Part 3: Journey to Happiness Engineer at Automattic! What Happens in a Year!

This is Part 3 of the series Journey to Happiness Engineer at Automattic! You can find the first part and second part!

The Roots

This day last year, I wasn’t the happiest person. I followed the rules of graduating college and getting a job; however, it seems rules are meant to be broken to get further in life.

After graduating college with a BS in Information Technology, I got a full-time Systems Engineer job in the city. It would have been great if I got paid more for being in the city, but I didn’t. As a result, the struggle to pay my bills, having trouble adjusting to the real world, and the long hours I worked provided no assistance to a healthy and happy mind.

One day in July, I came back from a strenuous day of work. I called my significant other, Holly, and complained again about my current life situation. She listened intently, paused, then said something so simple, yet so powerful.

“Then do something about it!”

It shocked me back to reality. I realized I was one of those graduates that blame everything on outside events instead of focusing on what’s inside and changeable. This realization lead me on a path of pursuing meditation, business, and positivity. It progressed to the point of finding Automattic.

In April 17, 2017, I managed to grab my life and change direction. I became a Happiness Engineer for the distributed company Automattic. I began working from home, traveling the world, and experiencing a world beyond imagination. I decided it’s time to let y’all know what’s happened since becoming an Automattician and how 2017 changed my life!

Remote Work

Working from home is like the new American Dream. When I mention I work from home, people always say “You’re soo lucky! I wish I could work from home!” To this, I usually say, “Yeah it’s pretty cool but it’s still tons of work.”

There is a misconception that working from home equates to work getting ten times easier. Rather, it’s easy in some aspects and harder in others. Working for home is NOT for everyone. It requires mental strength and focus. Being able to switch from work to home mode is not a simple task. You’ll be working and mail comes to the door or you notice your room is a mess or you notice the dishes need to be cleaned. Small distractions can get you out of your flow easily, ending in little or no work done.

Personally, I remedy this mainly with music. There’s a select few playlist I use to really get me in the zone. These playlists are usually instrumental in the genres of chillhop, funk, jazz, or hip-hop. With my noise-cancellation headphones, music bumping, and work windows open, I transport to my own world. Other ways are by working outside the house at a cafe. This also opens opportunities to meet new people consistently and change your environment often. It’s all about keeping the balance of work and play.

Traveling

It’s been a decade since I’ve been in the sky. Two weeks into Automattic, I was on a flight to San Diego. I’ll admit, it was my first time on a plane alone and don’t remember the feeling of taking off from the ground. However, the adrenaline of being on my first work trip and meetup with my new colleagues was enough to diffuse the worries of the trip there and back!

My first team meetup with Automattic is a trip that will be an ingrained memory. It symbolized that my life changed for the better. I entered the world of remote working for the best distributed company in the world! During my trip to San Diego, I danced on screen at the Padres game, saw gorgeous red pandas, visited a zen garden, and had some of the best fried chicken to date! Since this trip, I’ve gone to Boston (work), Whistler (Grand Meetup), Ecuador (Personal), Nashville (WCUS), and Miami / Norwegian Cruise (Personal). I’m super grateful for what I get to experience now and do not take it for granted. I even get to take small trips to see my family more often which, even though I need to work on, helps bring me closer to them. This experience of traveling and going around the world at my age is very rare and I find myself lucky where I am now in my life.

Experiences

“A person’s success in life can usually be measured by the number of uncomfortable conversations he or she is willing to have.”

– Tim Ferriss

A distributed company means that my colleagues live in countries across the globe. This comes with a language barrier and many uncomfortable conversations. However, I learned from speaking with my various colleagues at the GM that the language barrier is just a veil. Once broken, it unleashes a world of knowledge. Through my colleagues and trips around the world, I gain better understanding of the differences between my world and other’s.

I’m grateful and humbled by my colleagues/friends because through them, I get to learn about different cultures, languages, and lifestyles. A colleague of mine, Nagesh, teaches me a small bit about Indian culture each time we talk. I’ve even learned how to say “Good Morning!” in Sanskrit / Hindi, Su-Prabhaat! How Nagesh lives in comparison to how I live is different but I get to learn from his world each day which is something I’m happy to always hear about.

One thing to take away is that happiness and teamwork can be universal even through a language barrier. Our creed undoubtedly symbolizes who we are and it shows through my daily conversations within my team residing from Canada to Vietnam.

The Synopsis

There’s really not much to say about the past almost nine months at Automattic. I’m comfortable here and I expect to be here for a good portion of my life happily enjoying what the world and work has to offer. Last year, I never imagined being on the other end of the of these posts. Since I joined, I haven’t posted at all and 2018 seems like the year to begin showing y’all my life in Automattic. I’m glad you have read this far into my journey and I look forward to taking you on this trip I call life!


Should You Apply?

That’s honestly up to you. If you resonated with any of my story, felt that a Happiness Engineer is in you, and have the work ethic for it, go ahead! If you wish to contact me about it, feel free to! I’ll be waiting for your email, future Happiness Engineer! We’re always hiring! 🙂

Part 2: Journey to Happiness Engineer at Automattic! Becoming an Automattician!

This is Part 2 of the series Journey to Happiness Engineer at Automattic! You can find the first part and third part!

Where We Left Off

Last time on Journey to HE at Automattic, our hero discovered Automattic, did the research along with meeting Automatticians, and submitted his application to becoming a Happiness Engineer! In the months to come, he spent countless hours researching working on the WordPress.com forums helping anyone and everyone he could. Each day he vowed to do at least 15 tickets a day. This resulted in 369 replies in December and 753 replies in January. Then, on the fateful day of January 16, 2017, he received an email…

The Timeline

January 16, 2017 started the journey to my new life. I got an email (Thanks Pam!) from Automattic and set course to becoming a Happiness Engineer! The timeline for me can be found below; however, everyone’s timeline varies greatly!

  • 12/12/16: Application sent
  • 1/16/17: First email with assignment
  • 1/25/17: First Interview
  • 1/26/17: More ?s similar to forums
  • 2/1/17: Second Interview & Trial Acceptance
  • 2/13/17: Trial Start
  • 3/20/17: Trial End
  • 3/31/17: Matt Chat
  • 4/17/17: START DATE

As you can see from this timeline, I passed! It started with the assignment and interviews. They weren’t too bad and were more on seeing your ability to problem solve and your current understanding of WordPress. However, the trial was a monster of its own.

The Trial

The trial experience is not for the faint of heart. You really need to give it your all in these coming weeks. Everything around you becomes null and void and the trial becomes your life. For context, I was working a full-time job alongside my trial. My weekdays looked like this:

  • 6AM – 7AM: Wake-up and get ready for work
  • 7AM – 8AM: Commute to work
  • 8AM – 5PM: Work as IT Consultant
  • 5PM – 7PM: Commute home and have dinner
  • 7PM – 12AM: Trial work at Automattic
  • 12AM – 6AM: Sleep

On the weekends, I generally worked as much as I could. Somewhere around 7-10 hours per day. I took good amount of time into the trial and did my best to work hard and stand out. I’ll summarize my weeks briefly.

Week 1 — Organized Chaos

The first two days of training were intense! The training goes over all of the basics of what HEs use on a daily basis. On the third day, you get thrown in. The gif accurately describes what it feels like internally and externally on that first full day on your own! You walk in all excited and ready with your food (tools), take a look around, see many situations (tickets) everywhere, and just stare in disbelief. Also, I love Community and Donald Glover a lot.

The first week consisted of getting my footing and establishing what I knew about WordPress.com and enhancing it. It turned out that everything is organized chaos. When you read, “Welcome to the Chaos!” on your first days, they aren’t joking! That’s why you also get an awesome buddy (Hey Drew!) to help you out!

Week 2 — Let’s Talk Now

Support takes a turn when switching from helping via email to live chatting with the user. When live chatting, the user is there in real-time like you were talking to them without a picture of who they were. With a8c, I feel this is the most important aspect of support within the company and its goals. Providing consistent live chatting worldwide sets a whole new standard of supporting. Being able to provide high quality support, in real-time, and around the world is the biggest game changer in supporting our users. Also, we’re doing our best to keep a 24/7 presence as we go.

The second week proved that my mentality of support is right but my responses need adjusting. Coming from an IT background, it’s hard to break the habits of being straightforward with the user rather than actually trying to help them. I was told we need to teach others how to fish instead of fishing for them.

Week 3-5 | The Flow

As the weeks went on, it got better and better. My buddy gave me more tips on each feedback on what to do better, tools to use, dealing with tough users and general fixes/habits to my speech or formatting. Happiness Engineers always provided support and encouragement whenever we conversed through DM or live chat and the support felt like it came from everywhere! If you’re thinking that you won’t get to talk much with your colleagues in a distributed company, you got the opposite thought. As they say, communication is oxygen! If you’re not talking and working with others, things can go wrong!

It surprised me how well everyone communicates in one fluid motion. Got a question or need clarification? Someone checks and gives direction. It’s about time to go and need to transfer? No worries, someone’s got it, go live life. Need something tested? You got it! Slack provided such a great gateway to communication I never imagined was possible! Everyone worked efficiently and in-sync (or should I say, async 😉 ). You can go to any channel for even more depth to your questions! It was great seeing all the different sides of a8c through one platform itself.

When it came to the users, they were fantastic! I began feeling like a Happiness Engineer with how the users reacted and feedback went. If I had to choose a favorite chat through this whole trial, it would be where I became a travel agent for a user. To briefly summarize it, a user was asking on how much a trip to WordCamp USA is from Italy. At first, I was hesitant to help since it was only tangentially related to WordPress. But, it ended with me helping them with finding prices, giving some information on America in general, and answering questions about a8c. It was a long chat that I thoroughly enjoyed.

Matt Chat

The weeks passed by with ups and downs. Eventually, I was given one last project to work on. I completed the project within a day and sent it in. In a few days, I was told I passed my trial! After a bit, I was allowed to ping Matt and waited. This wait varies but I got lucky and got a reply the next day! The chat lasted 8 hours with a positive end! Afterwards, I received my offer and waited to start after my two weeks at my now previous job are over.

Epilogue

This whole adventure felt like a punch in the face to my world. What I realized is that it’s a new story beginning to a new me. From day 1 of the trial, I felt like I belonged. I got lucky and also had Anne, who I previously met in person, as one of my trainers. I felt like part of the family by the end of it. It seemed pretty effortless to feel a part of it, which is mostly thanks to the a8c environment.

I had my ups and downs through it but the whole experience has been positive. The downs were mistakes I made and learned from or the frustration/nervousness I had at times. Who doesn’t have those days? I learned that it’s about consistently improving and doing your best for the users, the company, and yourself. If we do so, we’ll continue to grow each aspect seamlessly.

The only thing that I will not look back on in this trial is the 70-90 hour work weeks between two jobs while sleeping only 5-6 hours per night. Now that it’s drawn to a close, I finished knowing I did my best and I’m proud to say I’m a new Happiness Engineer for Automattic!


Should You Apply?

That’s honestly up to you. If you resonated with any of my story, felt that a Happiness Engineer is in you, and have the work ethic for it, go ahead! If you wish to contact me about it, feel free to! I’ll be waiting for your email, future Happiness Engineer! We’re always hiring! 🙂

GO TIME: SERIOUS MODE ON

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Today Is The Day

It’s finally here! Today marks a new beginning. I don’t know what to expect. Anything can happen. I will be pushed down. I will go through many hardships. I will get lost on the way. But, I WILL persevere! I’ll find the paths needed to get to the main road! It’s chaos time and I’m ready to take it head on. Watch out world, here comes a new superhero! His name is Erick. He has solar-powered confidence and a genuine smile of getting work done! If Chance can get a grammy, I can get this goal! Time to put one foot in front of another every day. Given time, there is no problem that’s insurmountable.

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via Seriousness

 

Hear Your Inner Music

When was the last time you listened to yourself?

The distractions of today keep you in an endless loop of being “busy” all the time. Being controlled by thoughts and emotions creates a disruption to the real you.

Take some time to listen to the music your life plays. It’s a unique album filled with soundtracks playing your life’s tune. Let it spin without scratching the record or stopping the beats. Take a moment to sit and listen. What is your life trying to tell you? Should you take that leap? Should you live those dreams? What do you TRULY want? Sit and listen to it.

Meditating provides a method to listen to yourself. During a session, you’ll have the ability to become in tune with the rhythm your body plays. You feel the sensation if your skin—the aura that is your soul radiates out to the world. As you breathe in, you notice how your body is feeling at the current moment. As you hold the breathe, you recognize what is going on inside and accept it. As you breathe out, you release the negative thoughts, emotions, and sensations that have accumulated without your permission. Be in the moment with who you are, the thoughts floating around, and the emotions you feel. Acknowledge it and regain your composure.

Listening to yourself everyday will create a change in your life. Do it in the morning to assess how you’ll go about your day. At night, take some time to reflect on the day. Understand what you can do differently tomorrow to change the pace towards the direction you want to head. Listen to the music in your heart. Dance with it. Don’t let it play on its own.


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via Heard

Replace Everything BUT Yourself

Everything Is Replaceable Except You


The World of Things

Everything we have right now can be replaced within a year. If we break a phone or have our contract up, we get a new one. If a car breaks down, we buy another or find another means of transportation. We dislike our job and we go and find another. If you lose a friendship, you gain another. You (hopefully) change clothes each day. Almost EVERYTHING can be replaced these days. But, the ONE thing you can’t replace is yourself.

Why EVERYONE is Unique

In the history of this world, you have had an experience UNLIKE anyone else. Every moment of your life, even as you read this, is unique. No one will read this at the exact time, place, location, age, gender, race, etc. as you. YOU made that moment happen. Your whole life experience in relationships, jobs, talent, etc. are entirely different from anyone else. Even twins are different since birth. If you think about it, it’s because of our ability to think. We create a world of possibilities within our minds. Each mind creates many different thoughts and opinions that even AI can’t reach.

One can argue that history repeats itself, that patterns happen throughout time. That may be true, but everyone’s overall experience are different. We may experience SIMILAR situations, but never the SAME EXACT moment.

Think of all the conversations you ever had. They are irreplaceable. A conversation between you and another person happened at a unique moment. We’ll never get back each passing second. Stare for a second, you’ll see one go. Then another. Then another.

We will never get the moment of the NOW back. NOW is important to living. If you’re living in the past or future, you’re wasting time not being present to the moments that happen at this very moment. Take a second to not think and look around you. Take a breathe and feel how the breathe goes in, then out. You’ll notice how important the NOW is.

If You Don’t Like Yourself, CHANGE YOURSELF

Stop rejecting who you truly are. Personally, disliking yourself leads down a road of more darkness and negativity unlike any other. If you stop thinking so negatively and begin to be positive towards yourself and those around you, a change happens.

For example, I used to HATE working at Dunkin Donuts in High School. Everything about it sucked. I worked after school and on the weekends along with helping my mom deliver newspapers at 2AM then heading to work right after. Every time I came in, I did my job and waited to leave. I left when my shift was over without a care in the world.

At one point, I hated this way of thinking. I decided to change it up. For one week, I’ll be nice to everyone and go above and beyond to see if there’s a difference in my job. Within a week, the customers seemed happier, the job went faster, and regulars even requested I make their coffee/sandwich sometimes. Overtime I came to consistently give my all in the work I did and with a smile. Changing to a positive outlook will open up a a new world where even the worst people have a hard time getting mad at you. It gave me the social skills to even write these blog posts I do today.

If you really don’t like who you are, you’re missing out on a great person. You can replace everything in your world as much as you want. At the end of the day, you’ll still find an emptiness inside. You’ll only begin to be fulfilled once you look to better yourself and those around you. Some days will be tough, but the more you give, the happier you’ll be at the end of your life.

Don’t hate who you are. YOU are unique with a world no one other than you has ever experienced. Love who you are, change the parts you don’t like, and keep moving forward. You deserve to be the best version YOU want to be. Keep moving forward.


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You Are Cordially Invited to Attend Your Life!

“Those who know do not speak. Those who speak do not know.”

— Lao Tzu

Dear Reader,

You are cordially invited to attend the ceremony of living YOUR life!

You have the opportunity to live the life you desire; yet, you choose to live a life of mindlessness instead of mindfulness. Take a moment to be in the now. I encourage you to take a couple of minutes to close your eyes and take 5 deep breaths. Sit with your back straight and relaxed. Chest out like a gorilla (not too much here). Breathe in for 5, hold for 5, and breathe out for 10.

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Taking the time in your day to breathe mindfully invokes a change within you. You begin to feel happier, more at peace with yourself. Life situations begin to slow down. Remember, you live this life through your decisions and actions. No one else controls your body and mind. The main factor stopping you is the excuses. Keep in mind that how you react to anything matters most. You can either yell or stay calm.

I don’t know everything, I just know that you have the choice to live a life you desire through all the situations life throws at you. I’m just here to give you a push in the right direction. Work hard in silence and let your success make the noise. Know that there is more to your life. You can do it, I believe in you. I hope to see you in the life you’re meant for.

The Now.

Your Now.

Your Life.


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Daily Prompt: Renew You BEFORE 2017

It begins now.

I wrote in a previous post about my enthusiam for 2017. While it is exciting to have a New Year, it’s also funny. People dictate themselves based on time more than they should. That a New Year will be the cause of change. The effect of this New Year will bring a renewed you.

It won’t. It never does.

A New Year creates a new 365 days. It doesn’t create a renewed you. The only method to change is by acting now. You can’t wish for change. You need to BE the change. You know the saying.

“Be the change you wish to see in the world”

~ Gandhi

But I won’t use this quote. From this report, Gandhi’s words were reshaped for today’s minds. Brian Morton explains the following:

Sure enough, it turns out there is no reliable documentary evidence for the quotation. The closest verifiable remark we have from Gandhi is this:

“If we could change ourselves, the tendencies in the world would also change. As a man changes his own nature, so does the attitude of the world change towards him. … We need not wait to see what others do.” 

Here, Gandhi is telling us that personal and social transformation go hand in hand, but there is no suggestion in his words that personal transformation is enough. In fact, for Gandhi, the struggle to bring about a better world involved not only stringent self-denial and rigorous adherence to the philosophy of nonviolence; it also involved a steady awareness that one person, alone, can’t change anything, an awareness that unjust authority can be overturned only by great numbers of people working together with discipline and persistence.

You can have a personal transformation. It will be a start. It will get you on the path of change. The path can only be set in stone if you begin to surround yourself with others that are going down the same path.

For example, it’s a fact that a big New Year’s resolution is losing weight/going to the gym. Most people start the first week of the New Year. Come February, the percentage of people going to the gym drop drastically. They don’t create a concrete path towards their goals. You know how I started going to the gym everyday? I had a friend dedicated to going to the gym and wanted someone to join a certain gym with him. That was me. From then on, thanks to him, I go to the gym almost everyday now.It was because someone else helped spark a change that turned into a habit.

Don’t wait for the New Year. Don’t wait for anyone else. Get up and do what you KNOW deep down inside that you NEED to do. Not what you WANT to do. DO IT NOW.

I’ll tell you what you already know.

  • It’s going to hurt
  • It’s going to be hard
  • It will feel like nothing is working
  • You will cry
  • You will make mistakes
  • You will fail, A LOT
  • You will get pushed down
  • Everything will not go your way

Among these problems,—and all negatives associated—there are methods to overcome them. You can face them before they happen. Tim Ferriss has a method called fear setting that can help.

Begin by thinking of a goal that is important to you but that you’ve kept yourself from attempting, and divide a piece of paper into three columns.

  • In the first column, write down all of the things that could go wrong should your attempt fail. Think of the most terrible things possible.
  • In the second column, determine ways that you can mitigate the possibility of each of those bad consequences from happening.
  • In the third column, think of how you would recover from each of the scenarios you imagined and wrote in the first column.

By expecting fear, you will be prepared when it arrives. It’s okay to have fear and nervousness. It’s natural. Let it come. Embrace the negatives and work with the positives.

This New Year will not bring a new you. YOU will bring a new you. Today—right nowIS your time to change. You will change yourself for the better. You will take the proper actions towards living the life you want. You will create a concrete path and become renewed..

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via Renewal

Daily Prompt: ENTHUSIASM FOR 2017!

New Year, New You!

About a week and a half until 2017! Are you prepared yet? I definitely am! Why? What’s not to be excited about next year? There’s a whole new year of OPPORTUNITIES just waiting to be unlocked within you! THREE HUNDRED AND SIXTY-FIVE DAYS of creating your best year ever!

There are approximately 8,760 hours in a year. If you work an average of 40 hours a week, you get an average of 2,080 hours working per year. If you sleep 7 hours each day, you get 2,555 hours per year. That leaves you with 4,125 hours to work towards your passions. How do you spend those hours? I’m not saying that you should use those hours ONLY to spend time on your passions but if you at least take half of that, 2062.5 hours, you get about 86 full-days worth of working on YOUR PASSIONS.

I know that it sounds rough. My main point is that you can really change who you are if you put in the work for it. There’s a finite number of days for you to live. Why waste it on anything else but doing what you love to do, then turning it into your career? The reason I say this is because once I changed the way I look at my life and how I live in it, I felt enthusiastic about each day. Not to say everyday was perfect but most days were great because I allowed them to be.

If you want to change your outlook on life, I’m currently reading a book called Antifragile by Nassim Nicholas Taleb and Disrupt You! by Jay Samit. Most people are fragile to life, they can’t take the unexpected. Why not learn how to be different? To gain from disorder that is called life. Look at mother nature, she has been thrown some of the worst cards in human existence but still pushes forward each day to continue to grow and stay lush so life can exist on this home we call Earth! Look to become antifragile in everything that happens to you and learn to disrupt your life to create the future that you invision for yourself.

It’s a new year coming up. How will you adjust to it?

 


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via Enthusiasm

Part 1: Journey to Happiness Engineer at Automattic! The Adventure Begins!

This is Part 1 of the series Journey to Happiness Engineer at Automattic! You can find the second part and third part!

Hey, you! Smile!

Whenever you think of a smile, you suddenly begin to feel your lips turn towards the ceiling from side to side. Something in your brain stops you for a moment. You feel a bit brighter, lighter than you had a second ago. Your mind releases a bit and the world shifts slightly. You feel a calming for a moment. You gain… happiness.

Googling “happiness” explains that

Happiness is a mental or emotional state of well-being defined by positive or pleasant emotions ranging from contentment to intense joy. Happy mental states also reflect judgments by a person about their overall well-being.

Happiness does not always come naturally; nevertheless, studies show every single person can control exactly 40% of their happiness. Scientists have determined that your happiness level is a result of a complex interaction of genes, behaviors, and life circumstances. This means that even though factors play into your happiness, you can decide each moment if you want to be happy or not. That’s where Automattic comes in with their Happiness Engineer position.

Working To Live Or Living To Work?

I’ve always lived in the moment. All my life, I rarely thought of consequences and always took action. When faced with decisions in relationships, finances, or ultimatums, I always leaped towards one direction that was positive for me. I never looked back after a decision was made. To me, life was just moving forward and doing the best you could along the way! If you’re given something, give it all you got!

I discovered Automattic a few weeks ago on November 21st and was immediately hooked. Their company, culture, values, and general outlook on life resonated within me. It got better when I saw that there was a position I’ve never heard of before; yet, I immediately thought, “Yeah, that’s me! That’s my dream job!” The position, as you guessed from the title of this post, was Happiness Engineer!

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I always thought of myself as a happy individual who truly enjoys customer service and helping others. Naturally, I was drawn to this position. I thought about applying immediately. That’s what I would have done before. “No,” I said to myself, “I need to do this strategically.” I decided to create my plan of attack. I molded my story into 9 parts.

  1. Learn about the company and what they do/how they work. Get their in-depth information. Send emails (which later turned into post on their blogs then send emails).
  2. Read suggest books and more! Summarize and analyze them to utilize in video and email. USE FOR SCRIPT!
  3. Become a part of online support communities. WordPress forums of .com & .org.
  4. Read/Watch all news, articles, testimonials, and any other possible Automattic info possible. TAKE NOTES!
  5. Create websites utilizing both WordPress.com and WordPress.org to better understand both and their differences.
  6. MORE COFFEE
  7. Film the video. Hire professional actors & video crew AKA friends who have free time that I can get to help.
  8. Edit video. Revise email. Check Script. Fix Resume. Final touches.
  9. SEND EMAIL! NO FEAR! EVEN IF I DIE!

Strange list but it was a starting point. Much like any story, it won’t go as planned. Life happens and you learn to adjust for the better. One thing for sure was I am determined to become a Happiness Engineer within the next year or two.

New Beginnings

Now that I created my possible story towards my application to Automattic, I set course and began immediately.

In the weeks leading up to applying, I read all about Automattic and what it meant to be a Happiness Engineer.

I made sure to watch the talks that Automatticians held at conferences and wrote notes on each one. I watched the provided playlist of the Automatticians describing their experience with Automattic. Seeing how they all love what they do and their lives are changed, it just raised my hype even more! This company is both hardworking and exciting because the people that are a part of it come from all walks of life; nonetheless, share the common trait of every Automattician which, from their page, was curious, driven, compassionate, tenacious, autonomous, friendly, independent, collaborative, communicative, supportive, self-motivated, and amazing with .gifs! They want to work with people interested in making the web and the world a better place. These were people I could see myself working alongside. These were the inspirations and mentors that I would look up to and learn from. I began absorbing the Automattic creed. I read every blog I could find on being a Happiness Engineer. I commented on the more recent ones, asking questions and thanking them for an insightful blog! They replied happily and even gave me more tips!

To get myself going, I began helping in the forums alongside creating my own websites. Keep in mind, I know NOTHING about WordPress and how it works. So, this huge leap was one I would have to dive head first into. It was a great swim. I’m understanding how the current works. The first day I started helping out in the forums, I was pretty intimidated. A week later? The documentation really teaches you a lot. It’s like reading a book that just tells you how to do it all. There’s still tons of questions I have trouble answering, but I feel I’m getting the hang of how WordPress as a whole works. Having an IT background, answering support questions aren’t as bad. I’m going to continue learning more about how WordPress.com & WordPress.org works. I plan to master the basics, it’s always foolproof. After this, I’ll upgrade to another software and learn that!

The Happiness Engineer role also recommended a book, Delivering Happiness by Tony Hsieh. I bought it the day after I decided my journey to Happiness Engineer. I took my time to fully absorb the book and live in it. It took me a couple of weeks to complete an exciting journey. The book was very insightful on customer service and pursuing one’s goals! Being an Asian-American, I already created a small connection between Tony and myself as I read it. I understood the need to please your family while desiring more for yourself. That’s where I am now. I’m desiring for something more than myself. Something to change the world. That something is Automattic. If they suggested this book and see their company in the same sense as Zappos, I’m 100% on board the Automattic train!

One thing that stood out to me with all I was learning ended up being the CEO, Matt Mullenweg. I see Matt equivalent to a Zen master. Peaceful in his words. Soft spoken with rational thought. Doesn’t seem to worry too hard about what could come. Just looking at him, he seems to radiate peace and happiness. He knows how to work hard and to relax. Now, I’m not trying to put him as some God that I worship. I have major respect for him. At 19, he founded WordPress. That’s already impressive in itself. I can go on talking about my respect for him. I try to make myself better everyday by looking at those who I wish to mimic in some forms. Matt has become one of those people after my extensive research of him.

Around week 2, I discovered that Automattic was going to be in New York. I was EXTREMELY ecstatic. “THIS WAS MY CHANCE!”  I thought to myself. I ordered a ticket instantly. By the time AlterConf rolled around, I had been somewhat active for about a week and a half on the forums, I read Delivering Happiness, I had a solid understanding of the job and what it entailed, and even spoke to a few of the staff through their blogs. Turns out, one of the staff I spoke to in their blog was there, Kathryn! She had an inspiring video about Automattic. It was an interview detailing her day-to-day activities and advice on aspiring Automatticians. I also met Anne, Megan, and Nancy. The four of them were very relaxing and fun to talk to. I spent a big portion of the conference getting to know them, the company, and really understanding what I’m in for. I explained what I’ve done and how I’m working towards applying. From what I told them, they all told me I should just apply! I was hesitant at first. After talking with them the whole day, that hesitation was gone. They gave me the best advice:

“DON’T HOLD YOURSELF BACK” – Automatticians (They weren’t yelling it though)

It clicked in my head. I flipped my own story and ripped up the scripts. I’m applying! I had a busy weekend but Sunday night I sat myself down and completed the application. I went a bit overboard with it. I added gifs, music, visuals, and words, words, words. I submitted it around 1:30AM and now sit at work pretty tired but feeling accomplished. I believe that they’ll enjoy my application and resume. From here, all I can do is wait and see what happens now! What do you think?

. . .

I made it!

Oh! By the way, if this story inspired you, I want you to know, we’re hiring!!

Daily Prompt: What’s Missing In You?

Finding The Final Puzzle Piece To Waking Up

It was another day in July. I had just gotten home from my IT Consulting job in the city. I felt tired and exhausted. Yet, I did nothing for 90% of my work day. I called my girlfriend. She asked how work was. I proceeded on another rant of how I hate my situation of being underpaid, undervalued, and feeling like I’m going nowhere.

As I complained, she stopped me midway. “SHUT UP!” she exclaimed, “Shut up and do something about it. How you’re feeling right now, this… this is not you! My boyfriend is a hard-working, driven man. If you’re feeling stuck and in a hole right now, then get up and do something.

I was quiet for a moment. There was a switch in my head that turned on that day. I found what I was missing. I was missing WHY I was alive. My purpose, as some people will call it, was gone and I had given up on life. Playing video games, hanging with friends, and having drinks were all great; nevertheless, the world is ever evolving and full of experiences that can only be tapped once you choose to free yourself from these chains called “the real world” that we experience.

I decided to change.

I began reading books ranging from business to finance, self-help to spirituality, and any book recommended to me (feel free to comment on your top 3 favorite books to read). I listened to podcasts, joined webinars, and started attending conferences. Life becomes more fulfilling once you let go of your mind and take every opportunity and surprise that comes your way. Life opens up when you let go of negativity and learn that every situation that comes your way is how you react to it. Why live a close-minded life?

You see, growing up we are told to go through school, go to college, get a degree, and get a job. Along the way, we aren’t really taught WHY we should do it and HOW we should go about it. We’re just told this is WHAT we need to do. By the time you finish everything and get that job, is that it?

HELL NO!

We live in a world where our voice can be heard in millions of different platforms and the ability to learn about ANYTHING with a quick (or several) Google searches. Here, thanks to the daily prompt, you’re now reading this. Every voice can be heard with a quick tweet or post. Anything is possible these days and it’s just realizing that you’re missing your true passion helps reveal that.

If you want a start, I suggest reading the book Start With Why by Simon Sinek and How To Stop Worrying And Start Living by Dale Carnegie. Both phenomenal books that helped change my perspective of the world we live in.

Now ask yourself, what’s missing in you? Why are you living? If you don’t know, find it. I’ll be here to help if you need it.

via Daily Prompt: Missing