As I turn 33, I only have one question: “How the hell did I make it here?!”
All joking aside, while there’s plenty to go in my life, it’s fun to pause, reflect, and smile on the decisions that brought me here today.
Because the brutal truth is the life I have now would be impossible if it wasn’t for several turning points: Moments where I gave up the life I was previously living and committed to something that changed my trajectory. From then on, my personality, habits, goals, and more changed and could never go back.
“A mind that is stretched by a new experience can never go back to its old dimensions.”
— Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.
Here are the biggest turning points that lead to a lifestyle I love—and I hope they’ll serve you too.
1. Learning how to talk to strangers
To say “I used to be shy” is an understatement. I never asked out a single girl until I was in my 20s and I couldn’t talk to people I didn’t know.
By senior year of college, something had to change. I couldn’t go my entire fucking life terrified to talk to people I didn’t know so I created a challenge for myself: For 90 days, I forced myself to talk to at least one random stranger every day. Then, I would take notes on every conversation, analyzing how it went and what I could do better.
It was painful. It was embarrassing. It was uncomfortable. To make matters worse, I had body image issues because I was short, skinny, and covered with acne.
Yet 90 days later, I became a new person.
From that moment on, I could talk to anyone and it transformed countless areas of my life. For example, by learning how to build rapport with strangers, I made a lot of new friends. Rather than relying on luck—or just clinging on to previous friends—I could meet people all the time, which created new opportunities and adventures.
Also, my “soft” skills skyrocketed. Communication, connection, rapport, listening…