About this episode
In this episode, we discuss a variety of topics from ambient Minecraft music, working in public spaces, hobby flying, and when it comes to personal growth how past failures don't define your future success.
Matthew: Hey, Yogesh, thank you for joining me today.
Yogesh: Hey Matthew, I'm really glad to be here.
Matthew: Why don't you tell everyone a little bit about yourself?
Matthew: And where are you located?
Yogesh: I'm located in Ahmedabad, India. It's a small city in Gujarat, west of India.
Matthew: What's it like living there?
Yogesh: It's a dry state, so it's really quiet. No clubs, no bars, and it's a metro city, but it's really quiet and it's very peaceful living there. There's not much going around, but yeah, if you have grown up there like I have, then it's a good place to live.
Matthew: What is the terrain, the environment like there?
Yogesh: It's a plain. There's no mountains. There's no beaches unless you wanna drive for hours. It's fertile, there are a lot of farmers here. There's a lot of farming that happens around the main city. There's a lot of little villages. A lot of crops in India grow from Ahmedabad, like cotton.
Matthew: When you get out of the house, what do you like to go and do in the area?
Yogesh: The most interesting place in the city, maybe a nearby coffee place. I'm not a connoisseur, but I really like coffee, I really like brewing coffee as well. So I often go check out coffee places in the town. So yeah, that's what I like to do. Go to a new coffee place, try new food, watch a movie with friends. It's a good place to live if you have good company around you.
Matthew: Do you go and work from the coffee shops or is it just for–
Yogesh: Yeah, absolutely. Yeah. I just cannot work at home because I have a beautiful bed behind me. And just like in the– especially in the afternoons, I'm working on my desk and I just look behind and it's like the bed's inviting me to take a nice nap. I don't wanna fall into that because you know how you take a nap at two in the afternoon and you wake up at seven in the evening. So yeah, I just– that's like a ritual of mine. Every day after lunch, I just head out to one of these coffee places and work from there, because it doesn't let me take a nap there.
Matthew: So that's your normal workspace environment is heading to the coffee shops?
Yogesh: Yeah, heading to a coffee shop, a cafe, or sometimes co-working spaces. I like to sit more of like a day light, it kind of keeps me from being sleepy. Usually, I just head out to work. I can't just work at home.
Matthew: Since you're pretty kind of nomadic, almost day to day, what do you kind of pack up and take with you? What are the essentials that you need to move around and keep working?
Yogesh: I go to any place in the world with just my laptop and phone. I think you can just do anything if you're like transit, summer, you have a phone, you can book a hotel, book a hotel, voila, you’ve got a place to stay. Yeah, I just take my MacBook and my phone and my headphones. Music is really important while you're working, yeah.
Matthew: What music do you like to listen to?
Yogesh: I think some people will judge me, but listen to ambient Minecraft music.
Matthew: Ambient Minecraft music.
Yogesh: You should try it. Minecraft music is really good. It gets you the grooves, like, class naming after the Minecraft music starts, it's pretty dope.
Matthew: I didn't know that was a whole genre itself.
Yogesh: No, it's a genre of ambient music. There’s a really popular artist called Hecker, I think you would love his work. But I just like to have some kind of ambient sound around me. It helps me focus.
Matthew: So you mentioned that when you're like moving around– do you like to have places that have windows or maybe you have people around you and you can people watch?
Yogesh: Occasionally to just people watch. It's like you're alone, but you're not totally alone. And, it's like no one's bothering you. There's people around you, like a comfortable feeling. It's a weird, comfortable feeling.
Right now here I'm in New York and I just– sitting in the park and working from there was like the most amazing experience ever. I just had coffee by my side, I was sitting in a nice park, I could see nature, I could see sky, I could see different kinds of people around me. Sometimes seeing people around you kind of inspires you because, you know, you see a lot of interesting people, especially here in New York.
Matthew: One of the things I do love about visiting New York is just kind of having so much happening around me. So it’s a weird thing, it actually helps energize me and make me focus, like I can disappear into this large, chaotic city. I find it energetic and invigorating.
Yogesh: Like, you feel like the main character in a movie. Like everything blurs out, and it’s just you doing your thing.
Matthew: Do you have any interesting hobbies?
Yogesh: Well, flying airplanes is considered as an interesting hobby. It's kind of an expensive hobby, but I‘ve always loved airplanes. Like, just seeing that marvelous, huge engineering marvel, just flying in the sky, it was so fascinating to me. So, ever since I was a kid, even if I'm 21 today, if I hear a plane engine over my head in my house, I just kind of just stroll out the house and take a look at it. I'll just be like, “Wow, this.” I flew for the first time two years ago, when I visited the United States.
So, yeah, that's the first time I flew and it was– the feeling was totally euphoric. It was like I was talking to the wind, it was amazing. Last year as well, when I visited Webflow Conference in San Francisco, that area is a great place for glider flying. There's a few glider flying clubs in Hollister. So yeah, I took that opportunity as well too, for a little glider flying ride.
Matthew: Yeah, I saw a clip of that. That looked amazing.
Yogesh: I would totally recommend it.
Matthew: What is something that would surprise people to learn about you?
Yogesh: I don't want to brag about it, but people usually from my college, like I'm still doing my degree. They are usually surprised, how I’m working at this age and already like, making a living of it and working with all these interesting people around the world. So yeah, that's what surprises people when they meet me, when they get to know me.
Honestly, I give all the credit to Webflow. If it weren't for Webflow, I wouldn’t be sitting here right now talking to you through this mic. Yeah.
Matthew: When people realize what you are able to do as still as a student, earning a living at the same time, does that inspire them to try and do the same?
Yogesh: Yeah, definitely. Like they do get inspired and I do always recommend them to go check out Webflow, honestly like doing anything. The only reason I was able to do this right now at this age, it's because I took out the time to learn something.
You just have to take time out to learn something. Nothing is too hard, too tough. As long as you take out the time, the human mind is capable of building websites on Webflow or taking you to the moon. It's capable of both the things. It's like so simple and so easy, people often don't believe it.
Matthew: So are you still a full-time student?
Yogesh: I'm more of a part-time student. I'm doing my degree along the side. I'm working full-time as well. I dunno, I particularly find working and problem solving and everything so interesting that if I don't do that for two days, it feels really odd.
Matthew: Yeah. I mean, it's fun. It can be a hobby in and of itself too. I often refer to Webflow as like my playground.
Yogesh: I think the most therapeutic thing ever would be not to have any project, not to have any deadline. Not to have any client that you need to respond to, but just the Webflow Designer. Just design something random. I think that would be a very therapeutic experience.
Matthew: So what is your role and how do you describe what you do to others?
Yogesh: I basically started as a full stack developer. I learned full stack development first during the COVID time. You know, when there was like all the lockdowns, there was nothing on, and people were doing nothing. I had just finished high school after that and it was my summer break after high school.
I did so many integrations on top of Webflow with custom code that I was really well experienced to do any kind of integration on top of Webflow.
I started on Upwork as that, and apparently there were a lot of people that wanted someone like that. There was a lot of demand in the market for someone that can do these custom form submissions, custom integrations on top of Webflow, getting data from somewhere else inside Webflow. I'm also a Webflow developer. I do build sites as well.
Matthew: What excites and motivates you about what you're doing?
Yogesh: Ever since I was a kid, I really liked building stuff. It's not the part about building the thing, but it's the looking back at what you have built. It feels so satisfying, and you feel, “Wow, I'm capable of doing something so good.” I guess it also relates to why I like traveling so much because I see all these marvels that humans have made, and I just look at them and it kind of motivates me and inspires me that the same human that I am was capable of building something like this. So it kind of motivates me. Building is something that we do on Webflow.
That is what really excites me and motivates me, seeing a site come off after working on it for days and days and days. It comes into shape, comes into life. To be the person that does that really excites me and motivates me.
Matthew: What is a resource that you think more people in the community should know about?
Yogesh: Currently ChatGPT is a great resource for anything and everything. I've been using it at a concerning amount lately. So, right now I can just tell ChatGPT that, “Hey, I wanna do this.” Sometimes you gotta be a little precise when you tell the AI what to do because it's not as smart as you. It does not have all the context, but if you give it the context, it's smarter than you in that topic, in that context.
I think ChatGPT for developers is like Dribble for designers, that you get something to start off. Writing code, it's not that much of a creative thing compared to designing. But still you have to put logical reasoning into that. And it's nice to have something to start off. We humans like to be a little lazy, so–
Matthew: I mean, I think it is still creative work. You're still problem solving.
Matthew: It is just the brush that you're painting with is, you know, characters and syntax– and values rather than with pixels and shapes.
Yogesh: I agree.
Matthew: But it's still very creative.
Yogesh: Yeah, thank you for making me feel better.
Matthew: You are creative. It's just a different medium.
Yogesh: I think Webflow has great community forums, Webflow forums. You post a problem on there, people will be helping you out and responding to you within minutes. I don't know if many people know about this, but there's a great Webflow Discord server. I think it's by Flow Base and it has a lot of people in there. And It's a great place. As amazing as a community is, it’s an as amazing resource. People are like always ready to help you. That's a great thing about this community.
Matthew: Definitely, get involved in the community. Lots of great places to do so.
Matthew: Who is someone in the Webflow Community that inspires you?
Yogesh: First of all, like, McGuire inspires me when it comes to humor. I really like the way he does all the word plays and like puts everything out there. It's like I'm watching a Netflix show, it’s like Webflow tutorials are like the best thing in the world when it comes to like–
So Alex Iglesias, he's a total wizard, he really, really inspires me. Ever since I joined Finsweet, he has kind of, you know, walked me through learning a lot of things I didn't know before.
How you think that you know a lot of things, but then you work with people that are really good at something. Alex, he has kind of been a mentor, but I've always looked up to him. He always inspires me with his work, crazy things that he does with the fancy attributes, it’s just mind boggling. I take everything as a piece of advice that he tells me, ever. Like, every review by him is something of a lot of value to me. Yeah, I think I've never mentioned it to him, but yeah, I'm really grateful, doing things with Webflow. I think Alex is a great inspiration.
Keegan Leary puts out really good content. I really like his content and he's a great person in real life as well. I met him during the Webflow conference and total sport. I look up to him and every day I open Twitter and there's some kind of good content from Keegan.
Matthew: What is some advice that you would to share with others? What's something you learned that's had an impact on you?
Yogesh: I think the biggest setback I ever had in my life was like, I failed a class in my high school. Like, I had to repeat a year, that really set me back. I was like, “Oh, no, what am I gonna do now? I'm a total failure.” I somehow finished high school and right after I finished high school, I just wanted to do something. I had always been like a really average kid in school.
I'm no extraordinary or genius person. I just took the time and put it into learning something I really invested a lot of time in it. I used to go to the courses for like 12 hours a day. Some kind of drive was just making me go through all the courses and just learn it and apply it. And no matter how much of a setback you may have in your life, if you just put in the time to learn something, there's nothing that can stop you except you. Yeah.
Matthew: It's a very valuable thing to understand and be reminded of, that your performance in school and education and failures that you might have personally and professionally don't define the success that you can have. Those are things that happen. They are not you, and they don't define you. So don't let them, you can move on. You can push through and find success and accomplishment in different ways maybe that are not obvious to you in that moment, or even to like the educational system.
Yogesh: Yeah, I agree.
Matthew: Yogesh, how can others in the community reach out and connect with you?
Yogesh: You can all reach out to me on my LinkedIn or on my Twitter. I regularly scroll through both.