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How to Be Happy AND Grow a Massive Business with Entrepreneur Jesse Itzler (and Josh!)

The BiggerPockets Podcast
57 min read
How to Be Happy AND Grow a Massive Business with Entrepreneur Jesse Itzler (and Josh!)

You want to crush it in real estate investing. But you also want fun, adventure, and time for yourself and your loved ones. Can you have both? Our guest today says, “YES!”

Jesse Itzler is a serial entrepreneur who’s worn a lot of hats: rapper, founder of a private jet company (sold to Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway), partner in a coconut water venture (sold to Coca-Cola), ultra-marathoner, and part-owner of the Atlanta Hawks.

Jesse shares his plan for 4x-ing your productivity, what he learned from living with a Navy SEAL (and writing a book about it!), and why investors must learn to “fall in love with the process,” rather than the product. You’ll learn his trick for scheduling memorable experiences and why you should develop your own “happiness meter.”

Oh, and stick around to hear Jesse’s hilarious story about performing in front of 600,000 people—and forgetting the words. This show is packed with wise counsel for anyone who is or wants to be a hard-charging entrepreneur, but also craves more balance and bliss. Download this episode, and share it with a friend or family member who would enjoy it! When you do, tag us on Twitter (@jrdorkin, @brandtonatBP, @biggerpockets) or Instagram (@jrdorkin, @beardybrandon, @biggerpockets)!

Click here to listen on iTunes.

Listen to the Podcast Here

Read the Transcript Here

Josh: This is the BiggerPockets podcast show…

Brandon: Show.

Josh: 313.

Brandon: 313. Are you taking on my show again? Are you taking my how again? Alright, I am going to let you take my show. Let us do this.

‘All of us, all 7 billion humans on the planet wan the same thing, they want to feel good. You want to feel good and I do things to try to make me feel good. That has to do with my health, what I eat, working out, my relationships. When I think about learning, growing, crying, all that stuff. I try to do it all. In the next five years, I just want to continue doing that. I do not really care about what I am known for. I just want to feel that way.

You are listening to a BiggerPockets Radio. Simplifying real estate for investors large and small. If you are here looking to learn about real estate investing without all the hype, you are in the right place. Stay tuned and be sure to join the millions of others who have benefited from BiggerPockets.com, your home for real estate investing online.

Josh: What is going on everybody? This is Josh Dorkin, host to the BiggerPockets podcast. Here with my co-host, Mr. “I was once a host” Brandon Turner.

Brandon: What is funny is we both started this, we started recording and we have all looked at each other like, wait, who is going to do this. Anyway, we figured it out. You take it, you got it. It is good to have you back today.

Josh: What is up man? I am super super excited to be back especially for today’s show with a guest that I am just an absolutely huge fan of. It is great to be back. Great to see you. Unfortunately, the beard continues to grow a frightening children everywhere.

Brandon: I did trim this the other day. I got some new beard oil in the mail. Well, Christmas gift from Heather. She got it on the mail and give it to me. It is actually John Cooper Beard Oil which I just discovered John Cooper is the lead singer of a band called Skillet and he has beard oil.

Josh: Nice.

Brandon: I like Skillet so she got me his beard oil which is I think we should have Brandon Turner Beard oil and we will sell it on BiggerPockets.

Josh: We should definitely have that.

Brandon: Great idea.

Josh: Alright. I am co-founder.

Brandon: Of the Beardy Brandon Beard oil. Alright. Anyway, yes, those of you who do not know, Josh here was the host of the BiggerPockets podcast for five years. By the way, we just crossed six years on the podcast officially. But anyway, were here for five years and now you come back occasionally especially shows that you are excited about. Today’s guest, actually you introduced me to his books and then I read them and I loved them and you were like we should get Jesse on the show. Absolutely.

Josh: And so we did. I am also founder of BiggerPockets.

Brandon: Oh yes, that is right. You also the founder of the world’s greatest website.

Josh: Yes.

Brandon: BiggerPockets.com.

Josh: Greatest brand.

Brandon: You have got a few things going for you entrepreneurial wise. Good job.

Josh: Alright, oh boy, it is definitely good to be back. Good to be here and I am psyched and it is good to see you and thank you everybody for listening. Thank you, thank you. Thank you very much.

Brandon: Thank you all for listening. But before we get to today’s show, let us get to today’s Quick Tip.

Josh: Today’s Quick tip is very short, simple and sweet. Think of one person in your life who was an entrepreneur, who is trying to grow a business, trying to do something great and send them a text message with this podcast. Every like podcasts like service or if you are watching this in YouTube, has the ability to like share the episodes. Shoot it to one person right now, unless you are driving, do it when you stop. But this show was going to help so many people. Jesse, the guest today, is just real about entrepreneurship and probably the most successful entrepreneur we have ever had on the show. You guys are going to love this so stay tuned for that. But before we introduce you to Jesse, let us get to today’s show sponsor.

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Brandon: Alright, alright, alright. Let us get to this thing. Our guest today is Jesse Itzler. He is a serial entrepreneur, bestselling author of two books, Living with a Seal and Living with the Monks, both fantastic. Josh and I love them. He is the co-owner of the Atlanta Hawks NBA Team. He sold his company Marquis Jet to Berkshire Hathaway.

Josh: That would be Warren Buffet’s company.

Brandon: Yes, Warren Buffet’s company. He is also with a partner in Zico which sold the Coca Cola. That was like a coconut water, I think it was coconut water company. One of the original white rappers. Actually, go to YouTube.

Josh: Do not Google him or Google him because you will not appreciate it.

Brandon: Go to YouTube and type in Shake it like a White Girl. You are going to see 1991, I think it is, Jessie and one of the greatest videos ever made. He is also married to a massively successful entrepreneur named Sara Blakely. You might recognize her name. She is the founder of Spanx, which she started with like $5,000 in her like basement with no outside investors. Grew to a billion company. She is also one of the guests sharks on Shark Tank.

Josh: By the way, by the way, he is also the guy who came up with the Go New York! Go New York! Go! jingle for the New York Knicks. Yes, I am sadly still a New York Knicks fan after all these years. But yes, he is a pretty big deal. This show is not about real estate today. I mean, I do not think we have mentioned the word real estate.

Josh: I do not think we do actually.

Brandon: But it is about entrepreneurship, success, happiness, mindset. What separates people that succeed from those who fail. I mean, we go through so many things today. You guys are going to love his stories. you are going to love all this stuff. I love things like his three hour rule, it is fantastic. When he talks about happiness…

Josh: Happiness meter.

Brandon: Yes, happiness meter. How he slept in 18 different couches like when he was trying to build his businesses. He talks about how the average American only lives like 78 years and you are all going to love this show. One more thing, it is super important. There are some, call them adult words used in this episode. Some R rated words. Just a warning, we did not beat them out. If you are listening with kids in the car, this might not be the best episode to play right now, but definitely listen to the episode when the kids are not in the car. With that said, let us get to the interview with Jesse. Alright. Welcome, Jesse, to the BiggerPockets podcast. Good to have you here.

Jesse: Great to be here, fellas. Really happy to be here.

Josh: This should be a lot of fun. I think people are going to love hearing your story. I mean I just got to finish reading both of your books because I knew this was going to happen. Fantastic. But most people do not maybe know who you are. Do you mind giving us like a two minute recap? Like who are you? What do you do? How did you get to where you are today?

Brandon: I know, condensing 50 years into it. Just a couple of minutes, we will see.

Jesse: No, totally it is fine. I am happy to. Serial entrepreneur, I started out in the music business as, believe it or not, as a rapper. Resigned to a company called Delicious Vinyl. Then I shifted out of music into private aviation at a private jet company called Marquis Jet which we sold to Warren Buffet’s net check. Then I had a coconut water company I was involved with called Zico, we sold it to Coca Cola. I am married, four kids, author of a couple of books. Ran a hundred miles, endurance athlete. Just trying to do as much as I can while I am on this planet, man. I am chipping away at my lifetime goal which is leave nothing on the table.

Josh: I love it. Through all of that, right? I mean you have accomplished more than most people would die to accomplish in their lifetime. The one thing that stands out to me about you is the moment of happiness, at least in my interpretation of my studying of you, the moment of happiness is the day you made 41 bucks hanging out with your buddy, Myron, and your sister. Tell us all about that and why is it and was that the moment of, of the most happiness in your life?

Jesse: Well, let me go to the end of the story first. No, it was just a moment of appreciation and it set me on the course of being an entrepreneur. I realized from that moment that if I took a big risk, felt a lot of fear, overcame that fear, and did something I loved, I could be rewarded. That was became addicting to me but it was not a moment I would say of just happiness. I feel like super happy, I feel super lucky to have the opportunities that I have. The health. There is this old quote, ‘If you have health, you have hope. If you have hope, you have everything.’ I feel really fortunate to be where I am and to have the parents that I had that gave me that opportunity to try things and experiment and have a long leash to pursue what I want to pursue but the story you talking specifically, I was like 15 years old.

I grew up in New York in Long Island. In the ’80s, and break dancing was big, I got really into music, really into break dancing. I know I do not look like it but I was good and I am not doing like the regular shit. I was doing it a band shit. I decided that like if I went to Washington DC and got outside of like New York, I could probably make a lot more money because there is no way the kids in DC were going to be as good as the kids in New York. We invented the shit. I convinced my sister who got a driver’s license to drive my partner and I, Myron who you mentioned, up to Washington DC. The plan was boombox, find a parking lot, set up shop and rake it in.

The whole drive down I was really scared. I was like started getting all the self doubt and I still have today but as a 15 year old I did not understand how to really deal with it and that was what if the kids are not as good or are better than us? What if no one shows up? What if we are driving 10 hours round trip for no reason and all those kinds of questions and having a lot of doubt about the whole idea. But anyway, we get there, we set up shop, boom, put the boom box down in this parking lot in Georgetown. 14 years old, 15 years old, Myron is probably a year older than me, 16 years old. Starts spinning on his head, we get a crowd, the music is banging, he passes it to me, I am doing my thing, the crowd is getting bigger and I take off my hat, I pass it around and start collecting some money and by the end of the day we had collected a bunch of money.

After I gave my sister the gas money, we put aside money to eat dinner. We split $41 each and I gave it to Myron and he counted it up like a little kid. Counted it like 20 times to make sure I did not short change them. When he realized that we both did in fact have $41 equally, he gave me a bear hug and he looked at me and he said, ‘Jess, we are fucking rich.’ I just remembered that moment and I felt really rich. I never had $41 of my own dollars really. The context of the story you are telling is about 20 years later, we built the world’s largest private jet company in the world. We did $5 billion in sales and we sold it to… I think whenever a entrepreneur would want to ultimately maybe for their legacy self to Warren Buffet and Net Jet, a Berkshire Hathaway company and at that moment I was asked about it. I did not really feel much different than I felt that moment. I know it sounds like no way, bullshit, but it is true.

Josh: I get it. It was not like all of a sudden everything in my life changed and everything was better. I could just have a bigger plate of brown rice. A lot of stuff happened in between those points from when I was 14 or 15 years old up until that moment in my life. I had some exits before that too but a lot of that happened good and bad, but the happiness was not dictated. We all know money does not buy us happiness. Well, of course it buys us a lot of things and sometimes you can become happier. But in my case, I have always operated from a really big place of gratitude, really good place of gratitude. I have always loved the journey. I have been addicted to the process and the passion has been around the process.

Josh: Now, that is awesome. Yes, the reason happiness and one of the main reasons that we had you on is like I am fairly obsessed with the topic of happiness right now. As an entrepreneur myself, I went through a pretty horrible year last year. My daughter, who was nine at the time, got very sick. Was pretty much… She had a surgery, she ended up paralyzed from the neck down, I had to step away from work. Over the course of time, she has been able to recover. It really made me think like what is life about and what is happiness?

I have spent my time studying happiness and trying to figure out what it is. That is kind of how I came across you and your book, Living with a SEAL, which we will talk about because I am into exercise and running and health stuff now. But I do want to transition a little bit on happiness. In your Ted X Talk, you talked about this thing called the happiness meter. I loved how you talked about how we can evaluate our own personal happiness. You talked about taking the different buckets in your life and evaluating them. Do you mind running through that really quickly with people? Because I think it is really worthwhile.

Jesse: Sure. Again, I think that in most areas of our lives, there is a way to measure almost everything. We get on a scale to measure our weight, we have tax returns to measure financial statements and to measure our wealth. We have an IQ test to measure our intelligence but there is really no tests on happiness. I was just thinking like, why? What is an easy way to kind of rate where you are at any given point? More importantly to identify what is making you unhappy? Because if we could fix what makes us unhappy, we would all be so much happier, right? Some of that is not fixable, but a lot of that we own and we can fix. I did this at this talk. I was doing a big talk for a bunch of Wall Street guys, Uber successful audience, Uber wealthy.

You would think if you equated money to happiness, everyone would be super happy. I just said, ‘Look, I did a very simple test.’ I said the topic came up in Q and A and I said, let us just try this. Everybody think about everything that is going on in your life. Think about all the buckets of your life, your weight, your health, your relationships, your finances, your job, where you live, the city you live in, your parents are getting older, your daughter, whatever is going on, put it all in a giant blender, okay? Mix it up. Then on a scale of one to 10 with the Dalai Lama attending the Dalai Lama of happiness and one being someone that said rock bottom, what is your number? In the majority of the room, I would say probably 90% of the room was at seven, sevenish, maybe a little bit lower but seven and proud of it.

I am seven out of 10 and I was like amazing. But if my son comes home with a 70, a seven out of ten on a test, that is like a C-. The most important bucket of your life. Most people think they are like, okay, I am doing pretty good but like well that is a C- but what is amazing about that test is your brain and more immediately when you do that exercise goes to a 10. It wants you to be a 10. Go to a  ten and then boom, the two or three biggest things that make you unhappy appear in your head and take you down to a nine, eight, seven, six, or whatever it is. If you do the test at home and you are like, okay, I am an eight, it is so clear because you are like it is my weight, it is my relationship.

Whenever the two things are that just popped in that got you to that number. It is like the simplest method to identify. Not just like where you are out on a one to ten, but more importantly, what is broken? Like if you go into 2019 and just say to yourself, what is one thing I want to fix in my life to make my life better? You will come out in 2019 way better off. One thing, like what is the one thing? Okay, I have to communicate more with my wife. I want to get aligned on how we parent. I want to double my, whatever it is, if you fix that one thing that is totally messed up, you are going to be so much happier.

Josh: It is awesome.

Brandon: I love that. Hey, can I get personal for a minute? Can I ask where do you see yourself on a scale of one to 10 of your happiness? What is your number?

Jesse: I am really fortunate, man. I feel really, really, most of the time I am very, very happy. I have two parents that are alive, I mean knock on wood or everything, healthy kids. I am capable. Not everything goes right, I get a lot of egg on my face. I take challenges, I fail. I have things that bother me, people that turn on me, people that love me. I have everything that everybody has but I process it really well and I process it and come out and net out in a very good place. To be totally honest, I feel very lucky about that.

Brandon: I am going to shift the question slightly. What are you working on this year? What fires you up, what is that next level you are trying to get to? I mean, I am assuming there is always room for growth, right?

Jesse: My life is all about building my own personal life resume. I do not believe in resumes in the traditional sense. I believe in like what is your body work, building your body of work, and maximizing the opportunity. I do not one of these 70 or 80 years old, look back on my life and be like, man I would be 80% version of me. I want to see what the 100% or 90 or 110%. This year, I just turned 50, big birthday for me. I have a monster year plan. I am doing a documentary? I am writing another book, I am launching a business that I think could save 10 billion gallons of drinkable water. I have a coaching course, I do 50 speaking events a year and I spent 50% over 40 hours a week with my kids and my family. That is a really… That is a… I have a lot of other projects and support.

I am taking care of my parents. I mean a lot of stuff is going on. It is a big year for me and every year is a big year for me. The way that I do that, the way that I approached that is I have a system. I have a optimization system that I use. It is really efficient and I get everything out of my head. It lives on a piece of paper to create space and energy in my head. I fucking attack it man like I am a wild man and that is how I do it.

Josh: That is awesome, that is awesome. Part of that is this big giant, big ass calendar that you walk around with, right?

Jesse: It is right here, yes.

Josh: We got to see it.

Jesse: Hold on, I need to get it. I did not know you guys are going to… Hold on, hold on. I got it, I got it. Here it is.

Josh: I mean if you are listening and you are not watching this on YouTube, jump on our YouTube channel and check it up.

Jesse: Here it is. It never leaves far from me.

Josh: At the airport, everywhere you go, right?

Jesse: Everywhere I go. Yes, because I am visual and I am old school. I need to see it, I cannot operate on a computer writing it down. I went through every month, I wrote down every day what is going on. My whole year plotted out and it shows a tremendous amount of intent. Someone said to me, do you want me to digitize it for you and put it in? I was like, digitize it? I want to spend four days writing it down in my calendar. I pleaded, I do not want to hit send.

Josh: How do you… One of the biggest things that we tend to find, that I tend to find when I talk to people is they ditch and they moan, they complain and they are like I am building a business. I am doing this and I was guilty of it. I worked hundred hour weeks for eight years. I did not take a day off. It was the worst thing I ever could have done and I did not have any balance with my life. I had no balance. I did not spend time with my wife that I wanted to spend. I do not spend time with my kids that I wanted to spend. But you are doing more in one year than most people do in 10. How do you balance that time with your kids, with your family, and accomplish all the things that you want to accomplish?

Jesse: I have a very very simple rules anyone can do. Most people listening will probably say that is impossible. Or you have a team and nannies or you can, but I do not. I do not. The answer is I take three hours a day for myself. I call it the three hour rule. It is cumulative. I am going to go for a run in the morning for an hour, it takes 20 minutes to read later in the day. Before I go to bed, I will take a 30 minute walk or just sit and do nothing, whatever. But when I am in my time, I am not guilty that I am not with my kids. I am not guilty than on that with my wife and when I am with them because I was able to do what I wanted to do during the day, I am fully present. Somehow, I am aware of my feet are because I do not want her to resent my wife or my boss or anyone for taking away the things I love to do.

I would be a terrible parent. I would be a terrible employee or boss. I know if I get my run in, I can journal, I read, I do my things. Then my wife wants to go sit in an opera for two hours, even though I hate the opera, I am good because I was allowed to do the things that were important to me. That made me happy. Take that away from me and I am miserable.

Josh: Yes.

Jesse: Like if you cannot take 10% of the day, 10% of your own day, your own precious time, the one thing we all have, the same 24 hours in a day. If I can carve out two or three hours cumulatively to take care of the stuff that I love to do, that makes my day bright and energized and fulfill, then my life is completely out of whack and I feel like I would have to really re-evaluate what I am doing.

Brandon: I love than.

Jesse: That is what I have been doing. I have been doing it forever. I did not realize I was doing it, it was unintentional, but I have always done it and it makes me a way better parent and boss, friend, son, because again, I have been able to do some of the things that I wanted to do during the day that are important to me.

Brandon: I wanted to ask. You talk a lot about being present and you obviously love your family and you are very very involved with them. Do you have any like, tips, tricks, hacks, whatever. I mean the 3R rule is awesome. Anything else you can help our audience? I mean there are people listening, going I do not spend enough time with my kids. When I am with my kids, I am on my phone. I am always scrolling, Facebook, Instagram, whatever. Like that is a major problem today, especially in America. Do you have anything that you can advice to give people on how they can be more present in the lives of their family?

Jesse: Yes. I mean there is a lot of hacks. There is a lot of, I mean, I am not an expert in this but I will just tell you what works for me. For one, I only take calls twice a week. The old me, let me back up. Let me back up. I have a new system because I operated the same way as single Jesse for 40 years and it worked. But now I have four kids and a wife and I cannot operate on that same system like I want to go out and watch a football game or play basketball. I cannot do that anymore. I had to rip up the playbook, rip up my system, and created a new system, right? Like your system, as you evolve, your system evolves. If anybody is listening, your system changes as you change. As your daughter went through her thing, your system changed.

You spend more time, you had to re-evaluate your priorities and all that kind of stuff. One of the things that I realized is I want to do four times as much as anybody else this year. I want a 4X. The average American lives to be 78 years old. I am 50, if I am average I got 27 summers left, okay? I want to do this much. If you are watching on YouTube, it is this much. My time is this much. It does not work. Either, I have to get more time, stay healthy, extend my life, whatever, or I have to be mega efficient and operate at 4X speed to get it all in what I want to do, right?

Brandon: Yes.

Jesse: I had to change the system. The first thing I did is I had to create efficiencies. Rather than taking calls all over the day at every time of the day and interrupting time with my family, ‘Oh, I got leave guys. I got to be done at one o’clock.’ I said I am only taking calls in these time slots. If that does not… Like I am taking control of my life. Now, I am an entrepreneur. I work for myself. I recognize people have other nine to five jobs, they work for people, everyone’s system is different. But I would change my system but this works based on where I am in my life. Just by doing that, I know that that is my call time. I do not have to worry. I have no calls after two o’clock in the afternoon. That is one thing that became very efficient to me to. Two, I do a lot of things like that.

I do a lot of things that maximize my time and my efficiencies. That is one of them. I make sure that I schedule one on one trips with my kids every year. I make sure that I have a thing called Kevin’s rule once every two months. I take a weekend away or do something that I would do that I would not normally do if I did not schedule it. That guarantees that I will have five experiences, new experiences this year, which means if I live another 30 years, it is 150 experiences that I now have that I would not have had. I think the bottom line is this, as you get older, we live in routine. As you get older, it becomes really hard to create newness. You are young, you are in your thirties man so it is different. But when you get to wait 20 years, when life is a part of routine, maybe not in Hawaii, but when that happens it is hard to create newness.

You have to work on it. Honestly, otherwise you live in routine, you end up you are 70 years old and you are like, ‘What the fuck happened man? I have been doing the same stuff for 20 years.’ I work really hard at creating newness, really hard at it. I schedule it, I think about it and a I take it really serious. I am not saying that like we are on the podcast and let me give some soundbites. I am not selling anything. That is how I live my life and it is important to me. If it is not important to you, it is not going to happen.

Josh: No, it is great and I fully believe this.

Jesse: Look at my calendar.

Josh: It is crazy. Hey, a couple of quick things. One, really quickly, the name Kevin’s Rule. Why is it Kevin’s Rule?

Jesse: I have a friend of mine who is a police officer. Kevin the cop, he is in my book. I went on a trip last year with my son who is eight and his daughter who is eight and we camped out at Mount Washington. Mount Washington is one of the… It is coined the world’s worst weather in the winter and it was minus I think 20 degrees. We were in a sleeping bag that protects you if the minus 40. Sleeping outside in the snow, my son, his daughter, me, myself, Kevin the cop.

I was like, ‘Man, this is unbelievable. This is the life. This is one of the moments I was talking about. I said to Kevin, ‘How often do you do this?’ Like this unreal. This is the best weekend. I will never forget this. How often do you have moments like this? He goes, ‘Oh, well,’ and I am talking about a guy at blue collar man, blue collar. Officer, canine unit, staff at county, one of the happiest guys I know. He goes every year I go up since I have graduated college, like on a trip with my college friends. I am like, oh my God, I barely ever see my college friends. By the way, tomorrow, I am taking my college friends to The Bahamas.

Josh: Nice.

Jesse: That was the first thing that I changed. I might go I can do that, I have done that. Then he said, every other month I take one weekend where I set up a trip where I would not have taken and it could be anything. It could be I am going fishing on the pier in the city. I am going to museum, I am going to run a marathon. It does not have to be like I am traveling the world to go see Italy but I do something that I would have done instead of watching a college football game, I go and I create something that I would have done. I am like, I could do that too.

Josh: Yes. When I came home, I am like, I am going to implement Kevin’s Rule. Kevin’s Rule is I am going to go on five or six weekends a year, friends, family, whatever and that is what it is. Which by the way, in my calendar, it is the first thing that I marked up. I said, ‘What are the five things I want to do then I went to the weekends, I circled them. I said, okay there is 52 weekends, these five are carved out for this stuff with my family, friends, etcetera. I am taking one of them tomorrow.

Brandon: That is cool.

Josh: That is right. If you do not do that, you are never going to get through it because everything else is going to push it away. I love that.

Jesse: Never happened.

Josh: Josh here, Josh and I were in a Uber a year ago, whatever. We had this really, really great conversation, one of the best conversation I have ever had. It was on that like when you are a kid or when you are in college, amazing memories in times just happen naturally, right? The younger you are, the more natural those amazing things happen. Like you grabbed some buddies and you go out and stay until four in the morning and you still remember that 20 years later. The older you get, the less it is. It is like you were saying a minute ago, like you get in the routine the less those moments happen. What I love about what you are saying is like just what we were thinking, you have to like create those moments because they will not create themselves very often. It just does not happen but most people do not take time to create those moments. I love that you are doing that.

Jesse: Yes, I mean there is only really two kinds of moments. There is the ones that are memories. There is ones that happened that you have no control over. You will remember 9/11 forever where you are 9/11 but you had no control over it. Then they are the ones that you create, the ones that you schedule and you create. Those are the ones that you do have control over.

Josh: That is great, that is great. When you talk about changing how you do things with your time blocks? Living with a Monk, which was your second book, right? You went off on this adventure, you told your assistant you want to go live with some monks and had her set it up and plant it and you went off and I am not going to ruin it and spoil it for everybody but you ended up living with some monks out in New York and it was awesome, at least my read of it was. But there were all these lessons that you took away from it and I think few of the ones that stood out to me where the amount of hours that you have got in your life and time is ticking, you already talked about that, you have gone got supposedly 27 years left.

I am sure you are going to be around a lot longer than that. The other was mono tasking, that definitely stood out to me. But being away from your phone, it is in the book title. What turning off my phone taught me about happiness. Did that play a role for you and changing your scheduling and how you communicate with people? Because I think a lot of people would say how the hell could I do that? How could I go without my damn cell phone and chatting with people and being on Insta and everything else all the time?

Jesse: Yes. Well, I am still on e-mail. I am still on email but I have made it a note or a goal to the off email the next 30 days.

Josh: What does that mean? Off email?

Jesse: Well, I have an assistant and unless it is an emergency I really do not want to see it. Now, I do not know how realistic that is and maybe it will cut it down to 80% but a lot of my emails are insignificant. I was just with my wife’s grandmother who is turning 97. I went to visit her and I am sitting in where she sitting in this facility now. I was thinking to myself, I wonder if she is thinking about her emails from four or five years ago. Like, I mean, I know it is not going to mean anything to me what I am worried about or thinking about today.

Of course you, it does not mean you cannot ignore it. You cannot ignore it, it is part of your real light but a lot of it is meaningless and that is not going to really, it is just not where I am at today in my life. I am trying to avoid that, minimize that and create a system where I could literally live off of it. I remember about five years ago, I was with the owner of the Baltimore Ravens and he was telling me that he does not get any emails. He has the people that need them have his text and if they need him they text him and his assistant handles everything else. I am trying to build the process where my assistant knows me good enough that she can respond to everything and handle it unless it is an emergency, an email she can answer for me and that is that. Now, again, I am at a different place in my life that I was 10 years ago but for changing the process, changing the system to where you are, you always evolve, that is something that is important to me.

Josh: Yes, I think it is great. When I was in high school, one of my close friends said one of the most profound things that I have ever heard, and it always stuck with me. He talks about looking at your life as if you are doing so from your deathbed. Most people do not take the time to think about anything ever. The first thing you go to do is stop and think, right? Take moments, take an hour, take a half hour, think, go on a walk through something. Once you are doing that, one of the things that I like to do is say if I am looking back on my life from my deathbed, who is around me? It is my wife, it is my kids, hopefully some other family, maybe my closest friends. Those are the ones that…

Brandon: We will be there.

Josh: You will be haunting me with that beard down to your toes. Those are the people that are around you that really matter at the end of the day, those are the ones that count.

Jesse: Yes.

Josh: Go ahead and live your life in a way where you are supportive of those people. You are there for those people. Everyone else, be nice to, be kind to, be a good person. But like those are the ones that matter. How do you build a life centric with those people in mind and yourself in mind? That has always stuck with me and it has always helped me and drive me forward and helped me ignore a lot of the bullshit.

Jesse: Yes, I mean I think for most people it takes… When people have tremendous change for the better in their life, it usually comes after something tragic. A death, an illness, a revelation that drug addiction, something happens that causes this tremendous change and I never felt like I needed that to evolve or to change. Most people, humans are like a book. They live their life as a beginning, a middle and an end. The beginning chapter, we reflect on. We will go back and reflect on it but it is done. The middle section, that is where we are now. All three of us in our journeys, we are in the middle section. That is real time that preoccupies us. That is where our worry list, etcetera. Very few of us think we are never going to die.

You do not think about like you are going to die, you are like 32 years old. Now, you think you are going to live forever and you have got a long road ahead of you and I hope you do or this and that. I am sure that neither of you two guys have picked out a your grave site or your planned your funeral. Like I bet nobody listening to here has done it because we do not think about it. We do not want to think about the end of our life. We live forever, it is not happening, it is so far away but it is not man. It is not. It is like we live here like poof, poof.

Josh: Yes.

Jesse: Like I am aware of that, that is my driver. I am here for a short window, man. I am aware of my own mortality and my relationship with time is a special relationship and that is my driver. When you talked about earlier like what do you want to do this year? I want to do everything this year. I mean I am almost operating in a magic place where it is just like I want to do so much because I have so much appreciation for the opportunity that I want to like everyday it is like come on man, what can we do? What can we do? I do not know if it is good or bad but I am aware because you guys laughed about, well 78 and this and that and maybe I will hopefully I have more hope, maybe I have less. But let me just say this.

When I was on Mount Washington with my kids, with my son and Kevin and his daughter, I have not seen any 70 year olds up there. When I was walking up there, I did not see any 70, I did not see any 65 year olds. Like that window to do the stuff that we are all physically able to do and love to do, it shrinks, man. It goes so damn fast. I am playing for now, not playing for 89. I am playing for now. The opportunity that is in front of me right now.

Josh: I love it. I love it.

Brandon: Hey, I want to take a quick break from today’s podcast to invite you to this week’s upcoming Webinar. How to make your first 5,000 a month through real estate investing. I mean, yes, $5000 is kind of arbitrary, right? It could be three years, seven, but my guess is this, $5000 a month could change your life and that is the goal of the webinar. I am going to be going through three key strategies for getting there no matter what your financial picture looks like today. Like if you do not want any deals right now, you do not have money, you do not have experience, do not worry about it, come anyway. Just go to BiggerPockets.com/5000webinar. BiggerPockets.com/5000webinar. See you there.

Here we are at the after the new year and there is all these topics about goal setting and all that and one of the blog posts I read the other day talked about a good way to set a goal to figure out what you want to do is ask the question, what do you want to be known for in five years? I am curious, Jesse, what do you want to be known for? Like maybe five years, 10 years even when you die, like what is your I want to be known for this?

Jesse: I do not really think like that. I think there is so many buckets and so many ways to answer that. How I want to be looked at from my kids is different from the world. I mean, like I said, I am working on a really big project right now where I think I have had the potential to save a tremendous amount of drinking water that is being wasted and that is something that I think would be an amazing legacy to leave behind and be like what did I do? I saved 10 billion gallons of water and distributed them to people in the states in need of clean water, that would be like amazing. So that is been a big part of my shift and focus.

I have an online teaching course that I love. If anyone benefits from it, that makes me feel really good. I think we all want the same thing and you talked about it better earlier on, becoming like a happiness guru is really important to you but at the end of the day, I think everybody listening wants the same thing. All of us, all 7 billion humans on the planet wants the same thing. They want to feel good. You want to feel good. I do things to try to make me feel good, that has to be with my health, what I eat, working out, my relationships, what I think about, learning, growing, crying, all that stuff, I tried to do it all and the next five years I just want to continue doing that. I do not really care about what I am known for, I just want to feel that way.

Josh: Alright, that is great. I want to read something. You know what, Jesse? SEAL says, ‘No, I am not cool. I am sick of this shit.’ SEAL pounds his fist on the bed, ‘You are too pretty man. Too Cute, fuck you! What? Go grab a chair. The most uncomfortable chair you can find.’ I have no idea what he is talking about but I go and get a wooden chair. One with no arm rests, out of my home office and returned to his room. ‘This, this is perfect,’ SEAL says,’Sit down.’ I sit in the chair and, ‘Now, go grab a fucking blanket,’ he says. Wait, what? He does not really think I am going to sleep in a chair. You got to get out of your comfort zone, Jesse.

He says, ‘Enough of this comfy shit. Fuck this Park Avenue bullshit.’ He repeats himself under his breath, ‘Fucking Park Avenue, bullshit.’ But we live in Central Park West. This book, I have spent… When I read this book, I have laughed harder than I have ever laughed reading a book. My wife, I would wake up my wife in the middle of the night while I am reading the book and she is like, ‘What? Okay, read it to me. Read it to me. We enjoyed it so thoroughly.

Jesse: Thank you.

Josh: What inspired you? The book is Living with a SEAL, 31 days training with the toughest man on the planet. What inspired this book? Tell us the story.

Jesse: First of all, you are bringing back good memories or bad memories. I loved writing it. As I hear you reading it, I just remember laughing at that particular part, a lot of parts. I did not set out to write the book. I met this guy in a race. I was really inspired by his drive. He had struggled at the race. He had broken some bones, he was peeing blood. He weed out through weight and it was a ultra marathon that I was running, he was running, and I decided I wanted to beat them. I could learn from someone like that. I went out to lunch with them and realize like, I am never going to kind of get the secret sauce that this guy has. He was a Navy SEAL and I asked him if he would come live with myself and my family and he said yes and he moved in shortly after like right away, like right away. Then five years later, I wrote the book.

There was no like, ‘Oh, I am going to go live with a Navy SEAL and write about it.’ It was, I loved the experience. I learned from it, we became friends for years. I decided, someone approached me to write a memoir, a book about… Really a business book about my journey at Marquis Jet and some of the other stuff that I had done. As I started writing it, I realized that I do want to write a memoir but this would be an amazing way to do it and that is what happened.

Josh: What I loved was, there is a lot of things I took away from the book, I think most relevant to our audience you saw this guy, you were fascinated by him. You asked somebody who he was, you called him out of the blue, you flew out and met the guy, flew across the country to sit down and talk with the guy. He was, at least in my read, he was pretty abrasive at first, did not want anything to do with the kind of thing and you flew out there, invite him to come live with you and you made all this happen.

Now, most people, our audiences is most mostly aspiring or active real estate investors and a lot of people are scared to pick up the phone and call somebody who has got a house on the market or somebody who might have a house on the market, but you had the balls to go out and fly across the country to a dude who did not really want to talk to you on the phone. How does somebody get on the phone with somebody? How do you overcome that fear to chat with people, to talk to people, to reach out to people that you aspire to meet and connect with and overcome that fear, what do you do?

Jesse: I think it is just like going into a really cold ocean of water, pool of water and she just go. If you start talking and stuff added to it, I think it will come up with a million reasons why you should not. I have always just been like, give me the phone, give me the phone. Not preparing speech or thinking about it, I have always just kind of let me get my foot in the door and figure it out later. I did not go to California, San Diego to sit with the SEAL with a plan of we are going to live together and write a book. I got my foot in the door and one thing led to another and then we had a best seller. That is one thing, the second thing is just like anything that involves the fear of embarrassment or any kind of fears.

One of the tools that I used, and I have several, is that it goes back to my own mortality. Like nobody on this planet is going to be around in a hundred years from now, very few of us. Do I really care if someone does not? I am in the real estate game and like what happens on a phone call? I mean, come on, let me give you an example. I was in the music business for years and one part of my journey in the music business is I was running theme songs for professional sports teams. I wrote a song for the Denver Broncos, called Salute in 1997. Every time they would sort of scored a touchdown, the Broncos would salute into there. It was a big deal, it was all over. It was like this first trend and like super bowls celebrations. I wrote a song about it, caught on, it was huge. The Broncos win the Superbowl. I am in Vegas. They call me up and they said, would you like to perform the song at the parade tomorrow in Denver? I said, ‘Absolutely.’ I said, ‘How many people are going to be there?’ 685,000 people, bigger than Live AID, 685,000 people.

I am like 20 something years old. I fly from Vegas immediately to my apartment in New York because no one could get in and FedEx the instrumental that I needed in time to get to Denver. Get the instrumental, do not even change, get on the plane and fly out to Denver with my partner that we are going to sing this song. We get out there, 685 people. I am sitting backstage, about to go on, and they hand me the microphone and I am shaking. I am shaking, I am so nervous I can barely hold the microphone and my friend says to me, ‘Are you okay?’ No, I said, ‘I cannot go on.’ He goes, ‘Why cannot you go on? I go, ‘I just peed all over my leg.’ He goes, ‘Are you serious?’

He looks down and he goes, ‘Holy Shit.’ They go, ladies and gentlemen, all the way from the York City, please welcome and throw us on stage. I go on like a stained leg. Like the mic is shaking, I started singing the words, I am rocking, place is blowing up, everyone is saluting. It is going on unbelievable, best moment of my life and I forget all the words. I forget all the words. About three days ago, I am going through old videos and I see the video and I am like, ‘Oh my God,’ I have it on tape and I am going to show it to my assistant and I am showing my assistant. I said, ‘You know what the lesson is from this story? Because I was thinking about maybe telling this, sharing this, with a corporation I was going to speak at. I said, you know what the lesson is? The lesson is not preparation.

Everybody knows you have to be prepared and I was not prepared. The lesson is not like life throws you curves and you have to deal with it. Everybody knows that, you got dealt a very severe curve unfortunately with your daughter and we all have that and we got to deal with, everybody knows that. The lesson was after 20, or 77 and 87, 97, 97, 107, 22 years, got a 90 on my SATs, it is alright to count. After 22 years, I did not remember the story. The lesson was nobody cares. Nobody is talking about it now. It is over.

Josh: Now we are.

Jesse: What is the worst thing that happens if you pick up the phone and call somebody? That was the lesson from this, I fail in front of 685,000 people and no one is talking about it anymore. Who gives a shit? Everybody went on and worry about their taxes, their family, their kids, having anxiety and all the other stuff that we all deal with and this is just a moment and no one even really even knew. That is a powerful lesson. Now, I cannot call up somebody on the phone? Are you kidding me? Come on man. Nothing is going to happen if you do not.

Brandon: There you go.

Josh: That is good.

Brandon: Let me, entirely related question, do you have other advice or advice for entrepreneurs? Most of our audience are people trying to build wealth, financial freedom, that kind of like a business or whatever. But people, I mean, I do not know, you know the stats or you have all heard the stats about most businesses fail. What have you done that has worked so well to grow multiple businesses that have all succeed? Or not that everyone has succeeded but the ones that have, what have you done?

Jesse: I think the common trait for me, similar to a lot of entrepreneurs, was I took a chance. First of all, not all of them failed and I had plenty of egg on my face along the way. I think that I have always been the business plan. It is like I am the business plan.

Brandon: What do you mean by that?

Jesse: I mean like I had to raise money or sell something, it was never the deck that I had or the PowerPoint presentation. It was my partner or myself that people were going to bet on and they had a buy in to me. I think that people buy into stories more than products. People like if you have a good story or history, that is really important, even maybe more important than the product. Things take time. Early on, I thought like in today’s world of Instagram, it is like everything is, or social media, it is like you think that everything happens overnight and there are not get rich businesses and there are overnight success stories, but not a lot. Not a lot, most 99% of them are grinds.

Man, I slept on 18 couches between the ages of 19 to 22, 18 different friends put me up and housed me in my struggle to go from where I was to where I wanted to go. It takes support, it takes belief, it takes determination, it takes thick skin and that is not for everybody. Anyone who thinks like anyone can just do it, no you cannot man. Some people are better suited, knowing they have a paycheck coming every week and some people are adrenaline junkies and they want the challenge, they want the risk, and they like living on the edge. That is more me, that is not my brother. My brother likes to go and get a check and know that he is going to go home. Everyone has their own lane and I think it is important to understand that.

It takes a high man. I remember when we went with Zico into the president of Coca Cola’s office and the president of Coca Cola said it will take eight years to build this brand. Maybe now with social media things are accelerated, but I would say it is probably five. I look at Lyft, like were Lyft is today, what they started five years. A lot of companies maybe could but usually that is what it takes. It felt like six months and we were like rocking and rolling then. You have that patience. I think most importantly as an entrepreneur, it is really important to understand that people talk about passion all the time but I think passion is greatly misunderstood. I think the passion is not necessarily around your widget, whatever your widget is. The passion is around the process. Like you are an entrepreneur, that is what you signed up for, when all your friends are at happy hour and you have to lick stamps and put them on the envelope and send out all the stuff, that is what you signed up for.

If your passion is not built around the willingness to do that, whatever your end goal is, it is going to be a real struggle because there can be a lot of should I go to happy hour or should I stay in the office? If you always choose happy hour, someone else is going to choose the office and they are going to beat you.

Josh: Yes, that is great. That is great. Let us talk about failure for a second. One of the things that stood out to me most in the monk book was a moment you talked about your wife Sarah was that at the dinner table and his father asking what she failed at? The takeaway, every week there is this discussion about failure, and the takeaway being failure becoming tied to not trying rather than the outcome. Can you dive in a little bit on that?

Jesse: Yes, man. I think my wife was very lucky. Her father emphasized, re-defined failure as not trying versus the outcome. Every day he would ask her, or every Friday he would ask my wife and her brother, what did you fail out this week? My wife was like, ‘Oh, we did not try out for the cheerleading team and I did not make it.’ He would high five and be like, ‘Oh, you try it out. You did not make it, that is amazing.’ What he was doing was he was just deflecting, taking the pressure off of the end result and focusing on the effort and redefining what failure really is.

Josh: I think as a parent, that is so important.

Jesse: It is really important. I mean, as a parent we liked to praise the effort, not the result. Not like, oh man, you dominated. Not that my son dominates basketball games, he does not for sure, but using it as an example. Like as a parent to say, ‘Oh, you dominated the game man. You are amazing. You played a great game. No, you worked really hard this week and I really showed all that effort really paid off.’ See what happens when you praise that part of the journey.

Josh: That is great, that is great. Well, we have talked so much about all these things in the past and happiness and hard work and opportunities. One of the things that I am most fascinated about in your life is the ultra marathoning, it is the athleticism. After all this stuff that went on with my daughter, I had one of those moments where I was with my middle daughter and she was riding on her bike and I started jogging with her and got to a point where, yes, I was keeping up but I was definitely a little winded. I stopped and I looked at my Apple watch and I am like, oh wait, is my heart supposed to be 185? That seems high. I am like, we go home, I Googled it, 185, I am 40 years old. Well, wait a second, that is not good. That is like instant heart attack mode and I am a skinny dude, right? I thought, I am skinny, I am okay. I had this realization that like I am in terrible shape. I am in the worst shape of my life. I have been running a company for 14 years, I focused on that.

My sole focus. I got to change before I dropped dead. There is only 28 for 70 days in our lives, right? I started running, I started getting fit, I just did a 10K my first race ever in October and been reading all these great books and just super motivated. But you are doing the big stuff. I mean you are doing the ultras. You just did this, you started this thing, interesting, which I am fascinated by and want to try out. But what drives somebody to do, not just like a race that is going to drive you and push you, but you do the races that break you, what drives somebody to do that?

Jesse: I think everybody is different. I do not think there is a one size fits all answer to that. I think everybody has their own reasons for those kinds of challenges. For me, I started out with the goal of running two miles. That was my goal and when I was able to accomplish that after a couple of weeks, two miles in under 18 minutes was my goal. I think everybody listening can probably, the majority of the people listening, to probably do that with a gun to their head. But after I did that, I signed up for my first race. I mean, it was a gradual progression for me. Same as you, 5K, 10K, half marathon, marathon and then ultimately I decided I was going to try to run this hundred mile race in 2006. I gave myself 90 days to train for it and I finished it 22 hours and 30 minutes and they put me in a wheelchair for four days. Of course, I was like I will never do anything like that again.

By the way, I have not run a hundred miles since then but I am signing up for a race this year. But anyway, I think that was the best moment for me of growth in my life. The discipline, the training. There is an old Japanese ritual called the Misogi. The notion around the Misogi is you do something so hard one time a year that the benefit lasts the entire 364, other 364 days of the year. That was my Misogi and I found that it lasted me a lifetime, not just from that one day. I was like, whoa, if I could get more moments like that and build on that and take the lessons learned and apply it. Also the thrill, I enjoy it, I like challenging myself, that would be amazing. Since then, I have done some of those extreme races. I have done a lot of standup paddleboard, ultra paddle board races. I started a company called 29 O 29 where we rent a mountain. You hike up the mountain, you take the Gondola down and you repeat until you climb the equivalent of Mount Everest. I just feel like there is a lot of growth that can happen from there. That has become a part of my life. You keep looking for those kinds of challenges.

Josh: Love it.

Brandon: Yes, I love that. Go ahead, go ahead, go ahead.

Jesse: No, I was just going to say it is like I mean I started at two miles. I am not anything special at all. I just put the time in and changed what I believe that I thought I could do, what I thought my limits were and that is really the only fundamental shift between the guy that could run two miles from the guy that can run a hundred. My body is exactly the same. I am not very strong. Same legs I ran two miles on. The only thing that changed was I was like I saw someone do it and I was like, man, if they can do it why cannot I do it?

Josh: Yes. The same applies for everything in entrepreneurship, everything in business.

Jesse: That is the same thing.

Josh: For all the real estate investors. Like that is why we do this show. It is to model and to motivate and give people examples of what other people just like them are doing. I love it. I think it is awesome.

Brandon: Hey, Jesse, what do you listen to when you run or do you listen at nothing? I know SEAL mentioned in the book that he does not listen to anything, but what about you?

Jesse: Nothing, zero. That is my time, part of my three hour rule. That is my time to think and I do not want to be distracted by other stuff. I walk a lot too. When I walk, I listen to podcasts, interviews, motivational, inspirational lessons. I like to learn. Part of it is my efficiencies built in process, killed two birds with one stone, but when I run I feel like I just want to get this thing over with so I do not want to listen to anything. I am like really focused on my pace and time and I am very mathematical in my approach to that.

Josh: That is nice.

Jesse: I am focused on that.

Brandon: I have been working trying to build up, build up, and I am up to like I think I did a ten miles. The ten miles, that was the most I have ever done and like I wanted to die afterwards. But I listened to music and I am wondering maybe there is a better way, maybe I will try it without running.

Jesse: No, I mean, some people love it but for me it is just I prefer to listen to that. It is my time outside. I want to hear what is going on.

Brandon: It makes sense. Hey, by the way, you mentioned podcasts. You do not have a podcast or do you?

Jesse: No.

Brandon: You should do one, you are good. Alright, I want to transition here. Normally, we have a segment of the show called The Deal Deep Dive and we have another one called The Fire Round. We are not going to do either of those today but I do want to get in a quick word from today’s sponsors from those two segments.

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Brandon: Alright, big thanks for our sponsor. Now, last thing before we get to over the Famous Four, I am curious. I actually want to ask both Josh and you in this one and this has nothing to do, it probably will not benefit our audience. But I just liked these question because sometimes there are, well, I will just ask it. What do you love most about your wife? I want to know each of you guys. Like what do you love about your wife? The reason I asked that again, it is because I think sometimes, I do not know, our wives maybe get like, I do not know what the word is. Like we talk about ourselves and our families a lot of times, but like, I do not know. How much does your wife help you on that journey?

Jesse: Go ahead, Josh.

Josh: Man, not a lot of people liked me. I am pretty abrasive. Brandon, you can attest for this.

Brandon: Let us say you have a couple of people.

Josh: No, I mean look, I have got some close friends but at the end of the day it is hard to find really truly deep connections in your life. Maybe you have got five or 10 across your entire lifetime. My wife is one of them. She supports me, she stands up for me, she stands up to me, does not put up with my bullshit, pushes me, challenges me to be better. For me, I have lived my life in a way where I am always striving to be better. I am always striving, which is again why I am so excited for this conversation with Jesse, I always trying to do bigger and better things for myself. I want to leave my mark. It is not like I want to be known for something either.

I just want to leave my mark and do good by the world and she supports me in that. I mean when I started BiggerPockets, I had a buddy who would call me and just say, ‘Hey, Josh. I was walking down the street in New York. I found a penny, let me mail it to you you broke motherfucker.’ Like these are my friends. Like that is cool, it is all good. But my wife like would never give me that. She is supportive and loving and you need that, right? You need people to rib you but you also need people to support you and she has always been. I love that and she is always there. She has got my back. I mean she is also beautiful and amazing and phenomenal mother but beyond that, that is really it.

Brandon: Nice.

Jesse: I mean, I could go on and on. My wife checks all the boxes, supportive, a great mom, great daughter, great everything. Funny, fun to be around. She is just a really amazing human.

Brandon: That is cool.

Josh: Yes, you mentioned… There was a quote in one of the, I think it was a Living with a SEAL, might have been Living with the Monks, where you said, I think your wife said it, but I love the quote. It was like, ‘Money is fun to make, fun to spend, and fun to give away.’

Jesse: Yes, I love that quote.

Josh: I just want to throw that. I knew I would not get to find a place to fit it in today’s interview but I am not going to throw it out there cause it is so good.

Jesse: She is good at all three. Yes.

Josh: That is awesome, that is very cool.

Brandon: Okay, let us shift gears on the last time of the show because I know we got to get you out of here and there is a surf surfing wave out there I got to go find. We are going to head over to the next segment of the show called the Famous Four. Alright, this is the segment of the show where we ask every guest the same questions every week. We alternate just slightly for you since we are not doing a real estate related show today. Question number one, do you have a favorite book recommendation in like the personal development or fitness world? Not necessary business, that will come in a second but like the lifestyle fitness, that kind of a world. Any book recommendations?

Jesse: Fit for Life by Harvey Diamond and Marilyn Diamond. Fit for Life: A New Beginning by Harvey Diamond. Yes.

Josh: That is the fruit book. That is the one where you fruit all day, right? Until breakfast, until lunch.

Jesse: It is more than that though. Yes, but there is more than that. It is a great book and that has been a life changer for me.

Brandon: Awesome.

Jesse: Single biggest life changer for me.

Josh: Cool, awesome. What about business book? Favorite Business Book?

Jesse: I am just going to sound crazy. I am scared to even go on record. I have not read a lot of business books.

Josh: Fair enough.

Jesse: Honestly, I really have not. I do not think I have ever read any business books to be honest with you.

Josh: Nice. I mean it is it for you it really is…

Jesse: What is like the biggest business book?

Josh: I do not know.

Brandon: I do not know, Rich Dad Poor Dad, The E-Myth.

Josh: The ONE Thing.

Brandon: That ONE thing, I do not know. I am obsessed with one right now called The Four Disciplines of Execution. Completely obsessed, read it like four times in a month. Anyway, I will send it to you. 

Jesse: I read a book when I was in college, I think I was in college, no I just got out of college, called The Wealthy Barber.

Josh: Heard of that.

Jesse: Yes, which was like a three year old approach to financial planning and how to kind of save money and allocate money for savings, spending, and charity. That helped me a little because I never took really any kind of financial courses in college or business courses. But yes.

Josh: Alright, that is a good recommendation. We will take, we will take it, The Wealthy Barber.

Brandon: I am going to send you some books, though.

Jesse: Okay. Nice.

Josh: Alright. What about hobbies apart from ultra marathon? Any other hobbies?

Jesse: Oh my gosh, yes. Let us see, I like, well, obviously I like to run. I like to write. I am doing a documentary right now. I love taking my friends and family away, that is a big thing. I think part of the success is one of the big benefits of being, having any kind of success, is being able to treat people around you. That is like a hobby, I love it. I love music. I like to ski. I like being anything outdoors.

Josh: Awesome.

Brandon: Good. Favorite ski area? Sorry, I got to ask. You know the East Coast?

Jesse: What is that?

Josh: Do they have ski map happening on the East Coast?

Jesse: I like Straton, I like Straton on the East Coast.

Josh: Okay.

Jesse: I like Park City and yes.

Josh: Right on.

Brandon: Alright, last question for me of the day. I think Josh has one more but what do you believe sets apart successful entrepreneurs from those who give up, fail or never get started? I know it has been the whole theme of today’s show but if you have to kind of sum up what separates the successful ones from those who do not?

Jesse: Probably the last 5%. I think most entrepreneurs are willing to do the standard 95% that will get you to a certain point but that last 5% and the shit is thrown in your face and everyone is against you and everybody is where that is the weed out phase where everybody quits. Those that keep going usually find the gold. I think most people are willing to do the first 95% but I think very few are willing to do the last 5%.

Josh: Yes, love it. Love it. Alright, man, before we get out of here, tell us how people can find out more about you. How can they connect if they need to tell them about your books? Tell them what you want to tell them.

Jesse: Hold on, you guys asked me about my wife, my hobbies, business books, and now you are finally giving me a softball? You give me an easy one to knock out of the park. Come on. Yes, thank you. I am on Instagram, @JesseItzler. My name JesseItzler. My website is jesseitzler.com. I am pretty simple.

Josh: Awesome, awesome. Well, listen, this has been a privilege. Really enjoyed the conversation. Thank you so much for the time. Keep rocking it, man.

Jesse: Appreciate it guys. Man, listen, 10 miles becomes 20, 20 becomes 50, and 50 and you can see how far you are going to take it from there. Stay the course.

Brandon: Alright. Thanks, dude.

Josh: Oh man, that was like chalk filled with like life tips.

Brandon: Yes, that was really good.

Josh: Yes, yes. If you are like if you are looking for a chance to just think and learn about life, that was it. That was it. Now, you have got to go spend an hour, spend two hours, spent five hours in silence and just kind of ponder what we talked about because I think these are the kinds of things, these are the kinds of conversations that really changed your brain, but you have to actually take the time to think about it. Do not jump on your phone, do not go jump on your, whatever, your devices and start doing stuff. Think, take that time.

Brandon: I would love to think but here is the funny thing, right after I get done with this call, I have got a Webinar to go host over on BiggerPockets.

Josh: It is a big one.

Brandon: There are 13,000 people. Yes, we have 13,000 people register for the webinar. The biggest webinar we have ever done in BP was 8,000 registrants, 13,000 people registered who want to learn about investing in real estate. If you are listening to this in the future, it means that webinar is over obviously but we do them every week, biggerpockets.com/webinar. Now, one thing before we get out of here, in the quick tip in the beginning of the show we talked about sharing this episode with somebody who you think would benefit. I want to just say that again. Share it with someone you think would benefit. Then do me a favor, shoot me or Josh a message over on Twitter at jrdorkin, right? Is that jrdorkin?

Josh: It is at jrdorkin or my Insta is @jrdorkin also.

Brandon: Yes. Okay, either Instagram or Twitter. Do me a favor and let us know if you did so we can give you a virtual high five. Follow Josh too. Josh is a good dude. He is the best entrepreneur I have ever known. That is legit, truth right there.

Josh: Wow. Tears are falling off my face.

Brandon: You have done some pretty amazing things.

Josh: You are a pretty okay guy too man and I am excited for our upcoming beard venture. This is very exciting.

Brandon: The Beardy Brandon Beard Oil from BiggerPockets. The Beardy Brandon Beard Oil from BiggerPockets.

Josh: A little alliteration.

Brandon: Yes, there we go, the BBB BP. Alright, you all, thank you for coming.

Josh: Hey, guys, thanks for listening.

Brandon: Thank you very much and we will see you again next week.

Josh: I am the host, Josh Dorkin, signing off. You are not going to cut me off?

Brandon: No, I am going to let you do it. It is not often you come back here.

Josh: You are just so nice.

Brandon: You got to do what David Greene does. David’s thing at the end of every podcast is for BiggerPockets.com. Oh, no, for Brandon and then he makes up a nickname every time for me. A brand new nickname every time. Today, for Brandon BBBBBB…

Josh: I do not need anything.

Brandon: Fine.

Josh: I am good.

Brandon: End it the way you want to end it. It is your show.

Josh: Hey, Brandon. Thanks man.

Brandon: Thanks, Josh.

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In This Episode We Cover:

  • Jesse Itzler’s backstory
  • The moment of the most happiness -41 bucks story!
  • How to measure happiness with the “Happiness Meter”
  • The “3-Hour Rule”
  • What Kevin’s Rule is and why you should create “moments”
  • Advice for making the most of life
  • Why you should think through: What do I want to be known for in the next 5 years?
  • How to reach out to people who you aspire to meet
  • His advice on growing multiple business
  • A way to redefine failure
  • The Misogi
  • And SO much more!

Links from the Show

Books Mentioned in this Show

Tweetable Topics:

  • “If you have health, you have hope. If you have hope, you have everything.” (Tweet This!)
  • “In most areas of our life, there’s a way to measure almost everything.” (Tweet This!)
  • “As we get older, it’s very hard to create newness.” (Tweet This!)
  • “If it’s not important to you, it’s not going to happen.” (Tweet This!)
  • “People buy into stories more than products.” (Tweet This!)
  • “As a parent, praise your kids’ effort, not the result.” (Tweet This!)
  • “Money is fun to make, fun to spend, and fun to give away.” (Tweet This!)

Connect with Jesse

Note By BiggerPockets: These are opinions written by the author and do not necessarily represent the opinions of BiggerPockets.