It’s silly when you think about it.
Sitting at my parent’s kitchen table, I will never forget the moment this question hit me…
Christian, we know you just graduated high school and we are so proud of you. We have been excited about you being the first one in our family tree to go to college and be successful. Do you know what you want to study?
Those words came from my mother.
Have you ever told someone about a big shift you were making in your life and realized immediately they didn’t agree with it?
That experience became mine 2 years ago.
My family never had the opportunity for college. They migrated to the US from Mexico before they could. English was a new language to them. So I did understand them. They talked about this since I was a kid. They wanted me to be the first in the family. They were thrilled. They were encouraging.
They found out I didn’t want to go to college.
Because I wanted to learn about this thing called sales. I was passionate about creating a life for myself like all of my friends. I wanted to learn how to make friends. Make money. Grow my network. Learn about banking, credit, finances, etc. I was interested in learning how to negotiate and sell. I wanted to be an entrepreneur and challenge myself. I was chasing happiness.
But that’s not what I told everyone…
I just said I was uncertain about spending thousands of dollars at a school without knowing why I was going.
But since I didn’t want to disappoint my family, I decided to apply around the area and see what would happen.
You won’t believe it….
I got accepted into one of the top private schools in Illinois for free. My family was thrilled beyond imagination. So I softly interviewed all the business and psychology professors to see what they had to offer. I read everything there was to know about the school. I even reached out to many of the alumni so I could decide if I wanted to make the same commitment they made.
Sadly, I didn’t find what I was looking for.
One week later…
A gentleman named Cole who follows my posts on social media reached out to me. We met for coffee and a chat. I discovered he was associated with some of the most influential people in the area. It turns out he was in the same position I was recently after high school (he is 3 years older than I). I asked him about himself and here’s what I learned…
- He had tried college for a few weeks
- He wanted to create a lifestyle solely from the skill of selling
- He was doing that full time and talked about the difference it’s made in his life so early
- He also was an entrepreneur
…it gets better.
After taking his suggestions, talking to my family, and seeking advice and guidance from friends and my teachers on this college decision, I realized something profound, something I should have started with, and something that we all forget to do that costs us time, energy, and effort in the long run. This is what brought me clarity.
I Totally Forgot to Ask Myself What I Wanted
Here are the questions that influenced my decision to move forward and sell cars at 18 years old:
- What genuinely makes me happy?
- If I believe in myself, what would stop me from being successful at it?
- Why have I been chasing what others want from me instead of my own selfish desires?
- If I don’t know what I want yet, why don’t I try different pies and discover what my flavor is?
- If I know what I want to achieve out of life, why don’t I spend these 4 years actually accelerating myself towards those goals?
I didn’t find those questions on google. They came from within. I had to dig deep. It was a frustrating process that almost made me throw the shovel and give up. But I knew why I wanted to sell cars now; it was the fastest and easiest way to learn the skills I wanted. They came with a price, though, a different price.
You work 65 hours a week. You get one day off. You are all commission paid only. You are given a sales training platform and a desk and two chairs…
And… you begin.
So I began, and here is where I am at now.
I sell brand new Hyundai’s at one of the biggest and most respected dealerships in the mid-west. I have taken care of my family’s vehicle needs. I have helped those in my church as well. I continue to nourish my large client base that has made every ounce of success possible for me today.
And I write on the side.
Here’s What You Can Take Away From This
In life, more often than not, we stumble upon decisions that either make or break us. At some point, we have to completely disintegrate this people-pleasing mindset that holds us back from doing the things we love and steer our own train.
We all make decisions differently. We all have different dreams and aspirations. We have to believe in ourselves even if others cannot believe in what we are doing.
Keep this in mind…
If you are criticized for something that the masses don’t do, you are in a different ballgame than everyone. Only you need to understand your potential. Never underestimate how much you can achieve even if you go the opposite direction of those who surround you. Find a way to bless them anyway.
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Christian Sotero, 20, born in Rock Island, Illinois. The type of person who you can find him writing on his desk that sits under his goals on a Saturday night. His passion has been mixed with a gratitude for others when he graduated from Dale Carnegie Training. He’s been awarded Health And Life Skills by the Boys and Girls Club in 2015. He enjoys reading books by famous writers because it inspires him to impact people too. With almost 5 years in sales, his hope is to continue studying life and remaining a student of success.