What I Learned From a Stroke at 26: Make Time to Untangle

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As an idealistic, knowledge-hungry college graduate and aspiring writer, I had grown tired of hopping from one office gig to the next. It was 2000 and technology was in full bloom. I wanted to cash in on the digital gold rush. Like many of my friends in Austin, Tex., I figured, why not join the internet economy?

I answered an ad for a job at a venture-backed start-up company with a focus on education. More than just offering stock options, the job promised a creative launching pad that I would have been foolish to ignore. After interviewing for the position, I happily accepted the company’s offer.

Each day at the company was a sensory experience filled with color — the office was painted in 17 of them — fragrant candles, brain games and yoga balls. Each week pulled me into stimulating projects, problems to solve, new technology and, best of all, interaction with a team of talented, intelligent and dedicated co-workers.

My ambition swelled. I hustled my way up the chain of command and managed to survive layoffs. In a matter of months, I found myself leading development and marketing for a team of designers, programmers, producers, subject matter experts, sales staff and writers. To read more from JONAS KOFFLER, click here.