Biggest Takeaways of 2021

Last episode of 2021 and what a year it’s been! In this episode, I share my biggest reflections and takeaways that have served me so well on my life and entrepreneurship journey, and I hope you internalize them as well. Cheers to a great year and I hope you are proud of yourself! X

Welcome to the last podcast of 2021! In this final episode I reflect on what I’ve learnt this year and share the three most important lessons with you (03:20). From the importance of intuition (05:50) and trusting your ability (11:35) to not yucking your yum (21:00) this is an episode to reflect upon and use to set your intention for 2022!

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Audio Transcript

The Wanderlover podcast was created with a mission to enable travel and freedom through entrepreneurship. I’m your host, Danielle Hu, business mentor, content creator, and founder of The Wanderlover tune in every week for episodes about travel online business, social media, and mindset that will inspire you to take massive action towards living the life of your dreams. If you’ve been enjoying the Wanderlover podcast, if you’ve been tuning in and finding inspiration and taking away value, it would mean so much to me. If you could take a second to leave us a review on apple podcasts, I continue to record these episodes for you every single week and take all of your comments and feedback to heart.

Danielle (52s):
Thank you guys so, so much. Hi everyone. Welcome back to The Wanderlover podcast. This is our last episode of 2021, which is insane. Does anyone else feel like this year just flew by? I’m back in New York with my family and as we were opening up Christmas presents, we were all like, wow. A year has gone by since the last time this has happened! But as we reflect on this year, in this episode, I want to share my Biggest Takeaways of 2021. And as you guys may know, we started off this year in Hawaii.

Danielle (1m 32s):
We then made our way to Costa Rica, to Bali, to Rote and now I am ending the year, once again in New York. And although so much has happened as I really take this time to set the intention and reflect on what I’ve learned this past year and how I’ve grown as a person and how my business has grown in just one short years’ time. I really want to just relay everything that has come across on my journey to all of you. So you can also apply it to your life, your business, and ultimately I hope to really facilitate your growth as a person.

Danielle (2m 14s):
So a lot of what I am about to share today, I like to view as me being a Guinea pig for this thing that we call life. A lot of people look at the decisions I’ve made and they are inherently risky, right? This started off when I quit my corporate job and just didn’t have a plan for the next five years, stepped away from what society it’s hold us to be safe and stable and will make us happy, find a job and just stay in your one career until you retire. So it started off when I decided that I was going to try an unconventional path, and I would like to think of my journey since that decision, as just seeing what happens and sharing with all of you, all of my findings since then.

Danielle (3m 3s):
So a lot of what I’m about to share today, it’s nothing new. It’s simply what has happened since deciding to do what everyone else isn’t doing. And so it has been four years of doing things my way. And so of course, in 2021, my takeaways are going to be different than my takeaways from the first and second and third year. So in this year, what I’ve learned is to be consistent in following your gut. So this comes in two parts. The first part is following your gut, which I think I’ve learned to do and to trust myself way before I started entrepreneurship, just doing things that I really wanted to do.

Danielle (3m 47s):
I really wanted to study abroad. I really wanted to study abroad twice. I really wanted to travel to places that you know, other people may have not even thought about traveling to. I really took it upon myself to do what made me happy. And that’s something that I truly value as a person, as a business owner, following your gut. So in 2021, I learned the importance of being consistent in following your gut in mentoring and coaching, lots of clients privately through my masterminds. This is something that I tell people to continuously practice, not just practice once, right?

Danielle (4m 29s):
Not just be like, okay, I’m going to take this leap. And I’m going to give myself one month or three months or five months to figure it out. So I’m already putting this rational timeline on it. It’s not about any caveats. You don’t need to have disclaimers or a plan B. I really mean it when I say follow your gut. And this in reality always feels like this feeling where something is really scary and exciting at the same time. And I feel like I witnessed this over and over again. When people sign up for one of my programs, when they make the decision to commit to themselves and their business, even before they feel ready.

Danielle (5m 9s):
And this is always a feeling of your gut being like, this is what you’re meant to do because it’s scary and exciting at the same time. Right? If it was just scary, then it’s probably dangerous. But if there’s a part of you being like, oh my gosh, what could happen if I actually committed to myself, this was the same feeling I felt when I gave him my two weeks notice, it was like, what could happen? Like this just opens up so many possibilities. Yes, there are worst case scenarios, but there are also best case scenarios. So this gut feeling of doing things that are scary and exciting at the same time, that is usually the feeling of following your gut.

Danielle (5m 51s):
And so in 2021, what I learned is being consistent with that feeling. So me launching podcast last year, right? That was something scary because I hated talking about what I knew in YouTube videos on podcasts in lives. I just hated talking and feeling like I had to overcome imposter syndrome. I was like, what is it that I can possibly talk about? There were a lot of fears behind that, but I committed to it. I knew this was something I wanted to do. So I launched a podcast and throughout 2021, I released a new podcast episode every single week for the past year and year and two, three months.

Danielle (6m 34s):
And so even through times when I was traveling, when I was sick, when I had COVID, no matter what life threw at me, I committed to being consistent because I followed my gut in that original, you know, that original decision I committed to myself and I followed through with it fast forward to today, we have almost 15,000 downloads of The Wanderlover Podcast, all organic and listeners from all around the world. And this of course all came from the decision in the beginning. That was scary and exciting where I was like, I’m going to start a podcast. I don’t feel ready, but this is what my gut is telling me to do.

Danielle (7m 16s):
I have no expectations for this, but I’m just going to do it and I’m going to be consistent. And if you’re listening to this and you’re still like, but Danielle, I don’t know what my gut is telling me to do. I don’t know what you mean by follow your gut. I can understand that. You know, it’s not like this really clear. You have a voice in your head being like, this is what you need to do, but it is a feeling and it is this inner knowing. It might be scary because it’s not your rational brain talking. What? I can also describe it as what gives you joy? What are things that you do so naturally that you gravitate towards get rid of the rational mind, get rid of any thoughts being like this.

Danielle (8m 0s):
Isn’t going to make money. This isn’t going to be viable as a career option. Like those are all rational. Thoughts, talking really journal, go back into yourself, like do the inner work and figure out what it is that you are drawn to, where you don’t need anyone pushing you to do, go do your job or do work. What is it that naturally draws you in? Because this is different for every single person. I can give you a very recent example of very recently, Instagram targeted me with an app, an ad for an app called re decor. And I have been obsessed with this game and I usually never play games on my phone, but I saw this.

Danielle (8m 44s):
I was like, oh my gosh, it looks so fun. It’s this interior design game. It gets a little competitive because you submit designs. And then other players like vote for it. And you’re competing against other players. It’s very addicting. And I probably am more addicted than, you know, other people who have no interest in interior design. And prior to this, I actually had no idea how intricate interior design could be. But this drew me in for two reasons. One, because I am very creative and two, because I want to enter the real estate market and I see value in it. So that is of course, like the rational part in me talking.

Danielle (9m 24s):
But deep down, I knew that this was just fun. It wasn’t work. It was combining materials and colors and different floorings, different walls, submitting different designs based on, you know, they have different clients with different criteria. And to me, this just sounds so fun. I’m not thinking like, how do I monetize this? Am I going to start an interior design business? But it’s something that I find more appealing than rags or like my brother or my parents or my friends. Right? So this is something that naturally draws me in and I’m going to play without giving any thought to what it could be. Another example is I recently got an iPad and I downloaded procreate.

Danielle (10m 7s):
And this is something that I’ve, I’ve just been so consumed with creating and really exploring the artistic side of myself. I’m investing in a course on how to do calligraphy, because it’s just, it just sounds so fun to me. Same thing with NLP. It’s something that came across my radar very recently. And instantly I was like, that is something I want to learn and get certified in. So learning to answer these calls, learning to trust your gut in what makes you happy, what lights you up. And this is the same feeling when maybe you see other influencers, other coaches, other travelers, right? So you get that feeling where you’re like, that is what I want in my life.

Danielle (10m 49s):
That is what I want to do, because it is that feeling that we are chasing and being aware of, because that is how we follow our gut. So again, this to summarize, this first lesson is to do what gives you joy, follow your gut in what is scary and exciting at the same time and be consistent with it. It’s not a one-time thing when you’re like, I’m going to quit my job and start my business, but then I’m giving it five months and then I quit. No it’s following your gut and seeing it through only until you are able to trust that you have what it takes to, you know, keep ongoing, even when things get hard, that is the only way you’re going to see success.

Danielle (11m 35s):
So being consistent in following your gut, all right, the next lesson goes off of the first one, but it is trusting your ability to make it work. And I’m going to let you in on a little secret. When you see stories, when you see posts, when you see other people sharing that they’ve quit their job or have done something drastic. When they take a leap of faith, everyone has a worst case scenario. Everyone has doubts and fears of what if it doesn’t work. Everyone has the same emotional capacity to feel the worst case scenario. I really want to humanize this experience because every single new client that comes to me on our discovery calls, they are fearful of what if it doesn’t work out?

Danielle (12m 24s):
What if I am a failure? What if I have to go back home and, you know, live with my parents or I’m going to become homeless? Like all of these possible scenarios, every single person has, and I’ve had them, right? We are all human. And I don’t mean this in a condescending way, but your fears are not unique to yourself. Everyone is capable and everyone probably does feel the same fear, but the trick is you need to trust in your ability to make it work. And if you think about all of the life obstacles, you’ve had to go through things that you thought were unimaginable, right?

Danielle (13m 10s):
You found a way to overcome them and you will always find ways to overcome things. So when I first quit my job, I took a leap of faith. I traveled to Bali. I went to Australia, I didn’t have what I was going to do for the next 30 years of my life planned for once. And over time, what I’ve learned is no matter what life throws at you, you will find a way to make it work. And you need to trust in your ability to have the confidence that you are able to make it work. So in 2021, how this played out in my life in business is I had no expectations of where we were going to go.

Danielle (13m 57s):
We went from Hawaii, needed to do a visa run and went to Costa Rica, then ended up in Bali. And, you know, we ended up staying almost three months on a remote island that I had never been to and had only heard of didn’t know if they had wifi or internet. Didn’t know if I could run my mastermind from there. And I found a way to make it work. I had no expectations going in and I had no expectations, you know, going into this year. So this is what I really learned to internalize that you don’t need a plan. It’s great to have vision boards, and it’s great to have a schedule, but you don’t really need to hold onto something for 30 years down the line for five years down the line for three years down the line.

Danielle (14m 48s):
Like I have plans, but it’s okay. If things don’t go according to plan, right. And having a plan is already one step ahead of not having a plan. And it’s totally fine to not even have a plan. So letting go of all expectations and just trusting in your ability to make whatever you set your mind to work out for you in the best possible way. All right. So the next and last takeaway I have of 2021, this is more of a concept and realization that I’ve truly internalized this year. And I just see it playing out over and over again, you create your reality and everyone is a sum of their beliefs and values and therefore actions they take in their life.

Danielle (15m 44s):
I know that this might sound really simple, but until you truly internalize the power of it, I don’t think it will manifest as life-changing and as powerful as it can be until you really realize and accept it as truth as fact. So this happened very recently when I came home and my mom and I had a slight disagreement about children and the way they should be raised. And so in Asian culture, it’s very standard for young kids to enroll in piano lessons.

Danielle (16m 25s):
And so I started playing piano at a very young age, and I remember having to practice every day for hours and over time, I just didn’t enjoy it anymore. And I stopped playing piano. And the first chance I got in high school and thinking back on it, what I was trying to say was you can’t force kids to do something that they don’t enjoy doing. And then her argument or her belief was that kids will rather just play and, you know, not do anything productive and they need to learn some form of discipline. So of course I think there is a middle ground, right?

Danielle (17m 6s):
Like you don’t need to force kids to do something until they like hate it, which is, which was my case. But it was just so apparent that because of this belief, she raised kids who were really disciplined in practicing instruments, even though, you know, like maybe I wanted to do something else or maybe like we wanted to do sports, but in Asian culture sports and anything athletic just weren’t as glorified as music and instruments. And so it was just really clear that, because this was her belief, she created a reality for her children were practicing piano was a priority, right?

Danielle (17m 49s):
And it’s really interesting to just see how certain beliefs they have. You can see in your family history, you can see through generations, how decisions and beliefs and values play out. I know I talk a lot in this podcast about just mindset shifts within a year, right? Or beliefs that change within a few years time. But I’m talking about deep ingrained beliefs in your family history in generations, before you, how they have played out over time and what we can learn from them. So knowing the power in how your thoughts influence how you act and therefore influence your results. I was able to completely shift my reality this year around travel.

Danielle (18m 33s):
And for the longest time, I always thought that in order to have a thriving, multiple six figure business, I needed to be in one place. There was no way I could make being a digital nomad and having a successful business while traveling the world work so effortlessly. I knew it was possible, but I always thought it would be easier if I was in one place because I didn’t always have to find new workspaces need to, you know, get my office set up in different parts of the world. There was just so much more extra work required to being productive. When I was traveling, then, you know, ideally I was like, I wish I just had an office with blazing fast by five and I could make so much more money and help so many more people.

Danielle (19m 24s):
And then I realized this year that that was a belief I have developed. And I also have the power to change that. And so this year I rewrote my belief and said, I am going to be a millionaire while traveling the world. It’s just as easy as that. It’s just as easy to rewrite your reality. And right after that happened, I had multiple five figure months. I am well on my way to becoming what I had set out in my new reality. And it was just as simple as recognizing that, that old belief no longer served me and I could rewrite what I wanted my reality to look like.

Danielle (20m 12s):
Does that make sense? It is so powerful when you realize how your decisions are impacted by your thoughts. So another example of this and another example of how I’m able to now reframe my reality and challenge the thoughts that are within me. I recently had a conversation with my younger brother, Gary, who recently developed an interest in philosophy. And he was going on about all of these ancient philosophers and all of their theories. And he was so into it. And honestly the first thing that came up in my head and I ended up sharing with him my thought process. But the first thing that came up, because I come from such an entrepreneurship background where I’m just really focused on anything and everything.

Danielle (21m 0s):
Business-related the first thing that came to mind was how do I turn his passion and his interest into a business idea? How does he get something productive out of all the work he’s putting in? Then I had to stop myself and be like, Danielle, you are imposing your thoughts and your opinions on something that is so genuinely coming from a place of interest. You can’t, you know, yuck his yum. That’s what I always call it. When someone gives me opposing views or just inputs, their opinion, without me asking for it, I call it yucking my yum, because I’m on this, I’m on a roll, right? I’m going in this one direction. And because of your different beliefs, you’re trying to push me into another direction.

Danielle (21m 42s):
And I hate that. So I caught myself when I was about to do that. And instead I changed my words and I changed my reality because I was believing, I wanted to believe that I supported his interest and his passions, and that wouldn’t have come from a statement of, oh, how are you going to make this a business idea? Right? Like how, how is this going to serve your career or what you’re going to be doing for the next few years? I didn’t say that instead. I encouraged his curiosity. And I even thought, you know what, because I come from such a bias background and I know nothing about philosophy.

Danielle (22m 22s):
I think it would really benefit him to find a community of other philosophers, of other people who are really interested in the subject. So he can explore it further instead of sharing it with people who might not understand and get so much pushback from that. Right? And because of this awareness, this is what I want to share with you. When you have an idea, not everyone’s going to get it. This is especially true when you’re home or in my case, when I’m home in suburban New York, where a lot of people have different views. So you need to be really careful in what ideas you share with which people and how receptive you are to their opinions and their biases.

Danielle (23m 7s):
And ultimately, you’re only going to get ahead. You’re only going to start believing in yourself, having that confidence when you’re surrounded by other like-minded people. In 2021, we had two rounds of momentum mastermind. And this is the people that I love surrounding myself with. I love mentoring because we are all at the same frequency. We know there is so much more in this world. And we know that we are powerful human beings who are able to create our realities and we support each other through creating our new realities.

Danielle (23m 47s):
So this includes traveling the world. This includes making multiple five figure months. This includes making a lot of money while having your ideal relationship while having your ideal life. Like there are no limits. So finding your community of people who support you and are conducive to the life you want to be living. That’s why this is the main takeaway from 2021, you are able to create your reality, whether that’s you holding yourself accountable, knowing that you can do it and, or finding your community of people who also get it, of people who are going to watch you succeed and be there with you.

Danielle (24m 32s):
So again, this episode was basically like me being a Guinea pig of what has worked in my life, how I’ve created this life that I’m obsessed with. I didn’t come from a place where it was all laid out. For me. It was a lot of mindset work. It was a lot of learning from mentors, learning about entrepreneurship and business strategy, but ultimately through these thingsm through consistently learning and what I’ve shared with you in this episode, it has been so, so rewarding. So if you would like to start your business journey in 2022 and just get off on a good start, having your business idea down by January, 2022, just a reminder that Wanderlover business academy 2.0 is open for enrollment and to my podcast listeners, only if you enter in the code, Merry21podcast at checkout, you will get a hundred dollars off.

Danielle (25m 34s):
If you enroll by the end of the year, this is my gift to you. This is my sign to you. That what you are currently imagining is possible. You just need to act on it. You need to be consistent. You need to follow your gut trust in your ability and find your community. I hope this episode was insightful. I cannot wait to see all of you in 2022. I hope you all have an amazing new year and an amazing last week of 2021 sending you all so much love, and I’ll see you all next week.


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