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At the Magic Shop: Delos Chang is Redefining What it Means to Follow Your Passion

Delos Chang (ascend 45)

If you have a dream, you have a mission in life. For Chang, that meant venturing outside of his familiar realm of tech investing and Silicon Valley startups, and into the mysterious art of magic.

Born and raised in Silicon Valley, Delos Chang has always been surrounded by techies, startups, and talks of revolutionary ideas. After graduating from Dartmouth College magna-cum-laude with a computer science and economics degree, he quickly climbed the San Francisco tech ladder: first, as a software engineer at a solar financing startup (later acquired), then as an entrepreneur and consultant, and finally as an angel investor in early-stage tech companies. By the age of 23, Chang was already an accredited investor. Then, one morning, Chang decided to work at a magic shop and perform sleight-of-hand full-time.

“Back then, my experience felt a bit cookie-cutter for me, personally. Like I was following someone else’s definition and track of success. Nothing wrong with that, except magic always felt like this ‘what if?’ on the side. It has elements of what I love about software engineering and investing: finding clever solutions to difficult problems in a high-stakes environ that demands attention to detail,” states Chang.

Chang’s first day at NYC’s Fantasma magic shop? Performing the classic magic effect of the three-card monte live for FOX5 News and later, a visual coin trick for ABC local. At the age of 26, he performed his first professional magic gig.

“I think the biggest obstacle in pursuing our passions is ego. Not that we might think we are above it, but more often that we fear failing and the associated questions that come with that. In my experience, just as with investing, when we tie our identity to what we have or who we think we are, we also blind ourselves from considering alternative paths,” Chang continues.

Currently, Delos Chang spends most of his time planning his investments, playing with new magical effects, and meditating.

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