New Adventures and New Beginnings

It’s been a while since I’ve had the chance to blog or write anything for leisure. I’ve missed it. And I’ve also had a bit of writer’s block as well, combined with how hectic life has been.

So perhaps today I’ll write about my own life. As of now, I’m officially 3 years into my degree, and 8 days from now I am flying off to Toronto to start my new job. As a born and raised Vancouverite, I am leaving home for the first time ever, and I am so overwhelmed but excited for the new adventure. Everything I have wanted in the last 2 years has come to fruition. There is lots to be done during this time and I have my hands full, with not much of a chance for a break, as once I get there I’ll be hitting the ground running.

But would I have it any other way? Absolutely not.

But let me just say this. Nothing good ever comes easy. And this year, I learned a big lesson.

Sometimes when doors close on you, or you run into situations that seem like failures- it is actually re-directing you to something better and more fitting for you. And when you choose to go through life with that lens on, it makes the hard times more bearable. Looking back, I am so grateful for every experience I’ve had, every opportunity and every failure, because its honestly led me to this point in my life.

I’ve always believed that success is an iceberg. You don’t see the struggles, failures, sweat, tears, and hard work people go through- you only see the highlight reel. And that’s just not representative of real life.

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Luckily, the people I’ve surrounded myself with have been so supportive of my endeavors and work ethic. I’m really blessed to have the friends and family that I do. I’ve barely had 72 hours to process all of the above information, so it’s all still kind of surreal to me.

Time to swim in a much larger pond with much bigger fish, and get ready for exponential growth. This summer is going to change me, both professionally and personally. This year has changed me. And honestly, nothing has been the same since I first stepped onto campus 3 years ago. I just had no idea what I was in for.

Onto new adventures and new beginnings.

I’ve had the time of my life – Enterprize Canada 2014

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How do I even begin to describe the immense love and passion I have for Enterprize?

For those of you who do not know what Enterprize Canada is, it is the largest student-run entrepreneurship organization in Canada, and we aim to inspire, promote innovation, and instill the entrepreneurial mindset and passion into students and the community.

When people think “Entrepreneurship”, they automatically think of starting your own business. But it is so, so much more than that. Having the entrepreneurial mindset- that drive, passion, and desire to constantly innovate, improve, and excel- THAT is what we want people to understand. This mindset will carry you a long way and help you achieve success no matter what path you decide to pursue.

Our two main offerings are our Conference and Business Model Competition. This past weekend, our SOLD OUT conference took place at the Fairmont Waterfront, where we were able to share all our hard work for the past ten months with 250 delegates and speakers. Packed with amazing keynote speakers, workshops, an innovation challenge, the competition finals, a cocktail networking reception, and TONS of food, I just couldn’t help but feel so proud, seeing all of our long hours; our blood, sweat, and tears finally come together.

My biggest hope from the conference was that we were able to inspire and bring about a fresh perspective to our delegates. Even as a part of the Organizing Committee, I felt so inspired. The conference pushed me to think and act out of the box, to not be afraid to chase my dreams, and that I am stronger, smarter, and braver than I think. Getting up on the stage facing a room full of people with a microphone can be daunting- yet I did it multiple times (on a rather impromptu note) running on 30 minutes of sleep, five coffees, and lots of adrenaline.

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For the past ten months, these people have been my family, and Enterprize was something we were pouring our heart and soul into. The best part about working with such amazing, supportive people is that you really do become a family- sharing our lives and our progress on Enterprize with each other every Wednesday night has been something I’ve looked forward to, and I’m sad that it has to come to an end.

Personally, I have not pushed myself beyond my call of duty so much before, but that is what I just did since I joined the team in April. Go above and beyond, or go home. This past weekend (and honestly over the past few months), I’ve had the strangest mix of emotions- adrenaline, extreme fatigue, joy, excitement, stress, and peace all at once.

As I write this on the plane en route to Toronto for the next exciting chapter of my reading week, I can’t help but smile and feel nostalgic already. We made it, guys. We pulled off something amazing and brilliant and I could not be prouder of us. I have nothing but #eprizelove for all of you.

I’m going to miss sending you guys emails every week and consuming copious amounts of blue candy.

Love,

J

#eprize2014

2014 Is Upon Us! (An Unintentional Partie Deux)

Happy new year to all and especially to the wonderful people who take the time to read my blog!

Your kind words and compliments mean more to me than you know and motivate me to keep writing. My blog is just over half a year old, and it’s been an amazing journey seeing my writing evolve and the wide variety of topics that I am able to share my knowledge about. It is still a work in progress, and I am still somewhat shy about sharing my writing on social media vehicles, but who knows what the new year will bring?

I was putting together a list of New Years Resolutions today and thought that as a follow-up to my last post, it would be interesting to share what I have written for this year.

In the past, I traditionally wrote 10 specific resolutions that I want to accomplish. And even though I did just that with some friends last night, the ones I have drawn up after reflecting a lot on the past year are (mostly) unspecific to an exact part of my life, but rather encompass + apply to many different aspects of my life. This year, I am aiming not to just achieve one specific thing, but to change the way I think, the way I do things, and even the way I live to better my life as a whole. Having a few life lessons to live by has helped me tremendously and will continue to do so this coming year.

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Fingers crossed that my handwriting is actually legible. Even though I love to write, I am not artsy in the least.

Have an amazing new year, everyone! Today is the first day of the year of dreams.

(My friend Negar’s motto for 2014 which I think really says it all.)

Good luck and I am looking forward to what’s to come! It’s going to be an exciting year.

“You’ve Changed”

Is typically a phrase I hear from people I haven’t seen in years.

Do people really change? I used to believe that at the core, people just don’t change, and I was tired of people telling me that they would. But looking at myself and how far I’ve come, claiming that people don’t change would be hypocritical of me.

At the core, I believe that I am the same- I still hold the same values and have the same friendly and bubbly persona. These things are ingrained into me and will be constant, just as surely as the sun rises and sets everyday. But so much has happened in the last few years; all the highs and lows have continually shaped me into the person I am and the person I aspire to be. Things that I never thought would happen in my wildest dreams have come to fruition.

I have noticed that I am different. In the way I carry myself, in the way I interact with others. I am more confident, not afraid to make use of and showcase my abilities and talents (rather than covering them up like I used to), and no longer afraid to laugh at myself. I try really hard every day to find the perfect balance between taking the high road and not letting people walk all over me, knowing when to speak up and stand up for myself. Do not mistake this for arrogance- I am still a nice person at heart. But being confident and being nice are not mutually exclusive. I am a firm believer in treating people with respect and being aware of other people’s sensitivities.

I have pushed myself further than I could have imagined going into university. Sometimes you don’t realize that you are capable of so much until you are right in the thick of it, and you realize that you are doing just that, and that this is your life, right here and right now. A small amount of ambition can propel you further than you can fathom. I try to imagine what my younger self would think of me right now, and I think she would be proud to see that I am chasing my dreams and show no signs of stopping.

“You’ve changed.”

But is that really a bad thing? Did you expect me to remain static all these years? We as humans are continuously evolving creatures. The world is not static, so why would we be?

So much is about to change in the next few years. I am afraid, but I am so excited. As 2013 comes to a close and I start reflecting on not only the past year, but my journey over the last few years, I feel an overwhelming sense of gratitude for the wonderful opportunities I’ve had the privilege of experiencing, conflicting with a sense of nostalgia because I know nothing will ever really be the same again. I am so excited for what 2014 and the next few years have in store for me.

“Really? How so?”

“No, it’s a good kind of change. You’re more confident and mature, and I’m proud of you.”