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The Unexpected Way to Become a Better Architect

I never thought THIS would make me a better architect!

If you would have told me 10 years ago I would be teaching, I would have laughed at you. Sometimes it's the unexpected things in life that lead us on our greatest journeys.

The Stories We Tell Ourselves

Do you know what's funny? I never considered myself a teacher. I always thought I was a lousy teacher and would tell myself these stories:

"I don't have the patience."

"I don't explain things well."

"I know things in my head but have difficulty putting them in words."

These stories were the identity I had created for myself and one I was ok with having! Because I had never set out to be a teacher, it wasn't something I aspired to be. I was interested in doing my own thing. Putting my head down and just focus on getting it done.

Wanting Something More

As I moved through my entrepreneurship and architectural journey, I realized I had to figure a lot of it out on my own. There wasn't a manual or playbook that I could look at to tell me when/how I should do things. I was simultaneously winging it and researching. Lots and LOTS of research. Countless hours of listening to podcasts, reading books, and bookmarking articles.

So, when I finished my architecture exams and was in the process of growing my architecture firm, I wanted to share my story. Not with the intention of teaching but the goal of sharing what I had learned to help make the next person's path a little easier. I wanted to start sharing the information in a space that was easily accessible for those starting.

Becoming the Teacher

Unbeknownst to myself, I put myself in the role of a teacher. One day, I received an email that said, "Thanks for your ARE 5.0 videos. They are helpful and encouraging. I am in the process of studying for my first exam. I have watched several of your videos (most recently the PcM video). You do an excellent job on the videos, you communicate very well, and you would definitely be a good teacher if you were ever to teach a class..." Then, not long after that, I was offered a position as an adjunct professor at California State University Chico. So I went from not considering myself a teacher at all to teaching on YouTube and at a California state university.

I realized there was so much joy in teaching. The ability to help or inspire others is unlike anything else. There's nothing more special than when you have someone reach out to tell you your words have encouraged them to pass their exams or to pursue their passion.

The reason I share this story is that you never really know where life is going to take you. Sometimes you might surprise yourself and be interested in something different than where you thought you would go. So, I challenge you to put yourself outside your comfort zone and practice saying "yes"! Take risks and do new things because you never know what it will turn into, and it could lead to some of your biggest joys.

You can watch the video or listen to the podcast to learn more about how teaching helped me become a better architect.



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