Simple Challenges: Taking Your Own Advice

After much anticipation and many unforeseen delays, I finally released the drawings for our dream home for permit. This is the step in the process where reality begins to set in and all of the insecurities of embarking on a big solo project are magnified. Any mistakes, oversights or omissions will ultimately rest on my shoulders. It is a feeling of both excitement and trepidation. It is quickly apparent how difficult it is to face simple challenges: taking your own advice.

Lake Louise

Recently, I was interviewed for Philadelphia University and gave pointers and career advice. One of my main points to students and new graduates was to be confident. Confidence can come in many forms, and it can easily devolve into ego (which is really a mask for insecurity). However, the confidence I advocate for is one that relies on aptitude. Believing in your ability to find the right answers and to work towards the best solution is the kind of confidence that stands firm regardless of the circumstances or challenges you face. After all, you have confidence you’ll find a way to meet them head on.

It’s easy to give advice to others, but putting it into practice in your own life can be a challenge in its own right. It is amusing how quickly we forget our successes in the face of adversity and challenges, yet it is inherent to our human nature. I have to take my own advice and remember that although I may not have every answer, I have the ability to find them. I am equipped with an amazing network of colleagues, friends and family. They all want to see me succeed. I would wager that most people in life want to see you succeed, too. Our support teams and networks are here to encourage us, enable us, and engage with us.

So whether I am embarking on designing and building my dream home or chasing projects that push a million square feet, I can be confident that I will find the path to success. It is an attitude that I’ve adopted for my projects through Architangent, and it is a cornerstone of the work at PDR. There will be many challenges we face, but sometimes our biggest obstacle is ourselves.

Read the full Philadelphia University Interview here.

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