Thinking big

I can look back at my life and identify a few times where others have challenged me to think big - to take on projects or ideas that seemed larger than my current reality. For example - when I took my first teaching job, spurred by professor Wilmer. Or when I was offered a position of responsibility at SGI for the first time. Or when my friends proposed we created a technology company (we weren’t even out of school yet!). Or when I got recruited from a stable company doing Java into a tiny, risky startup to learn Scala.

In all of those crucial moments, I felt completely unprepared, and doubted my ability to succeed. But every single challenge led to tremendous growth and helped me widen my vision and trust myself even more.

I still need a nudge once in a while, but with time I find it easier to think big and see the possibilities instead of being blinded by the difficulties or paralyzed by the unknowns.

One of those nudges just became a reality - Scala Up North is the first Scala conference organized in Canada. It is exciting and scary, but I’m really looking forward to seeing a community fired up about building great software with Scala.

I’ve never been particularly attracted to the fame and glory that comes attached to becoming super-successful. I’m not looking to become the next Elon Musk. But having the confidence to take on challenges and find some measure of satisfaction in the process has helped me get to the point where I’m at - figuring out the best way to have a meaningful, positive impact in other people’s lives through my work.

A big thank you to those who’ve challenged me to think big.