Social Wisdom

May 26, 2021

Social Wisdom EP #3: Michael Dudley released!

Hello everybody, how are we today? Today Social Wisdom EP #3: Michael Dudley Part 2 released! In this very special episode we conclude by discuss the concept of becoming comfortable with the uncomfortable. Sometimes in life it is way too easy to close ourselves off and end up going through the motions.

Hear the story about how Michael transitioned from a corporate sales job to a start up in the healthcare industry after having a realization that he was not doing what brought him joy and satisfaction in life. Sometimes it is NOT about the money, and finding your passion is the key. Listen to his other advice regarding sales, AB testing and growth mindset!

Check out new episodes every single Wednesday. Remember that we are always looking for guests. Send us an email at if you would be interested to share your wisdom, you never know who will resonate with your journey. Check out the audio and transcript of our entire episode below. We appreciate you for starting the journey to #BecomingXceptional with us!

Additionally, we have released multiple new DAILY CC episodes – our vlog that showcases the behind-the-scenes of Chaminger and what it takes to build a brand and podcast from zero! Watch here!

Listen Social Wisdom EP #2: Michael Dudley released

Social Wisdom Episode #3: Michael Dudley Part 2
Social Wisdom Episode #3: Michael Dudley Part 2

And read along – the transcript:

Fabian: Hola from Chaminger. My name is Fabian Chagoya and I’m your host of Social Wisdom. How do you know what to work on to improve? By being exposed to what is actually possible or obtainable. A major goldmine of untapped knowledge and experience is learning from others, Social Wisdom. Be a sponge, save yourself countless lessons and years of figuring it out the hard way by absorbing it firsthand from others. And here we go.

Welcome back to Social Wisdom by Chaminger. Thank you for joining us as we continue our journey to gain insight from others, since this is a multi-part episode. If you have not watched the previous segment, we highly recommend it for context, but feel free to continue and experience the valuable wisdom that is to be gained from this episode. You are the reason we do this. Enjoy today’s Social Wisdom. 

Today on Social Wisdom, we discuss getting comfortable with the uncomfortable with Michael Dudley.

Michael: Yeah, one other thing, as you were talking about that, maybe it’s just this, I think this generation in general, it does so many things to keep themselves comfortable. I mean, if you think about like half the things that are bought and sold, are just like pillows that just are a little bit more contorting to the head, or everything’s just a little bit more comfortable than that last thing that was already there. I feel like everyone’s keeping themselves boxed in. I, I think people are afraid to fail and I get that part, that’s very natural. 

But I also think, and this might be, I just thought of this and I hadn’t reviewed it with you. So hopefully you don’t mind me going this direction, but I think people take themselves too seriously. I’m pretty self-deprecate, I don’t take myself too seriously. Like I said, I know more things that don’t work than, than work. And I think if you’re willing to put yourself out there and willing to reveal yourself. Like you, jeez, in the first four minutes of being on this podcast. I talked about, you know, me going through a depression. You have to be willing to be yourself and be transparent. I think whether you’re in sales, people appreciate that. People don’t want the Facebook version where you’re just only posting or Instagram version of yourself where you’re only posting the highlight. 

If you think about any hero that we’ve, um, that we’re drawn to, they go through a point where, some type of low. They go through some valley where they learn something about themselves and then like the Phoenix, they rise. But we were with them in those low moments. And I think you have to sometimes be willing to take people through the low in order to take them to the high. 

You know, in sales, I always have to, I’m always willing to just say, Hey, this company that I’m at is not the best at this. And when I say that, then they’re like, okay, so all the things that he’s telling me that they’re good at, it’s true because he’s, he’s now, there’s some kind of like good and bad. He’s not just telling me all the great things that this company does and just shoving a bunch of sales jargon at me. Um, he’s being, he’s being transparent. He’s lowering his guard. 

I’ve been known, over the years, as a good closer, and I think the only reason that I’ve been good at that is because, whether it’s at the negotiation table or at closing, that person, that prospect is always on my side of the table. I’m always like their advocate. And I’m saying, Hey, I’m going to talk to my leadership about getting you this discount. I know what they’re going to ask me though, they’re going to ask us this. What are you want our response to be? I’m on your side of the desk. Like, let’s get this done. I want this done, you want this done, it’s that empathy. 

I mean, just the worst thing you can do in negotiation is tell somebody that you’re good at negotiating, because then they’re gonna be all right. Now, I’m going to screw you over just for absolutely no reason other than to show you, you’re not good at negotiating. Where if you come and just be like, Hey, can you help me out here? I’m trying to get this and trying to get that, I think we could use this on our side of the deal, Mr. and Mrs. Prospect. I think that type of empathy goes a long way and that also translates to life. 

I even have a hard time, you know, even being on a podcast where I’m giving advice, because I don’t want to be that guy who’s just like, you got to do it this way, gotta do it this way. I’m not that guy. I’m the guy who’s just like you. I’ve been there, I’ve done that. I just have, I’ve learned a couple things I want to be able to pass along. So hopefully somebody doesn’t have to go through the same mistakes as me, but I think ultimately you can’t take yourself too seriously. Um, or, or else everyone will want to shut you down. Everyone will want you to fail because they hadn’t seen you fail. Even though you’ve already failed behind closed doors.

Fabian: I love that. There really is something to be said about people taking themselves too seriously. I mean, once you’re able to laugh at yourself and just relax, I mean, everyone makes mistakes, everyone. And this was something that really kind of started turning me off towards these big corporate jobs and these non startups and stuff like that, was the fact that everyone took themselves so seriously. Yes, there’s something to be said about professionalism. I love it. I think it’s amazing because you get things done and you have a certain quality that you can expect. But once it got to the point where it’s like, well, I can’t tell the customer this, or I can’t say this, well why? You guys are all thinking this, why do we have to pretend that we’re saying something else or thinking something else? 

And I know I rattled a lot of feathers during my time there because I always embrace the approach of just brutal honesty. If a customer is like, well, what happened here? Why did this happen? Well, you know, our project management just completely dropped the ball here, but we’re going to find a way to make this work. So what do we need? I’m going to go talk to them, I’m on your side. When I was doing that, like I really was on their side because I’m like, you know what? You guys need this. Like, they absolutely need this product. You need this help, you really are like struggling a little bit to pay for things, but you’ll need that ramp up of money after three months of having this success with this product, so let’s do it. Like what can you afford? What can we do? Let me go fight for you up there. 

I know that sometimes the leadership and certain bosses were like, well, you should be more on our side. You should be trying to get more money and make the deal worth more so a, we make more, why are you helping them? And it was always like a struggle because then you have to be better about pitching it to your own bosses so that they don’t realize that. But to me, it was just like, I wasn’t afraid of that brutal honesty of saying what it is, like good or bad. And like you said, I feel like people appreciate that vulnerability and it’s hard, it really is. 

Like you said, the social media, like the Facebook, the Instagram, the highlight reel. People are so used to that part. All of a sudden you like show like, well, you know what? I got laid off last month and I haven’t found a job. I just got turned down by three jobs and you know, now I’m feeling a little depressed. Obviously don’t have to share everything. There’s some benefit to, you know, keeping the mystery alive and being private. But people really resonate with that because they’re like, Oh, this guy who I thought has everything figured out is actually a normal human being until he rises like a Phoenix. 

Which by the way, I love that analogy. I think there really is something to be said about that. I feel like that a lot of times, being underestimated, I actually like it. Um, I don’t know how you feel about that, but it’s kinda cool to be like, no one would expect this from you. Like they all think you’re going to do this and then you just come out.

Kind of curious before we move to the next part about talking about like your vision and the idea of success, but going to more of this startup. I’m sure some people are going to be like, Hey, well, why are you doing that? Why would you do that? Why would you give up like these insane corporations and potential? Do you almost feel like that’s you rising up and it’s like, Hey, this is what I want to do. This is who I really was. But you guys just never really understood or tell me more about that.

Michael: Yeah, so a couple of things. Um, one from a starter perspective, I’ve always been, you know, one of the top reps. And so for me, it was always good to be in a large sales field because I knew they would appreciate where I was. So, you know, being the, the top rep at a two rep company, isn’t as meaningful as a top rep at a 15 rep company. So I, I’ve been focused in on that in the past. 

One of the things that I would highly recommend if you do have a conversation with a recruiter or looking into some type of sales role, find one where you can earn equity. From that perspective, like the commission is good in the short-term, but none of it’s life changing. I think equity and being able to build a business, um, it’s like, it’s okay if your rep one out of two and you’re building a company that goes public and later on you’re rep one of 15, that’s, that’s awesome. That’s way better than doing anything else. What I’m looking forward to the most is that every sale is going to be extremely impactful for the entire business, in like a 20, 30 employee company, like you make a sale, everyone knows about it. Everyone’s celebrating, everyone is excited because you’re creating different bottlenecks in different sides of the business. And they’re like, they get pumped about it. And I think that’s very different than in a corporate job where you hit your number one month and it’s like, cool, two months later, it’s like, what have you closed here lately?

So, from that perspective, there’s a different aspect there and there’s also different culture too. Knowing that you’re a part of something that you’re literally like lifting up off the ground. I’m really looking forward to getting more involved with them and especially the industry that we are, where we’re really providing true care to patients and making an impact on patient’s lives. Like that, it’s going to be so exciting cause we’re all doing it together and I think that’s very different. Being on the corporate side, selling healthcare technology, you always had the sales versus professional services. I can’t believe you sold ’em this and like, it, it just it’s it’s way different. 

One of the reasons I made this, this role change is to be in a role where I can, when I make sales, I’m making a major difference in the lives of customers, in the lives of patients that these practices are serving, but then also make a huge impact in the company I’m working for. And then hopefully making a huge impact on my family. When that equity, you know, gets to a certain amount of money. I know we have certain targets and I know what that payout will be and so I’m working my butt off for that one day. I know in the meantime, I’m going to be, uh, reimbursed.

You have to be willing to understand if that’s, if that’s right for your family. I said goodbye to a couple colleagues last week and, and they’re like, I’m just getting out of that window of, of where I’m able to take risk as a family and not everyone’s able to do that. To go to a startup, you have to take one step back to take two steps forward. Thankfully this one, was actually a step forward, um, in order to hopefully take a lot of steps forward, but that’s not always the case. I understand that and so from that perspective, there’s just a major difference there.

I will say, you know, there’s going to be different things that you miss from that corporate life. The one thing that I know that I can’t do going forward is, there’s no hiding in a small company. There’s no like, at my annual year, I can take, you know, a week or two off. It’s like, I was on vacation a couple of weeks ago and I want to hit the ground running. Um, and I know that I’m not going to be able to, to hide, not that I was before, but you know what I’m talking about. In a corporate company, it’s so big that, um, sometimes you can get lost in the numbers and that that comes with both pros and cons.

So I hope that gives you a little bit of information about why I made that decision. I mean, ultimately it came down to being at the right place at the right time and being aligned with what I’m passionate about. The fact that it’s a small business was just icing on the cake.

Fabian: I love that so much because, you know, I feel like we get ingrained in our mind that we have to keep making more money, more money, and it’s all just about the money. And yeah it’s amazing and you know, there’s a lot of upside with your move. So I think that’s even better, but there’s just something to be said about creating something, creating a legacy. Knowing that your impact was part of the reason. Obviously I don’t know everything about this business that now you’re starting with, but it’s like, Hey, you get a big sale or you get a big customer. Like now they might be able to hire 10 more employees. They might be able to open a new department. They might be able to expand to another city and you are literally affecting so many other people’s lives. And there’s just something to. Be said about that. That is in my opinion, amazing. So I love that so much and I respect that and I really hope that it works out for you because that sounds really cool. 

I want to touch upon one thing that I think is a very misunderstood part about life. And it’s like, what is success? How do you get successful? And obviously that’s part of the thing that I want to explain to people, but I want to kind of change that definition because I think too many people view it as, Oh, that means that I am the CEO of this big corporation. You could argue that that guy is successful, but is he really successful? Like, did he sacrifice everything in his life, now he’s unhappy, he’s depressed. I would argue that that guy truly isn’t successful because what if he just loses his job because something happened at the company and now his head rolls and what does he have, you know? And he destroyed everything else to get there. I think there’s something to be said about us changing our view on success. And I know this is not like completely foreign, a lot of motivational speakers talk about this. But I think that it’s such an important concept because they’re habits and it really is about figuring yourself out, getting the self-esteem that no matter what happens, you’re going to be set up for success.

But I want to hear your take on the Chaminger definition and then I want to hear your opinion on what success means to you. So I have to read it because I always forget my exact wording, but it really is the point of where you feel great with what you have currently accomplish in life. So you’re happy with yourself, you’re happy with your worth, the value that you provide and you don’t need other people’s validation to feel like you’re successful. So that is our definition. Curious to know what your thoughts are on that.

Michael: Yeah, I love, um, I love that mentality. It aligns with what I’ve been talking about all along. I don’t really even think about success, success is like that after that I was talking about. It’s for me, like success was a validation of what I already knew or where the joy that I’ve already found. To give you a perfect example, you know, I was depressed and it’s hard even just like saying it out loud, but I had to take control over it. I couldn’t just say, you know, what, this is what it is like, I’m going to just keep doing this until I’m successful. No, I said, I’m going to take control of what I can control. I’d rather be happy at something that I’m enjoying and mediocre, or like, you know, in the world’s terms versus successful at something that I hate. 

I’ve seen so many executives over the years, like just be at the office until whatever, and they have a divorce and they go through all this. I hang out with them for drinks afterwards, and they’re just not, not all of them, but many of them just aren’t happy. And there are other people that, they’re clocking in, clocking out and then spend as much time as they possibly can with their family. I would almost rather err towards that second option, but I do think that there is an ability where you have to be on when you’re at work and you have to be able to flip it off. I know there’s many times where I have my phone and I know that people have a lot of great tips of, you know, turning off their email, turn off their phone, you know, when they’re at home. I can’t always do that, but sometimes I’m like, I just, I’m not going to respond to any emails until the morning. No deals are going to be signed right now, everything, almost everything can wait until the morning. Now is my time with my family, now is my time to do this and if I can’t enjoy this moment without thinking about all these other things and these clouds over my head, then it’s not even worth being here. 

So another good example, I joined a softball league two years ago. Um, I don’t play softball. I played little league, when I was like a child and I, I started playing softball and I was like in right field and they were like, please, no one hit it towards him. By the end of the year, like I won the MVP of the team just because I brought spirit, I brought energy and I wasn’t the best, but I was, I was bringing it. I ran around the bases for everybody. Cause that was the one thing I knew how to do. I was like, I know how to run, I know how to stop. I’m going to do that on behalf of the team. It’s like those kinds of moments, like where you have to, even if you’re not good at something, you have to try and if you’re passionate about it, people pick up on that. People appreciate that. 

I think the same thing, as you know, with, with life, you have to be able to find that joy. And if you’re at home and you’re not finding joy, you need to find out why there’s no joy there. You know, maybe it is, you know, spouse related, or maybe it is due to your house and your physical home. During the COVID-19, we did a lot of, uh, a lot of things around the house, we actually put a pool into our deck. There was a hot tub platform underneath it. We put a pool for my five-year-old three-year-old to be able to, to splash around in, it’s only like two feet tall. I just was not going to, to live with the fact that I couldn’t go to some neighborhood pool. I was like, I’m going to put pool anywhere I can put a pool, otherwise we’re just having a puddle of water somewhere because, uh, it’s going to too hot to not do something. 

So it’s, it’s those kinds of things where you just, you take control of your life, you find joy where you can. And if people call it success, cool, that’s whatever, you know, it’s icing on the cake, but if you’re happy and you’re finding joy in things, that’s all that matters.

Fabian: I think that’s a perfect way to end it on that note about the success piece. That’s awesome. I love that you take control of the situation. At the end of the day, are you going to do something about it or are you just going to complain? And it’s hard, we talk about it, like, you know, Hey, we got it all figured out, but I know both of us have, like you said it happened to you recently, up and down. So guys, it’s not just immediate, it’s not just always. It’s always a constant fluctuation, but that’s the cool thing about it, you know, find your passion. 

And this leads me to the final thing before we go with our goodbyes and our takeaways is what are your thoughts? I mean, you’ve really touched upon it throughout the entire episode and I love that, but it’s one of the things that I live my entire life, especially basically since I’ve graduated college, I’ve had this mantra of always be improving. So kind of want to know what is your take on that? And do you feel like it’s almost like maybe dangerous when you always want to be changing and growing and improving? Or is it just something that more people should approach?

Michael: My fear is that people will hear that and they’ll say, Yeah, that’s what you want to do. I can’t do that. And they’ll, they’ll think like that is how you’re wired and they’re wired differently and they, they can’t get to that point. And I think that’s up for debate. And I think that you do a good job of, of saying, Hey, I think everyone, everyone can, can improve. So that’s why everything I’ve been talking about has been like, Hey, you don’t always have to improve the way everyone else is telling you and to improve. If you’re going to find joy in something, why wouldn’t you want to improve? Why wouldn’t you want to do things your way? I think we live in a very expressive world where it’s perfectly okay to do things your style, as long as you’re in that lane. You can be all the way to the left or all the way the right, as long as you’re in that lane, you follow the rules to a certain extent.

And that’s why I’ve mentioned, I always, no matter what role I’m in, I always want a manager who gives me creativity to do things my way. And if I’m ever interviewing for somebody and they’re like, Nope, we want you to do it this way, we have this process. You cannot do it your way, you are not allowed any creativity, I’m not going to be a good fit. I have to have structure, I have to have lanes, but I want the liberty to do it my way. 

So, you know, I think from that perspective, I’m with you, I feel like everyone can be in that growth mindset. If you, if you acknowledge that you’re in that static mindset. So for me, I always like thinking like, what does that sound like? So I know I had a friend of the family who just was like, Hey, you know, this is me, you know, you either love it or hate it. Like, this is me, I’m not changing for anybody. I’m like, that’s not like a way that anyone should be living life. But actually it makes my blood boil a little bit when I hear that, because I’m like everyone should be trying to improve and get better at things. If we just have to accept each other as the 14 year old version of ourselves that we thought we figured out, that’s not going to get us anywhere. But if we’re always trying to improve, I think everyone appreciates that. Like that superhero story, people know that, like, you’re not perfect.

And I think that’s also another, another part too, is you have to be willing to, to let your guard down and let people see that other side of you. And if, if so, then, that improvement, people are going to celebrate with you and people are going to be like, yeah, dude, I remember you last year, you were like literally hating life and now you’re doing this, I’m so happy for you. And, and, but they can’t be so happy for you. In fact, they want to tear you down unless they know where you came from. So, um, that would be just my encouragement is that if you’re going to be growing, if you want to be constantly improving, find a way that you can find joy in it and that you can improve and love it and also take people on for the ride.

Fabian: Exactly, I think that’s the key. Like you said that there’s like this misunderstanding in people, like, well, I can’t do that. And it’s because I think people just hear that and they’re like, Oh, it has to be major improvements. Like if I’m 10 pounds overweight, now I have to be like fit. I’m like, no, maybe you just exercise once a week now and before you never exercised. That’s already an improvement, you know? And I think it’s rewiring your mindset and just changing your view on it. Like even small little things are the key and that’s at the end of the day, what brings us to make changes in our lives and grow, because if every day you just do a little change, a little change. I know, I’m sure you can relate, especially considering you were doing fitness related stuff and nutrition, it really is the small things that add up over time. And then eventually once it becomes a habit, it’s easy, but it’s getting to that point.

Michael: Everyone wants the six pack abs, no one wants to actually do the crunches. 

Fabian: Exactly. So with that said, Michael, this has been an amazing talk. Uh, I love everything you’ve had to say, your response to it. I want to shout you out, first of all, for reaching out. I want to hear your take on something that I’ve kind of noticed that, um, it’s, you know, we’re figuring this out as well. This is a new journey, but I feel like a lot of people are paying attention, are watching, are listening, but a lot of people are hesitant to reach out, or to start this journey, or to share their take on it, or maybe it resonated with them, but they might not publicly acknowledge that. And I feel like there’s almost like this fear of showing that like, like you said, that vulnerability, that weakness, like, Hey, I portrayed to the world that I have everything figured out. Yet here I am, I feel pretty darn secure at my job. Like everyone makes me feel inferior, or something. 

So I’m kind of curious, you reached out, you were on this journey to do this new job. You were leaving something that probably most people were like, Oh, Hey, even if this new thing is even more prosperous and successful, like you were leaving something that most people were like, wow, why would you leave that? You have your life set. You took a risk. And I’m curious to know what was the kind of motivated you to, you know, reach out and be inspired to do this. Cause, I mean, did you ever feel like a moment of hesitation when you’re like announcing like this big change and you’re doing something new or was it just easy for you?

Michael: Yeah, I think, you know, like for you, I think I just said, Hey, I man, I love what you’re doing. If you ever need a guest. I do know that there is that person who’s like, Hey, can I be a guest on your show? That wasn’t my intention. My intention was like, I just want you to know, like, you’re doing a good thing. I also know like, it’s hard to create content all the time. So, you know, if you need help with that, I’m happy to help you out. Uh, but I think it’s just another way that I was putting myself out there. And I think that’s, that’s, that’s the part is like, you know, I would often take just calls from recruiters, even if I was happy. Just because, you know, I never want to close a door that hasn’t even been opened yet.

So like, that’s the perspective I like to take is just, same thing with the headphones in the airplane. Just like, I don’t know what’s going to happen. Maybe I don’t want to talk to that person, but I would rather have that option to talk with that person, then not talk with that person. So it’s kind of that mindset where it’s like, you just have to be open-minded and I think that’s the hardest part that I have with COVID is I miss those interactions with people. I miss, like at the gas station, you know, having those interactions and not everyone does. I know I’m an extrovert, I enjoy those things. 

I miss being able to be a manager and being drop-shipped into an opportunity and being able to meet a physician and hear what his problem, I know to a certain extent he’s gonna be feeling one or two, three, or four different pains uh, and I can kind of hone in on that, but I I’m excited. I actually loved walking into and cold calling a private practice and just say, I don’t know, what’s on the other side of the store, but I’ve trained my butt off. I know my talk tracks. I know what I’m going to say. So I’m excited to see which one, which objection he gives me because I want to see their reaction when I give them, you know, the objection handling response that I’ve developed for that. So for me, it was like, I enjoy those interactions with, with other people in life, um, that were pre COVID. And we’ll see what, what happens after, you know, a couple months here. I hope things, I hope people are willing to break that six foot barrier and, and be able to bump shoulders with people. 

One last analogy. I know we’re kind of cutting on time. But, uh, one thing I, I think it was like a Bar Rescue episode or something like that I was watching, but they literally talked about like bars were set up a certain way so that you had these bump areas where like people would, would, would mingle with each other. If it was too wide open people wouldn’t feel like they’re a part of a community. And it’s kind of like, I wish there were more bump areas in life where we could just meet each other and like I said, we, we might’ve said two or three words to each other at this old company before, but I always respected. You sounds like you respected me. So from that perspective, it’s like, we need more interaction with people.

And that’s one of the reasons why I felt, you know, kind of depressed at that point last year. So I think from that perspective, it’s like, you have to be willing to put yourself out there and just say, Hey, I’m going to be a vulnerable. I’m not going to take myself too seriously. I’m going to bump in with other people and we’ll see what happens. Uh, you know, if it’s being comfortable in the uncomfortable. Those are uncomfortable situations. And, uh, I, I thrive for it. So  I really hope that this normal new normal includes more bump areas.

Fabian: I love it. I that’s literally, that was a perfect conclusion to the episode, a great way of tying it all back together. It really is guys, be willing to be uncomfortable. It’s scary at first, but once you try it, it changes everything. I mean, I will end this with an analogy where I think about, like, I became very good at hosting parties and social gatherings because of my parents. They always had the host stuff, because diplomats have to host other diplomats. Like, so the Mexican ambassador would have the American ambassador over, the president of that country and like, you know, we’re hosting like the 30, 40 people. You know, my mom is either catering or making food herself and we have music and all of a sudden my dad is having karaoke going so that people can like mingle together with a shared activity. Like you said, a bump thing. 

And that’s kind of where I, you know tying it back to my Mexican tradition, I had like this thing, like I called it the Mexican cheers. Where like, I’d do a shot with people, or I gather people together and like, do you guys know the Mexican cheers? And like, everyone starts doing it. And there’s a lot of strangers that come together, like I asked them, Hey, come on, do a shot with me. I’m going to teach you the Mexican cheers and if you ever go to Mexico, you can get a free shot if you do this. Because Mexicans love Americans who appreciate their culture. 

So all of a sudden you have like 10, 15, 20 people that have never talked to each other. Maybe they all know me, but now that you’re doing the shot together, we do it. Like everyone’s like yelling because you know, they’re excited. It’s something different. And now all those 10, 20 people feel like they can talk to each other. Because now they have a shared activity they’re like, man, what did you think about that? A Mexican cheers, that was crazy. Huh? Now they feel like they can actually just approach a stranger because before it’s like, Hey, I don’t want to interrupt them, but now they’re able to do that. They did something that maybe made them uncomfortable, but now they feel comfortable and now it completely changed the dynamic of the gathering, the party.

It’s just little things like that. And it really resonated with me what you said about, Hey, like those areas for people to bump into. And it’s kind of crazy how it’s just kind of completely vanished right now with COVID, but I know we’re going back to that and I’m super excited to see that, but I appreciate you so much for everything you said, all the messages  and advice that you had to offer. I think there’s a lot of great things that people can absorb there. I mean, we’ve had some similar experiences, but also completely different ones. So guys make sure you listen to everything Michael has to say, he will not lead you astray, but you know, also remember to forge your own path.

So now is your opportunity to make any shout outs you want to do, talk about anything that you want to share or thank people that you want to thank. So the floor is yours.

Michael: Yeah, no, I appreciate that. And you know, if you want to connect on me, you can find me at on LinkedIn, uh, Michael Dudley, D U D L E Y. Um, I’m also launching a YouTube channel where I’m talking about some of the patient success stories that we’re doing. It’s just trying to keep things positive and I think in today’s world, um, we have people constantly bashing each other on social media, just to just a Ray of positivity. So I’ll be doing a lot more to bring you guys in on that future journey on LinkedIn, as well as on YouTube, you can find me @ValueBasedMicheal on YouTube. 

Again, we’re just getting started. Uh, I’m pretty excited about I’m going to be building this brand. And, if you are, if you’re in the healthcare space and you have a provider, if you are working with a practice who, uh, wants to be able to impact lives, I’d love to talk with you more. Again, you can reach me at That’s C O H O R, that is the email address. You can feel free to shoot me an email too. I mean, ultimately, um, I love meeting new people, so don’t, don’t hesitate to reach out. I just love hearing experiences. I mean, I, I’m always attracted to people that come from different backgrounds than me. So to hear like the karaoke and, uh, karaoke is one of those things I’m not good at. That’s one of the secret moments I was telling you about. Hearing that culture aspect of it, I love that. I love that part, I love learning about that. 

So, um, it actually kind of drew up one last point, which is, um, be inquisitive and ask questions. I think at that point in time, if you, if you ask somebody like, well, what was that like? I think people are just naturally going to, or if you ask for help or ask questions, you’re like, Oh my gosh, you just seem curious. People will put you under their wing and they’ll carry you along for their ride.  

So, um, I mean, I just, I just can’t thank you enough for, for hosting this specific podcast and everything that you’re doing. I love the brand. I love what you guys are encouraging people to do. So I would just, uh, thank you guys for for having me and doing what you guys are doing. Uh, and I just, I personally just thank you for having me. Ultimately if, if I get nothing other than just, you know, one person saying that their life, you know, they did one or two, two changes where they, uh, they just took off their headphones in the airplane. One or two things, I am so happy that I spent this time with you.

Fabian: Yeah, well, I view this as I’m definitely going to stay in touch with you. I’m going to be following your journey. I love that it can start new friendships, new connections. I mean, I think it’s so cool, especially, uh, you know, people that are willing to risk to try something new and build something. You know, like I, I’ve never done YouTube before and all this stuff like that. I’m sure you haven’t really either. So it’s so cool to see other people also trying to expand their horizons and build personal brand and professional brand as well. I will always support that. And I know a lot of people are gonna resonate with this. You had some excellent things to share.

I guess I have one last question to you. So I’ve interviewed some people that don’t have a lot of experience that are still very young, because I want to prove to people that so many people feel like they don’t have anything to share. They don’t have any advice. They don’t have any wisdom. And I tell them, that’s not the case at all. Like someone could, you could be 22, 23 and you’ve lived a crazy life, or you’ve figured out something that maybe none of us have realized. Yet, here you are, you’ve worked at some very prestigious companies. You’ve gone through amazing things. You’ve had some lows, but you’ve overcome it and now you’re trying a new journey. I think there’s so much to be said about that. So, uh, what do you feel about, I guess, to, to send us off for Social Wisdom, what is your take on wisdom? Is that something that is age related, experience relate, or does everyone have something to share?

Michael: While you were saying that I, I instantly became very opinionated. I I’m glad you asked that question. So I  appreciate your willingness to just kind of feel the vibe. So as a manager, uh, I, everyone who I had managed up until, I think six months before  everything changed with COVID. Everyone who has managing was older than me. So I was managing people who, like in an age perspective, was older than me. However, uh, I think that my experience with the organization and my drive was the reason I was in that role and they weren’t. I don’t think there were any subordination issues because of it, but the one person I hired that was younger than me, I had to make a decision. I had one, one sales rep candidate that had done an interview and he was a young guy. He actually didn’t speak great English, but he had a drive to. I mean, he had a pure, like positivity that you couldn’t deny. 

And I had two or three other candidates that were really, really well established, uh, that had, you know, accolades, have been top rep and had done everything. But, um, they were also, they felt like they were more uh closed-minded and that they were going to do things their way. I ended up hiring the younger guy because he had that drive. He had that tenacity, he had like a, um, a positivity that I knew that I was going to enjoy managing him and he generally cared about what was going on. And in fact, he’s one of my favorite hires, because he was so genuine and he had, he had an energy that you don’t see very often. So I, you know, I, I hope that I can be like that type of energy and I, I think you definitely are. 

When we run across these types of human beings, that just are, are positive. That’s why when you’re asking me like, what’s the difficulties of COVID? I was like, I want to talk about the positivity first. I don’t want to be known as that guy who’s complaining. I never want to come in and, and, uh, describe a problem without coming with a solution. I never, I always want to be that positive guy, even if the world around us isn’t as positive. I’m going to be transparent. I’m going to tell it like it is. But at the same point in time, at the end of the day, I want to be someone that people want to be around. And I think that is my last, last, last, uh, soapbox moment. It it’s just to be a positive person that people want to be around. And if that’s the case you’re going to be successful at sales are going to be successful at anything you do.

Fabian: Thanks so much, Michael. Well, you guys heard it here, get uncomfortable with the comfortable and you’ll become a rising Phoenix. Chaminger out.

Hey, my fellow Chamingers, thanks so much for experiencing the Social Wisdom of the week. We hope you absorbed as much as you could. Please leave a comment if you learned something or if you have another guest whose wisdom you’d love to hear. If the message is helping you, please remember to check out our Ko-fi donation page so we can also Become Xceptional. Follow our journey on all our social medias and subscribe so you will never miss an opportunity to #BeASponge. Chaminger out.

May 19, 2021

Social Wisdom EP #2: Michael Dudley released

Greetings from Chaminger! Today is a very important day because Social Wisdom EP #2: Michael Dudley released! In this episode we discuss the concept of becoming comfortable with the uncomfortable. Sometimes in life it is way too easy to close ourselves off and end up going through the motions.

Hear the story about how Michael transitioned from a corporate sales job to a start up in the healthcare industry after having a realization that he was not doing what brought him joy and satisfaction in life. Sometimes it is NOT about the money, and finding your passion is the key. Listen to his other advice regarding sales, AB testing and growth mindset!

In other related news, we released our official Social Wisdom trailer today. You don’t want to miss it! Watch it on Youtube: TRAILER!

Check out new episodes every single Wednesday. Remember that we are always looking for guests. Send us an email at if you would be interested to share your wisdom, you never know who will resonate with your journey. Check out the audio and transcript of our entire episode below. We appreciate you for starting the journey to #BecomingXceptional with us!

Additionally, we have released multiple new DAILY CC episodes – our vlog that showcases the behind-the-scenes of Chaminger and what it takes to build a brand and podcast from zero! Watch here!

Listen Social Wisdom EP #2: Michael Dudley released

Social Wisdom Episode #2: Michael Dudley Part 1
Social Wisdom Episode #2: Michael Dudley Part 1

And read along – the transcript:

Fabian: Hola from Chaminger. My name is Fabian Chagoya and I’m your host of Social Wisdom. How do you know what to work on to improve? By being exposed to what is actually possible or obtainable. A major goldmine of untapped knowledge and experience is learning from others, Social Wisdom. Be a sponge, save yourself countless lessons and years of figuring it out the hard way by absorbing it firsthand from others. And here we go. 

hey guys. Today on Social Wisdom, we discuss getting comfortable with the uncomfortable with Michael Dudley. So how are we doing Michael?

Michael: I’m doing fantastic, man. I’m, I’m happy to be here. Thanks for having me.

Fabian: Thank you so much for reaching out, agreeing to do this. I think there is this almost like, fear that a lot of people have getting interviewed, sharing their advice, sharing their story. There’s like this feeling that, well, I almost got lucky or I don’t know if I want everyone to know the crazy things that I did. Yet, here you are and I think there’s a lot of kudos and respect that I have to give to that.

Michael: I appreciate that, man. I’m going to let you down before I pick you back up. I don’t have all the answers. as I mentioned, uh, I probably know the wrong way to do things more than the right way, but I think that’s the big piece that, um, I, I feel like I, if I can encourage anybody, it’s just, you know, keep trying. Keep trying to listen to people that are two steps ahead of you, because you could probably learn something from their mistakes. And, and maybe if you make one less mistake, that’s, that’s fine. At the end of the day. You’re, you’re not in necessarily one straight path. It’s a wiggle, you’ll get there.

Fabian: I love that. Yes, you guys will always get there eventually and keep listening and it’ll definitely help you.  I want to go into our small talk segment first, before we really get started into discussing your story and your advice and your lessons and go from there. So how have you been with everything that’s happened really over the last, I would say, year and a half. So much has changed. I know I have taken significant risks. My life has changed dramatically. I mean, I used to be much more extroverted and socializing and now I’ve been very, uh, hold up, but by choice and gladly, and I’ve realized a lot of benefits. So, I’m curious, what has kind of changed for you over the last year and a half?

Michael: Yeah, man. Well, I would say, you know, anything that I had, um, set as a, as a normal was flipped upside down. And I think back, as an individual contributor, at a healthcare software company, I did very well. I moved into management and then I, I loved being in that management role because I could kind of be drop shipped into deals. I had to know like very little and I could just basically be kind of submersed in what was going on. Um, and I feel like I could handle that really well. 

So I think at 2000, uh, I guess 2019, I was in about 90 airplanes, uh, flying all over the East coast with some of the reps that I was managing. And it was, it was a whirlwind. I literally was living life like 2020 was going to have a pandemic, I felt like, looking back. And it was a wild ride and it all came to a screeching halt. And so, you know, someone who is very much an extrovert, someone who loves being around people, um, I suddenly had to kind of find joy in other things. 

To be honest with you, for the first time in my life, I did have to kind of deal with a little depression. I had to understand, um, I’m not always going to get these outlets that I was getting before. I’m a kind of person who likes to go to the gym, you know, see my friends have a workout buddy. Not seeing my friends, not being able to work out, not traveling. Even, um, my role was moved from a management role to working on some other projects. 

I think as, uh, at least as, as, as guys, I think girls too, they find, um, a lot of self purpose in how well they’re doing in their role or how well they’re doing at their job, or even just staying active in projects and whatnot. So, I think taking all of that away and there’s only so many episodes of Tiger King before you have to really address what life is and what is this new normal, and how long am I going to be doing this, et cetera. And so, I was kind of forced to like look at my options and I just didn’t see a future where I was. Thankfully I had good friends and they connected me with somewhere. 

Through that process, I also realized that even though I was good at something, I didn’t have a passion for it and so that’s something that I had to learn. And I’m just realizing it just now, you know, I just made the decision to make a move and to leave a company that was only with for a year and that can be tough. At the same point in time, I’d moved from one competitor to another and I only have good things about to say about the organization. For me it wasn’t about whether I was good at it or not. For me, it had to do with, like when I sleep at night, when I wake up, am I excited to do what I’m doing? is this something that I feel like I’m making a difference? Does it feel like I am serving a purpose. 

I remember it was, it was New Years, um, New Year’s night and I got a couple texts from some of my reps that I had managed. They said, you know, happy New Year, you know, miss ya and whatnot and to be honest with you, I broke down crying, man. I was like, what am I doing? Like, this is, this is not something that I want to be doing.

So I just, I texted all the reps that worked for me, Hey, happy new year and then I just sent kind of appreciation texts. Like, Hey, I just loved everything that you did with this and I loved your followup and you did a good job planning. Whatever it was that they were good at, I just sent an encouragement note there.

Not long after that, I was like, man, I gotta do something. So I interviewed for a couple like, uh, pursuing my master’s degree. I was literally at a point where I was like having to make a decision about what is my purpose. And that’s what I’m kind of saying, this is right when I was going through some of this depression of like, what am I doing? I had to do some soul searching. I’m a man of faith, so I, I did kind of like sit back and try to, um, kind of meditate as to what was going to be my future and try to visualize that and do a lot of prayer, but ultimately it just happened to be at the right place at the right time. 

I had a recruiter reach out and it made a lot of sense for me and my background. I had done some fitness competitions and I’ve helped a lot of people with coaching on nutrition and diet as well as also exercise. And then I’ve done some, uh, background in value-based medicine. So, um, what I’m doing now is a perfect fit for me. So it’s like, that is when I knew it was the right point to make a move. I can say that not all the moves I’ve made have been just that evident, so I feel very blessed in that respect.

At the same point in time, one of the encouragements that I would do, and I think this is, this is we all get caught up in it, it’s just to observe your surroundings. And I think if you’re able to do that, things will be much more evident to you. So a good example for you, I mentioned how I was on 90 airplanes in 2019. One of the things I stopped doing, you know, in that start, stop, continue, I actually stopped wearing headphones walking into an airplane. Because for me, it’s like, I didn’t know what was going to happen. Maybe the person next to me was going to start a conversation maybe I didn’t want to be a part of, maybe it didn’t, but I was just going to be open to my surroundings be available to the world around me and who knows what would happen. I ended up having awesome conversations. I ended up being invited to a wedding, uh, for this, couple that was, they had all their family there, going to Miami. So just like these crazy situations. 

We’re living in a world and we try to do so many things to try to keep ourselves comfortable and try to close ourselves off from everybody else. But, um, I don’t think that’s how the world was meant to be. And so that’s kinda why I propose to you one of my tips and one of my biggest, um, I guess, uh, flags that I like to hold up, is just being comfortable in the uncomfortable. Being willing to try things new. Being willing to just embrace the world around you and not feel like you have to kind of shelter yourself or close yourself off.

Fabian: I love that, man.  That was, that was a lot, but I love it. I want to go back a little bit, cause there’s a lot of things that I want to say from that piece. One, I just want to mention that it’s such a pleasure and joy to interview and have a guest that is so used to and comfortable with public speaking and meetings and all that stuff, because there’s just a different dynamic that is there. That initial period of time where you have to like pull out all the questions from them and get them comfortable, like you just get straight to it. So first of all, thank you for that. 

Second of all, I want to say something that I think is absolutely fascinating that a lot of the viewers might not be aware of, is that Michael and I used to work together at the same company a few years back. We knew each other, but it’s almost just the name, or in passing, or at those big conferences, you might just like shake their hand and have a drink together and that’s it. It’s a very short thing. So the fact that now we’re in different roles, we’ve taken our own risks, we’ve done our own journey and we have the opportunity to reconnect, start a new friendship, get to know each other at a complete different level. I think that’s absolutely fascinating to me.

One more thing that I want to mention, I’m curious to hear about you is that. Obviously we were both in sales. It is very interesting to me, all the pieces that you said that you wanted to do and how you felt about for example, you wanted something that had more impact, you wanted something that had more meaning. I just know from a lot of people that have gotten to know me, there’s almost like this initial pushback that they have, because they’re like, Oh, you used to be a sales rep, or you are a sales rep, or you’re always selling, you know? I mean, it’s kind of hard to turn off that switch for us. Cause at the end, everything is a sale, everything’s a transaction I would say. 

It’s just so fascinating to me that you, as a fairly successful sales rep could also take a step back and be like, it’s not just about the money. Obviously, it’s really nice when you get a great paycheck after a lot of hard work and you help the customer, but you actually cared about the end result. And I think that’s something that’s kind of being lost in today’s society and a lot of modern day sales that I was viewed as like, Oh, you’re just, you would say anything to a customer for sale. I’m like, absolutely not. That was actually one of my biggest struggles in my past few sales jobs, where it’s just like, it got to a point where that was like what it was being encouraged. And I’m like, I just can’t do that because I know that I’m going to have to look them in their eyes a year from now and tell them, yeah, this kind of messed you up, your business. 

Once I realized that it could affect their livelihood, their happiness, especially now with COVID, you know, everything is different. No one knows what’s going on. Even people like you and myself that kind of know who we are and what we want can get affected. Like you had a minor depression or anything like that, right? Cause things are changing, you have to completely alter your life. And for me, that was something that really resonated with me with what you said right now was that, as a sales rep, who’s been doing sales for awhile and has had success, could actually take a step back and you wouldn’t just do anything for a sale. So I’m curious to hear a little bit more what your opinion is about that.

Michael: Sure. Hey man, you know, I think a lot of the advice that I gave my rep or that I would give anybody listening to this. I mean, I think they apply to real life as much, if not more than to a saleslife. The reason I say that is like, I take a very honest approach into genuinely caring, genuinely like wanting to ask a question. I’m very curious in nature, so like when I’m in discovery, I feel like I’m in discovery all, all day long, the rest of my life. When I’m at, like a party, I’m rarely the one talking. There’s usually that guy who’s off in the corner, you know, telling his great stories. I’m not that guy. I’m the guy who’s like, Hey, so, you know, I don’t know anything about the insurance business. So like what happens here, you know, if you get to this then when do you get to that? To me, that all is a major part of whether you’re in sales or real life. And I think when it comes to helping our prospects or just working with people in general, they just want to feel that you care, you know? And I think if you take honest, genuine questions and you’re inquisitive and you want to know. You’re not just asking a question to get to where you want to go and to get to that point where you say, cha-ching well, here you go, this is it all packaged up. 

I mean, heck I there’s been times where I’ve been ordering pizza and the guy’s just like, Oh, that’s, you know, olives, that’s interesting. Okay. You know, and they actually care, they’re not just like checking boxes. The same thing with the doctors that I work with, if you truly care, I think it’s genuine and you can sell anything, if you think about it that way. 

Like I would, I feel like I would be a terrible SDR, just like calling people up. I like just having high quality, no rush, just have a great conversation and when you guys leave, you have a bond and you can build off of that. I think that’s hard to do. I did a lot of cold calling in person and I love that. During COVID-19 one of the downsides, uh, Well, first off, I’ll say one of the positives, cause I always like to start positive. I’ve been really impressed with how businesses in general have been able to adapt. And so, um, you know, I was only there with, uh, for this last organization for less than a year and closed three deals and these are large enterprise level deals. And so I’ve been really surprised how groups and whether the practices or businesses in general have still kept their decision-making process, have kept like their business running very successfully. 

However, on the downside, when it comes to prospecting, everyone’s sending emails, everyone’s calling because they don’t have that in-person ability. They don’t have some of the conferences that they had, the events, et cetera. The one downside to COVID-19 is it’s, it is hard to get people’s attention and that day trader of attention job that we have, it is very difficult to break the ice. And so from that perspective, still trying to figure that out, that part’s not easy. But I think if you genuinely care about what you’re selling and you’re not desperate, I think people will be more receptive. 

So I mentioned to you, one of the tools that I use is Vidyard. I just have a membership through them, they’re not sponsoring this at all or anything like that. But for me-

Fabian: They should sponsor us.

Michael: They should sponsor you. That’s an awesome idea. Um, I can put you in touch with the person I work with. 

But for me, it’s a visual, um, like thumbnail that’s at the bottom of the email. It’s actually a gif so it looks like any other picture that’s in an email. But it’s just like me waving and then someone can click it and then it shows me talking to them. For me, it’s like, that’s why I have this mic here, that’s why I have some of this equipment is because for me, it’s like, I have to show my face. I have to have that face, you know, eye contact and have that full discussion because that’s who I am. And that’s the brand that I’ve developed. So, you know, I want to stay true to that even if the world around me is going crazy.

Fabian: Question to you. So obviously a lot changed and I appreciate you sharing all that piece. Did you have VIDYARD before or how did you kind of adapt to, cause we went fully digital. And I think yes, a lot of businesses adapted really well. I agree with you 100%. I mean, look at the world now. Everyone has kind of gotten used to it and now we’re starting to recover from it, we’re slowly, slowly getting back to a new normal, not previous normal. But at the same time, like the world’s gonna be completely different. Right. I mean, I don’t even want to know how many people are going to have anxiety and depression and other mental health issues after this or social skill struggles. But that’s a topic for another time. 

What I’m curious about is I know that a lot of things went virtually like, you know, selling. You had to use exclusively phone calls and video chat, and video chat, especially kind of exploded. So did you already have like some of this equipment beforehand? Did you get that because of COVID and you had to adapt and you learned? Cause I would also argue that so many companies took a long time to adapt. Because one of the biggest things that I’ve noticed and I know you said you’ve listened to a few of my episodes and stuff like that. But for those people who don’t know, I’ve lived in six countries and I lived the diplomat kid life. So I had to constantly start over, start over, start over, start over. Starting over and taking a risk for me is not scary. The only thing that I need to know is that I’ll have enough money to continue living the lifestyle that I want to live. That’s all I care about because you don’t want to sacrifice too much. You don’t want to start like living in a homeless shelter while you know, you’re podcasting. That was the only piece that really affected me, you know, when I take a risk. 

But when you have to constantly start over, you learn, Hey, you know what? I need to pay attention. I need to listen and I don’t need to be the guy that’s always talking. Just pay attention to other people, kind of figure out the room and I felt like it took a lot of businesses, especially like in the restaurant industry, a while to adapt to that. I feel like the medical industry, kind of adapted faster, but I’m kind of curious in your case, how do you feel like, was it very easy for you to adapt and change? And did you apply all these things to the digital world right away? Or was it something that you’ve already been used to from your past, like maybe even your childhood? 

Michael: Yeah, man. That’s, that’s a good question. First off, kudos to you for having lived in that many countries and travel that much and had to like reinvent yourself. I moved twice, maybe three times in my life. You know, when I was 12, moved from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to Charlotte. Lived in Charlotte for five years, then Virginia Beach. Now I live in Richmond, Virginia, and even then I went to school in Williamsburg. I’ve had to move around a little bit, not as much as you, so, you know way more about that than me, but I do think that there is something to that. I couldn’t imagine just like living in that small town my whole life. And I think maybe, maybe that nature versus nurture there, does have an impact. 

But I would say for myself, um, I kind of do, and this is kind of a motif just in my own life in that, for me, I’m constantly doing AB testing. I’m keeping in my peripheral what I do well and what has been successful and what are those best practices and then I’ll make minor tweaks. And, and I’m always kind of tweaking back to what I know and then trying something new. 

So when I talk about Vidyard, for me, that was, uh, an AB test. Like, Hey, I’m getting a bunch of emails and I was doing, you know, I was using a tool called Sales Loft, that allows you to kind of automate some of this and do cadences. I was doing emails and then I was like, ah, I got to try this. And that would be trying, tweaking new emails, uh, styles. I would be like, eh, this isn’t working, I’m going to do a bunch of calls this month and kind of keep similar messages. As I was doing those, there was one message that seemed to be working. And then I would tweak this and it’d be like no, that’s not working. Let me, let me keep this, but try this and so you’re constantly like revolving around. 

I think a lot of people do that, first off. I think that’s not anything new. I think people in their minds, they’re doing it more than they think they are. But I think what’s important is to remember what those best practices are, because you can go totally the opposite way. Try things totally off the wall and be like, Whoa, where am I? And just, you’re just off in your own zone. So I think there’s a fine line between when you’re understanding, like this is the best practice. I know what works. I want to try this. And I think sometimes people want to try like an AM test like way too far. Versus just like a tiny tweak and just being able to say, well, let me try this opening or let me try this different subject line, but everything else is the same. So you’re kind of just making minor changes and, you know, eventually, um, I feel like eventually you’ll get to what works if you’re constantly doing that. And I think that’s kind of the approach I took just in this one example, but it’s also an approach. I, I feel like I take in life. 

I don’t want to get too far off in crazy land, but you know, a good example, like say the gym. I’m not going to be the guy who’s like, you know, upside down holding some weights, doing something weird, but I am the guy who like, will watch like an Arnold video. I’m like, ah, I like how he’s like laying on a bench really awkwardly and flying out. I like trying new things, I like doing a tweak that’s different than everybody else. I’m the guy that’s, that’s doing the weird thing that no one else is doing. And I like being good at it because I’m doing, I’m doing these minor tweaks.

Another part around that, that I think also has to do, um, a little bit with this, but maybe not as much as I’m thinking in my own head, but I really enjoy the grind of things. I actually really like the progress. When I was in Pennsylvania, this is what I was good at, this is what I wasn’t good at. And you know what, I didn’t accept that I wasn’t good at this. So I did this and this, and, you know, I think growing up, I was kind of a Jack of all trades, master of none, because once I hit a point of diminishing return, it just became kind of boring for me. So I was like always trying new things. So, I was always in like acting classes or music classes, I always had to be around creativity. Uh, but I also loved math. But I liked to do like problem solve, I also can do, you know, on the SATs that had that weird, like walk 30 miles and you walk, like, I love that kind of stuff. That was like my favorite. I didn’t like the boring math, I liked the creative math. And so I think from that perspective, um, you know, I really enjoy the grind. I like waking up at 5:00 AM and going to the gym, have that alone time. And then the rest of my world can go crazy, because I at least had the other side of the coin, the solid aspect of my life, the consistency, because, um, that feels like it kind of counteracts. It was, for me that et cetera thing.

So I’m kind of talking around a lot of what you’re asking. I hope I’m able to tie it all together, but, um, AB testing, enjoying the grind, enjoying the process, enjoying the development from where you are to where you’re trying to go to.

Fabian: So you’d say pretty much. That’s one of your first keys of advice that kind of brought you to where you are today. All of those things, AB testing, enjoying the grind, enjoying the process like it’s literally is a work in progress always

Michael: Yeah, I think a good example would be, I think everyone wants to be standing on stage and winning an award, right? But I don’t enjoy that part. That part’s nice, like, I, I wouldn’t say I don’t like it cause that’s, I’m not, I’m not psycho. It feels great, there’s no doubt about it, but that’s not the goal. If that’s what I was looking forward to, I wouldn’t enjoy the process. So for me, it’s like, I like honing my skill. I like, um, perfecting my craft. I enjoy getting marginally better at something over time. And eventually when I’m on stage, it’s more of a validation. Like when I close a big deal, it’s actually more of a relief. It’s like, all right, cool, I can focus on this now. I’ve been neglecting prospecting, I need to get back out there. I need to do this because I, now I feel, I feel good, I feel relieve though. it’s not like a, yeah, I earned this, like, this is awesome. It’s like a, oh, alright, cool. Now I can like focus on everything else I’ve neglected over the last month trying to close this massive deal. 

So, I think when it comes to enjoying the process, you’re going to get burnt out if you’re just going for that award ceremony. If you’re not enjoying, um, getting better at things, you’re just going to hit a dead end or you’re going to get to a point one day where you just said, geez, like I need to do something now. And that’s why for me, it’s like whether it was applying for my master’s or, you know, uh, I think in February I decided I was going to reach out to 1000, uh, prospects through customized emails. Where I was specifically looking at their website and making a point to go out of my way to, uh, mention something specific that was going to grab their attention, not just, you know, uh, blanketed emails. Um, and you know what? I got burnt out.

Fabian: You got burnt out?

Michael: I got burnt out doing this, but then I said, you know what? This is what I liked about it, which was I did Vidyard, I did a couple of things that I picked up on from doing that experience. So I’m always the guy who is willing to try something new, because I know that if I pick up one thing, if I learn like two or three things, I’ll consider it a success. Even if other people see it as a failure.

Fabian: Well, I love that. I mean, that was exactly where I was going to this. So for me, you said a lot of things that I want to touch back upon. And one of the first things is obviously one of the themes that I am preaching and discussing with the Chaminger brand and the podcast and all this stuff, is really getting people to change your perspective and their view on failure. I think most people have it wrong. Like they view it as literally the worst thing in the world. And it’s why they hesitate to ever try something new. Yet here you are talking about how AB testing is one of the ways to go, because it helps you enjoy the process, but it also helps you perfect, your craft slowly, slowly over time.

So my first question is, were you always into this? Because for example, I feel like it took me a long time to change my view on failure. I was always a little more open to it than I think, for example, like my siblings who have the same life as me and a lot of my friends. But in general, it’s still like, man, when you put in your heart and soul and then it just didn’t work out, you get down on yourself. Especially just the way that I over, I used to especially be a notorious over thinker, I would preplan. I would try to make sure that I cover all possibilities, things that could go wrong and I’m prepared for anything. And then at the same time, I am very good at just improvising. So it’s like, Oh, there’s no way anything could go wrong. Then all of a sudden, you know, you get a left hook jab and then it’s like, you’re knocked out.

So I’m curious, did you always view failure a lesson? Because I know like for example, past relationships, failed friendships. Some of my first jobs, especially when I got into sales, it really changed my view. Like sales, I would say, would be the thing that really made me start viewing failure as a lesson, because I’m like, okay, well this happened, this happened. And then I can start applying it to my past life. And I’m like, well, it’s sucked that I had to move from Denver, Colorado when I was eight years old to Jamaica. And I lost all my friends and I had to go there and I was literally the weirdo. They’re like, why is your skin like this? Why do you talk like this? Why is your accent like this? I’m like, I have an accent? You guys have an accent, you know, like there’s all these things. And it starts getting to you. Especially when you’re a kid, you don’t have like that confidence and that strength. My parents didn’t know either how to support us during that because they were also figuring it out, they were also the weirdos.

For me, it was something that I learned a lot later. So I’m curious, like for the AB test, cause I think that’s absolutely fascinating. I know I always did that with my sales as, like you said, people do it without even realizing. But for me, sales was always fascinating, cause it was like a game of chess. I’m like, Oh, they just did this. The CEO texted me this, I’m like, well, what’s my play now? And it was like, well, he didn’t reply this time. I’m like, okay, tomorrow I’m going to send this with a little, this and this. And then now, Oh, he replied, that worked and so forth, you kind of see what works.

I think because of all my experience growing up and getting to know people and getting comfortable befriending people very quickly, I became very good at what I would call honestly, a super power, is the power of simulation. So I can kind of predict what’s going to happen. So if right now I told you, Hey, Michael,

Michael: I feel like Queens Gambit, just like going up on the, the chess pieces on the ceiling. Yeah.

Fabian:  Exactly. I’m like, Hey Michael, pardon my language, but I’m like, you’re a Dick. I’m like, I don’t like you, you did this. The way you talk about sales is just, you’re just bragging. And what’s going to happen? You, you, might actually hang up on this call if I just started going at you. But if I’m like, Michael, I think your advice is great. There’s a lot of people that actually need to hear this because as much as they can resonate with my message, hearing it from you, not only confirms it, it validates it as well. Now you have a different perspective and they might enjoy or relate to your story more because you’ve lived more of an, a, more of an American lifestyle than I have, so maybe they need that. You’re much more likely to respond. 

So you kind of like start figuring that out. If I did this, what’s going to happen? Like if I tell the client, no, I’m not going to give you the discount. Are they going to stop talking to me or are they going to be like, okay, well, what can we do? You know, like, I feel like that’s kind of where I took AB testing is like, I thought about it like that. But long story short, AB testing, did you always view failure as a lesson? And how did you get to that?

Michael: Yeah, you bring up a lot of good points. I will say that everything I’ve kind of mentioned as, observed at different levels of maturity. You know, I don’t think it’s like something older or younger. It’s like, when the world was like, this is the biggest thing that’s ever happened to me, it was a big deal. When I’m older and more mature and I’ve realized I’ve been through more losses, you just realize, okay, it’s just another loss and it’s less of a big deal.

It’s kind of like that Wayne Gretzky quote, it’s one of my favorite, where you miss a hundred percent of the shots you don’t take. From that perspective, it’s like, you realize, it’s okay. Looking back, we worked together at the same organization, I don’t know, two years ago. Which isn’t that long, if you think about like, you know, your life, but I mean, if I made a mistake or if I failed in front of anyone there, there’s no one that would remember that. I remember there’s one time where I, I asked the question that was literally just said, but I wasn’t paying attention. I felt like an idiot, you know? But at the same point, that to me, that’s something I remember, that’s something I beat myself up about, but literally no one else remembers it.

So if you think about things like that, No one else cares. Like, literally no one cares so why should you. They’re too busy focusing on themselves and their own failures, they don’t care about yours. Yeah, they’ll point it out or joke you about it, but I do think it’s just, just a maturity thing. It’s just being willing to try something new and be considered in the short term a failure, but longterm a winner. So that’s kind of answers part of your question, I think it gets to the meat of what you’re asking. 

I do think, um, you know, I’m thinking about AB testing, now that I’ve been doing it for such a long time. I almost wish I like wrote it down and it’s like, I have a wipe off board. I feel like now I should be writing down what those best practices are so I, I don’t ever lose track of them. But then one of the things that I think is important to understand is the difference between a static mindset and a growth mindset. So, a static mindset would be, I take a test, you take a test, you score higher than me, you’re forever smarter than me on that topic. Versus a growth mindset says, no, you are just smarter than me on that topic or maybe even just more prepared for that topic at that one moment. So, uh, there’s nothing stopping us from taking the same test in a month and me scoring higher than you. It’s not a defined or forever, um, situation. So I think about things like in that, just because I’m not good at golf now, doesn’t mean I’m not going to be good at golf in 10 years. So whether it’s picking up lessons or doing whatever I can to control what I can control to get better at something.

That’s what I’m talking about as honing my craft, I like to get better, incrementally better at things. I hated seeing weaknesses. Um, and there’s still some weaknesses that I’m aware of that I just avoid, because I know that once I do it again, I’m going to beat myself up until I get better at it and I’m going to get addicted to getting better at something. 

From that perspective, um, you know, sports sports are a great example. I remember one summer, um, jeez, it was in Charlotte, so I was probably, I don’t know, 13, 14 years old. For whatever reason, we just had a long summer and my brother and I found a tennis court down the street. And we both just like got rackets at a Walmart and one day we, we just started. And we had a hard time getting the ball over. It was just literally like the most terrible experience of all time, but one of us would figure out a forehand. And then that person had a competitive advantage for probably, you know, a day or two. Then that other person picked up how to respond to that and then they figured out how to respond to it in a way that would put me at a disadvantage. The next thing, you know, by the end of the summer, we knew exactly how we were going to respond to things. We were playing at a, I wouldn’t say competitive level, but, you know, for teenagers, like it was a major improvement in just a matter of two or three months because we incrementally tried to competitively get better at something. 

So I think that’s the, the main perspective for me is like, just because you’re not good at something now, doesn’t mean you can’t get better at it. And I think anyone who thinks that they can’t get better at something is only putting a cap on what the potential is. So I think it kind of goes along the AB testing.

Fabian: You share a lot of great points. I think it brings to mind something that I think is what I call a self-awareness. I think it’s one of the things that is lacking the most in today’s society is that, you speak to, you know, there’s certain things that you should try to improve on and always perfect your craft, but you’re also open to change and realize just because you’re not good at it today doesn’t mean that you can’t be good at it a year from now. So I have two questions about that. 

One is, do you feel like you’ve identified your strengths and your weakness, you know yourself and you’ve set yourself up success. So for example, I always tell people, I know I am absolutely terrible at art. Like I literally cannot draw to save, if my life depended on it, like, I would hope the stick figure-

Michael: It’d be a stick drawing.

Fabian: Yup, like that is like, Pictionary. I always tell people I’m like, Hey guys, can we just, instead of when I have to draw, can I just act it out? They’re like, you want to act it out? Can I talk it out? Like any of that stuff, I would love that they’re like, that’s so much harder. Why would you want to do that? I’m like, it’s not. So that’s one thing.

And then two, I’m just like, certain sports, uh, after a certain point in my childhood. For example, we had to play baseball or football right now, I would struggle. Now soccer, I could probably do okay. But like those other things, we just started living in a lot of third world countries. So my parents didn’t feel comfortable with me going outside and just like playing sports and hanging out with these kids in the middle of the night or whatever. So I stopped doing that a lot so you don’t really practice that, you become more, almost like sedentary in some ways. So that’s not one of my strengths. Could I improve it? Yes. But also it doesn’t necessarily come naturally. So I’m like, okay. I would much rather spend my time perfecting my gift of gab and relationship building and stuff like that because I realized those are my strengths.

So I’m curious if you always kind of knew your strengths and weaknesses and you spend time like trying to get rid of your weaknesses. Or you just are like, that is something that I could spend a year perfecting and I would only be still mediocre. Is that really worth my time?

Michael: I see what you’re saying. Um, the way I would, I would say it is like, say a good example would be, you know, music. My mother played piano for, um, many, many years and taught piano lessons. In fact, she taught like other people’s kids for decades. And I, uh, I took lessons for nearly that same period of time. And that was exciting, I guess, technically. I mean, I got free lessons, everyone’s gotta love that. But I didn’t, I didn’t enjoy it, I didn’t find joy in it. So, um, my mom knew that I didn’t enjoy it and I, I got a little bit better. But I hit that point of diminishing return and I said, you know what? I got here, I learned chords, I understand, I can play all the music you want me to. Like in all sense of completedness like it was done, I was there. I could have gone on and done other stuff, but I didn’t enjoy it. So my mom had to keep wanting me to play drums. And so I took a drum lesson at the local, you know, Guitar Center or whatever it was and took lessons for over two years. And I love playing drums. 

So, you know, for you, it may not be Pictionary. It might be like watercolors or some way that you’re like able to express yourself using art. Um, you know, there’s, there’s so many different ways to express yourself using art that isn’t just, you know, drawing with a pencil or whatever. So, um, it could be clay, a lot of people like molding clay or, or making pottery. So like that’s the perspective that I have is like, Hey, you may not like the, the vanilla flavor, but you might like vanilla with Oreos, uh, sprinkled in or  chocolate chips. Just cause you have to eat vanilla ice cream doesn’t mean you have to eat it, you know, the way everyone else is eating it. 

I know that analogy breaks down pretty quickly, but that’s the perspective that I feel like I take. And I’m the guy that when like bowling, I like to spin it as crazy as I can. I get more gutter balls than anybody there, but for me it’s like, that’s fun and it’s a challenge and I also get cool strikes that everyone’s like, Ooh, that’s cool. If only you can do that every time. So from that perspective, I enjoy, I like to find things that are boring and try to make them, uh, fun. I, I just think that’s how life was meant to be, you know, if you have to do something, might as well just to enjoy it.

So, um, again, I think that kind of, uh, answers a little bit of your question, but ultimately, don’t feel like you have to fit someone’s mold. You can change the mold a little bit to find a compromise where they’re happy and you’re happy.

Fabian: Well, I think continuing on that part, before I hear your next key takeaway which I know we’ve probably already touched upon, but is really the topic of sales. What I mean by that is I feel like a lot of people don’t even know that that kind of job exists and let me share a little bit about that. So my dad being a Mexican ambassador and a diplomat and working for the foreign service, wanted me to follow in his footsteps. Which I get, I mean, he has connections, he can teach me, he can mentor me, he can guide me, he can make recommendations and it can help a lot. But I just thought about having to move again every two to three years and I’m like, yeah, absolutely not, I’m not going to do that. So I really couldn’t, I didn’t find what I really liked and enjoyed after college. I mean, I took business, I took communication. I know I loved like classes where like debate, public speaking, advertising, marketing, but I never really was aware of sales.

And I know that my cousins that had moved from Mexico to the United States were in sales, but I didn’t really know exactly what they were doing as like a teenager. So I remember when I first started looking for jobs that really would make me excited and passionate. I wasn’t finding anything, like I would do something and I’d get bored because it was so easy. I would perfect it right away and I was working way harder then the other people, and I’m like, I’m getting paid the same as them and they’re just slacking off. And then, like, that was a huge thing, which it’s crazy think now that we do sales. It’s like, I found this timeshare marketing slash sales job and it was ridiculously challenging, but it was talking about travel, getting people excited about that. And that was my life, so it was amazing. And I could meet literally like a hundred people a day and get to stop them, talk to them and convince them, Hey, you should probably consider this. And, you know, forming relationships, friendships. It was absolutely insane. It kind of was like an unlock for me and I’m like, this is something that I could do. Plus the harder I work, the better I do, the more money I make. That’s awesome. So that’s kind of how I got into sales. 

So I’m curious about you because, um, there is also a part about burnout that I want to get into after. Cause you mentioned that and I think that’s really important because again, now I’m not doing it. I mean, everything is sales. We talked about it, but in a way I burned out as well, but I want to hear kind of like, what was your journey into sales and what would you say was the part that burned you out?

Michael: Yeah, man, that’s a good one. So, um, I think everyone as they’re teenagers has that person who just nags, well, what are you gonna do when you grow up, what are you  going to do when you grow up. You know, I didn’t know what I wanted to do, but I ended up, you know, moving right as my senior year. So I ended up going to a community college, getting my associates degree first and, you know, it was just a broad business degree. Uh, and then it transferred to Wayman Marietta, it’s a college here in Virginia and I went to the business block and, you know, it’s at the point in time, I’m like, I’m getting business major. This would be perfect, going to be doing some business. Yeah. And you’re like, I know exactly what I’m doing now. And you’re like, I don’t know what I’m doing. Um, so what do I got? Finance isn’t for me, you know, accounting is not for me. 

So I went in, uh, they had just gotten rid of an IT degree and they had this consulting degree. I also had a marketing degree, so it was like a double major within the business school, but I actually loved this new consulting degree they had, process management consulting is what it’s called. So we did Excel database management. I learned how to like, actually, I’m one of those guys who loves Excel and just like loves learning V lookups and, and an awesome table. So, I can talk your ear off on that and you don’t want to know, but I hated the actual like, uh, data management, so I could never be like that guy. So, um, that part was cool, but then also like marketing, I liked the creativeness of it. 

When I graduated though, all the jobs were up and up in Richmond here. And so I started actually working for a technical recruiting company. You know, it’s around that same time that I met my now wife and her ex boyfriend, like all most of her ex-boyfriends were like in healthcare sales. She would always be telling me these stories where like they’re watching ESPN every afternoon and just like just working about two or three hours a day and would show up to their hospitals and you know, get their devices. I was like, man, what if someone gave like 110% to that? Like, they’d be making so much more. Cause I already knew that they made a decent amount at what they were doing. 

So I had a mentor at the time, shout out to Chris Sweeney he’s, he’s been awesome, sat down with him. He had a very glorious career in health care sales. I said, I want to get into healthcare sales. I know I would crush it. I love the healthcare aspect of it. Um, what should I do? And he said, if you could sell a commodity, you can sell anything. So whether it was, you know, Paychex and I ended up selling copiers for about two or three years, actually I think it’s close to three or four. Which is way longer than I thought I’d be selling copiers, but I was successful at it. And one of the things I found out while I was there, is I really liked the document management software that was on the copiers that could help businesses be able to be more organized instead of just print. It’s not all just printing. It’s like, I want to be more organized. I wanna be able to scan into something that is able to, you know, um, it doesn’t matter. I’m not going to bore you with that. But the point is, is that I found that the lane I was in and I founded the sub lane that I actually found very passionable. I don’t think that’s a word, but give me some grace here. So I found the, the lane that I was passionate about within the larger lane that I was supposed to stay in. And so, you know, I, I made my number by selling document management software and I was the only one who was selling it.

That’s kinda how life is, you find the joy in the variation of the larger thing that you’re having to do. And so, from that perspective, I liked the software part of document management. So when I moved into healthcare sales, I was looking for software, healthcare sales and so I found the company that we worked at and was successful there and I’ve stuck with it. I like the software, but I also like being able to make an impact on people’s lives. I’ve further tweaked and now I’m finally where I am, but I, I started out here and then I finally got here.

And I think that also kind of goes into the part B of your question, which is how do you avoid getting burnt out? For me, it was like, I had to find that sub lane, I had to find what I’m passionate about. I like to gamify everything. So for me, it’s like, you know, I told you in February, I was like, I’m going to reach out to 1000 prospects this month. I’m just going to do it, it’s going to be a challenge. Maybe in March, I don’t do any and it probably would be better for me to reach out to 500 and 500. Absolutely probably, but for me, like that was the goal and I was going to stick to it. It had already come out my mouth, so I had to fully commit to it.

Um, but I mean, these are like the challenges, you find a way to gamify something, you find a way to find joy in something. Whether it’s, you know, something that you enjoy, like for you, for arts, it might be making a clay pot. There’s that, those things in life, you don’t have to do everything the way that everyone tells you. But there are certain things you have to do, you have to probably pay rent and you probably have to, you know, get a house. But if you like a tiny house, get a tiny house, like no one has to tell you what to do. Um, you just, you know, find what you find joy in and don’t worry about making other people happy.

Fabian: That was a great answer. I mean, the first thing that sticks out to me is that you kind of got into this from other people telling you. I mean, I always find it fascinating to hear how salespeople got into sales, because I don’t think like most people start off, I’m going to be a salesman. Unless your dad was, I feel like that’s not really something that most people think. I know I always was like, I would love to get paid to talk to people, but everyone just kind of laughed at me when I was a kid. They’re like, yeah, that’s not a thing, you don’t just get to get paid to hang out with people. I’m like, yes I do. 

But I think that I really resonate with the fact that you said you kind of like had a mentor and that’s kind of what happened to me as well. That I had my, my cousin who was doing medical device sales. And he, I kind of saw how he did and what he did. And I’m like, man, that’s really cool. I’m like, that’s awesome that this company trusts him to like travel to places and represent the face of the company. I know he was making bank too, that was motivating and inspiring. So it was kind of through him where I also started realizing that. So it’s interesting that we both had like this mentor figure that kind of encouraged us and guided us along.

 One of the parts that truly, truly resonated with me that you said near the end was the part about challenging yourself. And I think too many people almost feel the need and I would love to hear your opinion because I know I keep talking about it on the Chaminger podcast, is people almost feel this need to not change. Like they are who they are, they figured themselves out when they’re like 28, or 30, or whatever, whatever age, it doesn’t matter. And that’s who they are. They befriended like 20 different couples and families. And they all know them as that person, there’s literally no way that they can change from that. 

Now all of a sudden, two years later, let’s say you are now a drummer in the band and you changed your hairstyle and you no longer wear dress shirts. People are going to be like, well, what happened? Like we don’t like you anymore, what’s your problem? And like, you’re still the same guy, you still talk about the same things. We had a conversation like this. You would be able to talk about all this, but people are like, Oh no, he’s completely different. Like what the heck? Like they almost like demonize it. And my question to you is I feel like too many people stop challenging themselves. They figured it out.

 I know at that software company that we worked at, I mean, things changed with the pandemic. But before then, I feel like I had come to a point where I finally figured it out. Like there was this repeatable process that I could do that could pretty much guarantee a sale, as long as they have money. You know, like I could have a process and they would respond well to it. But then I’m like, well, the pandemic forced so much change, product change, and you had to learn how to sell something else. It was very exciting actually for me to re-challenge myself, but I know a lot of my coworkers just ended up doing the same exact thing and they were struggling and I’m like, well, this is a new challenge, why don’t you, um, rise up to it? And it, that causes so much change. So I just, I guess what I’m trying to ask is If you embracing challenge was something that always came naturally to you, because I feel like I know a lot of people that don’t like that they want it to be easy, they want their job to be on autopilot. I feel like once they get to that point, that’s when I get bored and I want to do something else or I want to constantly improve because if I’m already succeeding today and I figured it out, well, I could get better. You know, I could challenge myself. Like, let’s say with this podcasting, I’m like, well, how can I figure out how to do more episodes? How can I reach more people? How can I increase the exposure? Like we might be killing it today, but why can’t we kill it even more tomorrow? You know? So I’m curious to hear about that.

Michael: Yeah, I think, I think people don’t like change in general. In fact, even I’ll be honest, I don’t always like change it to start. To me it’s like I was telling you about earlier, there’s things that I’m not good at that I’m aware I’m not good at, and I’m not going to try it until somebody says, Hey, let’s all start doing this. And I’ll say, all right, you know what? I know that I’m not naturally good or gifted at it, but I’m actually looking forward to finding that little sub lane that I, I do enjoy. And so for me, it’s like, it’d almost like a curiosity joy of like, I know I’m going to like some facet of this new normal, I’m kind of excited to find out what that is. 

I think from that perspective, you have to be able to adapt. I mean, I think in, especially in sales, I think sales would probably be one of the most adaptable parts of business out there. Same with marketing too. Gary Vaynerchuk talks about, you know, we’re day traders of attention. Uh, and you know, one of his claims to fame was that, he was, you know, one of the first to do like Google ads back in the nineties, when everyone wasn’t doing that, then everyone was doing it. And he had and then when everyone else was doing it, then he got into Facebook and then everyone was on Facebook then. Everyone who, back in the nineties, was mailing things to people’s homes. Now, no one was mailing, so he’s like, I’m going to go back there and now I’m going to start mailing people things. So it’s kind of like, you have to do the exact opposite of what everyone else is doing, or you’re not going to get the attention.

So, you know, I’ll be honest, you know, that this morning I checked my Vidyard and like the last three videos had zero views. Meaning that the last three prospects I emailed out, didn’t see it. So I said, Hey, you know what scrap where I thought this AB testing was going, I’m going to go back to where that best practice was. So I looked back and I literally watched the last video that somebody watched. I said, why would someone watch this? What was different about this than, than what I just tried? That is something you have to realize is like, Hey, I’ve gotten too far away from that best practice. I do need to back up, get back to my roots, get back to that center and then start back out from there. 

I think though, if, if you aren’t in that growth mindset, you’re going to probably think that way where you’re going to say I’m going to keep doing what I know. If people are really like that, um, they may not enjoy sales because you, you really have to adapt. I mean, there are so many other things you could do every day that, that you don’t have to change. You can, you can keep doing the same thing every day.

What I love about sales is that you can be creative. You can try things that are new and honestly, the new things are celebrated. When I talk to people about Vidyard, they’re like, geez, you know, no wonder I’m not closing deals. I’m like, Hey, I’m not guaranteeing you close these deals, I’m just trying like, this is one thing that you can have under your belt. One piece of your arsenal that you can, you can try. And if it doesn’t work for your audience, like may not work for, uh, you know, if you’re selling bulldozers, it’s probably not going to work for you. They might not have like a laptop in front of them or something, they can just click on things.

So, I don’t know. It’s, it’s things like that where things don’t always work for everybody the same. Um, but I think to your original question is for those people who, um, are close-minded and kind of have that static mindset, I can’t give you advice on to how to think outside the box. All I can recommend is try something new that you enjoy, and if you enjoy it, enjoy getting better at it. And I think if you, if you enjoy it and you enjoy getting better at it, I think change will be much more welcome today than, than it has been.

Fabian: I think, well, one Vidyard, would love to talk to you guys. I think that’s so cool, by the way, that they have, um, a video thing. For example, I know that I always just completely kicked ass with customers. Like they loved it when I was there in person and you can hang out with them and just because of my Mexican German heritage, I would always be like, at the end, like, Hey man, I’m a hugger. And like, people would be a little uncomfortable at first, but now they’re like, Oh, are we already at the point where we were hugging? And I’m like, okay, I get it. And then, you know, that, that was just completely different about giving me their cell phones or whatever. And people are always really shocked. Like how do you get this super cold person, dude? That was something that I really could fully embrace in person. And then you go full digital, it’s a little more challenging to do so, so kind of eliminating that barrier. 

And there’s just something different about like, if, you know, I just think back to, I got a Peloton recently so that I could exercise at home, because like you said, the gyms being closed. And like after 50 rides, you get a message from one of the instructors on video by email, they’re like, Hey, congratulations on your 50 rides. We appreciate you. Thanks for being part of the family. You’re making progress. Remember to check back to where you-, you know, just something like that. And yes I know that it wasn’t just made exclusively for me, but the fact is that they had that video message. It, it hits differently. I’m like, I know what they’re doing and it’s still hit differently. So imagine if someone who’s not aware of what is actually happening in the background and why they did that, how they did it. That’s just crazy to me. And I think that’s a really cool thing that just sets you apart because at the end of the day, people pay attention to things that are different. So I love that. 

And then two, I, just kind of want to summarize, because I know it’s been a great conversation, but it sounds to me like from everything we’ve talked about, I would say that another key of advice that you would have is approach this growth mindset. Don’t be static, embrace growth, embrace change, and just really get comfortable with being uncomfortable because it puts you in scenarios and situations where you can actually improve.

Hey guys. Thanks for tuning into Social Wisdom. This concludes this part. We hope you enjoyed it as much as we love making it. Please leave a comment on our social media, mentioning what parts resonated with you from our guest and if you gained some wisdom. 

As always, don’t forget to follow us on all our social medias to get the full #BecomingXceptional experience. Remember, stay amazing and tune in next week to hear more Social Wisdom. Chaminger out. 

May 12, 2021

New Series Launch: Social Wisdom Episode 1: Taylor Yu

Hello my fellow Chamingers! Today we have amazing news. We can finally officially announce our New Series Launch: Social Wisdom. This is going to be a show were we can significantly increase the amount of viewpoints present on Chaminger. We interview guests from all ages and demographics with very unique backgrounds and stories. The whole point is to hear their perspective and have them identify the key advice that helped change or improve their life significantly for the better. Don’t sleep on the super power of learning from others.

Today marks the release of our first episode where we have the opportunity to interview an old friend. While he might be young and starting his journey into the work force, you get to hear how powerful it is to be a foreigner, and a traveler. There is incredible insight to broadening your horizons and seeing how the world really works.

Check out new episodes every single Wednesday. Remember that we are always looking for guests. Send us an email at if you would be interested to share your wisdom, you never know who will resonate with your journey. Check out the audio and transcript of our entire episode below. We appreciate you for starting the journey to #BecomingXceptional with us!

Additionally, we have released multiple new DAILY CC episodes – our vlog that showcases the behind-the-scenes of Chaminger and what it takes to build a brand and podcast from zero! Watch here!

Listen to our New Series Launch: Social Wisdom

Social Wisdom Episode #1: Taylor Yu
Social Wisdom Episode #1: Taylor Yu

And read along – the transcript:

Fabian: Hola from Chaminger. My name is Fabian Chagoya and I’m your host of Social Wisdom. How do you know what to work on to improve? By being exposed to what is actually possible or obtainable. A major goldmine of untapped knowledge and experience is learning from others, Social Wisdom. Be a sponge, save yourself countless lessons and years of figuring it out the hard way by absorbing it firsthand from others. And here we go. 

Today on Social Wisdom, we’re going to be exploring the advice from our guest, Taylor Yu. Hey Taylor, how are you doing today?

Tyalor: Hello? Good you? 

Fabian: I’m doing excellent. It’s exciting to be able to do this with you for two reasons in my mind. One, because we hung out in person years ago in Seattle. We met through a mutual friend. And two, just to be able to now remotely, we’re in different States, and reconnect over a podcast and a completely different thing is to me insane. Like how does that feel to you?

Tyalor: Uh, it feels kind of crazy cause everything just kind of like all turned to remote after COVID and after everything hit. I was actually out of the country. So it was kinda crazy trying to get back into the U.S. and everything.

Fabian: Where were you at? If you don’t mind me asking.

Tyalor: Vietnam.

Fabian: Oh, so you actually had gone out, did it like happen like right before, during, or how was the situation?

Tyalor: I was actually visiting my wife’s family in Vietnam and we were over there for three months from December 26th, so right after Christmas and then to March 20, it was supposed to be March 26, but because of COVID, my parents were like freaking out. They’re like, you need to come home now. They’re going to close the airports. They’re going to not let you back in the U.S. 

Fabian: How was it coming back to the U.S. and how did it differ in Vietnam in your opinion? 

Tyalor: So in Vietnam, they actually, they did a very good job of actually stopping COVID. Late January, it hit Vietnam pretty hard and that’s when the realization woke up and it was like, this could be pretty serious. So they had like locked down everything. They closed all the bars, all family businesses were closed. No one was able to go out after a certain time in Vietnam. If they did, they’d toss you back and be like, Hey, you can’t go here, this is closed. They give you a ticket or they enforced laws. Um, It was kind of scary to be honest, because at first I wasn’t really too worried about the virus itself. It was just the authority there. Right? 

And then on my way back, I was like, Oh, it’s just kind of like a flu, it’ll go away, right? It’s not that bad. And then the numbers started slowly increasing during my two week quarantine. I actually had to stay at my parents and my landlord was like, Hey, don’t come back for two weeks. Stay somewhere else for two weeks and then come back to the house. So yeah, it was pretty crazy. 

Fabian: So obviously that was huge, especially because kind of like you got to see two different countries handle it very differently. Which, I mean, the U.S. definitely lacked the, the ballsiness I guess we can call it, right? To enforce these things. My question to you then is, so you came back and all of a sudden things are changing. People are telling you, Hey, you got a quarantine. How did this start effecting your mindset? You come back and then all of a sudden, like no one is going to be hiring, or tell us a little more about that.

Tyalor: I had used to fundraise. They had halted, the governor had halted all businesses and that they were not allowed to fundraise in person. So I came back, I was like, okay, well I’m still hired by them, but we’re basically on furlough. So we don’t have anywhere to go. I was collecting unemployment. I honestly didn’t want to go back to work. Cause unemployment started paying more then my actual job. 

I wasn’t spending because we were quarantined, just getting basic necessities. And then, uh, everything started opening up, spending more money. And then my mindset kind of just came from like lazy, didn’t want to go back to work because of the uh, unemployment. And then after eight months, my parents were actually like, Hey, you should probably go back to work somewhere. And I ended up working for Toyota Forklift Northwest. So you know how a forklift looks, there’s a big counterweight that holds the forklift from tilting over. We repair that and make it look brand new and also so that they can resell it and all that.

So I started working, mindset started to be like, I don’t want to go to work. I don’t want to do this. I don’t want to do this. And then now I had realized that I basically wasted a whole 11 months at that time, after the eight months of doing nothing, not improving, my wife basically pointed out that I had done nothing. It was like played games all day, stayed home, eat, sleep, come back, do the same thing every single day.

Fabian: You felt like you weren’t accomplishing anything. My question to you is, was it out of like almost necessity? So what I mean by that is COVID hit, pandemic hit. You were in Vic, on vacation somewhere, you come back, your life completely turns around. All of a sudden you can’t do your job anymore, which is kind of crazy. Like, do you feel like that, let’s just call it laziness, but it really was just not doing anything outside of home life. Was it you, your body and your mental health just basically saying, Hey, I need to like recover and stabilize because so much is going on or do you think it actually was just like, you were like, okay, I can kind of chill right now because of unemployment and all this stuff

Tyalor: I think it was partially from also me coming back from Vietnam and not working for three months. That kind of made it like to the point where it’s like, okay, I don’t want to do anything and transition back into, you know, work, grind, get to where want to be, improve.

Fabian: The vacation after the vacation, you have to like, change your mindset after that.

Tyalor: Yeah. It’s hard to change after that. So you kind of get stuck in a loop. So it was comfortable at first. I enjoyed it and I was like, okay, four months, I can do this, this is fine. Five months, I’ll look for a job in next month. Six months passed by, my boss had called me up saying, Hey, we’re doing telephone calling. Didn’t want to do that.

Fabian: Yeah. Random cold calling. No, thank you.

Tyalor: It wasn’t, wasn’t for me. And then started to switch into like nine to 10 months in when I got the job at my, the company that my dad works at. It just slowly, it was like, okay, I’m going to start doing this. So now, right now I’m in like the mode where I’m improving myself, also like my mindset and physically as well. 

Fabian: Well, I mean, I think that’s really cool that you kind of saw that, Hey, I need to start doing something about this. I can’t just keep remaining the status quo 9, 10, 11 months. And the next thing you know, it’s end of the year and you haven’t really done anything. And did the concern of like time hit you? Like you were like, Oh my like a year just passed by and nothing major happened.  What was the trigger in your opinion that kind of made you feel like, Hey, things need to change now.

Tyalor: I think the trigger was the time that had actually passed. Cause when I had come back, it was my birthday, I had just turned 23.  A year passed and I was like, Oh crap, I’m 24 now. Um, we kind of have gone through COVID for a whole year and nothing has gotten done. 

It was to the point, like, I need to switch it into gear and start working, start doing this, start improving. Being on this podcast, thank you for having me also, by the way. It was something that I wanted to do and it was out of my comfort zone. So I was like, I should probably try doing new things.

Fabian: Respect man, I like that. I think, number one, I just want to say, from me to, you were both young, but you’re especially still really young dude. The way I view it is you can restart at any point. Like, I would even say like a 45 year old, 50 year old, if they wanted to, like, they could be like, I am done working at being the Starbucks manager in Seattle. I am going to completely change that. I’m going to flip my life around and I’m going to start working towards certain goals or aspirations that I’ve always had. And why can’t you start then? Right. Like the question is, do you not have money? Do you have a certain other obligations? Like, do you have to take care of your parents or your wife or whatever, right? Like those are the things that can change that. But I feel in your case, I mean, you’re young. You have the opportunity to really still discover so many things and try different things and really kind of decide what you want to do.

So I just want to put things in perspective because a lot of the things you’re saying like, Oh, I felt like, I mean, yes, you can say, you could have used your year better, but I really, I wouldn’t be too harsh on yourself because sometimes you have to go to that part in life where you’re like, you didn’t do anything, you were “lazy”, so to speak, you didn’t, you maybe gain weight. You were whatever, right? Like all these things that the society considers not ideal, but you now saw what that was. You saw how you felt. I’m pretty sure you’re probably not going to do it again, unless something terrible happens. Right?

Tyalor: Right now, it’s like also, there’s a lot of stuff that’s like holding me back.  But it all comes down to like making a plan and actually going for it rather than just not doing it.

Fabian: Well, let’s kind of transition to that, I think that’s a really good point. I appreciate all the things you shared. Um, I love the fact that you are working in a completely different field. I’m definitely going to be interested to hear if this job was just a job. Sorry if your bosses are listening, or it’s something actually you were interested in because they are two very different things. But it sounds to me like you have certain goals and you said that there’s certain things holding you back, and those are the things that I want to focus on, but let’s talk about that job piece first.

So you’re working at this forklift place. And that’s something that I find absolutely fascinating because I have no idea where I would even start there, man. Like the stuff like mechanical things and like handy stuff, like I’m okay. But I would much rather, like I was happy when I got money in sales to pay stuff and buy stuff because I’m like, Hey, who wants to fix this for me? Right. So curious, that job, like, did you choose it for a particular reason? Was it money? Was it interest? Tell me more about that.

Tyalor: When I started, it was like, okay. I have like obligations I need to pay for right? Obviously rent, uh, tuition, stuff like that. Stimulus check and the unemployment is not gonna keep, you know, keep funding that. The time passed and it did cover most of it. And then it was the point where like, like I said, my wife pointed out and also it ended up to a point where my parents were also pointing it out saying, you can’t just be sitting at home playing video games all day and not doing anything.

So it was supposed to be just a job, but now I like it. It’s actually, it’s a lot more enjoyable than my previous job. The stress, the amount of time I had to stand outside fundraising in downtown Seattle. The people I had to train for like four or five days straight, making sure that they did their job, but also the fact that when I would train them, they wouldn’t stay. So it was just a bunch of effort put into someone that wasn’t worth the time. 

You can kind of tell when you’re doing a certain job, if someone is going to make it or not, when you’ve done it for a while. They may blow you away, they may surprise you, but it would just end up to be the point where like 90% of the people that I did train and I knew weren’t going to make it, weren’t making it. And only about 10% of the people that I had fully trained did make it. So it was just exhausting. 

Fabian: Well, I think there’s a lot there that I want to talk about. I completely understand why you were exhausted having to train people. Like training people is actually such a valuable skill set. You should be always mentioning that and talking about that from any jobs that you do from now on, because a lot of people don’t realize that training is one of the keys to employee success. Like most jobs that I’ve had, had terrible training and you can set someone up for success. 

Now, one thing that you said was right, is that I feel like a job like that is very similar to the timeshare job where we had met, that job was very sink or swim. They weren’t too particular about who they hired. They wanted to make sure you were okay, but they knew that it was really challenging. So most people couldn’t do it. So I was in charge of training, mentoring people at that time. So I know exactly you’re talking about. I’m like, okay, like you would invest like back, then it used to be two weeks, then they lowered it to three days. But imagine you spend two weeks with one person and then at the 20th day, they leave. You’re like, Oh my goodness, I just wasted all this time. Right? So I completely understand where you’re coming from there.

Tyalor: Also in that same way, it also improves on how you train, right? And also retaining people in fundraising and sales in general, retaining staff to make sure that it doesn’t seem like you’re forcing them and that they’re having fun with their job. I think the reason I did fundraising for so long is because it was fun. I loved making people smile when they would fund like fundraising. They’d be like, Oh, this is going to these kids over in this country and it would. Then seeing the impact that it had on those kids, uh, that they actually were able to see or get letters from in the mail.

Fabian: It’s kind of like your baby, almost like you, it really was something you spent a lot of time in. 

Tyalor: Oh man, it’s just, I have a lot of good memories of it and a lot of like exhausting memories and made a lot of friends though from it though, too, as well.

Fabian: There’s very few jobs that I would even consider going back to that I’ve held and I’ve done really well in pretty much all my jobs. And I’m like, yeah, I don’t know if I would ever go back. The reason why I say that is because since you first started to where you are now, you’ve improved, you’ve grown, you’ve learned, you’re like, Oh, I’m better than I was back then. 

So I’m curious what it is about fundraising. You mentioned one thing that I thought was really interesting is that you liked seeing people smile and that they saw that they’re making an impact and you know, that you’re making an impact.  You want something that will really help someone’s life, that’s one of the things that I got from that, but was it like the socialization aspect. Like what other thing was it that really drew you. 

Tyalor: I think it was more the socialization aspect of it. Also making people laugh during their day. Our job was to stop people on the streets and fundraising and ask them to donate and people in downtown Seattle at the time were like busy. Right? There’s Amazon, there’s um, Oracle, Nordstrom. Microsoft, there’s people walking all over the place from building and building and just getting people to stop from walking past you and stopping and making them laugh. Even if they just don’t stop for you and you say, Hey, like, Oh, you look like someone I know. And they’re like, who? You’re like my new best friend. Just making them laugh or smile throughout their day, it was fun.

If I didn’t hit the quota for the day, It’s more of like, I had a good day, had good conversations, met some really nice people. I think meeting the people over and over that had signed up with me for fundraising and to donate was probably the best part of it. 

I’ve gone twice to Vietnam, once last year and three years before. And then during the three years before the first time I’d left, when I came back to fundraise, my boss had actually told me and a bunch of my coworkers that were still there. They said, Oh, a bunch of people at Amazon kept asking where you were. So it had really surprised me that people at Amazon and Microsoft and those people that I had gotten to sign up had actually remembered me personally. Just from standing on the street and asking them to donate monthly for children’s charity.

Fabian: Well, that’s really cool. That’s a really cool part. And I can relate because I just remember like the Wyndham piece, you know, stopping people is very challenging. It’s not a competition, which one was more challenging. Obviously, I think a donation is.

Tyalor: They were both pretty hard.

Fabian: Yup. Just in general people don’t, especially that kind of crowd. West coast people are more friendly and open than East coast, but these people are probably very busy tech-oriented people that have a tight schedule and they are on a mission to go somewhere. And because of that, stopping them is challenging. 

I think one of the things that is so special about a job like that is you’re relationship building. What you were describing is relationship building and it’s why I loved sales. Once I did the timeshare thing and I continued in my sales career, I realized that relationship building was one of the things that like lit me up.

I had an almost more of an account management role, so I would keep seeing the same people maybe once a month, at least like, uh, doctors or whatever. And over the course of a year, like I changed, they changed, maybe they had a kid, maybe they got married, whatever, right? You actually are having a relationship with them. Like, it’s more professional, but you can also be friends in a way. So I thought that was always something that was really cool to me. I didn’t know that I would’ve liked that so much and it sounds to me like that was one piece for you. Would you agree?

Tyalor: It’s very enjoyable because you get to meet and learn about a bunch of different people and it’s very interesting how people react in certain ways in how you talk and socialize with them.

Fabian:  Do you feel like the reason most people sink in sales is because they just cannot handle the aspect of rejection? Because you’re constantly, constantly, constantly getting rejected or blown off, or even like sometimes insulted for like trying to stop them. Like, do you think it’s that? Or is there something else that goes behind it and how did you handle that piece?

Tyalor: Most of the people that didn’t make it, was mostly because of the rejection. This one person had just like had a mental breakdown, um, because someone had told them that they’re wasting their time or to F off. It also gave me a perspective on also how cruel people can actually be too, uh, for, for no, no apparent reason at all. You just even look at them sometimes, they just like tell you to F off or that say leave, you’re wasting my time.

Fabian: Every person’s different, but it really says a lot about them. Let’s just say it’s a kid is doing this job. You know what it is, and he’s trying to get donations and you’re telling him all this stuff and insulting him, it’s like, come on. Maybe that was you 12 years ago. The fact that they are doing that, I mean, it says a lot about their happiness and their fulfillment and their insecurity or whatever. That’s how I view it to make myself understand it because otherwise I’m like, why are people doing it? You know? Like, why are you hating on random people on the street that you don’t know.

Tyalor: For me personally, the rejection, that didn’t really bug me. Throughout, I think elementary school to middle school, I was like bullied. Mostly for me, just ignoring it eventually and being the bigger person. Thinking this person is saying this for a reason.

Fabian: I think a lot of people don’t look enough into their past, because I think a lot of who we, I mean, who we are today is literally defined by our past, like, little things. So, I’m curious to hear, do you feel like that bullying and all that stuff, did it cause you to have like this down period or did it build like some insecurity in you? Or was, was there ever any aftermath to that or did you just like get older and overcome it or did you move away somewhere and know people in bullying more? Tell me more about that piece.

Tyalor: I think it’s mostly the way that my parents raised me. Um, just mostly because they’re like, Hey, let it go, they might be having something going on at home. And I, I think the reason that it didn’t really quite affect me is because I knew that they probably did. People who do bully have like some insecurities or things that are going on in their life that they can’t quite get away from.

Fabian: They’re almost like lashing out. Uh, what they receiving they’re like passing it forward to make themselves feel better, in a way.

Tyalor: Lashing out from the anger.

Fabian: Yup. So seeing that you kind of, and your parents constantly, like reinforcing that thought, you kind of understood where it was coming from. So you really didn’t let it affect you? I mean, I respect that and admire that. I wish I would have had like that mental fortitude. It didn’t destroy me, but it definitely got to me in a way.

Tyalor: I think more of the recognition of that happening is me realizing it while I was in college. And hearing people will be like, Oh, you’re a little bit fat. You need to lose weight. It wasn’t like, Oh, I feel down. Right. It was just like, I knew I had to lose weight, but it was also to a point where it didn’t quite affect me. And then later on, like after high school and then college, I had actually looked back at my pictures and I look at myself now and I’m like, I actually lost a lot of weight from high school. You always think that when you’re in high school, that that’s how you are going to look for like the rest of your life. And there’s so much more even now that I, I need to learn personally. There’s always more things to do and more things to learn as you go through life.

And I remember one worker, it’s kind of strange, this guy worked at Amazon and I remember him telling me “all these people are sheep that work at Amazon”. But the funny thing was he worked at Amazon and I kind of stared at him. I was like, wait, but you, you work here too. He’s like, well, yeah, but I don’t do all this stuff.  He’s like, don’t settle for too little. I was like, What do you mean? He’s like, don’t get used to how you feel right now. Don’t get stuck in a loop of doing the same things over and over and over again. 

And every time I saw him, he’s like, Hey, how are you doing today? Did you hit your quota? Stuff like that? He’s like, what are you doing tomorrow? And he’d always be asking me if I was doing something else or learning something else. And at the time I was learning a little bit more Vietnamese and he’s like, Oh, that’s good, you’re improving. And over the course of like six months, I would see him every day. And then just, he was just gone after that. 

Fabian: Well, that’s a really good story. I actually would love to have met that guy because he sounds like exactly the way I started thinking a few years ago. I mean, it already started a while back, but very much so recently.  

I say this to everyone, not just you, but when you’re young, like don’t, you don’t need to rush it, but you should always be working to, you know, learn something or change something or improve something. And it could literally be, by the way, like even just getting better at a video game. Just so people realize, it doesn’t have to be anything drastic, life changing, but if this game is something that matters to you, it’s bringing you happiness. Like getting better at it or improving, like that could actually be very worthwhile in your life, but you’re still constantly improving.

And that’s one of the things that, I mean, shout out to the Chaminger brand, is like always be improving is such a key thing. What that guy said, people, most people are, I wouldn’t necessarily use the word sheep anymore, but I understand that, I’ve used it in the past, it’s basically everyone, they’re followers. They’re not, they’re not the leader, they’re not lions, they just want to see what everyone else does. And they’re going to try to fit in and mold themselves to that. So then, you know, years go by and you’re doing the same thing and that’s it. They’re going to be doing that same job forever. 

And it kind of goes back to your fundraising situation, man. It’s like, Hey, um, it’s a great job, it’s a great opportunity. Like you got some really good skills that you might not even realize are worth a lot. That if you learn how to sell yourself and market yourself, you could probably like climb the ladder just because you had that experience. But I think being able to constantly improve and change yourself and not like conform into that is such a big thing. So that was some really good advice.

Tyalor:  I’ve heard that before and usually it doesn’t quite click the first time, right? When you hear things like that. Oh, okay, this person is giving me some information, but hearing it from my parents, hearing it from him, um, just also hearing it in videos. 

That’s the reason I wanted to travel to Vietnam as well. My wife being from there, but it’s seeing new perspectives and exploring new things is probably the most valuable thing besides education.

Fabian: Well, let’s talk about that. So one of the big things of this Social Wisdom series is that I want to have people on, like yourself, that have a story to tell. That have your own journey, you know, the ups and downs, but there is a few key things that you’ve identified and felt like have really helped you improve or change your life. Would you say that one of them is that you have actually left the United States? You’ve traveled and you’ve seen different environments. You’ve seen a third world country. You’ve seen places where you can buy a full meal at $1. Would you say that’s one of them?

Tyalor: Yeah, it definitely is. I think the one thing that made me realize the most was like Jamaica and Vietnam were the two biggest things that had actually made me realize that financially, you should be secure. But also, it won’t lead to you being happy. Money doesn’t buy happiness. 

In Jamaica they had met, um, I think it was a tour guide, and then as we were driving, all the houses were like a quarter way built and people were living in them and they weren’t even fully complete houses. My father had asked him, why are these houses not completed? Why, why are they just all, you know, stone and then a window and that’s it? And there’s a bunch of framework for the rest of the house. And the guy was like, Oh, they take like 20 to 30 years to build the houses because they’re on an Island. So they have to have everything imported from other countries and other places because they don’t have enough resources on the Island itself. And seeing that and how happy the people who were there just also made me think, a bunch of money won’t make me happy. 

My first trip to Vietnam, I was kind of expecting it to be like Japan, in a way. Where like, you know, lights, there’s neon everywhere. It’s like the night life’s really like picking up, everyone’s drinking. There’s tons of like people partying, like a party life at night. 

I got there, to Vietnam, and it kind of was underwhelming for me at first. You’re expecting all these skyscrapers, all this nightlife, all these cars and stuff like that. And then you get there at like, I think I had arrived there 1:00 AM, so there wasn’t anyone out and it was like dark. We had stopped by this restaurant on the side of the road to get pho and that was my first meal in Vietnam. 

I didn’t have any cash at the time. So, uh, her parents had paid for us and I was like, Oh, how much is this? My wife’s like, Oh no, no, no. Don’t don’t, don’t worry about it, it was only like $5. And there was like six of us. I was like, okay, this is something I can get with. 

Going through like downtown Saigon, walking around, seeing people, they were happy. Even the homeless people, like you can’t even tell they’re homeless, because they probably had housing by the government. But very little people that were just sitting on the street begging for money. If they didn’t have money, they would be working and you interact with these people, and even if I couldn’t speak Vietnamese at that time, they were very inviting and caring and happy to see that someone is there visiting them or buying food from them.

And that’s also something that had shocked me because I spent half of the month in the city, in downtown Saigon and then the other half in the countryside. So I’m talking about like a city about the size of maybe a big high school, the population felt like 500, 600 in that little tiny town. And, Oh man, that was probably most like at peace I’ve ever actually felt.

Fabian: Do you like that?

Tyalor: Yeah, I loved it. You’re on vacation for a month and you’re just sitting there relaxing, sitting in a hammock, drinking a beer, or having pho for 25 cents or going for a smoothie for like 50 cents. I think that’s the best I’ve ever felt in my life is like going to Vietnam and just relaxing and seeing that money doesn’t really make you happy.

Fabian: And without necessarily having all the luxuries and the hustle and bustle and everything like that. Like sometimes the simplicity is the more important piece.

Tyalor: I need to improve, like my mindset on this stuff. Finding ways to like earn a steady income, but not to the point where it’s like, I’m crippled by it. Just like enjoying moments, like the vacation, enjoying moments to just relax and enjoy life.

Fabian: I love that you said that, man. I mean, that’s such a powerful realization. It’s interesting to me that you had it happen to you in a similar way. I mean, I had an up and down, but because I grew up traveling so much and living in third world countries, like actually living there, also vacationing, but mostly living, it gave me like this humility and this perspective very early on. It’s just like, Whoa. Like the people in the U.S. are living a completely different world than everywhere else pretty much. I mean, there’s Europe and like you said, Japan, Tokyo, those places are much more similar. But you go to some place, like you said, like Vietnam, you go to Cozumel, you go to Jamaica, I lived in Jamaica, and you go in the not touristy area. And like I said, there’s these homes that are broken down. You’re walking by and there’s literally, like I had to walk to school, and every day I would walk by like just random families like just sitting out front in they’re like half broken shack smoking weed, you know, at like 8:00 AM. Imagine seeing that as a kid, you’re like, Whoa, what’s happening. And then they have like their goats and their chickens that are like walking next to them on their bicycle. It’s just a completely different world. 

And I’m worried about, you know, what, I’m going to eat tonight. I’m worried about, Oh, where are we going to go on a vacation? I’m worried about, when am I going to get new shoes? It really puts things in perspective very quickly. And you’re like, okay, like those things just, they don’t matter in the grand scheme of things, like maybe short-term and that’s such a powerful thing to realize at a young age. I mean, even realizing it at 21, 22, 23, like it already puts you at a different level than so many other people, man. It’s a reality check and it makes you kind of reprioritize things. 

Realizing that money, doesn’t get you everything. Like, I think money’s awesome. Getting that freedom, you know, to do what you want, where you want, but I worked in sales. It’s very high paying potential and the harder you work, the more you can earn. But then it’s like, you’re working so much, you’re stressing out, pressure of quota, all these things, and then you get it and then you’re like, okay, this is awesome. But now what? You know, is this it? Like now I don’t have time to actually spend it with the people that I care about or all these things and that’s when you start taking a step back. So I love that you said that, like, I would summarize what you said as it’s really just like that perspective and humility, but I’m curious if you agree with that. 

Tyalor: It kind of made me bitter in a way when I came back, uh, the first time from Vietnam. I went back to work to fundraise for the same company. It made me very bitter at that job, about what people had complained about. Like the stuff that they would tell me why they can’t stop and talk or donate to a charity.

It kinda made my perspective on what Americans think of like necessities. So like when you’re out in public and you hear someone say, Oh my phone’s on 10% right after you come back from third world country, it kind of does make you a little bit bitter of like how people see that. 

There’s actually people in these countries that are living on, like, I think Vietnam’s average salary is about  $700 a month and they’re happier than the people who are making double, triple, even quadruple what they’re making. It made me very grateful for what I have. All this that I have right now, don’t take it for granted, enjoy it. 

Fabian: I love a man. So you would say the key to having a better life is traveling and expanding your horizons. Would you agree with that?

Tyalor: Yeah, definitely. Nas Daily and Drew Binsky, they’re two guys that travel around the world and they’ve done like collab videos a lot. I think Nas Daily has traveled to all the countries in the world and his horizons on like perspectives on how people act, how people see politics, how people, um, see life and their outcome of life is way more than what I think anyone can get. But he has expanded that by traveling to these other countries and seeing and experiencing it himself.

Fabian: Well, I love that you shared that because, um, one of the things that I was gonna bring up right before, which is very relevant that you said, you know this guy traveled so much and had so much more knowledge and perspective. As you keep watching, make sure you join the live streams, man. Like I think you should interact and, you know, hype people up, get them on. I want this to be very conversational, build a community and have people like share these kinds of stories. I think a lot of people just need an avenue to share.

 But the game is really access of knowledge. So what do I mean by that? There’s just so much out there that most people are just not aware of. Like you said, let’s talk about American, sorry Americans were foreigners, we’re gonna criticize you guys a little bit. They just live in like this bubble, right? And it’s a great, like, there’s no reason that they don’t have to change, but once they start complaining and all these things. It’s like, Hey guys, there’s so much more out there. And once you check it out, you realize, Oh, Hey, well now you know about this country. Now, you know about this country. Now, you know about currency, now you know about in Vietnam, they make this much money and the cost of living is this. As you start learning, you know, you start growing because of that, you just have so much more knowledge. 

But here comes the other part, there is a dark side to knowledge. And what do I mean by that? Because if you, once you know these things, you can’t go back. Like now I’m aware of, Hey, There’s so much more in the world, the beauty of traveling, the, you know, money, isn’t this be all, end all. And I almost, I’m glad I have knowledge. I don’t regret it, but there’s times where I’m just like, ah, like when you hear someone say something, you just know it’s wrong. So curious to know what you feel about that piece. Like the access of knowledge, like blessing and a curse.

Tyalor: There was several times where like for fundraising, where you get to the point when you’re in sales where you can influence what someone does. In a way it’s subtle things where you implant that seed in their brain and they’re like doing it.  For example, I don’t know if this would kind of relate to it, but like my parents. As a kid, you want gifts for Christmas. So the older you get, you realize that it’s not, the big fat man isn’t there.

Fabian: Oh no kids don’t watch this. You guys didn’t hear anything.

Tyalor: The older I got, I knew that was not a thing. So by like middle school, I had used it to like, Oh, what’s he getting me for Christmas? And I don’t think they had quite realized that I knew, up until I was too old, to like, I would say 11th grade. I kind of had abused that, but I’m pretty sure by like 10th or 9th, they knew.

 People can be so much more easily influenced when you have that knowledge. Especially when fundraising, like one reason people will be like, Oh, why can’t you donate? And I wouldn’t say it’d be manipulating in a bad way, but there are ways that that can be used in a better way. It’s something like where you have to kind of hold yourself back from doing that because you know, it’s not right.

Fabian: Well, let’s talk about that for a second, man. Um, do you feel like that was a skillset, going back to something that I asked you way before, is that you got kind of like from your fundraising? I know that you mentioned that you did it already as a kid and I mean, a lot of kids are good at it. Basically what you’re describing was that you started learning social skills, to a certain extent. You started understanding human psychology, body language and that’s how you get better at sales and all this stuff and communication. But you’re right, there comes a point where, like you said, you can manipulate people. And you’re right, you have to basically take a step back and be like, well, no, I can’t do that. But it’s scary. I mean, what are your thoughts on that? 

Tyalor: Yeah. It was like psychologically. It was just like, there was always a game that we would do, um, fundraising.  It was kind of a fun game where, you would do something, like hand motion, facial gesture and the person that you were talking to would actually copy what you would do and they would do it unconsciously.

When someone would stop and talk, they would have a closed like position. So they’d be sitting there like this, listening to you. And then if you took a step back, like if I’m this close to someone or this close to someone talking to them, if I took a step back, they would open up and be more open. 

So I think the negative part of that and the dark side of that is, it’s scary. It honestly is scary knowing that you can do that and have some influence how they act in a certain way, just based off your own facial expressions or their facial expressions and being able to tell what they’re thinking. 

Fabian: Well, let’s start, uh, let’s start concluding here, because this, this has been a great talk man. One of the key things that we talk about is success, right? Mindset, perspective, all these other things. But one of the things that I think a lot of people in today’s day and age really, like, hyper-focus on is, Oh, I need to be successful, I need to be successful. We have a definition here at Chaminger and I want to know what you think about the definition and what would you say is success to you? So the way we define it is, it’s success is the point where you feel great with what you have currently accomplished in your life. You’re happy with yourself, with your worth, with your value and you don’t feel the need to have other people validate it.

So that is how we define it and how I have found myself feeling successful. Curious, what are your thoughts on that? And then what would you say is a good definition for it, if you had to give one.

Tyalor: I would say that success is like basically being able to not be stuck in a constant loop. But also enjoying life and also, um, being at peace with what you’re doing and who you’re with. 

Fabian: Got it. Well, leave us your thoughts on, I know we talked about it throughout the entire episode, but on the concept of always be improving, I kind of want to hear your concluding thoughts.

Tyalor: I think this is one thing for always be improving, is don’t get too comfortable, always want to learn something new.

Fabian: I love it. I love it. That’s that’s a perfect summary of what we talked about. So Taylor, thanks so much for being on this episode of Social Wisdom. Now is the part where you get to talk about anything that is relevant to you. Whatever it is that you want to mention and shout out. 

Tyalor: The shout out is mostly to people who have been in my life and are in my life right now. I think mostly you and sales for like work-wise. The sales aspect of it was pretty big for me. And meeting you in Wyndham was probably like, it was kinda weird to me, like how, how you’re so happy and the sales part of it was just so exhausting. But you were like, able to keep doing that, just go through that, like it was nothing. I think that also makes me who I am socially as well, from sales and doing the things that I do now and how I interact with people in certain ways.

Fabian: Awesome, man. I love it. Well, I’m glad that I could inspire you seeing that because at the end of the day, that’s, what more does anyone really want? You know, create a legacy, help people out. The key takeaway from Taylor Yu, is travel guys, you will learn so much, you’ll expand so much.

Tyalor: Travel, learn, learn a new language. Last shout out is I think the person who most importantly made me who I am, is my wife, because as much as she may yell at me for doing stupid stuff, that also makes me a better person.

Fabian: Blink four times if she’s there and she made you say that.

All right, man. Well, I appreciate you. Thanks for, for hopping on and see you guys next time on Social Wisdom.

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