5 Notable Life Lessons From Moving Cross Country

Five years (on July 12th) ago I landed in Los Angeles after a five day journey across the United States. I had interned in the city for two summers prior to my move and knew that I was meant to live here. I knew what I was getting into…kind of. What I did know was that I wasn’t progressing with my career in Michigan and committed to being all in in that area of my life.

I remember that in order to convince my parents that I was making a good decision I told them if I didn’t get a job in three months (the length of my sublease), I would move back. I think we all knew that regardless of what happened, I wasn’t coming back.

Case and point I’m still here, but let me tell you, I learned some things. I went through some stuff. As it turns out, city living was so much different than living on a farm surrounded by corn fields. Regardless, I wouldn’t trade these years for anything.

To celebrate, I’ve made a list of the five most important lessons I’ve learned since being a citizen of Los Angeles, CA.

  1. Trust Yourself. When you move to a new place and you don’t know a single soul, or the culture of the city, you learn to listen to your gut. At the end of the day, you find out that you know a lot more than you think.
  2. Perfect Doesn’t Exist. I thought I’d get a job working in the action sports industry right away, work my way up in the company, make a good living, have a nice house, and be married by now. I couldn’t have been more wrong. That may be, but I’m happy and that’s better than perfect to me.
  3. Living Your Passion Is Real. If I had a quarter for each time someone told me that “living your passion” was a myth, I’d be rich. The truth is, if you’re willing to commit to the lifestyle you want and go after it so fiercely that there are no other options, it’s 100% possible and real.
  4. There Is Beauty In Diversity. One of the biggest reasons I moved to LA (besides the weather) was to be the minority for once. There were only a handful of people of color in my hometown and when I moved away to college, I found diversity to be fascinating. There’s a lot to be learned from different cultures and backgrounds. I try to embrace diversity everyday.
  5. Supporting Others Is Free. At the end of the day, we all want the same thing: to be successful. The definition of success is different for every person and even if we don’t understand why another person places significance on certain things, that’s no reason to not support them in their endeavors. If another person experiences success before you, support them rather than cutting them down. Use their success as motivation. You never know when it will be your turn, but from my experience kindness and gratitude plays a huge role.