Break Diving Ten
1. Who are you in just a few sentences?
My name is Roberto Severino and I’m a current volunteer for and member of Break Diving, Inc. I’m someone who came from nothing and grew up in a low-income family. I know what it’s like to face adversity after adversity, and what it’s like to be able to bounce back and make luck work in my circumstances. In my spare time, I enjoy a lot of art and entertainment, but also find joy in listening to audiobooks and now teaching myself how to code. [Editor’s Note: Roberto is one of the first Break Diving volunteers and really helped get Break Diving to where it is today. We’re grateful that he’s still with us!]
2. What are your greatest accomplishments?
One of my greatest accomplishments was having several of my heroes look at my drawings when I was 16, and both told me to keep doing what I was doing at the time. While I haven’t broken into that industry, it’s still a dream I keep in the back of my mind, and everything I’ve been doing has been a means to an end. If I get out of debt and increase my cash flows, I might have more time to relax and go hard on my artistic pursuits someday. The other accomplishments all revolve around not giving up and staying the course, even when the situation was bleak and dire. For now, I’m just happy I finished school and now at least have a job I enjoy a lot.
3. What are your biggest regrets and what have your learned? (You can’t say you don’t have any)
One of my biggest regrets was letting my own pride and hubris get the best of me after I graduated from high school. I looked down at community colleges and didn’t want to go to the closest one near my house out of fear of embarrassment. Nowadays, I feel I would have been much better off skipping college and teaching myself the skills I needed to make a lot more money sooner. I learned from that mistake I should always stay true to myself and do what’s right in my heart rather than blindly following a crowd.
4. What do you feel is your mission in life?
My mission in life is to live a better life than my parents did and never to have to worry about how I’m going to pay my rent or credit cards each month. I’ve always wanted to entertain people and capture everyday life through my drawings and art. I have many eclectic interests now, but no matter how much I’ve tried to suppress the right-brain aspect about myself, I still get the art bug every so often.
5. How do you feel you can best help others?
If I can make people smile and laugh, then I know I’ve done my job to help others. I’ve also helped people through very difficult times by talking to them one-on-one about their problems. I even prevented someone from committing suicide several years ago.
6. Where would you like to see yourself in ten years?
That’s a good question. I still have a lot of uncertainty as to where I might be in the next ten years, but ideally, I’d want to have enough financial resources to the point where I could live comfortably no matter what I did. Ideally, I’d still want to work at some animation studio or draw comics for a newspaper. By then, I’d have so many other skills to fall back on and hopefully a lot of savings to where even if that doesn’t work out, I’ll be fine and happy doing something else or even retiring early.
7. How has Break Diving helped you personally?
Break Diving has taught me a lot about the idea of perseverance and dealing with setbacks. Break Diving has taught me how I could go from having nothing to gradually building my self-confidence and self-worth over a period of time. At my current job, I’ve noticed a lot of the same traits in the people I work with. They also came from nothing but actively made the decision to work hard and learn new things constantly to get to where they are now.
8. What things can you do undeniably better than most everyone in the world?
I try to be humble about what I can do, but when it comes to pondering about some of life’s most philosophical questions, I guess I’m really into that more than most. My greatest strength is being able to quickly adapt and change whenever I need to learn a new skill, and then connect what I’ve learned from other fields to what I’m doing now like with project management. Even though I haven’t become a project manager [Editor’s Note: ‘yet’!], I constantly read and take thorough notes from books on the topic, and now at my current job, I find much of what I learned is so useful when trying to staying focused.
9. In what areas do you think you could improve the most?
I’ve struggled with insecurity for much of my life and being a very introverted person overall. I’m able to express myself much more fully online a lot of the time, although when I really want to, I can strike up a conversation with others when needed. I’m constantly getting better at becoming more comfortable saying what’s on my mind. Sometimes, I don’t like feeling alone, but other times, I prefer to have some time to myself to think by myself. It depends on what mood I’m in each day.
10. Got any projects or websites you want to promote?
If you’re on LinkedIn, I’m always happy to connect and meet new people on there. The link to my profile is found at https://www.linkedin.com/in/adwordvigilante/.
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