The Mexican Fisherman Story (From The 4 Hour Work Week)
The Mexican Fisherman story, which I originally read in the 4 Hour Work Week by Tim Ferris, completely changed the way I viewed wealth and financial freedom.
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Today I want to share with you a little story that completely changed the way that I view business and the way that I viewed life. It was extremely impactful for me and that’s why now I live a pretty conservative life. I focus on lifestyle and enjoyment. I focus on spending time with my family and with my friends and being creative and just loving life rather than striving for extreme well. So this was this story that I’m going to share today was hugely the defining for me and it comes from the four hour work week by Tim Ferris. If you haven’t read it yet, I will leave links in the description down below or you can go to on property.com forward slash four hour and that will link through to the book. This story comes from that and I just think it is a great way to look at life and to look at finances as well.
So the story’s called the Mexican fisherman and American banker was that the peer of a small coastal Mexican village. When a small boat with just one fisherman docked inside the small boat with several large yellowfin tuna, the American complimented that Mexican on the quality of his fish and asked how long it took to catch that. The Mexican replied only a little while. The American then asked, why didn’t he stay out longer and catch more fish? The Mexicans said he had enough to support his family’s needs but the American than us, but what do you do with the rest of your time? The Mexican fisherman said, I sleep late. Fish a little play with my children. Take css with my wife, Maria, stroll into the village each evening where our sip wine and play guitar with my Amigos. I have a full and busy life. The American scuffed.
I’m a Harvard Mba and can help you. You should spend more time fishing and with the proceeds, buy a bigger boat with the proceeds from the bigger boat. You could buy several boats and eventually you’d have a fleet of fishing boats. Instead of selling your catch to a middleman, you’d sell directly to the processor. Eventually opening your own cannery. You control the product processing and distribution. You would need to leave this small coastal fishing village and moved to Mexico City, then La and eventually New York City where you’ll run your expanding enterprise. The Mexican fisherman asked, but how long will that take to which the American replied, 15 to 20 years, but then what? Ask the Mexican. The American laughed and said, that’s the best part. When the time is right, you will announce an IPO and sell your company stock to the public and become very rich. You would make millions, millions.
Then what the American said. Then you would retire. Move to a small coastal fishing village where you would sleep late. Fish a little play with your friends or play with your kids. Take css with your wife, stroll to the village in the evenings where you could sit wine and play your guitar with your Amigos, and so that fisherman story, the Mexican fisherman story had a huge impact on my life and the way that I saw wealth and just that line there. That is you could make millions and then the Mexican fisherman says millions. Then what in the outcome was the exact life that he had. It’s just crazy to think about that. There’s so many of us. We strive after wealth. We strive after extreme wealth so we can have a particular life, but that particular life is actually potentially accessible to us right now.
It can be accessible with a little bit of work, with enough work so that we enjoy our jobs and that we have enough money to get by and to do the things that we love to do. We don’t need extreme wealth. In order to do that, we can do that with a job. We can do that with a business. You can do that in your life right now. One of the reasons I’m so passionate about sharing the two properties to financial freedom strategy is that a lot of people aren’t comfortable doing what the Mexican fisherman did, which is that his income is directly tied to what he produces that day and while this story makes it sound really easily. Obviously in life there’s a lot of things that don’t happen the way you plan, so he might not be able to fish every day. He might get sick, he might have medical expenses that he needs to pay for it if he was more wealthy.
So obviously there’s a combination of growing your wealth as well as living like the Mexican fisherman and that’s why I think the two properties to financial freedom strategy comes into play because most people don’t want to live paycheck to paycheck. Like the Mexican fishermen. Most of us can’t do that and just live a really happy life. There’s too much stress on us and there’s too many things in society and consumerism that tries to make us spend more than we earn. So it’s very difficult to be the Mexican fisherman. But if you’re able to work and purchase your foundational properties, and if you don’t know what I’m talking about, go ahead and check out the three stages of property investment video that I did with Ben Everingham. That’s an on-property dot com. Dot Eu four slash 5:43. So in there we talk about the three stages of investing.
The first stage is that foundational stage and so that’s where you’re actively purchasing properties that will then go on to achieve financial freedom for you. Second phase is the acceleration phase where you focus on paying off those debts. And the third phase is freedom. So that first phase, the foundational phase, most of us don’t want to live day to day like the Mexican fishermen because it if he got sick and couldn’t fish, then he might end up poor and might have a very bad situation. But if we can spend a couple of years purchasing foundational properties that will go on to achieve financial freedom, then we can move into the acceleration phase where we can either focus on paying them off as quickly as possible. Like the American, the Harvard Mba recommended. Focus on paying them off as quickly as possible to achieve financial freedom and wealth as quickly as possible.
You can work hard to do that or once you’ve acquired those foundational properties, that could be a time in your life to become the Mexican fisherman because you’ve got those foundational properties that are working for your future, that are working for your retirement, that are working for your financial freedom. They’re your backup plan. You can now live like the Mexican fisherman and that you can go to work that you enjoy every day, not work too much, not stressed too much, and then spend time with your family, with your spouse, with your partners, whatever it may be, and then spend the nights or the afternoons doing what you want to do and live a very happy life. I spend the majority of my time here around the new set area, but I absolutely love it. I traveled down to Brisbane to the gold coast, but I don’t do a lot of international travel or anything like that.
Most of the stuff that I do is pretty cheap. I love going for runs at the moment. I love going to the beach. I love having naps with my wife. You know, I love meeting new people and stuff like that, so a lot of what I do is quite affordable, but I really enjoy it. I have no huge ambitions to travel though. I may in the future, but yeah, I’m just really enjoying my Mexican fisherman life at the moment. So I heard that this story inspires you to think about money a little bit differently and to think about whether you want to be that American Mba, you want to spend 15 to 20 years to build extreme wealth so that you can live the life of the Mexican fisherman or maybe there’s a better and there’s an easier path to get that Mexican fisherman in life without all the stress and all the heartache and all the years that it would take to do it through the extreme north avenue.
So just another way to look at building wealth. Another way to look at finances and look at your life. That story really inspired me. I hope it inspires you to, if you haven’t checked it out already, do check out the episode onto properties. So financial freedom. When me and ben lay out the strategy in detail so you can see that in action, go to on-property dot com, forward slash two properties, and you can see it over there or click the link in the description below. Don’t forget to subscribe to the channel as we have new episodes coming out every single day or every single week, day, and until next time, stay positive.