I woke up this morning with a memory from when I just got into the crazy world of CPA marketing. It was Feb 2016 and I had just come back to KL from my hometown.

I spent most of the CNY finding new offers on Clicksure, building websites, and testing those offers with Facebook ads. I was a total beginner on everything β€” CPA marketing, website building, and paid ads.

(Heck, I didn't have a Facebook pixel on my websites throughout the entire year.)

But it was fun. I can still recall the excitement I felt over the many months of 2016 when I was trying to figure things out.

What was my motivation back then? Honestly, I'm not sure.

It could be the fun factor of geeking out on things that interested me. It could be the monetary potential. Or it could just be curiosity.

For the past few years, I've been trying to “channel” that excitement sporadically to stay motivated to get things done. It didn't quite work the way I wanted it to.

It feels like a piece of the puzzle is missing. And I don't know what that is.

It was way simpler back then β€” I just quit my job as a realtor and joined a long-lost friend's coaching program to get my feet wet in affiliate marketing.

All I wanted was to make $3,000 in 90 days, then repeat it every month. At least that's what my friend promised to help me achieve.

Then I went on to make $1 million in profit that year and lost all of it in the next 3 years.

I thought money would get me what I wanted, which was happiness and potentially a bunch of other unknown stuff.

Turned out that was a massive misinterpretation. Once the monetary goal had been met (and exceeded), I started to lose touch with what I actually wanted.

The initial goal was to make a few thousand bucks to live a decent life. At that point, I'd been struggling to make a decent living for years and had zero clue what I wanted to do with my life.

I started chasing money for two reasons:

  1. I didn't know what else to strive for;
  2. I was making quick bucks promoting shady offers. Meaning I wasn't adding any value to people's lives. Meaning I wasn't getting any fulfillment doing what I did other than the dopamine hits from making money.

And because I've had that experience, things are so much different and complicated now. I can't plainly go after money right now because it no longer means the same to me as it used to.

I'm now aware of the fact that money isn't the answer to my life and that I don't need millions of dollars to live a good life.

As cheesy as it may sound, I'm now more geared toward finding meaning and personal enjoyment in what I do.

And that's tricky because as human beings, we tend to enjoy doing things that give us the most dopamine hits. For instance, I enjoy playing video games. Does it mean that I want to make it my career?

Well, I've actually pondered over that thought many times over. But every time I came up with the conclusion that I don't want to get into that massive red ocean where supply is way beyond demand. Plus, live streaming isn't really my thing.

With that, you've officially made it to the end of my occasional morning routine. For real, that's what typically happens in my mind when I wake up in the morning.

Obviously, I haven't found an answer to all those questions, otherwise, I wouldn't have been writing this weekly newsletter for a ghost audience. And I would've gone all-in on something to make things happen.

Or perhaps, I'm indeed making things happen? πŸ™ƒ

Until next week,

Weekly Recommendations

🎬 Watch

Watched Palmer the other day and I enjoyed it. It's a story about how a returning citizen develops a unique relationship with a boy that has unusual interests and goes on to become his legal guardian. Great story and great presentation.

🎬 Watch

CODA is another great movie that talks about how a musically talented girl that comes from a deaf family meets her mentor and goes on to pursue her musical dream. The story is so great that it feels like a movie based on a true story, but unfortunately, it's not. It's just a story.

🎬 Watch

Ali Abdaal released a video the other day giving some updates on his life and business. It's a lengthy video, but I find it packed with value, insights, and inspiration that really resonate with me. The value Ali provides in this video is what separates Ali from other creators that only care about arbitrary metrics and money.