December was a great month! Now I realize exactly how huge the holidays are for retail, so December and Q4 in general were really great in terms of sales. This is a new record for me so I’m super excited.
On the other hand I know January is going to experience a dip as retail is pretty much the worst during this month of the year. Regardless, knowing I’ve hit this number gives me confidence that I can achieve greater heights if I keep working hard!
December 2017 Progress Report
Mid-month I went back to Chiang Mai, Thailand from Hong Kong. I am staying there until March as I find it a good environment for me in terms of relaxation, play, and even productivity.
A lot of December in Thailand required apartment hunting and getting materials for my place, like internet, towels, dishwashing soap, and other home items.
A few friends visited while I was there so it was pretty fun. We did the Mama Noi Cookery School and hit up some festivals/night markets:
Passive Income – Bigger developments:
To be honest, I didn’t do that much in December. But I want to discuss the two things that occurred:
1. Contemplating “Bigger” Projects
In December, I really decided that though passive income is great, it is not exactly stable especially if you’re depending on other marketplaces like Amazon or Etsy. To be honest, they have a little too much control over your work and can add anxiety to your day-to-day. So I’ve been writing down my ideas for bigger things to pursue that I’m passionate about or interested in. I held the belief that I required $10,000/month passive income to go for something greater, but I realize that though it has helped motivate me, it is an arbitrary number. I started questioning if my need to hit this number was to at least meet the Bay Area median salary (yes it is super high) in the eyes of my peers. If I can hit and maintain at least a $5k-$6k/month passive income salary, I can essentially support myself financially (in most parts of the world). I’m not there yet but I’m getting close.
But don’t misunderstand this as “giving up” on the $10k/month milestone. I started realizing that a better goal revolves around the work itself – building something I really care about that allows me to fully engage myself and find extreme joy in the journey over the destination. In Eckhart Tolle’s “A New Earth”, the author discusses that it’s okay to keep the “what” but it’s the “how” that can change in your activities.
He discusses an inner spiritual purpose of “awakening” (primary) as well as an outer purpose (secondary). To make the outer purpose align with the inner, you have to engage in the present moment and be in full enjoyment. You can have goals but the main motive is the aliveness and sense of pure joy in the work itself. So rather than being so fixated on a numeric goal, I wanted to be more engaged in my work. I can still hit the $10k/month eventually and possibly more, but it doesn’t have to be the driving force for my work.
In January, I thought of an idea that I am going to pursue if things work out. We shall see as it progresses.
2. The Main Boosts in Income due to Holidays: Merch by Amazon and Amazon FBA
A few of my income streams actually did worse, but I added new products in Amazon FBA that helped boost income for the month. I actually didn’t really work on Merch at all but it sold more because everyone is buying presents for their loved ones. It is insane seeing the surge and pretty awesome experiencing these gains and learning how great the holidays are for consumerism, lol.
Though these avenues did super well, I will still act with caution.
In the future I want to: 1) work on my “bigger project” and 2) gear up more for the holidays for 2018. I’m currently reading the ONE Thing by Gary Keller and Jay Papasan and it talks a lot about focusing on the one thing that matters most rather than getting scattered or sidetracked. 50% of time should be allotted on your one thing and the other 50% should be for everything else. When thinking about this principle, I believe I’ve been doing everything wrong and need to start building this habit! This will be something to work on for 2018 as well.