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I performed my first ever spoken word piece at the Student Parent Orientation Program. I’ve never been on a stage all alone before and of all the performances I’ve done, this was by far the most nerve wracking moment I’ve ever had on stage.

Thanks to the Orientation 2013: Year of the Phoenix Staff for being such an inspiration in my life. Thanks to the freshmen who I mentored for being the most amazing freshmen a staffer could ask for. It has been a great summer and I couldn’t ask for a better way to end my career at UCI.

I hope that everyone continues to work toward their definition of being remarkable.

Keep reading for a transcription of the spoken work.


They say the sky’s the limit.
I say your limit is up to you.
But if it were completely up to me, I’d say you have no limits.
Because I believe we are as invincible as we believe ourselves to be and even the sky can’t put a cap on that.

You see, there’s an immeasurable potential that you possess within your being that will be the key to your success.
You may just not realize it yet and if you have, then good, I’m here to reinforce it.

Now, I just met you, you can say I hardly know you, hell, we’re still strangers.
But I already see the amazing things you’re capable of.

I believe that if you put your mind to it,
if you work for it,
if you sweat for it,
you can achieve things you never even thought you were capable of.

All you have to do is take that first step forward.

The moment you take that first step,
you’re one step closer to facing your fear of failure,
one step closer to becoming the person you want to be,
one step closer to success.
You’re one step closer to becoming…remarkable.
And I don’t mean amazing.
I mean remarkable.

Can you imagine that?
You, remarkable.
And I’m not talking about famous or rich or on TV with Ellen or Oprah.
No, no.
I’m talking about being remarkable in the purest sense.
Remarkable in the sense that people will make remarks about you and say,

“That person, that person is inspirational.”
“That person makes me want to become a better person.”
“That person is gonna change the world.”

We’re capable of it,
so why settle with being just like everyone else?
Why be average when you can be, well, remarkable?

It’s because you’re scared.

You’re scared because you’ve heard all the discouragement before.
You’re scared of rejection,
scared of failure,
scared to be laughed at for having your own beliefs, thoughts and ideas.
You’re scared of not making others happy.
You’re scared of being told
“you’re stupid,”
“you’re crazy,”
“you shouldn’t do it,”
“you can’t do it.”
You’re scared of being told to be “more realistic.”

But what’s “being realistic?”
To that person who shuts you down,
realistic is settling for sub-par accomplishments with visions of sitting at a desk 9-to-5 doing something they hate just to go home, sleep,
and do it all over again the next day.

Realistic is doing what’s socially accepted and avoiding risk at all cost
because risk means being vulnerable
and being vulnerable means getting hurt
and getting hurt means having to climb your way back up that unforgiving pitfall of

But  the people who discourage you don’t do it intentionally.
They do it because they care.
They don’t want you to fail or get hurt.
They want you to be safe.
They want what’s best for you.

You know what, forget that.
Take risks.
Be vulnerable.
Get hurt.
Learn what failure truly feels like.
Pursue your most idealistic sense of success and happiness because no one but you can make those ideas come true.
Stop waiting for permission because you are the only one who can make things happen.

I’m just like each and everyone one of you.
I sat in your seat 4 years ago. I was scared too and I still am. But I didn’t let that fear paralyze me. I let myself be vulnerable and I took risks and I did things others wouldn’t normally do and I was called crazy and I got hurt and I failed, over and over and over again.

I took a risk against the advice of everyone around me
and stuck with a girl who I thought I loved
and, after three years,
ended up damaged and broken.
But I’m okay.

For 7 years, I was told by my parents to stop dancing,
to stop doing what I love and focus on something more realistic that will make me money like being a doctor,
but 7 years later,
I’m still dancing,
and I love it.

Like many other staffers,
I applied to be a SPOP staffer multiple times,
three times to be exact,
before I got this amazing opportunity and
here I am.

So you see?
Taking risks,
being vulnerable,
things might go horribly wrong,
but in the end things are always better
and if it isn’t better,
it isn’t the end.

So just hear me out.
I was lucky enough to have people who believed in me and what I wanted to do.
Now, I believe in you.
I believe in the beauty of your mind and your ideas and your passion and your desire to change the world and your pursuit to be remarkable.
I believe in your dreams.
I believe in you because I believe that you’re capable of achieving anything.

Now, stop focusing on what others expect of you.
Don’t chase your dreams focus on living them out.
If you will those dreams to happen,
it is no longer a dream,
it’s your life.

You have an immeasurable potential.
What are you gonna do with it?

Go be remarkable.