Tony Bennett Was Right

Get packed, say goodbye, mentally prepare yourself, get focused.

It’s hard to believe that I’ve only been in Boston for nearly five months. Even harder to believe that I’m already packing up and leaving.

If you have either followed or explored my blog, you know that (so far) it’s about my adventures in several cities: Barcelona, San Francisco, and Boston. If you’ve really paid attention, you’ve noticed the trend that each of these cities includes a coming and going post. You’ll also notice that these posts happen to be roughly 4 months apart from each other. In other words, I can’t sit still.

Whether it’s the desire to explore or the need for constant change, I’m always moving about and people never know where I happen to be. It’s nice that I can be unpredictable but I’d also like a sense of stability.

So…California, here we come.

I knew there was something about San Francisco, even if it took a few tries for me to realize where I needed to be. It came down to priorities.

Family, Friends, Ocean, Lifestyle, care-free, Career opportunities.

It certainly helps that I have some of my greatest supporters out there. (Shout out to Joey Roth and Macy Horton).

There are plenty more reasons why I picked SF and if you are genuinely interested, you can reach out to me. In the meantime, I’ve got to go get packed. I leave next Sunday (December 6th) so if you are in Boston and are reading this, I hope we can meet before I bid adieu.

To Boston, thank you for all the good times. For reminding me how to be resilient and how to stick up for myself and for helping me recognize what was most important. Until next time…

“I Left My Heart in San Francisco”-Tony Bennett

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The Importance of Being Genuine

Found this article on LinkedIn and so I thought I would share. This is something I try to practice every day and I think ‘genuine’ is a quality I would use to describe myself…or at least something I aim to live up to.

The Importance of Being Genuine

Stung Sting Strong

 

A golden flake, I was mesmerized by your beauty. The way you shined with every flicker of light. I should have seen it coming. The sunlight radiated off of you so strongly into my eyes, leaving them stung and blind

A rose, tempted me to smell and sense each layer.  Your thorns, as much as I tried to get past them, guarded your insecurities while perpetuating mine. Reminding you of the wonder you evoked on me wasn’t enough. What could I do?

 In the end I was left with the prick of a finger and the bitterness of ever having made my soul vulnerable to you. Thorns nestled in my skin. A constant sting that only numbness could heal. 

Here I am now. Previously torn, but not broken. Stronger than ever. A woman of super strength. Super vision to see past your golden facade, which has now turned to brass, and an armor to cut past your thorns and unveil those insecurities. 

Stung. Sting. You’ve showed me what not to be. 

Strong is what I’ve become. 

Hey, You! You’re doing great!

So it’s been three and a half months into my official adult life in Boston and I will say that it hasn’t been too shabby.

Throughout this time, I’ve met with a lot of my college friends. In fact, the people I primarily hang out with are my friends from work, college, roommates or family. In the times that I have hung out with members of my graduating class or those who had graduated few years before me, a certain topic has always seemed to finagle its way into our conversations.

“How do I make friends?” and “Why does it seem so hard to make friends all of a sudden?”

It may seem kind of comical that this is an issue, but let’s break it down.

From the moment we enter school up until the time we leave it, we find our crew. We generally do this by establishing commonalities, whether through activities or personality traits, for example. The way we make friends doesn’t seem to change, but it seems like it’s just become a lot harder. Any theories on why?

Some advice I’ve received that I’ll share with you is to check out Meetup.com and Boston Social Sports. If you have any other suggestions, please send them my way.

In the meantime, I just wanted to give out a dose of some Monday Motivation:

You’re Doing Better Than You Think You Are

Until next time,

Christianne

~~~Update~~~10/29/2015

After receiving some feedback from friends and other readers, I’ve come to some conclusions that I think are best summarized by my college friend, Mark Daniel:

“1) Most friends in school are friends by default. You spend so much time together that it’s hard not to have some type of bond.

2) Instant connections in adulthood come from shared belief systems and similar dreams, but rarely do people allow themselves to be vulnerable enough to facilitate this.

3) “Working” life imposes many hard filters on us and how + with whom we spend our time. Before you know it, you’re in a routine. It becomes hard to remove those filters, and it takes very serious effort to develop real relationships.”

With that said, friendships are not going to come easy. They require hard work paired with a mixture of vulnerability and availability. As with anything, if you put in the effort, you will see results. Don’t worry if it doesn’t come fast. Sometimes the best things happen when we least expect it.

New Beginnings in Beantown

So, it seems like sticking with this whole blogging thing gets tougher as more things come my way. I’ve realized though that it is somewhat necessary to my sanity, as it gives me an excuse to make time for introspection among all the chaos. With that said, I am going to do my very best to keep momentum with my blog, starting now.

In my last post, I left off talking about my semester in San Francisco as well as the graffiti found in Clarion Alley of the Mission District. I also paid certain attention to the hustle mentality of people in the Valley.

What I failed to keep you all updated with was how I pitched my startup idea to Kleiner Perkins & Caufield Buyers (a venture capitalist firm with investments in Twitter, Google and Snapchat) and walked away from my fall semester in San Francisco with a firm belief in where I wanted to take my career: The Tech Industry. I went through my last semester of college in Boston and a Boston winter I thought would be my last. I made a solid friend group, took an amazing Spring Break road trip through The South, worked 3 jobs, took a coding class and really just made the most out of my last semester of college.

In terms of personal growth, I opened myself up to new friends. I got hurt along the way but ultimately learned that being vulnerable is necessary if I want to take things beyond surface level friendships. I learned a lot about self respect from how my friends treated themselves and I learned how to stick up for myself.

In May, I graduated. Spent the last few weeks in Boston…the most I had probably ever spent in my four years. As soon as I got on the flight back home to California, where I thought I was going to start my post graduate career, I felt like I was leaving too early.

Cue the foreshadowing…

I spent the rest of my summer in SoCal working remotely for DropMessages, a startup based out of San Francisco. I flew up to SF to see some friends I had met the semester before and united with the DropMessages team…finally putting faces to names. During my time there, I celebrated the Supreme Court’s ruling of Same-Sex Marriage at Delores Park and at the infamous Pride Parade. In my time in San Francisco, I also received a job offer to work at a software company in…drumroll…

Boston.

Bet you never saw this coming…unless the title gave it away…but neither did I!

Fast forward to August. Reunited with my family in Boston, settled into a new place in Brighton and starting my new job. Hanging with college friends, enjoying my independence. Missing my parents and friends back home, missing the nice weather and Mexican food. Adjusting to adult life, breaking negative ties, moving on. Meeting new people, doing new things.

Realizing that now is a new beginning. I have the freedom to do what I want! 

Getting used to the post-grad “adult” world has been both challenging and rewarding thus far. I’d say that overall, I have a positive outlook on it and I am enjoying this new part of my life.

Here’s a gallery of some of the fun things I have done in the last two months. Stay tuned for more updates.

San Francisco Experience Photo Gallery

Welcome to my photo gallery of San Francisco! There are 3 different galleries: Adventures, Class, and Business.

ADVENTURES

BABSON SF

BUSINESS

For the Hustlers

Today I was walking in downtown Mission, right around 16th street. I was walking the speed of light, though I’m not sure why since I had time to kill. I had a lot on my mind, and it definitely showed. Right before I entered the BART station on 16th, an artistic African-American man of probably 27 years who carried a portfolio, called out to me right after we made eye contact: “Keep that determination”, he said.  I quickly turned around realizing he was talking to me, and in that instant he turned around too and looked at me intently. We then went our separate ways.

How did this stranger understand my thoughts within the two seconds of seeing me on Mission St? He seemed like he was deep in his thoughts too…Hey, maybe it takes one to know one.

This post is dedicated to the hustlers.

The ones who could ask for help, but grin and bear it.

The ones who bust their butts working, though they live pay check to pay check.

The ones who work two jobs just to make a life better for someone else.

The ones who pay for their college education.

The ones who self-educate themselves.

The ones who try every possible road and don’t stop until they get it.

The ones to border on homelessness and starvation, but have a hunger for success.

The ones who get energized from sleepless nights.

All I have to say is that if you’re a hustler- you know it- and you love it. You know things could be better but you keep trucking along because things shouldn’t be given to you, and you don’t want it that way. You want the satisfaction. You love the thrill of uncertainty, struggle, and it is this that gets you out of bed in the morning.

Another day, another hustle. Don’t stop. Keep going. Never give up.

Keep. That. Determination.

Alcatraz

This past Thursday night I visited Alcatraz, the high security prison located on an island in the middle of the bay. Alcatraz is known for being the prison that housed infamous criminals such as Al Capone and Alvin “Creepy” Karpavicz. It was said, according to the on-site informational items at Alcatraz that: “Those who broke the rules went to prison, but those who broke the prison rules went to Alcatraz.” On my visit, I really got a good idea of what this meant. I took a tour around the cells and even stood in a room of the solitary confinement. There was an uneasy feeling as I attempted to put myself in the shoes of the prisoners. One part of the tour led me outside to the front yard which had a stunning view of the city skyline. It was amazing that such an terrible place was still in the heart of such a beautiful city. The juxtaposition of this prison and the city stood out the most in my tour of Alcatraz. I can imagine seeing the city but not being able to go was certainly tormenting to the prisoners who saw the buildings and lights just a few miles across the water. On a bigger scale though it made me think of the actual malice, danger and poverty that lied within the city. It was a reminder that while San Francisco does seem to be like a fantasy world, that there lies a darker reality that we should be cognizant of, though not too worried about.

San Francisco’s Mission District: Comedy & Graffiti of Clarion Alley

Anyone who knows anything about San Francisco knows that there is always something going on the city, whether its a Salesforce or Oracle event, the Folsom Leather Street Fair, a Stanford/USC pep rally, or a pride parade. There are of course little events going on daily that make San Francisco the charming place it is.

Last week, I visited sffuncheap.com looking for some thing fun to do on a Monday night. You can ask all my friends and I’ll agree that “Monday is the new Friday”.

So I gathered my friends and we hit a comedy club/bar in the hip, Mission District. The comedy show we attended was led by local comedians who told pessimistic, anti-jokes. One of my friends was having a bad day, so we thought these jokes might actually lighten his mood instead or worsen them. It ended out that we were right, because he was glad he came.

After the comedy show ended, we hit the streets of Mission and went exploring. We stopped at a Mexican restaurant for some “dirty tacos” which include guacamole, sour creme, and salsa and then we came across Clarion Alley.

Clarion Alley is a hole in the wall…literally. It is tucked away between 17th and 18th streets. The only thing keeping a passerby from blindly walking past it is the vibrant color that is spread through out its perimeters.

After I visited this spot, I took some time to understand its historical importance. Railroad workers gathered here and it was home to many artists and writers during the ’60s. The graffiti spread from one end to the other with images of social demonstrations, weapons, peace signs, historical and racial figures, religions,etc.

My friends and I took some photos, you can check them out below!