This week at Material, we're proud to introduce our guest contributor Cristina Fisher. Cristina is the Special Projects manager at SXSW, and is here to give y’all some solid advice for pursuing your goals.
My Austin story started nearly ten years ago after leaving San Diego to attend UT. After graduating, I fell into a pretty sweet gig at SXSW in the “Special Projects” department doing all sorts of different stuff: brand development, new business, creative marketing, etc. Here are some tips that got me where I am (and keep me going):
1. Get passionate. Moving to Austin sort of sky-rocketed my passion for music. I remember going to Austin City Limits for the first time as a freshman and felt pretty certain that I wanted to be a part of festival culture, in some shape or fashion. I never imagined I’d be doing as many different things as I am now.
2. Know yourself. I think learning about yourself and recognizing your real strengths and weaknesses in a professional setting can come as both a challenge and reward. For me personally, this was (and remains) learning to improvise with imperfection, finding the courage to say no and adjusting to make thoughtful decisions on the spot or relatively quickly. (And about a million other things I’m still figuring out as I go.)
3. Expand your social circle. Meet, network and share ideas as often as possible, and explore any possible industry you might be interested in. I may be biased, but SXSW is a great place to start!
4. The bravest risk a person can take is, well, taking risks. Trying something that you don’t think you have the time, support or resources for and pulling it off like a boss is one of the most satisfying feelings.
5. Travel inspires. Whether it’s a quick road trip or nine-hour flight, I always feel supremely refreshed and inspired by experiencing new cultures and environments. On a daily basis I look to nature and reading for inspiration. Instagram is also a really great tool to follow artists and role models that you love.
6. Keep your brain fresh by making daily routines seem less like a chore. Try a new recipe with a friend instead of defaulting to take-out. As an early riser, I also try to reserve the mornings for myself, whether it’s by doing yoga, listening to a new record or writing someone a letter.
7. Think small. Success always feels like it’s exclusive to these huge life accomplishments. I’ll try to set baby goals every week, even if it’s just staying positive or making some else feel really good about themselves. To me, feeling fulfilled at the end of the day feels like success.
Which of these tips do you incorporate in your daily life? Which ones would you like to start focusing on?