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Never Be Satisfied, but Always Be Fulfilled

Brandon's Bulletin
Hello everyone 👋
Really loving the change in weather! I started running again this week, going on daily walks, and overall just spending more time outdoors. Plus, got a few 5-6am wake-ups scattered in as well. Getting closer to going back to my “school routine!”
Photo by Wendell Fernandes on Unsplash
Photo by Wendell Fernandes on Unsplash
Never Be Satisfied, but Always Be Fulfilled
One of the highlights this week was talking to my friend Yi Fei about career trajectory, personal motivations, relationships, and everything in between. It was a really refreshing conversation from someone who just emulated so much passion and drive with everything that she does — and it’s truly remarkable to see.
One of the things we talked about was the pursuit of career vs marriage/family. (To me, it’s really interesting to be having these conversations with my friends now — I’m only 19! I guess we’re getting close to that stage in life…). Anyways, that topic has actually been recurrent in my conversations over the past couple of months and it’s always great to hear what everyone’s perspectives and rationale is.
Career was something we’ve talked about, and something that I’ve thought about extensively over the past few months. Am I someone who wants to chase career, or find fulfillment in my life through something else?
Career, to me, is another one of those “things” that people aim to attain, in hopes of bringing them happiness (which may not be a bad thing at all). Tangential to winning a sports championship, receiving an award/position, or getting a certain marks — basing your validation on achieving these “things” can unconsciously become toxic.
This reminds me of one of my best friends. He was a really high level winter-sport athlete and had (realistic) aspirations to compete at the Olympics. There was a period of time when he couldn’t make the national qualifying tournament (what he’s been training for his entire life) as he fell pretty sick a couple days prior. He was devastated.
Long story short, he did something that I find is really common throughout many high-achieving people: basing your worth on the “whats/things” (ie. what you achieve) and the goals (ie. only happy when I reach this level, or this thing).
I catch myself doing this sometimes as well, where I only validate my work/experiences once it results in something. An example: I will only be fulfilled when I get into X position, or when my CV looks like Y, or when I’m able to be best friends with Z kind of people. Mind you, fulfillment is completely different than satisfaction (in my opinion):
  • Fulfillment: being happy in the present state/season that you’re in
  • Satisfaction: being content with what you’ve done/accomplished
My perception on this: it’s good to be chronically not satisfied, but always fulfilled.
To me, I think that when you have a healthy perspective of “never being satisfied,” it provides an additional dimension of motivation to always push yourself to better. Not to be confused with fulfilment however, which is being appreciative and proud of yourself for doing exactly what you’re doing now.
Keep pushing yourself, but be proud of yourself too. That was the kind of realization that I had throughout the conversation with Fei. It’s also reaffirmed the importance of being surrounded by people who make these kinds of conversations with you — people who make you introspective and critical about your beliefs and ideologies, with a purpose of strengthening those that build you up.
Thanks to Fei for talking through this perspective with me — until next week!
Me this Week 🤡
  • What I learned — how complicated the patenting process was (thanks Vishan, who spoke to us at BioDojo), more about various 1º NK cell lines
  • What I did — got outside daily for >1hr, started running/working out again, more lab preparation for my project, getting started with the transition for iAscend
  • What I’m going to do — onboard the new execs for iAscend and start hiring, my official start date for my project is tomorrow!
Quote of the Week 💬
Be happy, but never satisfied — Bruce Lee
Video of the Week 🎬
I really appreciate you for being a part of The One Percent today! if you are enjoying this newsletter, I’d love for you to share this with a friend or two by hitting the share button below. I’ll see you back here again in a week’s time!
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Brandon Yu
Brandon Yu @brandonoliveryu

Becoming better in public and sharing weekly learnings throughout my personal pursuit of ikigai.

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