2 – The Mindset Shift – Becoming a #GameChanger

This post is the second in the A Software Engineer’s Journey to 7-Figures blog series.

Today’s Miracle Morning:
Date: 5/22/2015
Day: #52
Time I slept: 10:00 PM
Time I woke up: 4:30 AM

I want to thank you so much again for following my blog! This is the second in a series of blog posts that I am, for now, calling A Software Engineer’s Journey to 7-Figures, where I will share my personal and professional journey towards a 7-figure income. As I share my journey, I aim to be as authentic and transparent as possible when I write about everything that I do, in order to make it more enjoyable for you and so that we all realize what it takes to aim for extraordinary results. Always know, that unless you win the lottery, extraordinary results don’t happen overnight :).

I really want to make a commitment at contributing to this blog series at a regular point in time (the first Saturday of every month, or something), but that’s difficult considering that I may want to write multiple times each month.

With that being said, I am making a commitment to post at least one article in this blog series every month! I’ll aim for each of them to be as short as possible, but I also intend to provide as much insight/value as I can for you. If you follow my blog, you will get an e-mail every time I post, so you will never miss anything.

As I mentioned in my first post, I wanted to cover passive income and share some ideas that I have to accomplish that. But as I’m writing this post right now on my way to work, I’m thinking: would it be better to first write about how I even came across that concept, and how I became ambitious enough to strive for it? I’m not sure what the best answer for you is, but to me it doesn’t make sense to go over my passive income strategies without explaining my story behind it. I have the gut feeling that it would be better to start with my story first (hopefully, lol). So, let’s save passive income for the next post, and briefly go over my story.

I was always an ambitious young kid. But the problem I faced, like most people, was that I never did anything about it. I was also a huge pushover, always. For example, one dream that I’ve always had was playing in the NBA (and looking back, I hate that I used bullying as an excuse to not pursue it). As unrealistic as that was, there are NBA players like Isaiah Thomas, who are under 6’ tall and making millions. That could’ve been me, right!? At the very least, I could’ve played for college. I mean, come on, I would play basketball for several hours a day back when I was in school.

But no, I didn’t go for it. After making the basketball team during my sophomore year of high school but being bullied off the court (and even crying at one point), I chose not to play high school basketball again after that season ended. I tried out for my new high school during my senior year, but because I was afraid of being bullied again, I stopped going to tryouts.

I was mentally weak.

Fast forward to Summer of 2014. I had just graduated from USF and I received my first full-time job offer as a software engineer at a small start-up. During my time there, I learned how to use some of today’s modern technologies like JavaScript and Ruby on Rails, and I felt that I couldn’t have asked for a better opportunity. But reality set in: I was being paid far below what I eventually wanted. What am I doing working for $55,000 a year as a software engineer at a small start-up? Yeah, that kind of money sounded great when I got the offer, but I quickly realized that I could do much better. Software engineers are the driving force behind every company’s product, and they’re much more valuable than that. Without software engineers, there is no product. And that’s why many software engineers in the Bay Area get paid near and in the 6-figure range.

I was too hesitant to negotiate my job offer.

Then, it was Thanksgiving 2014. My family and friends usually make an unnecessary, but fun, big deal out of Black Friday. Hurray for crowds, huge lines, and discounted (?) products at 3 AM! I went to Amazon.com and bought a Paperwhite Kindle for $169 (not including the leather case and a 6-month subscription). And I’ll jump straight to what really matters so that I don’t keep boring you with all this text. I finished reading a personal growth book and found a recommendation at the end to read “6 Months to 6 Figures” by Peter Voogd, who holds many titles: serial entrepreneur, mentor, speaker, best-selling author, podcaster, leading authority for young professionals and entrepreneurs, and many other titles that he grew into.

I read Peter’s book and he gave a lot of valuable wisdom and advice; much of it coming from his experience when he was broke. After finishing his book, I subscribed to his audio series that he generously gave to his readers. My favorite audio was the one where he talked about Vision, and you can find that audio below:

Becoming Unstoppable Audio Series – Part II

Note: Thank you so much Peter, for allowing me to share this audio with my readers for free!!!

While listening to his audios, my mindset shifted in a way that I had never experienced before. I listened to them over, and over, and over again, and I became so inspired that he helped me realize how much I wanted with my life. He lit a fire in me.

I then found out about his Game Changers Academy, which is the premiere mastermind community for young professionals and entrepreneurs with the goal of taking their lives, businesses, and results to higher levels. And long story short, I interviewed with Peter in January 2015 and convinced him to make me a Game Changer.

And that’s where it all started.

Now let’s fast forward to the present, right now. I have transformed physically, mentally, and professionally since I became a Game Changer. I’m more knowledgable, influential, mentally tough, physically fit, and know what I am worth and am capable of.

Letting someone bully me? That’s a reflection of how insecure bullies feel about themselves. They’re the losers.

$55,000 a year as a software engineer? No way, you don’t find many software engineers who actually go out and meet people, who respond well to their teammates, who constantly grow, who get the job done, and who come in to work before 8:30 AM.

Obviously, I’m not yet where I envision to be because it requires time and effort, but I learned so much and have had more accomplishments than I can count during my time as a Game Changer. Some of the biggest accomplishments are:

  1. Established an early morning success routine in which I wake up at 4:30 AM
  2. Learned how to maximize my time and energy in order to fit my hobbies, side projects, exercise, and workouts into my schedule
  3. Grew my Twitter following from less than 50 followers, to over 350
  4. Created a Meetup group for Web Developers in my local town
  5. Personally networked with start-ups, entrepreneurs, investors, software engineers, and countless other like-minded people
  6. Mapped out my life plan for the next 5+ years, in order to get to where I want to be
  7. Found a new position as a software engineer and negotiated the salary offer to meet my expectations
  8. Interviewed with top companies such as Google, Facebook, and AngelList
  9. Made a habit of mastering personal growth content every-single-day through mentors, podcasts, and books
  10. Established a much healthier diet to further help me trim down a bit 😉

The list goes on and will continue growing. If you want to check out the Game Changers Academy, check it out here! If you have any questions about it or about my experience, please don’t hesitate to comment, tweet me @JourdanB21 #AskJourdanB, or send me an e-mail at jpbullalayao@gmail.com. No matter what stage you are in life right now and how you’re feeling, you will learn a lot and gain extraordinary results if you are accepted into the community. I highly recommend it, especially if you’re an aspiring entrepreneur or someone who wants to grow into the Next Level You.

To wrap up on my story, I’d like to share some wisdom that I learned from one of my mentors, Hal Elrod (best-selling author, speaker, life coach, hall-of-fame business achiever):

Motivation comes from action. You have to act your way into feeling, not feel your way into action.

Always remember that. If you workout regularly, you know this concept very well. If you need the motivation at all, it won’t come until you check out the website, apply, and see where you go from there!

Game Changers Academy
The Premiere Community for Young Professionals and Ambitious Entrepreneurs

And that’s where I can begin writing on the concept of generating a passive income. How great would it be to passively make money outside of your day (or night) job? How great would it be to passively make money while you’re out with friends, playing video games, or even sleeping? How great would it be to make money 24/7?

I don’t want to sound like I’m a greedy mofo, but if you think about it, money buys you the freedom to do whatever you want, whenever you want. Money buys you the freedom to spend quality time with your friends and family. Money buys you the ability to not stress over bills and finances. Money buys you the resources you need to invest in yourself, and even invest in others. Money gives you the ability to invest in something greater than yourself.

Simply put, money buys you extraordinary opportunities, so why not have more money?

As you might imagine, though, it takes a lot of work, discipline, and sacrifice to get to the point of financial freedom. But for me, I’m determined to get to that point, while still making time for myself, my friends, and my family.

I can’t wait to share my journey with you! In the next blog post, I will cover (for sure, this time!) passive income, and my strategies for accomplishing passive income. At the end of each of my future blog posts, I will also share a personal growth resource with you (in the form of a book, article, podcast, or other medium). Be sure to share my blog with your friends if it might be of interest to them!

Do you have any questions for me, or want to say anything? Anything else you want me to write about? Comment here or tweet me @JourdanB21 #AskJourdanB! In addition to replying to you personally, for every 5-10 questions I get, I’ll make a blog post dedicated to answering your questions, and shout each of you out :)!

P.S: In an effort to be as authentic and transparent as possible, I want you to know that I began writing this blog post on 5/22/2015 at about 7:00 AM while on the Caltrain to San Francisco. However, as I am finishing up this blog post, it is now Thursday, 5/28/2015, 7:30 AM :). Writing takes time, people. Anyways, this blog post will be posted today!

A Software Engineer’s Journey to 7-Figures

Today’s Miracle Morning statistics:
Miracle Morning, Day #34
Date: 5/4/2015
Time I slept: 10:30 PM
Time I woke up: 4:30 AM
Hours of sleep: 6

Back in November 2014, Black Friday to be exact, I made the decision to purchase a Kindle Paperwhite through Amazon.com. It was a painful $169 (plus a $59 6-month membership and $31.99 leather cover) but I was determined to view it as an investment in my future, rather than an expensive, well, expense.

One of the first books that I read was 6 Months to 6 Figures, written by my mentor Peter Voogd. Did you catch that? My mentor. There’s many things I can and want to say about how mentors benefit me and really how they could benefit anyone, but let’s save that for another post.

Peter wasn’t my mentor when I found and read the book; but after reading about what it took for him to go from dead broke to 6 figures, I was just so inspired to make the most out of my life! I subscribed to all of Peter’s content that he gave to his readers, and joined his Game Changers Academy in January 2015.

Ever since then, I haven’t looked back.

That’s where I begin this series of blog posts, in which I call A Software Engineer’s Journey to 7-Figures. I may title it something else if I come up with something better hahaha, but for now we’ll use that.

For any new readers of my blog, it would probably be best to first introduce who I am. My name is Jourdan Bul-lalayao and I currently work for 99Gamers as a software engineer. I’m a recent graduate of the University of San Francisco (class of 2014!!! Go Dons!). I majored in computer science and found my passion in software development after my junior year. The reason why I chose computer science was because I was so fascinated by the possibility of creating video games that millions of players around the globe could play (you know, just like how millions of players play Call of Duty, Final Fantasy, and the like). I struggled with my major early on and almost dropped it because of poor grades and no motivation to do the work.

But I stuck with the major, and eventually found my passion in software development after creating my first web application in the Summer of 2013. Although I didn’t have the best major GPA (hint: it wasn’t even a 3.0), I proudly and emotionally graduated with my friends and classmates, and knew that I would do great things with this degree.

I received my first job offer at AuditFile in June 2014, but very quickly became unfulfilled because of my salary. Software engineers in the San Francisco Bay Area typically get paid around the 6-figure mark, right? What am I doing working for a small start-up with a salary that WASN’T EVEN CLOSE to that?

And here’s the thing to note: no matter how hard I work, I will always get paid the same exact amount.

No matter how hard I work, I will always get paid the same exact amount.

And that’s where it hits me. My work isn’t in direct proportion to how many hours and how much effort I put into my job. I wasn’t fulfilled with my current salary, so how can I have that full satisfaction that I want? I can’t make more money with my current job, because like most jobs, I have a fixed salary.

If you haven’t guessed already, I want to earn a 7-figure income, just like many other people! But the only way I can do that is to leave my comfort zone and pursue a passive income on top of my day job as a software engineer. And as I pursue a passive income, I want to share my journey with you.

This blog series is written for fellow software engineers, entrepreneurs, college students, and others who want to pursue a passive income on the side and go on a journey with someone who wants to do the same thing. In this blog series you can expect stories of what I accomplish on a daily-to-weekly basis and follow what I do as a software engineer in order to pursue my first passive income opportunity. I’ll even share a lot of wisdom that I have learned from my mentors.

In the next post, I’ll define what I think a passive income is and explain what ideas I have for accomplishing that. And by the way, most of these ideas aren’t related to programming. If you’re a software engineer, I hope that sparks your interest! There are many ways to create income besides creating mobile and web apps!

Be sure to follow my blog to subscribe to updates, and feel free to follow me on Twitter @JourdanB21. If you tweet me that you found me through my blog, I’ll follow you as well! I would love nothing more than to personally connect with you and share our journeys with each other!

Until my next blog post, make it a fantastic rest of the day, and I can’t wait to share my journey with you!