Vincent Chan

Why I stopped setting goals

Welcome to reThinkable – my weekly newsletter where I share actionable insights to build a wealthy and healthy life.

Here’s what we’re covering:

📖 I gave up on my passion

❤️‍🔥 What Is Crafted Passion?

▶️ The 2-Step Process

Estimated read time: 3 minutes and 45 seconds

📖 I gave up on my passion

In my early teens, I thought my passion was to become a lawyer. I took “pre-law” classes in high school and watched a lot of crime thrillers.

In my late teens, I thought it was to become a software developer. I studied Python and built little apps for fun.

Fast forward to 10 years later.


I create content online, a job I didn’t even seriously consider until a few years ago.

Chances are, you’ve heard the advice, follow your passion and you’ll never have to work a day in your life.”

It paints a picture of a life where work feels like play, and success is just a byproduct of doing what you love. But the truth is, following your passion is terrible advice.

Because what is passion, really? By definition, it’s very ambiguous. Is it something we have to find? Are we born with it? Can we have more than one?

I’ve tried “following my passion” multiple times in my life and it always results in the same outcome:

First, I get really excited. Then, I face a realization and question whether this is truly my passion. Finally, I give up because I’m unsure if it’s my true passion and since I don’t like wasting time, I’d prefer to wait until I’m certain.

The truth is, instead of following your passion, you need to build Crafted Passion.

In today’s email, I’ll cover what is Crafted Passion, and how you can build it.

❤️‍🔥 What Is Crafted Passion?

Despite the similar name, there is a big difference between passion and Crafted Passion.

Let’s say you like drawing. You might think,“Yeah, this is fun. I could do this on a sunny afternoon. but I wouldn’t say I’m passionate about it.” 

That’s an a-okay thought.

But it becomes a problem when you start to think, “I’m not super passionate about drawing so I shouldn’t do it. Instead of following that, I’m gonna wait for the thing to come along that I’m really, really magnetized to.” 

The problem is, if you wait to feel passionate about something before starting anything, you might just wait forever — stuck in a state of limbo and inaction.

On the other hand, Crafted Passion begins with a choiceYou choose an interest, you work on it a lot and then it becomes a Crafted Passion. And the reason this works is because of this feedback loop: 


Action generates quantity, which generates quality, which generates motivation, which generates passion, which in turn creates more action.

But it all starts with an interest and an action.

So the question now becomes: how do you choose the right interest?

▶️ The 2-Step Process

1. Build The List

First, grab a piece of paper and a pen. Then, write down everything that you’re sort of interested in. Don’t exclude something just because you think it’s not feasible or you’re not good at it. Jot everything down.

Let’s say you wrote:

  • Watching TV

  • Designing games

  • Drawing

  • Running

  • Cooking

2. The Trial Commitment

Next, pick something, anything on your list and commit to it (don’t worry about picking the “wrong” thing, we’ll talk about that later):

For the next [insert your commitment here] you’ve got to do something in line with that path, no matter what.

For example:

  • I will write 1 new paragraph every day for the next 30 days for my short story

  • I will record 5 YouTube videos in the next 30 days

By the end of the month, you’ve created a new habit.

And I’m not talking about writing or recording — I’m talking about action.


But you might think, “what if I picked the wrong thing and I waste my time?”


The truth is,
 the very act of picking a path, even if it’s the wrong path, will lead you much faster to a more correct path than doing nothing.

Doing nothing is a choice, just like choosing to design games, draw, or cook. However, unlike literally every other option on your list, it is the only option that will not move you forward.

In college, I did something like this with graphic design. It started when I saw a really cool poster in Nashville. I thought I could definitely do something similar so I gave it a go. I watched a bunch of tutorials online and after a few weeks, I was pretty decent.

I figured the best way to test out my newfound skills was to help other people. I put a post on my Instagram trying to see if anyone would be interested in some graphic design work. A lot of small businesses messaged me and I had a couple gigs and I came to realize that I really enjoyed designing things.

There’s 3 reasons the Trial Commitment works:

1. Remember the feedback loop — it just needs an action to start

2. It forces you to do something multiple times before deciding whether you enjoy it or not. This is important because, for example, if you never drew before, chances are, your 1st drawing won’t be as good as your 10th drawing. The Trial Commitment lets you build your competence before you decide if like it or not

3. Just by starting something, this opens your eyes to more options and opportunities that you couldn’t see before. Even if you initially chose the wrong thing, you might see something better along the way

Jot down your interests and start giving them a try. Your path to success is not in following your passion but in crafting it, one step at a time.