BOOK REVIEW: “So Good They Can’t Ignore You” by Cal Newport

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Are you following your passion? More than likely you’re doing it wrong.

Reading So Good They Can’t Ignore You might change your mind about passion. It did for me.

For the longest time, I thought it was great to follow what makes you happy. While I was reading this book, I realized why my initial idea wasn’t always the best.

I wanted to be an actress since I watched Home Alone for the first time when I was a kid. The career looked like fun. Throughout middle and high school, I took theatre classes and performed various stage productions.

While I was taking those opportunities, I realized I had a knack for scriptwriting, but didn’t pay much attention to it.

Eventually, I majored in theatre in college. The excitement for acting began to wane as my interest for scriptwriting grew. There weren’t many writing opportunities, so I took the little what was offered and a playwriting apprenticeship outside of school.

Not only did writing made me happy, but I also wanted to get better at it. Something I didn’t mainly think about when I was on the acting path.

After undergrad, I moved on to obtain my master’s degree in dramatic writing, a study mixing playwriting, screenwriting, and television writing altogether.

To this day, I continue to learn by endlessly writing, submitting scripts to competitions, and reading books on the craft.

Cal Newport’s main point in So Good They Can’t Ignore You is to have passion following you instead you following it.

Ask yourself consistently what do you enjoy and how to get better at it.  The better your skills, the more valuable you are in the career market.

Key Terms

Here are some key terms in So Good They Can’t Ignore You you’ll find.

  • Career capital
  • Craftsman mindset
  • Deliberate practice
  • Pasion mindset

Career Capital

Career capital is the number of rare skills you obtain in your field.

How many languages you know working at the UN? What skills make you stand out as a photographer than the rest?

The main goal of upgrading your career capital is to know what the average don’t know, to do what they don’t do. That’s how you become extraordinary.

As you grow, you’ll become a valuable asset to your employer. If you’re working solo, potential clients will be banging on your door and jamming your inbox for your expertise.

The more career capital, the better. You’ll be able to shape your schedule and choose your projects.

Craftsman Mindset

The craftsman mindset is to improve your craft, experimenting with your skills endlessly.Newport uses TV writer Alex Berger as a craftsman example.

Berger moved to Los Angeles and began writing for National Lampoon magazine. Seeing it wasn’t taking him where he wanted to go with his writing, he landed a TV writing position working on multiple scripts at once. Eventually, he fell in the TV producer’s seat.

How? He never stopped writing and always reached for the opportunities to do better.

Now, if he came to Hollywood following his passion, he would’ve dropped out as soon as the work grew too hectic. Hollywood’s no kids playground. To get stronger, you need deliberate practice.

Deliberate Practice


Deliberate practice is repeatedly improving and asking for feedback on your skills. Plus, it’s stretching yourself out to do the uncomfortable until it becomes the new comfortable.

Back in college, for example, I wanted to lose weight. I started walking around the school track field for 30 minutes about 4-5 times a week. The workout was more than I was used to so it worked.

Later on, I went up to walking for 45 minutes to two hours (only on weekends). Doing this five times a week helped me lose weight (my legs hated me for it though).

Passion Mindset

If you dream of being a successful travel blogger, don’t quit your day job and try to live off overseas like you’re Tim Ferriss. You’re working with passion the wrong way with this mindset.

If you want to blog about the best restaurants in Paris or your encounter with the Maori tribe in New Zealand, you have to let the passion follow you by:

  • learning survival skills
  • learn multiple languages (become a teacher or a translator)
  • Develop expert traveling tips (right time to book a flight, passports, etc.)
  • Photography
  • Blogging experience
  • Expert knowledge of various cultures and customs
  • Travel writing (travel reviews, submitting stories to travel magazines)

Become a master of these skills, and the world will become your oyster. You’ll have travel opportunities coming left and right.


So Good They Can’t Ignore You has changed my outlook on passion. Passion is more about career development than searching for that one “happily ever after” fulfilling career.

After reading Deep Work, I knew this book wasn’t going to be a disappointment. Cal Newport always takes the concept of work success to a whole new level.

What is your definition of passion? Do you agree with Cal Newport’s argument on passion or not?

Related book reviews:

(Book Pic: Goodreads)

(Pics: Pixabay)


BOOK REVIEW: “The 10 Pillars of Wealth” by Alex Becker


Life: A Virtual Reality

Reading The 10 Pillars of Wealth reminded me how much life is a video game.

In Sims, we create and control people. We give them jobs, aspirations, beautiful homes, and all of the money we want them to have through cheat codes.

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When I was an avid Sims player, I made my Sims get money strictly through their careers. Besides that, I had them side-hustling selling paintings, building robots, and investing in stocks. Within a few weeks of consistent playing, my Sims were millionaires.

Now, how come we don’t focus on making more money and upgrading our skills as we do for our Sims? We tend to get upset about not having any.

With The 10 Pillars in mind,  I could make money like in video games. It won’t be easy, but what’s a video game without challenges?

With enough focus and consistent habits, we can design our lives instead of living by default.

Take those super gamers who end up making millions of dollars playing night and day.

“You can’t make money playing video games!” -Some Naysayer

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How in the world did gamers get so much money? They repeatedly played until they become masters.

People can have fun making money. Working in a lame cubicle environment is not our only option.

Whatever we want to do in our lives, we have to focus raising our game every day.

The 10 Pillars

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To play the game of money mastery, Becker presents the ten pillars  you need to level up your finances:

  1. “Rejecting Getting Rich Slowly”
  2. “Separating Time From Money”
  3. “Accepting That You Must Be Better than Everyone Else”
  4. “Knowing Every Little Thing is 100% Your Fault”
  5. “Adopting an Abundant Mind-Set”
  6. “Forgetting “What Ifs” and Focusing on “What Is”
  7. “Mapping Out Actions that Achieve Goals”
  8. “Focus Solely On What Gets You Paid”
  9. “People Give Money to People That Get People”
  10. “Finding Competitive Friends and Suitable Mentors”

The 10 Pillars of Wealth is only a sliver of valuable knowledge Alex offers to his readers. More can be found on his website and Youtube videos.

I watch some of his videos occasionally. Be warned if you’re sensitive to foul language.

I’d recommend reading this book if you’re an aspiring entrepreneur and tired of having a mundane financial life. You want money to work for you, not you being a slave to it.

Have you read this book? Any entrepreneur books you’d recommend? 

Related book reviews:

(Book pic: Goodreads)

(Gif sources: Giphy)

BOOK REVIEW: “Hustle” by Neil Patel

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Having fun doing the work you love? Is that an actual thing?

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It doesn’t seem to exist the way people work nowadays.

Fortunately, Hustle reminds readers you have to take serious action to do the job you want to do every day.

People aren’t millionaires working on somebody’s dream, but hustling their own.

The Hustle authors have been through severe work-related obstacles. Neil Patel cleaned amusement park bathrooms, Jonas Koffler suffered a stroke thanks to his highly demanding job, and Peter Vlaskovits struggled to support his growing family.

Now they’re all successful entrepreneurs thanks to hustling.

Hustle is a highly motivational book to kickstart your decision for a more fulfilling career life.

This Job Blows!

A recent Gallup study reports only 30% of Americans are engaged in their work. The rest are like:

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CNN Money states there are disengaged employees due to little opportunity, irritating co-workers/bosses, company culture, and small pay.

Who wants to go through all that 8 hours a day, 40 hours a week? You don’t. Nobody does.

The solution to this career nightmare: hustling. You still might have to face the nonsense but take time to do exciting work feeding your long-term goals.

Do the Hustle

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Hustle’s most significant takeaway: action.

That’s it? You better believe it!

So many people complain about their current jobs yet do nothing to take the next step forward.  Ask yourself what do you want to do and create opportunities for yourself to do that.

The only person who’s stopping you from your goals is you.

Nobody has truly genuinely succeeded working for somebody else. How often do you hear about the millionaire employees? If they are, they indeed have been side-hustling.

I’ve learned from Hustle you become a truly successful hustler by expanding your network, track record (accomplishments), and your skills. If any of those aren’t growing, you’ll remain in the same, dull spot.

Kudos to Hustle

Feeling lost in your dream career journey? Read Hustle to pull yourself back on track. You can create your future.

It’s never too late to start anew.

Related Book Reviews:

Do you have a side gig? Comment below your job or a hustler’s book you recommend!

(Pic Sources: Giphy)

BOOK REVIEW: “Your Internet Cash Machine”

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Imagine yourself working a few hours a day on your laptop making thousands of dollars a week. Sounds freaking awesome, doesn’t it?

Your Internet Cash Machine introduces readers to the affiliate marketing business. You’ll learn valuable tips from niche research to creating amazing blog post headlines.

This book throws away the old belief you must work for somebody outside of your home to make a decent living.

Most people wished they worked from home, others made it into a reality doing affiliate marketing. You don’t need to commute for an hour for this position.

Being an affiliate marketer means you sell products from a major company and receive a commission if you’ve made a profit. Amazon Associates, Commission Junction (now known as CJ Affiliate), and Clickbank are a few on the list of well-known affiliate marketing programs.

What do you think is the hottest product to sell online? Tech gadgets? Clothes?

Information is the #1 selling product.  People will do anything to get their hands on life-improving information. This very book is a fine example of an information product. Readers purchase this book to improve their work life and finances.

However, Your Internet Cash Machine was written in 2008 and it has plenty of outdated information. It repeatedly refers Myspace as the top social media site to attracting new followers. Plus, there are several websites listed in this book that are now broken.


For the most part, Your Internet Cash Machine is filled with great tips to get you started making money online despite the outdated info. This book doesn’t go into the technical aspects of setting up a profitable website, but it offers great info on attracting new customers.

Personally, I’d say it’s a book worthy of being on the bookshelf, but not one you can solely depend on when it comes to online businesses.

Books like Your Internet Cash Machine:

BOOK REVIEW: “Deep Work” by Cal Newport


Deep Work praises the lost art of long, focus-intensive work. Cal Newport clearly defines the difference between “busyness” and concentrated work leading to notable advancements.

This book has captured my attention entirely. I’ve read it all in one evening!

We currently live in a bustling world of multitasking. Studying nowadays consist of occasionally glancing over notes for an upcoming test while watching The Life of Kylie with a group of friends. The failing test grade answers the accomplishments.

Next, there are work places glorifying multitasking. The ideal employee constantly checks e-mails, accomplishes many trivial tasks around the office, and attends meetings with minimal “call to action” results.

Really? Research reveals multitasking harms our brains!

I learned from Deep Work being that kind of busy isn’t remarkably as important as society points it out to be. There’s “busyness” aka shallow work then there’s deep work.

Shallow Work

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“Shallow work” is labor of little to no value to your major goals.

Let’s say you’re a blogger planning to post ten blog articles within a month. You want to complete your first blog post on the first day of the month.

On the first day, you search for the perfect WordPress theme for your blog, comment on other people’s blogs, write notes from a book about blogging, and watch dozens of YouTube videos on creating blog content.

Close to midnight, you’re too tired to start your blog post. You decide to do it tomorrow and go to bed.

The day wouldn’t have flown by if you’ve only given yourself a few hours in the morning writing your first blog post. All the blog post commenting and WordPress theme searching is shallow work. They mean little to writing!

Now, you can’t avoid shallow tasks forever. It’s best to schedule your deep work first and the shallow work later.

Deep Work

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“Deep work” is tending on a goal from start to finish in a dedicated number of hours. The more focus on a project, the more it will likely be produced.

University of Pennsylvania professor Adam Grant (introduced in Deep Work) formed an excellent “deep work” formula that has helped him reach astounding success in his teaching career:

(Time Spent) x (Intense Focus) = High Quality Work Produced

Back to the blogger example, it would’ve been best to give yourself two hours to blog content creation with no distractions. The first draft would’ve been completed with a brief outline for the next blog post.

Now, Newport mentions big goals are best when they’re cut down into small, manageable steps. One can’t simply publish the next great American novel of 100,000 words within a day. Set up how many hours a day you’re planning to work on the novel and see what happens.

Better luck having the novel all set and ready within six months than twenty-four hours.

How to Start Deep Work

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Did you know J.K. Rowling wrote the last Harry Potter book exclusively at an Edinburgh hotel?

Mark Twain isolated himself in a cabin to get some work done. His family blew a horn to get his attention when it was time for dinner.

These famous authors have created time for deep work and steered away from any distractions for their projects. That’s how you can get started.

Distractions include:

  • Phones
  • Tempting internet
  • TV
  • Small talk with people disrupting “deep work” time

Some of you who may read Deep Work may be thinking: “I can’t do deep work, I have kids!”

Along with being an active writer and associate professor, Newport mentions his deep work routine with the addition of his two kids. He has established time blocks for himself to get work done and a shutdown time.

Shutdown is a set time when you stop everything and chill. Your willpower can go on for so long until it runs out and it needs to be recharged.

After a couple of hours of deep work, parents can conveniently use shutdown mode as precious time to spend with their kids (if their little ones can understand that).

However, I’m a single gal with no experience with parenting whatsoever. I don’t know much about the hustling parent world balancing family and work life except for what I’ve seen my parents do. Check out this Motherly article about doing deep work from a parent’s perspective.

In short, to start deep work:

  1. List your top goals
  2. Create time blocks for those goals and a shutdown time
  3. Clear distractions
  4. Execute deep work within time blocks
  5. Shutdown after you’ve completed blocks

The Benefits of Deep Work

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Deep work creates flow and flow leads to happiness.

Surprisingly, work flow leads to more fulfillment than free time.

Work flow happiness comes from the structure of a planned goal. When you set an intention, and put forth action until you reach your goal, the euphoria of achievement (thanks to dopamine) overcomes you. You’ll want reach the pleasure of success repeatedly.

Free time is always fun. You get to break free from structure once for a while to do the spontaneous. People go on vacations to take a break from their everyday routines and do whatever they want in a new landscape.

Eventually, vacation mode gets dull and it’s time to return to work mode.

Happiness is found in whatever meaningful creation you contribute. Chinese philosopher Confucius once said: “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work again.”

Vacations aren’t necessary to finding happiness but they’re worthy rewards for hard work.

My Deep Work Relationship

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I’ve changed a couple of my daily habits after reading Deep Work. I shortened time from less important tasks and added it to more important ones. Exercise, a very important habit to me, has been reduced from an hour to thirty minutes. My hour of writing I do most days increased to ninety minutes.

Plus, I changed my wake-up time from five in the morning to four. My body is not used to it yet so I take a nap or two during the day to work diligently with much energy as possible.

Video games, social media, and TV have all been placed after my shutdown time around five in the evening. However, I’ve end up writing and reading more after shutdown simply for leisure more than I already do for deep work.

Great things happen when you sharpen your habits!


Newport has indeed written a remarkable book on the joy and great outcomes of focused creations. Deep Work offers readers a “deeper” look on what needs to be done to get ahead.

If you want to stand out for your steel discipline and ceaseless production, please do read this book!

Other Book Recommendations:

  • The 80/20 Manager: The Secret to Working Less and Achieving More by Richard Koch (review)
  • The One Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth Behind Extraordinary Results by Gary Keller & Jay Papasan (review)
  • Do Less, Get More: How to Work Smart and Live Life Your Way by Shaa Wasmund (review)

(Pic Sources: Amazon, Giphy)

 Had a “deep work” experience? Share your story in the comments below!

The Millionaire Fastlane Review

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The Millionaire Fastlane is one of the best books for aspiring entrepreneurs I’ve read so far this year! The title appears scammy but the book covers clearly authentic material.  The book was an immediate reliever after reading the unsettling Automatic Millionaire. Author MJ DeMarco offers a “no BS” guide to the millionaire lifestyle of your dreams. Take note: it’s a long path of dedication and hard work.

DeMarco began his self-made millionaire journey after his encounter with his dream car: a Lamborghini. What surprised him even more than the car was the owner, a young inventor. DeMarco thought if the young man could afford a Lambo, he could too. He built and sold a highly successful limousine directory website and the rest was history.

The Millionaire Fastlane is a wake up call to readers to take a leap of faith, acknowledge their own power to create money, and work like it’s nobody’s business. DeMarco states there are three paths of wealth people take: the Sidewalk, the Slowlane, and the Fastlane. Sidewalkers are always broke, Slowlaners depend on retirement wealth, and Fastlaners build money systems (multiple passive incomes, businesses, etc).

Here’s a closer look at the three:

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  • Complete consumers
  • Dependent on people to give them money all the time
  • Look rich but completely broke
  • Sometimes steal
  • Scheme people for money
  • Spend their entire paycheck on crap on payday then complain about not being paid enough

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  • More productive than the Sidewalker but still tend to consume useless liabilities. Even go into debt for it.
    • Example: Going into credit card debt for a rarely used boat
  • Hoping to earn millions through a decent full-time job with low to average pay with an annual 1% salary increase
  • Returning to college (and further debt in the process)  for an advanced degree in hopes of receiving a higher paying job
  • Working for an employer for forty-five years and contributing money for a 401k in order to retire rich (if they don’t die first)


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  • Complete producers
  • Creates businesses
  • Own multiple streams of passive income


This book shatters the old beliefs about becoming a millionaire. There’s no age or career requirements to be one. The only tools you need are your ideas, passion, and commitment.

Now, DeMarco states passion alone isn’t enough to gain ultimate wealth. I was confused by this statement until he presented an example of a woman’s passion for art. She was so enthralled with art that she opened up an art gallery/cafe. The business shut down a few months after it opened. The problem: it didn’t answer to people’s needs.

If you can figure out how your passion can solve problems, you have a successful business!

I loved how DeMarco pointed out the difference between being “interested” in creating a business and being committed. The person interested in making a business would only work on the idea for an hour a day twice a week while the committed one works seven hours a day, seven days a week.

The committed individual will go farther financially than the interested one. Staying committed is part of the millionaire fastlane process.

The Millionaire Fastlane has done a great job guiding readers out of the outdated financial beliefs that wealth is only reserved for the naturally talented and retired old folks.

Please read this book along with other “millionaire” books you may find and see which ones you should keep. Not long before I’ve created this review, I purchased my own copy. The notes I’ve written down from my previous library copy wasn’t enough. I had to have a copy of my own because I know for sure I’ll be reading it again and keeping it as my personal strategy guide.

(Pics: Getty Images *via Bustle* and Tumblr *Sponbebob skelelton & Great Gatsby DiCaprio*) 

Comment below if you’ve read this book or have any related book recommendations!



The Automatic Millionaire Review: “Be a Millionaire by Skipping Starbucks?”

The Automatic Millionaire, Expanded and Updated: A Powerful One-Step Plan to Live and Finish Rich by [Bach, David]


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Don’t know your way to a millionaire future?

Does climbing the corporate ladder lead you to being a millionaire? Maybe. Do you have the patience to find out?

What about having two or three jobs? Sounds stressful.

David Bach’s The Automatic Millionaire offers the stress-free solution to your millionaire goals: compound interest and cutting out your morning Starbucks latte. Now, these steps are great ideas until I realized it’s not the financial route I’d take for the long run. Kudos to Bach, they’re smart moves, but not something I would depend on for the rest of my life. There has to be more than watching my baby dollar grow into mega millions when I’m 85.

The Automatic Millionaire presents a luring cover promising readers a life filled with financially free paradises if they follow the book’s monetary guidelines. I was excited to read this book when I picked up my library copy then disappointed. This book reveals you’ll become a millionaire by the automation process of repeatedly paying yourself 10% of your paycheck, putting a couple of bucks into a 401k, and investing in a few mutual funds.

C’mon, that can’t be it!

This book is for those who don’t mind becoming millionaires when they reach their sixties and seventies. Try reading another book if you have decided to retire while you’re still young.

Parts of the Automatic Millionaire path is throwing out hard-to-keep budgets and morning lattes to save money. Sure, lattes are not necessary like bread and water, but you can simply learn how to make more money enough to keep buying lattes. Either way, deleting unnecessary expenses is a good start to greater financial awareness.

From previous financial books I’ve read, the key to making more money is to keep purchasing assets that’ll you give more money repeatedly. To me, that’s the “real” millionaire route. That way, you don’t have to think about trading your precious hours away for an average pay working for somebody else for thirty years.

There’s little in this book teaching readers how to make millions getting out of the employee mentality. An employee’s wage runs on a fixed income under a fixed time. Plus, Uncle Sam (the government) takes a bite out of your paycheck before it passes over to you.  Adding more income streams like real estate investments and businesses are solutions to a full, happy financial life.

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Money can be transformed into an unlimited supply. Your limited human lifespan can’t be extended while you wait for your millions to manifest.

Overall, The Automatic Millionaire is a great book for crazy spenders who want to be millionaires but have no concept how to use the money to invest in themselves first. This is not the book for those striving to be millionaire entrepreneurs.

One more tip: don’t use this book as your only “how to be a millionaire” book.  Please read more. Keep yourself financially educated.

Personal book recommendations:

(Gifs & Pic Sources: tenor, totalpeople, giphy)

Please comment below if you read this book or you have any personal financial book recommendations!