It’s you from 2015. I know, its unbelievable. I’m writing you to share some hindsight. A few things you should know:
Don’t convince your uncle to purchase the embroidery machine. It’s easy to learn and use but you haven’t thought about all the other hidden costs and risks. Just go online, or in the yellow pages and find another embroiderer. Your margins are great right now. I know you’re worried about all the things you don’t know about running a legit business, but everyone starts there and you’ll pick it up along the way. Also ask around about webstore development, it’s not as hard as you might think. If that fails, just sell them on ebay until you stack enough to buy a real site. Don’t worry about the quality of the shirt. It just has to be good enough. You can improve over time. Lastly, stop looking to Ralph Lauren/Vineyard Vines for inspiration. Just make the stuff you want to wear. I can’t stress that enough.
Give up the hoop dream. I believe in your potential on the court but your heart isn’t in it. It’s a means to an end for you, and you aren’t there for the joy of the journey. It will continue to be an uphill battle. You have nothing to prove, let it go. Play varsity this year, but let your goal be to have the most fun possible. Treat it like art, don’t compare your game to anyone else’s, embrace your uniqueness. Remember what you love about the game: creating opportunities for teammates to shine. That’s a theme in your life, embrace it! You’re not a scorer, you have that ability but that’s not what you enjoy the most. It’s ok to work on your game, but do it based on fun. Instead of trying to systematically improve every weakness, just pick the most interesting and fun moves like Ginobli’s eurostep.
Go to Providence College. They’re the only school offering you a full ride. There’s a financial crisis on the way and it will be difficult for you to find loans. Also debt sucks, big time! Stay away from it at all costs. Study marketing and finance. Don’t take any info at face value. Question everything. Don’t be bound by the professors’ expectations, own the situation, make your standards higher than theirs. Read everything that is remotely interesting. Utilize every resource there. Read outside of assigned text. Let yourself gravitate to the most interesting things/people/topics you can find. Read What Customers Want by Anthony Ulwick.
Don’t worry about church. You’re going to leave at some point to find your own connection. Check out anything written by Abraham Hicks. You don’t have anything to prove. You’re worthy the way you are. Don’t try to save the world, or change people’s perspective. Live a joy-driven life. Do what resonates with you. Everyone is connected to the same eternal power, when they’re ready to realize that, they will be guided by their own internal guidance system. The best you can do is demonstrate your power through the life you create. Those who align with what you believe will gravitate to you, those who don’t will be repelled. Let it be organic. Also, virginity is overrated. It’s good for feeding your ego but it’s not as fun. Enjoy yourself but be responsible. Don’t get caught up on any one person. There are MILLIONS of women, and probably a thousand who are fantastic matches for you. Put off a committed relationship until your 40s. Just have a great time. If there’s is a girl you really like spending time with, do it at much as possible. Let fun be the goal, it doesn’t have to “go anywhere.” Also, keep lifting weights, and don’t cut your hair, let it loc, then grow a beard. Trust me.
After school, move to San Francisco. Intern with IDEO, Y Combinator, Chris Sacca, or Andressen Horwitz. Learn how to code. It will teach you how to think more clearly, and open a TON of doors. If you come across any start up ideas that you like, only participate in the things that you believe in, and really want to use. You can’t really go wrong that way.
Authenticity is everything, aim for that. Every relationship in your life depends greatly on the relationship you have with yourself and your dreams. Stay true and life will be smooth. Get clear about your beliefs and share them on a blog.
* If you’re reading this and you’ve played a part in my life over the past 10 years, I believe we would have met at some point regardless.