feb '23 - changes
what did you get done this month, sofi?
research: i moved to monterrey to do more plant bioengineering research. so far, i’ve continued practicing tissue culture—this time in callus from avocado! and later this week i’ll get more proper training to start doing more complex stuff…
events: beyond that, i’m loving the experience of meeting different people, working at places, and attending more science events than i would imagine! i’ve attended a cool synbio symposium, chatted with igem peeps, and been at lab meetings of the group that’s spinning out the first mexican lab-grown meat company i know of.
convos: i really love having both my physical and digital environment level up. i want to shoutout christina agapakis (creative director @ginkgo), evan groover (phd @uc berkeley), and john lee (partner @jazz ventures), and daniel vogel (ceo @bitso [1/7 mexican unicorns!!) for taking some time in their days to have truly awesome conversations i’ll soon share with y’all on my podcast :)
sxsw talk: i’m preparing to talk at sxsw on march 13th! i will be sharing my knowledge and experience in the cellular agriculture space, from lab-grown meat to lab-grown wheat. first time on stage, so i’m really excited. if you happen to be in austin, i’d love to meet. i’ll also share the recording once it’s out :D
emergent ventures: i’m incredibly grateful to the thiel foundation, tyler cowen, and the whole emergent ventures team for selecting me as one of the latest winners of their fellowship. i will be using this support to advance my bioengineering research in plants at stanford this summer. before that, i’ll be in washington and boston in early april. let me know if you’re around!
ps: i also celebrated by 19th birthday this month! any *unconventional* advice on how to spend my last year as a teen? i’m thinking of habits to improve before my brain stops changing that easily…
i didn’t know it was so hard to say no, until i’ve got more crazy awesome opportunities than those i can actually excel at—not uncommon to hear among teens in the 21st century, i think.
there’s labs to assist, lab-grown cotton research to do, articles to write, bioinformatic skills to develop, relationships to cultivate, body to take care of, and more things which i’ll later on tell you about…
my optimistic self tells me that i should stop behaving as a victim and just act. so that’s what i’ve been doing. last year, i wrote 80+ essays (>200 words each); essays on interesting thoughts i had, or general reflections on my life, just like this one.
being in monterrey with lots of commitments has made acting easy and writing hard. i don’t even listen to music as often as i used to, only watch youtube when i need to, and have once again reduced the amount of time i’m on linkedin or twitter to <15 min per day.
my closest friends know that i left instagram 6 months ago, netflix 6+ years ago, wake up at 5 am, exercise at least 4 times a week, have never drunk a cup of alcohol, let alone drugs.
some youtube influencers would call this “monk mode”, claiming that it’ll change your life and make you 100x more productive. the thing is that you can’t improve what you don’t measure, and i have absolutely no idea of how to objectively measure my progress as a more productive person over time.
i don’t feel more productive than someone who has all the opposite habits to mine. sometimes i think that waking up at 5 am means that i’m actually less productive than the average person.
of course, sofi! it’s obvious that doing 5 things at a time won’t give you the same results than committing to a single one. there’s no insight here.
it’s been proven that it’s not the athletes who train more time, but those who have the best quality of training, who have the best results. getting rid of distractions such as social media is only 10% of the process. the rest needs to be smart work → focused work.
anyways… i should also mention that i haven’t met anyone, not even my parents or mentors, who have higher expectations or standards for myself than those i have. i’m the hardest person to make proud of myself.
the good thing is that i will never stop. i might take ages to get to where i want to be, i don’t care. i’m not the person who dreamed as a kid and forgets as an adult. i’m not the person who failed and stopped trying or failed to try at all. i’m not even that smart or talented. in fact, i’m not anyone in particular yet. i’m just myself and i know that’s enough.
thank you for following the journey! i really mean it when i say that every single person reading this has been a part of it. i couldn’t be more grateful for living in a time in which ‘strangers’ online can realistically intervene the future.
al infinito, y más allá!