by Jeremy Cai
This year has been nothing short of amazing
Traveled (too) many times for free, started and worked on several ventures, spoke with my heroes, and have friends all over the world.
Here are a few things on how you can do the same.
Stop talking, start doing.
Nothing matters until you take action. Stop talking about what the definition of a leader is. Go find out yourself. Make mistakes in the real world.
The only thing stopping you is yourself
Test the waters. Play the student card
Your most valuable asset is the stats of being a student. Take advantage of this to test the waters. Saying: "I'm Jeremy, a student from X" is invaluable.
Take the time to meet (the right) people
Don't write or someone or something off. I've spoken with Evan Spiegel, Rich Minder, Travis Kalanick, Alexis Ohanian. Yes. Networking
How do you get access to those people?
Most people are genuinely nice. Just say hi. Go to events.
Working smart > working hard
The best students think like entrepreneurs: they are unbelievably efficient. Think about breaking tasks down into automated parts. Use IFTTT, Evernote, Pushbullet, etc.
Don't ever get too caught up in the details
or you'll lose sight of the important things
Save some time to read
Read Good Advice, Quora, thought leaders. Also books, like the Lean Startup, 4 Hour work week.
Travel as often as you can
Look for opportunities to explore. Leverage networking, competitions, and more to find these opportunities.
Fall in love
"You're having fun and you love the pursuit, but you just don't know whether you'l ever get Julie Dream" - Sander Daniels
Find the inner Gatsby in you, and never let it die
Develop your reputation
Forget privacy, it's dead. Get a LinkedIn, Quora. Clean up Facebook and Twitter. Make content on Dribbble or Behance. Actively contribute
Serendipity is not accidental
You are the master of you own future. You need to persist, suffer, tolerate failure until you make it. "All successful startups are lucky, but they're never just lucky"
College is a time for you to experiment, explore, and realize what you genuinely enjoy doing.
That's my freshman story. Now go make your own
You will fail. Many, many, many times over. But keep at it, and I promise this: you will succeed extraordinarily, inconceivably more than you failed.