For Delos Chang, entrepreneurship and investing can help one achieve financial freedom and liberty but how to find fulfillment in the journey is a much trickier question.
Fulfillment as an Art
There is always a get-rich-quick attitude to dreamy entrepreneurs when asked about their key drivers to choose the ‘be my own boss’ route rather than work for someone else. That said, years of research into psychology and behavioral science underlines that most successful entrepreneurs have much higher drivers than just the lure of money. Entrepreneur cum investor Delos Chang shares, “Success is a science and fulfillment is an art. Maybe the question is not how to do what you love but rather how to love what you do. Having a why beyond money is so important.”
Fulfillment through Gratitude
So how do you find your why? Chang suggests that perhaps the “why” might be already at your fingertips. “The entrepreneurship journey is one of the hardest things you can take on. It is highly demanding and things will constantly be on fire. Maybe it’s a cliché to say but gratitude is such an important factor in fulfillment and self-actualization. Some people say that they can’t be grateful because it reduces their hunger and drive to succeed. I think that frames the problem incorrectly: it is gratitude that keeps us grounded enough to not only define our own criteria of success but that enables us to take risks and shoot for the moon. Gratitude is empowering, not limiting.”
Fulfillment through Knowing yourself
Delos spends most of his time meditating, practicing magic, investing, and exploring hobbies. He advises aspiring entrepreneurial minds to think about what is it that he or she wants to achieve through entrepreneurship.
“I think there are actually two parts. The first is that it’s natural to view entrepreneurship as a means to an end. But you will be much more suited to success by viewing it as the end in itself. The second part is knowing what you want out of life. If you know that, then you can roughly back out what you need and see if that aligns with your goals. For example, financial freedom can actually be closer than you think if you run the numbers. The 4% Trinity Rule is popular but unfortunately doesn’t contemplate a lot of factors. It states that you can safely withdraw 4% of a combination of interest and base capital and survive until retirement. But if you want to retire earlier or are much younger or you want to leave amounts for future generations, a better rule of thumb might be the 3% or 3.25% safety withdrawal rate.”
“That being said, as to the first point, I’m a huge subscriber to the idea of the journey being the goal or rather doing things that are autotelic: the activity having the purpose in and of itself. Ideally, it can make money too but I believe scientific research on flow, self-actualization and happiness all point to the same thing: finding things that are fundamentally autotelic. Of course, it’s different person by person and only you can find what that is for you.”