Cultivation of Xinxing as a full-time salesperson for the Epoch Times
Revered Master, fellow practitioners,
I have been an Epoch Times salesperson for several years. Looking back to when I started, I was initially quite reluctant to take on the role. However, knowing that nothing comes accidentally on the path of cultivation, I didn’t dare to step down, but have continued until today. In the past, I always viewed myself as only an “insignificant” salesperson who only targeted small ads; therefore, I did all my work with a “small wife’s” mentality. This only resulted in my poor performance over the past few years, with my excuse being that “Chinese customers were not easy to find.” A fellow practitioner, who also found it hard to understand, said, “You are quite good at clarifying the truth and persuading ordinary people to quit the CCP… but why aren’t you good with sales?” In other words, she was questioning why I did so poorly when it came to selling ads. I too felt terrible, but wasn’t sure how to break through the barrier.
Early this year, it was requested that Epoch Times staff should work full-time. At the time, I worked for everyday people and received some commission from my sales of ads. With my life and living expenses running steadily, taking on the role of a full-time salesperson didn’t appeal to me. However, my daughter, hearing this news, instantly sent a resignation email to my employer on my behalf, and I had no choice but to work as a full-time salesperson. In this way, Master pushed me – His disappointing disciple – up to a new level.
Master stated in the ‘Fa Teaching Given at the Epoch Times Meeting’: “Your journey is one where if you can take correct, right steps, the doors before you that were once shut will open and the road will become wide”
So I put down the burden I felt in my heart, changed my mentality, and made a desperate effort to wholeheartedly work for the Epoch Times. Surely enough, “After passing the shady willow trees, there will be bright flowers and another village ahead!” (Zhuan Falun, Lecture 9) Now, I have been securing more big ad contracts rather than small ones, and my sales results have increased by several times compared to when I worked part-time. I have truly witnessed the extraordinary and magical power of cultivation practice.
In the process of working as a salesperson, Master created opportunities for me to remove my attachment to self-interest. Although initially I thought self-interest was something I took lightly, working for the Epoch Times revealed that in the face of practical interests, I couldn’t let go of the attachment.
When I started as a salesperson, I only managed to sell classified ads to clients over the phone. But once, when I managed to get a big ad contract, it was a memorable moment of encouragement that I can still recall clearly. Whenever I encountered difficulties, I often used this achievement to encourage myself to keep going. I also kept in contact with this customer.
Later, when the owner of this company changed, they also stopped advertising with us. But the salesperson of the company regularly persuaded the new boss to advertise with the Epoch Times. One day, a fellow practitioner told me, “Your customer wants to advertise with us again; their agent rang us. The CEO told us to take over this ad.” Having heard this, I was very sad, but didn’t show that I cared on the surface, and instead acted very generously and said, “OK, you do it.” But seeing the ad published in the paper, my heart felt as if a painful needle had pricked through it.
At the time, I had strong views towards the CEO. With great effort, a minor salesperson like me had finally managed to sign a big ad contract. Why couldn’t they understand how I felt? They had so many big ads, yet were still granted this ad. Even though the advertising agent had organised it, they were still originally my client – you could have at least asked me. My heart was filled with these thoughts, yet I buried them beneath the surface, and managed to maintain a casual façade. To make things worse, two fellow practitioners said, “You should talk to the CEO and get this ad back”. I then thought to myself, “Although they have the contact with the advertising agent, I have the connection with the salesperson of the company,” and so I called the salesperson. The salesperson spoke kindly to me, explaining that the agent was her boss’s friend. She suggested finishing this group of ads with the agent and leaving the next bookings to me. This was exactly what I wanted. I now had hope in my heart as I thought I could still keep my customer after these ads finished.
Driven by the attachments of competitiveness, jealousy, and self-interest, I called the salesperson when the ads had nearly expired. She still spoke nicely to me. I called her again when the ads had finished, and nothing had seemed to change. However, a fellow practitioner told me that the salesperson of the company sent her a message, especially telling her not to ask me to negotiate about future ads with them.
As if struck by a thunderbolt, I suddenly awoke. Throughout the entire process, I had a strong attachment to getting back this ad; yet, on the surface, I acted unmoved, hidden beneath a smooth façade that had formed under the influence of CCP culture. In the past, practitioners had criticised me as being superficially friendly to please everybody on the surface, and I felt wronged by this. I always viewed myself as quite honest and far from this. But looking back on my mind activities when handling this ad, I could now see the toxins of the wicked Party culture lurking within me. I didn’t want this; I had to get rid of it!
In hindsight, I’ve realised Master has been constantly trying to awaken me, yet I still wasn’t able to come to my senses. Therefore, a ‘stick warning’ was needed to awaken me completely, and finally the attachment was dug out. Knowingly, I let go, and immediately felt a sense of lightness and a wonderful feeling. It was just like Master had stated in Zhuan Falun, “…to truly improve oneself, one should genuinely upgrade one’s mind. Only then can one truly upgrade oneself.” www.falundafa.org
A good salesperson is someone who doesn’t simply sell products to customers, but has an earnest and responsible attitude, letting the client understand that we are truly trying to help them, and only then can a deal be done. When everything we do becomes a manifestation of the principles of Truth, Compassion, and Forbearance in the human world, God will give us the glory and then our job performance will also be good. I have always been careless in my life. However, I’ve always forgiven this and never considered changing myself – I accepted it as a part of my character.
I remembered that once I had organised in advance to meet with a client. But after leaving home the following day, I realised I had left the customer’s address in my office. With the time being insufficient for me to travel back for the address, I had to cancel the appointment. After that, I was never able to organise another appointment with this client. These situations were common to me. I observed experienced salespersons and they were well organised before seeing a client: they would call them again and again, checking what they needed and preparing things meticulously beforehand. I finally realised the seriousness of my problem. How could I succeed in cultivation with this kind of state?
How could a God be so muddle-headed in front of his sentient beings? I realised that this was a big loophole in my cultivation. With this weakness, I was unwittingly complacent, and wasn’t diligent amidst the relaxed environment. It seemed that I had physically participated in all Dafa activities, but was my heart there? How much did I put my heart into it? Vigorously, I joined many projects and participated in various activities, as if they were a routine business of mine. When studying the Fa, doing exercises, and sending forth righteous thoughts, my mind was filled with random thoughts, but I never took it seriously.
My experience as a salesperson offered me the opportunity to reflect on my own problems. Cultivation is a serious matter. The negative effect of that problem reflected in the job of sales is that one is unable to retain old customers and has to constantly look for new customers. Everything we do is for the sake of saving sentient beings, saving lives. How much effort had I put into dealing with customers? Was I able to let sentient beings feel the sincerity and kindness of Dafa disciples? We shouldn’t act like everyday people who seek immediate success and just want to make money.
I remember once at a large group Fa study, a Western practitioner shared that before this federal election, he invited several local candidates. Some of them came and some of them didn’t. But he continued to follow up, build and maintain relationships with them. This responsible attitude is what I need to learn.
I would like to thank our compassionate and great Master for giving me the chance to discover and dig out my attachments doing sales work. Only through being diligent can I repay Master’s care for me.
I also realised that, as Dafa disciples, it is inevitable for us to have conflicts between different projects and media groups, and this is in fact a good opportunity for us to improve our cultivation. The rights or wrongs on the surface should not fool us; we should seize every opportunity to remove our human attachments. Master said, “When Dafa disciples do not cooperate well, or get angry and lose their temper, I can see that certain degenerate beings, some of which are rather large, are present, adding to it; and also at work are those layers upon layers of bad beings at various lower levels that [the practitioners’ thoughts] have aligned with. Haven’t I taught that people have both a good and bad side?”(“Dafa Disciples Must Study the Fa”) I told myself, if someone takes my client again, I firstly shouldn’t start thinking negatively, and secondly, I should communicate with fellow practitioners, thus leaving the old forces with no opportunity to interfere.
Master has paved the path for us; it is up to us how we follow it. We must put our full faith in Master and Dafa, walk along the path Master arranges for us righteously, truly make the Epoch Times the world’s largest Chinese media, save more sentient beings, and fulfil our prehistoric vows.
Thank you, Master!
Thank you, fellow practitioners!