Listen to Your Heart, Follow Your Dreams

I know I haven’t been pushing much content out these last few months. The reason? I’ve been a little occupied—  living life, experiencing new things and learning to listen to my heart..all of which take up a fair amount of time. There’ve been lot changes...many ups and downs like a rollercoaster. So in today’s edition of reading recommendations, I’d like to share that journey with you in hopes you find a little bit of inspiration along the way to do, well, whatever it is you love to do.

The Ultimate Sales Machine by Chet Holmes

Rewind a couple months back when I was just starting my sales career...I was on the GRIND. I had an obsession with growth, both professionally and personally… always trying to reach that next level. I remember trying to squeeze every minute out of the day— listening to podcasts about business whenever I was driving, working on weekends, and reading a ton of sales books. The Ultimate Sales Machine being one of them.

My biggest takeaway was to have “Pigheaded Discipline and Determination”. At the time, in my opinion, I thought I was pretty good at cold calling; talking to strangers was a lot of fun. But I lacked consistency...I would make a few dials and be like, “Alright, I’m good…”. It’s tough to stay motivated. Especially when people don’t pick up the phone 90% of the time, nobody around is making any calls, AND if you’re unlucky... some jerk would pick up the phone and ruin your entire day!

Since reading The Ultimate Sales Machine, I’ve learned to stop letting my emotions control my actions. If I’m lacking motivation and don’t feel like doing anything, I keep pushing. It’s not like an internal struggle with myself, it’s more of me introspectively thinking, “I know I’m tired and I don’t feel like doing anything right now. But this is important. I have to get it done.” In theory this sounds great, but in practice it’s really hard. I’m not all the way there yet, but I recognize the path and I’m walking towards it every day. After all,it’s the journey that makes you who you are.

Kinfolk Issue Fifteen: The Entrepreneurs Issue

Now after being on the grind for the first few months since moving to San Francisco, I was burning out. I even started questioning WHY I was working so hard. So to relax, I went to a bookstore in Japantown and this Kinfolk magazine caught my eye.

It was The Entrepreneurs Issue and I thought it would be perfect for someone who was sooooo ambitious like me. But to my surprise, the entire thing was about SLOWING DOWN. After reading a couple of pages, I was HOOKED. I took a seat and read the entire magazine on the spot—cover to cover! Here’s what I walked away with:

Prior to reading the magazine, I was living life in the fast lane. Always rushing to get somewhere. But I now realize no matter how much work and responsibility you have on your plate, how you FEEL about it is a choice. You’re still going to have the same amount of work in front of you regardless of how you look at it. The key is shifting your perspective.

Now, instead of rushing to get everything done as fast as possible and move on to the next thing, I’ve been making the conscious decision to take a step back and say, “Okay, there’s a good amount of work to do, but I’m not in a hurry. I’m going to take my time and do the best I can do here. And if it takes longer than expected, I’m okay with that.”

Slowing down taught me to enjoy the journey rather than being obsessed with the end goal. Not only am I living a much healthier and happier life, but the quality of my work and productivity have dramatically improved as a direct result! I do believe having a vision and a vision of where you want to be in the future is important, BUT being mindful of the present is what’s going to get you there...and keep you sane!

Now that we understand the value of slowing down, the next lesson in our journey is to follow our dreams.

The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho

When we’re young and naive, we have all these amazing dreams. But as we enter the “real” world, those dreams start dimming...and dimming...and dimming to the point where we don’t believe they’re possible anymore! It’s so easy to lose faith in ourselves and bend to whatever society tells us to believe. But it’s all an illusion!

Here’s a line from The Alchemist that really stuck with me, “When you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you achieve it.” I remember when I was younger, I had so much FIRE...so much confidence in myself to accomplish ANYTHING. And man, during the last few months I started losing it because I let my environment influence my thinking. I was jumping through hoops trying to live up to other people’s expectations. But no more.

Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about when I was younger and “didn't know any better”. When I didn’t pay attention to other people’s expectations and focused on being the best me I could be. That’s when I was the happiest. That’s where I need to be again...

If we’ve chatted recently, you already know I’ll be making some big moves within the next few months. I’ve been listening closely to my heart. And from now on, I’ll be following my dreams. 100%, no compromises. Here’s another line from The Alchemist, “There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure.” And even though I can’t predict what exactly my future will look like, I’m not afraid. Why? Because the universe is on my side.  

Conclusion

To recap, we learned from The Ultimate Sales Machine how to stay disciplined and determined. And from Kinfolk Issue Fifteen: The Entrepreneurs Issue, we learned although working hard is important; slowing down, finding balance and enjoying the process will keep you happy. Finally, from The Alchemist, we learned that we already have all the answers to our challenges. We just need to listen closely to our hearts, then we can understand and pursue our dreams.

So, for those who’ve been wondering what I’ve been up since moving to San Francisco, there it is. I’ve been learning, growing and discovering my true self. And if you made it this far, I want thank you for reading. I hope you leave here feeling a little more inspired to do what you love and follow your dreams.

with luv,
Patrick

P.S. if you'd like to be a part of my secret reading recommendation list, go ahead and shoot me an email at patricktdang@gmail.com.