners, artists, creatives, academics, and others we have learned that the most common experience is that challenges never go away – instead they get more complex as we grow and succeed. Our ability to to thrive therefore depends heavily on our ability to learn from our experiences and so we are asking some of the city’s best and brightest: What’s the most important lesson you’ve learned along your journey?
Kazu nagahama | tv comedy actor
Life is full of excitement and so much to learn from others. Journey of life is all about how we influence to each other with positive energy. My dog Jack is my life changing companion that I enjoy my day everyday.
Erik Probst | Artist & Illustrator
So far my transition from the mid-west to Los Angeles, California has been both daunting and exciting. An important lesson I’ve learned is to not be afraid to explore and engage opportunities as they may bring on positive surprises.
Giulia Carla Beskid | Blogging Model & Content Creator
Don’t rely too much on opinions from other people. Do whatever you like and what you are comfortable with. People will always judge, so just go out there and be confident with your life choices.
Sa’Shay Moore | LA based skin and beauty specialists
The most important lesson I’ve learned in my journey so far is JUST GO FOR IT! Don’t worry about what other people may think or say as long as it makes you happy, that’s all that matters . Never doubt yourself or convince yourself to think that whatever you are doing isn’t good enough.
Have confidence In yourself and JUST GO FOR IT. I’ve also learned that everyone is not meant to be on the journey with you. Nor are they supposed to see your vision.
Rocky Levin | graphic designer & entrepreneur
The most important lesson I’ve learned would be to share everything you make because you never know who is going to like it! Even if it’s not your favorite piece of work, it might be someone else’s.
Pauline Wolstencroft | Ceramics Artist
To take risks and be patient with the process. Rushing ceramics is a terrible idea!
Jazmine Valencia | Music Marketing Executive
Don’t give up when something doesn’t go the way you hoped!
HECT!C | YouTuber & Musician
The biggest lesson I’ve learned is that LIFE is simple. I have broken everything down into the simplest terms for myself and that is if I have a roof over my head, clothes on my back, and food on my plate I have already won. So striving towards my career becomes a lot easier when not caring who’s watching. Understanding that no one’s opinion of me can affect me. Not valuing what they think, what they might think, or they will think. Not giving power to likes, followers, subscribers and short term highs to determine the success of my career. All of these things allow me to create freely without feeling judged. I LIVE stream with my brother, Brownie Sibrian, on our Fresh Brownie YouTube channel everyday and we absolutely pride ourselves on giving the best show to our subscribers whether it’s one viewer watching or a million watching.
Kelsey Walker | Social Worker | Feminist with a passion for social change and female empowerment
I would say that I am constantly learning, however one of the most important lessons I’ve been lucky enough to learn so far is that self care is not selfish. That to love oneself, especially as a woman, is vital to living a fulfilling life. We become so concerned about how we’re being perceived by people on social media, or our partners, or friends that we forget that our most authentic, unadulterated selves are worthy of as much love as we are willing to give. It’s a lesson that I will be continuing to learn from and evolve with for the rest of my life.
Valeria Simmons Garcia | Student Affairs Professional & Consultant
The most important lesson I’ve learned in my journey so far is that fear is a liar. Fear can keep someone from launching that new project/idea because it’s not fully fleshed out, from going after something because they may not feel deserving, experimenting due to failure, and so on. The reality is that we can spend too much time overthinking and letting the fear of the outcome interfere with growth.
**Trust yourself. You know what you are doing. If not, you are smart enough to figure it out.**
Shawn Pham | Chef
Always keep an eye out and be ready. You never know when a moment may present itself.
Sahar Golestani | Model & soccer fanatic
I have learned that life is too short to get bothered by negativity and hate. Anger causes such a ripple effect on your mind and body – and most of the time the things you get angry about are just not worth it. So I try to always keep a positive head space and honestly its worked wonders for me.
D. Sine Chan-Golston | Dancer and Freelance Model | Student
So many young girls imagine themselves up on center stage, dancing Sugar Plum Fairy in a beautiful tutu in front of a huge audience- myself included- and want it more than anything. However, as important as it is to have a goal in your field to keep you motivated, I’ve learned it’s equally important to be open to any opportunities that come your way. It might not be what you imagine yourself doing or even necessarily what you “want” to do, but every new experience stretches one as a person. Every new experience is an opportunity to grow and explore (you may even find yourself finding new passions!) plus, it often makes you even more desirable in your field and to others.
For me, my series of “crazy opportunities” started with shooting with the photographer that took this photo, Oliver Endahl of Ballet Zaida. After shooting with him only once, he invited me to model for his company on a regular basis. He also advised me on social media use, where I started my professional Instagram account. My newfound usage of social media allowed me to market myself as an artist. This past year alone I’ve been hired for multiple modeling gigs, featured in articles and on other accounts, invited and participated in international dance programs, and will be playing a Lead, the role of Giselle, in Alignment Cinema’s new film Spellbound!
Cléa Boitaud | photographer at Cleya Photographie and Cleya Asulon | fashion and lifestyle photographer
I’m only 22, but I think, and trust it’s going to sound cliche, that the most important thing have learned is to follow you dreams. You have to follow as much as you can what you feel in your guts, because it is this feeling that will drive you for the erst of your days. Listen to it, and you will be, maybe failing, but you will have tried, or successful and you’ll be fulfilled. Don’t listen to it, and it will become this little tiny voice saying « you had a dream, and you will never know if you were able to achieve it ». I also learn that a dream is not a goal, but a chain of several goal, leading to the achievement of yourself and allowing you to be truly and genuinely happy. It might sound to self-development advice’s, coming from me, it can appears so paltry. However, it’s the most honest answer I can write to this question. Be truthful to yourself, be brave, give yourself more than a 100% and you will realize everything you’ve been through was worth it.
Fanny Miller | singer | songwriter | half of Jacob and Fanny
Being in a creative industry, everyone has an opinion of what you should and shouldn’t be doing. The most important thing I’ve learned is to always trust your instincts and go for it! Your heart knows.
LaMeisha Davis | Dancer and Cosmetologist
The most important lesson I’ve learned thus far pursuing my interests is to wholeheartedly believe in what you are doing. Whether it be a talent you want the world to see or something you want the world to buy. Because if you don’t believe in yourself how can you expect others to believe in you?
Maricruz Gallardo | power lifter
Most important thing I’ve learned in my journey is to never give up. It might take you a while to get to where you’re going but you won’t get there any faster by giving up.
Dr. Pamela Chollet | Cognitive Behavioral Therapist | Personal Development Coach
The most important lesson I’ve learned in my journey so fa is, either you decide the life you want to live, or life decides you.
In my 25 years as a cognitive behavioral therapist, I’ve worked with hundreds of women who felt stuck, stifled and smothered after living for years trying to live up to others expectations, not expressing who they are and wind up stuck in life trying to be someone they’re not. Their negative feelings, attitudes, and beliefs accumulate over time so there’s constant voice justifying their fear, anxiety, depression, despair, self-doubt, and uncertainty.
Nicholas Naughton | Artist and host of The Print Cast podcast
It’s important to be persistent and follow through on things. Being persistent has helped me accomplish more than I ever expected. I can think of so many instances where I progressed in my life, from work to personal life, and it was because of persistence. If I push myself, I continue to grow and surpass my previous accomplishments. Anything under the sun is possible, we just have to have the courage to make bold moves in this world.
The most important lesson I’ve learned is to be your self.