Where you grew up and your background can often have surprising effects on our lives and careers. We’ve asked folks from the community to tell us about how their background has affected them.

DeLisa Leonard | Baker/Treats Maker

I like to think I represent the best of South Louisiana, being born and raised in Violet, La. and the Calliope Projects in New Orleans. I was able to see the unity of a small town and the toughness of the projects. It made me a humble and caring soul that will make something out of, what other perceive to be, nothing. Read more>>

Q Prodigal | Artist

I am from Rochester, NY. It’s a huge melting pot and has different sections of it that seem like completely different realities. Growing up on both sides of the fence made me adaptable to any environment I’m in and has allowed me to live all over the country my entire life. Read more>>

Rufus & Jenny Triplett | Authors, Speakers, Podcast Hosts

We are from Michigan, Flint and Saginaw, respectively. Growing up in the midwest had a great impact on us. Two thriving, blue collar towns, in the 80’s, that was open for all kinds of opportunities. Where we traveled, how we thought, what we ate, what we watched on TV all played a part of growing up in that area. Read more>>

Kyler Redding | YouTuber & Content Creator

I was born in Gainesville, Florida, but raised in Arlington, Texas. My father is a minister at a baptist church, and my mother is a teacher. The fact that my father’s ministry degrees were in marriage and family counseling helped me a great deal as I grew up. He was able to counsel me through life’s situations without me realizing he was doing it. And through all of that there was a theme. My dad always wanted me to have fun. Life can be very difficult, so sometimes we all need something fun and light to do or watch or participate in that makes life a little easier, and my dad exemplified that for me. That is part of the reason at the end of my Instagram posts and YouTube videos, I always say, “Have fun today.” I make content that is fun for me to make, and I want my viewers to have fun watching it. Read more>>

Matt Araiza | Fitness Professional & Baker

I used to think I had to be working all the time to be successful. After having worked across multiple job fields over the years I have realized it’s your overall quality of life that is most important. Yes, being successful at work is fantastic, however if you’re failing at other aspects of your life outside of your work sphere your quality of life is likely to suffer. I have learned that when I can spend quality time outside of work doing things I love and taking care of myself I am overall happier and can better give to my clients at work. It’s like the saying, “Look good, feel good.” I have to feel good (mentally & physically) to teach well. That means enjoying life outside of the studios I teach at. The fitness professional career is a constant ebb and flow depending on the season so I have to be sure to stay in tune with my body’s needs physically and mentally to stay sharp and ready to ultimately have a long lasting career. It took a while, but I’ve realized it’s okay to not work every day of every hour. Read more>>

Amanda Arista | Author

I had one of those child things a few years ago. The Bean has changed a lot about my life, but mostly, made me completely rethink what the work life balance needs to be. And maybe the notion of work and life as well. To add a few caveats, I have two careers. One as a school administrator and another as a writer. Both are full time and both feed a part of me that I need. Both are work where I have to challenge myself and constantly keep on my toes to deliver a deeply thought out and crafted product to another human who needs it. Read more>>

Daniel Parrish | Architecture and Development

My balance of time has changed over time due to the fact of my priorities. When I started my career it was just me. But soon thereafter I got Mari and had a family and noticed how easily work can take over the time that you have available. Typical office jobs care only enough about your personal time as long as you’re getting your work done. They are not as focused on the amount of time you were able to spend with your kids, wife, and family. I noticed that I was coming home burnt out from work and I wanted a change. So when I started my own firm I wanted to make sure that I was not overly exhausted when I had time for my family. I also chose to make more time with them creating memories. We try To make sure that everyone has a healthy work-life balance so that they bring their best version of themselves to work. Read more>>