Who is there for the Oldest?

4am.

I’ve been at this blank page for over an hour, staring at the little straight line that ticks in and out of sight – all in beats of eighths as it waits for the letters to be typed out.

I’m sitting on my chair, my bed in front of me, and a soft lamp to the corner that only lights up half the desk. I hear nothing but the echoes of the water heater crackling in the distance: a reminder that I am indeed, alone.

I look up at my bed again, my eyes begging me to sleep, and yet I know that if I don’t write this out, I. won’t. get. rest.

Yesterday, my 61 year old mother told me she wanted to kill herself.

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Why Instagram Vlogs Will Rule 2018

I’m going to warn you that I haven’t written in sometime. As a way to get back into the groove of things, I’m going to write about a theory I have when it comes to Instagram. This may not be the best written piece I’ve ever done. There might be grammatical errors, who knows. It’s all about getting back into the groove of things. Here goes nothing…

I believe that 2018 is the year of Instagram.

I understand – Facebook is making a massive push to popularize Facebook watch. However, a successful Facebook watch page comprises of professionally made video content:  we’re talking HD quality, we’re talking about engaging stories where each video lasts more than two minutes and thirty seconds, and we’re talking about pages that can posts these types of videos consistently.

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The Decision: A Risk for Creative Art

“Jonathan, working full-time here means you cannot work on any of your side projects. You can no longer uber, you can no longer do YouTube, you can no longer work on anything else but PlayTable.”

I sat there listening to my friend’s words and my heart sank. I’ve known him since 2009, been working with him on many projects since 2011, and since late 2014, started the journey of working on this new project that led me from LA to the Bay Area. This current project is called, PlayTable.xyz. It’s an all-in-one board game console, which can play every single board & card game in the world: we’re creating the soul for board & card games everywhere.

“As a friend, I understand your situation. But, as the CEO of this company I need you here all the time.” I replied asking if I could get one day off to work on my side projects. “No. Jonathan, we’re crowdsourcing in 5 months. I need you here.”

He gave me a weekend to think about my decision. I sent him an e-mail last Monday and apologized. Yes, I decided to not work with PlayTable in the capacity expected of me, and I’ll tell you why I made the decision…

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How To Hire, Teach, And Work With GREAT Interns

I was about to title this post, “how to get people to follow you & work with you… for free.” But, I realized that sounded as if I was profoundly teaching you how to exploit others to do your bidding… for free. This isn’t the case because I, in retrospect, have paid many of the interns who have worked with me in the past. However, this isn’t my good ole’ days where money flows out of my ass like a Taco-Bell burrito. Therefore, the interns I do have must work for free.

I guess the post should be “How To Manage Interns – For Free?” You get the idea. 

Before I begin with my post, here’s my experience with managing interns.

(in college I once managed 17 interns at once). 

Since starting my entrepreneurial journey in 2011, I’ve had a total of twenty-seven interns. I’ve fired sixteen, three of them quit, two of them went awol, four of them will always stay in my heart forever, and two of them are currently working with me at this moment. I’ve disappointed a few, I’ve overspent money with a couple, I’ve out-shined my own expectations with some, I’ve gotten taken advantage of, and I’ve also been surprised in the most amazing ways.

It’s because of these experiences that I now have a better sense of what it takes to i) find the right intern(s) for the right job(s) and ii) how to get these intern(s) to give you their best all awhile working with you for free (something that fits your budget).

Let’s begin.

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What Defines You?

People will never truly define you based on the skills you possess, your education level, or anything plastered on your resume. Let’s be clear, there is no harm in having an amazing resume filled with glitter and experience. But, what’s more important, are your daily rituals. These rituals, your habits, these are the things that define you.

What do I mean?

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Video Blocked

Screen Shot 2015-09-18 at 2.35.04 PM

About a month ago I made a viral video that reached over 10 million facebook views across many pages, a million views on snapchat, and 880,000+ views on YouTube. It was called, “The Weeknd- Can’t Feel My Face (Uber Edition). It was a video that brought people together and made them smile. I’m not going to lie, I’m really sad and distraught right now as I try to figure out how to resolve this issue.

As I wait to see the fate of my future, let me tell you that I think this goes into a deeper discussion of how this affects my life as a whole.

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What It’s Like Being A Manic Depressant

I’m a manic depressant.

Manic Depression is a genetic mental disorder that can be best described to be related to an individual who is bipolar and who also has post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Like any (genetic) mental disorder, mania is triggered through events that carry overtime.

This means that at any moment, without warrant, I can plunge into a feeling of depression. Or, in another moment my brain can catapult into a high. In this post, I’ll talk about what depression feels like, what the high does to me, and what the pills do to my body… Let me explain:

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Why I Made “Say Something Wonderful Surprise!”

I recently made this film to help cope with my anger management issue:

Last weekend I visited my family in San Diego to hang out with my 15 and 17 year old brothers. The youngest one is into film while the other is into music. I’m fortunate to have creative family members because that (this) weekend I wanted to film something for my YouTube channel.

I haven’t posted anything for about a week. But I didn’t want to film just anything, I wanted it to be good.

The first concept I had was to start off being sad and then actually crying. The background would change as my face would tear up while looking miserably downcast. This is how I actually felt at the time (I’m a negative person). Then, the camera would shift and a smile would begin to creep up on my face as I looked up to see… the Disnelyand sign!

The next sequence of shots would be of me having a ton of fun on Disneyland rides. I was going to call it: “The Happiest Place on Earth.” However, we didn’t film it because we realized that Disneyland is very expensive, almost three hour drive away, and their was something missing in the overall concept. I swayed back and forth until I made the decision that we needed to push the idea for a later date.

This got me into a very depressed mood.
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Making & Connecting with Friends

A week ago a reader emailed me asking me to write a post:

I think it would be cool to hear more advice on making friends. I know you have a post on networking though. I love hearing about networking advice though lol. Personally though, I struggle with connecting with people and making friends, and you seem like someone who knows a lot about that.

I think this reader gives me a little too much credit in this department. I’ve been thinking about this subject and I’ve realized the one thing this reader has to understand is that making and connecting with friends are two very different concepts. I believe making friend is one of the easiest things one can do in life, it requires little or no effort. Connecting with a friend is harder because it requires more time and trust with both parties involved. However, the main thing to keep in mind is that for both things to happen you cannot go in trying to be friends with anybody: you need to let it happen naturally.

As you can see there are three concepts we’re going to analyze and go through. Let’s begin.

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Surround Yourself With Smarter People: For The Entrepreneur

Surround yourself with people who are smarter than you, people who you can bounce off ideas with, and people who are there to motivate you till the very end.

It’s been three months since I’ve been out of a job and in the process I’ve been looking for other opportunities to keep me going. The time has been spent traveling from North to South California to even random places, like Utah. I’ve been able to interact with a variety personalities in the YouTube space and startups.

This whole ordeal has led me to one conclusion: I need to surround myself with people who will get me to work. This is basically my issue is that I’ve been able to get out of bed and start working. You can see this as a sad thing but I’m unable to work alone. I love working an office. I love working with people who I can talk to about my ideas and here the projects they’re working on – this keeps me on my toes. And, I’m taking this philosophy not only for my own personal work, but also to the people who I work with (interns).

For example, I’ve now left my girlfriend in Northern California (staying long-distance) because the peer group I need to be at is in LA. And, I just purchased a plane ticket for my intern so I can start working in LA over the summer.

I believe the biggest investment you can make are the people you surround yourself with: you can do things yourself, but it’s always great to get second opinions on things because it can only make your work better. Also, it’s always great to have people who also believe in your projects because that in itself will make you make more.

I’m saying that you should be doing the same thing.
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My Disease Called Gambling

I have a gambling problem.

I’m writing this because I find if I make this issue public I’ll be able to get a better grip of my problem. It’s not only a need – I WANT to stop this horrible habit because it is ruining me financially.

I know I would be about $100,000 richer and done more productive-meaningful things in my life (time wasted) if I didn’t gamble.

It is SUPER CRUCIAL that I must stop this time because I’m starting my own business venture this summer. Every cent I spend must be spent wisely towards a business purchase / decision. I am fortunate that, till September 2014, I will have steady income being deposited into my bank account.

However afterwards – gulp.

Therefore, I am telling you that I have a gambling problem. I’m going to tell you my story of why I got into it, what it has destroyed, and how I will fix it altogether. I hope sharing this will help anyone else who is dealing with compulsive disastrous habit(s) / disease(s) such as gambling.

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How To Make Things Right

It’s really hard to figure out a way to make something right.

Before I start with this whole piece, I’m going to say that I’ve made a ton of mistakes in my life. I’m talking about errors and mistakes, intentional or unintentional, that have led to me burning bridges with important people or “people close to me” – in my life.

Definition:

Important people are people I care for, while people close to me are usually the ones who are not necessarily on the top of my “caring” list but have some stake in my life (e.g., co-workers and subsections of different family members).

Let’s continue where we started – it’s really hard to figure out a way to make something right. The idea that you can suddenly say a few words or do a quick action to absolve your sins is something of a magical miracle.

I also want to make it clear that this article is going to be focusing on “making things right” with people you are or once were somehow close with you. As in, these people were never your opponents to begin with… usually people who you trusted as they trusted you as well.

Alright. Let’s begin.

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