Another Year With Another Moment of Reflection

Year TwoI’m a bit behind on this, but nevertheless I thought I’d mark this occasion once again. If you’ve been keeping track of my adventures, you might be aware of the significance of this month…it marks my second year here in San Francisco living out what might be considered my dream…and there have certainly been some ups and downs compared to my last post highlighting my inaugural year.

My whirlwind adventure started off good with going out to meet people and I’m thankful with the way things turned out…having met some really great people and even had some really great opportunities. Sure, I’ve been to a lot of parties, events and conferences – I’ve had people joke that I’ve been out to more parties now than I did when I was in college, which is very true, but I think that these are all part of the building process – I’m here to build up my network. So while in my first year of living independently here in the Bay Area has been full of doubt and insights, has my outlook changed one year later?

Change is good

Over the past year, I’ve set out to continuously find the next job opportunity for me. I’ve been on a couple dozen interviews and met some really great people – way too many business cards…all of which extend from me simply not being an introvert. I must say that while most of year one was spent on the unemployment line being what people termed as “funemployed”, year two wound up being one where I was frequently employed – starting from my nice stint doing social media strategy for a great company run by Jeremy Toeman (@jtoeman) at Stage Two and then picking up my recent job at Kane & Finkel doing, of all things, web project management minus any social media or relation to tech.

And for those that know me, I’ve been pretty accommodating with the latest tech and social media craze so it’s a bit refreshing to have a great gig where I’m not thrust into it all the time. Nevertheless, it’s now a more constant job and I’m afraid that it will force me to change again – no longer will I be able to attend every event, meeting, party that I want to…it just won’t happen…gotta focus on my job.

Reflecting on things past

Over the past year, not much new stuff has happened in my time here. I must say that if anything, I’ve been growing up some more and doing some interesting things. By becoming great friends with folks like Larry Chiang (@larrychiang) and Brian Solis (@briansolis), I’ve been able to meet some really great celebrities like MC Hammer (@mchammer) and Chamillionaire (@chamillionaire) and even get some remarkable opportunities like never before – probably the biggest thing I’m happy about over the past year is going on the Price is Right with really great friends including Robert Scoble (@scobleizer), Brian Simpson (@bsimi), Owen Stone (@ohdoctah), Krystyl Baldwin (@krystyl) and Drew Olanoff (@thatdrew) and even getting to talk to Drew Carey (@drewfromtv) and get a photo with him after the show! How absurd is that?!?

And I must say that while not exciting for most people, for me personally, I’ve been able to really experience a lot of things in my profession and am constantly searching for that next high. Frankly, I don’t know how people in the Silicon Valley area can do this for years…these type of people are incredible.

Connecting the dots

As I start my third year here in the Bay Area, I’m wondering what will happen next. I’ve been fortunate to have worked on some cool stuff, both pro bono and also for pay…and then there are those times when I’ve just been burned. Nevertheless, I’m grateful for the friends that I’ve made along with the cool things I’ve got to do, like continually working with Shashi Bellamkonda and Steven Fisher at Network Solutions where I continually write for their Solutions Are Power blog and also still contribute my periodic posts to Bub.blicio.us covering the latest events.

Even my photography has started to take off a bit which I’m grateful for. I’ll admit that I’m not the best photographer, but I love doing it…and who knows what will happen within the next year. To help separate the two hobbies: marketing & photography, I made a clean break by starting a new site devoted to just my photography: Snapfoc.us. Unfortunately, I had hoped to have this site up, but decided that I would build up my own WordPress theme which has sadly stalled. But my experiences in doing photography professionally has grown here and been nurtured…I’ve been lucky enough to hang out with some outstanding photographers – many who are more skilled than I, including Kris Krug (@kk), Thomas Hawk (@thomashawk), Brian Solis (@briansolis), Lisa Bettany (@mostlylisa) and more!

In my last post reflecting on a year here in the Bay Area, I talked about some doubts about where I would move to, and those still linger, but would it be worth me pursuing now that dream of a job in Seattle, Los Angeles, New York or anywhere else? Probably, but I think my heart lies here in San Francisco. Sure, jobs are starting to come back, but what I seem to be noticing is that it’s a freelancer’s paradise in SF with a lot of my friends being contractors or entrepreneurs. It’s astonishing to see how many have moved from place to place and have become really successful. I only wish that I will be that fortunate in the near future…

And so now we come to a conclusion of this post leading up to the start of another 365 days in the SF Bay Area. What awaits me in the next 12 months? Who knows…but will I be here to celebrate the fun, parties, jobs and wacky adventures? One will only have to check out my Twitter stream or view my photos to find out.

Off to the races…

Image Credit: iotdfi / sxc.hu