Intuition is the ability to understand something immediately, without the need for conscious reasoning. It’s a power that enables something to be known without any proof or evidence. Steve Jobs even called intuition "more powerful than intellect." 

Just a month ago, I started interning at Rokkan, a small-ish digital agency located in the Flatiron district of New York. "Rokkan" is the Japanese word meaning intuition, and each day I am getting more in tune with my gut instincts. I am learning how to make hard decisions, how to be bold in my thinking, and how to best organize new thoughts that enter my mind. As a strategist, you have to possess a unwavering sense of confidence and reckless optimism as you approach any problem, and furthermore, when you share these ideas with others. Below are a few nuggets of advice that I have gathering in the past 30 days.

i. Be useful in any way you can. Maybe someone needs help thinking of posts for a laundry detergent. Maybe you overhear someone hearing how stressed they are about writing a brief. Offer your skills in any way possible. If you consider yourself an "intern," you will be treated as one. So put yourself out there.
ii. Work faster. Much faster. In college, I was never one to write their papers the night before. I needed time to think and process information, to analyze my research and dissect it into pieces. Well, now I almost wish I practiced doing things a bit more last minute. This is reality. You will need to think on your feet, and put together a deck on health insurance by the end of the day. Be ready for a new pace to work at.
iii. Eat the free food. It's there for a reason. Nuff said.
iv. Trust that you know what you're doing (to some extent) Our program really does an amazing job of preparing you for the agency world. I have experience working with clients from AHA and Venture. I gained incredible skills from classes I took at Wieden+Kennedy and Uncorked Studios. And the New York trip allows you to explore the myriad of possibilities that exist if you're a copywriter, a designer, etc. Don't take these opportunities for granted, and use them to your advantage. Of course, I don't think anything can truly prepare you for being thrown into the advertising fire, but all of this really does help. Every time I mention one of these things to my co-workers, they are immediately amazed that we even do things like this. 
v. You will make mistakes, but that's part of the whole shabang.
vi. Go to lunch with everyone you can. We've all heard this advice, but it's really true. I have always had a tendency to be a bit more uptight in work environments. I feel a need to be professional. I want to be taken seriously. I think what helped me the most in terms of feeling more comfortable was introducing myself to people outside the walls of the office. Going out to lunch and feeling a bit more like a real person as you chow down on your grub together.
vii. If you don't believe what you're saying, no one will. And to further this one, practice working on hard brands. The ones you know literally nothing about. Whether it's cars or make-up or tax companies, figure out how you approach these foreign concepts. Learn how you dive into something to make it a bit more tangible. As a strategist, I promise you will be doing this a lot.
viii. Work-life balance is actually hard. Especially in New York. Use your time wisely, and do the things that make you feel alive.

I'm sure I have about 20+ more things I could say, but this will do for now. Look out for part 2 soon. Namaste.

Smith Rock. Terrebonne, OR. 3.24.15.

Israel > Greece > San Fran, December 2014

A poster I designed the other day (New York is obviously on my mind)

Inspiration meets us in the most unexpected of places. While we are actively inspired by the sights we see, people we meet, and books we read, there is an underlying sense of mystery as to where our thoughts and ideas come from. It's not always possible to pinpoint the exact moment in which we are inspired, but it's there. We embrace it. And we create as a result.

"If you're bored, it's a failure of imagination. There's always something interesting to be found." - Chelsea Bauch, Strategic Planner at AKQA

It's always good to escape from your work for a bit. This past weekend my friends and I decided to drive to the coast to relax our minds and enjoy the nice Oregon weather. It also gave me the chance to put my Nikon to use, which is something I've been meaning to do a lot more lately. Enjoy!


The world sometimes move a bit too fast for us. We generate schedules for ourselves that grow too familiar, and slip into cycles of monotonous habits that somehow rule our daily lives. The construction of time has perhaps limited us to how often we focus on ourselves – the moments spent searching for epiphanies that bend our minds towards enlightenment, and the moments spent acknowledging the world’s beauty that fills us with so much life. All in all, I value the moments in which time ceases to exist. I thrive off conversations in which you are able to see a person’s thoughts unfold, or songs in which the lyrics gently remind you of how wonderful life is. I hike mountains to reach places that entice all my senses, and I act on stages to explore mindsets that differ from my own. I temporarily escape the constraints of time, and find myself only focusing on the present.

We need to devote our energy to embracing the things that bring our world to a giant hult – the ones in which no degree of seconds, minutes, or hours can stop our minds from racing and our hearts from beating.

* My Thesis Prospectus professor asked us to write her a letter in which we discuss what we value in life. The above is a snippet of my letter to her.