My Motivation

If you talked to me at a party any time in the past couple of months — you know exactly what questions I asked you.

“What is your biggest fear?”

“Why do you want to be successful?”

“What does success mean to you?”

“Where does your motivation come from?”

I asked these questions because I was asking myself them and didn’t have the answers that would satisfy me.

Over the past year, I have been struggling trying to figure out who I am and what I’m supposed to do. I was contemplating dropping out of school and moving to Hong Kong for some time. After I abandoned that idea, the other idea was to get a full time job in San Francisco and drop out. I decided not to do that, either. I had no idea what I was doing and I was paralyzed into inaction.

During the summer, I was fortunate to have an incredible mentor, and manager. He told me that only I could answer those questions for myself. That was when I stopped asking people those questions at parties. That was when I started to do a lot of self reflection to figure out what my answers were. No one else could answer them for me.

The answer came, strangely enough, from an anime I was watching a month ago.

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Why do I continue coding? I have no idea. That’s the most freeing thought in the world. I have no idea why I continue coding but who cares? I love it! I love coding more than doing anything else in the world. Who cares why I code as long as I love coding. There doesn’t need to be a why!

This shift in perspective pulled me away from the wrong path and from constant self-doubt and imposter syndrome. There doesn’t need to be a why.

I can finally answer those questions myself.

“What is your biggest fear?” My biggest fear is being comfortable. I view my biggest failure as the moment when I stop being ambitious, start relaxing, and start being comfortable.

“Why do you want to be successful?” Because I want to work with amazing coders so I can become ever better. I want to be able to make my code beautiful to read.

“What does success mean to you?” Working with the best and being the best coder in the world. I want to be able to write the best code in the whole world.

“Where does your motivation come from?” I love coding. My motivation is the way, not the destination.

I used to think that my motivation was creating a startup, winning a hackathon, etc etc. But I realized those were just creative applications of coding. When looking at what were my least favorite things about starting a startup — they were all the things that had nothing to do with coding. The same goes for hackathons.

Writing code gives me unlimited powers under my fingertips.

I can’t believe that some 90s anime from Japan made me learn so much about myself. I have a lot more to learn but this is a nice start.

:wq