15 Property and Personal Lessons This Year

2020 has been a big year of growth and learning and towards the end of the year we want to look back at some of our biggest lessons of the year both finance and property related as well as personally.

0:00 – Introduction
1:49 – #1: It Takes Longer Than You Expect It Will
2:50 – #2: Have a Plan and Believe In Your Plan and Yourself
5:08 – #3: Earning More Money Is a Great Way To Get Out of Debt
8:38 – #4: The Best Time To Buy Property Is When Everyone Is Freaking Out
15:55 – #5: The Media Cycle is Always 6 Months Behind The Experts and 3 Months Behind The Banks and Data Sources
19:15 – #6: Financial Freedom Doesn’t Equal Fulfillment or Happiness
21:21 – #7: You Have To Work Hard To Find The Joy In Your Work
24:20 – #8: It’s OK To Choose What You Want
27:25 – #9: You Have To Live With Intention
29:30 – #10: It’s Important To Look After Yourself and Your Relationships
32:24 – #11: Self Care Is An Important Part of Productivity
36:57 – #12: Spend Time With People Who Raise Your Energy Levels
39:00 – #13: Practice Gratitude
42:45 – #14: Life Isn’t That Serious
43:47 – #15: Be True To Yourself

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Ryan 0:00
2020 has been a big year for everyone. And there is absolutely no understating that, but for myself personally, and I know for Ben as well, it’s been a big year of growth and a big year of learnings. And towards the end of the year, we want to look back and say, Okay, what was some of our biggest learnings this year, both financially and property related, as well as internally self growth, family related, etc. So we’re really excited to share this with you today, so that you can learn from our experiences, and hopefully have a better 2021 yourself. So hey, Ben, thanks again for coming on.

Ben 0:36
It’s awesome to be back man, Missed you.

Ryan 0:38
It’s been too long, hasn’t it?

Ben 0:41
It’s been it’s been about four days. I think we’re setting together in Sydney last weekend. But yeah, it’s been too long since you’ve been on camera that’s too long,

Ryan 0:47
since we’ve recorded them way too long since we’ve recorded in person can’t wait for next year being able to fly out there and be able to record in person but super to catch up towards the end of the year and kind of reflect as we tend to do on you know, what a crazy year. It’s been right?

Ben 1:06
crazy man. Like, I think that’s something you’ve actually taught me in the last five years, bro. Like I was very much a person always looking forward. But reflections Good luck reflections where you get growth and reflections where you let go of things that don’t matter as well.

Ryan 1:20
Yeah. And I always find reflection good, especially towards the end of the year to just say, Okay, what, what did I learn, and that led me consciously take that into the new year and learn from that. Because if you don’t reflect back, sometimes you can just continue on the same path without realizing it. So I, I’m one of those people that like to look back, like to reset at the start of the year, set an intention for the year. So I’m excited to do this, are you going to lead us off with one thing that you’ve learned?

Ben 1:49
Yeah, like, I think this has been a huge year of learning for me. And I think pretty much every other person on the planet as well like this is really forced everyone to slow down or speed up or reflect. And so, you know, I think one of the biggest things that I’ve finally got this year after being an investor for the last 10 years is it actually is going to take longer than you expect it will. Which sucks, man, because I wanted it all, like five years ago. But, you know, I finally like realize that it’s a patience thing, it’s going to take time to get to the financially free position I want to be, but I’m happy to like just enjoy the journey and the processes, I go through that and just take the pressure off myself or that like a hard voice in the back of my head, which is like, you should be more or you know, you should have done it already. Or why’d you make that mistake tomorrow, like, you know, well done, you’re on your way. And if you can consistently keep this discipline up, you’ll get there. You know what I mean?

Ryan 2:47
Yeah, well, that was one of my big things, as well as just consistently keep up that discipline. And then you’ll get there like, one of the things that I wrote down, as my biggest lessons is to have a plan. And then Believe in your plan and believe in yourself, even when no one else does. So whether that’s probably related, work related, business related, or even in your personal life, and what you want to achieve out of that, like set your plan up and know roughly how it’s going to pan out. Obviously, we never know exactly how it’s going to go because there’s always twists and turns. But for me, it was in my business, having an exact plan in place of articles and videos I needed to create working that plan and knowing that that’s going to pay off in the future. And I can’t tell you how many times people just could not understand my plan. I can’t understand what do you mean, you work and you don’t get paid straight away, but you generate income that you’re gonna get paid for months in the future? And how are you going to be, you know, financially free through your business in a year when you earn nothing today, and so no one could understand it. And so, people in my life, trying to help me and trying to offer advice and support by saying, just go and get a job, Ryan, what are you doing, but I knew in my heart and I had a plan, I just had to believe in that plan. And also believe in myself to work that plan and achieve it, which I was able to do and get my business to a point where, you know, financially free through it again, I think a couple months ago was when I achieved it. So sticking to my plan, even when it wasn’t making me any money, but I saw the future and I knew it. I believed in myself like that. That was huge for me this year.

Ben 4:30
We were laughing about that last weekend. I think we’re down at bend alone. Surf in the Back Bay chat there, man Yana and I was just like, I just wouldn’t have the guts to do what you’ve done. Just run back to safety man but like you’ve just persevered and got yourself into an incredible position and we’re looking forward to the future again and, you know, really Detroit financial freedom again in a 12 month period. Obviously, you know, no one has your unique skill set for online marketing either and so that helps as well. But um, it’s awesome, bro. Like, it’s really inspiring.

Ryan 5:03
Yeah, I’m super, super happy with how, how that worked out, which kind of leads me into another one of my points, which is finance related, because I was in a lot of debt and in a large debt position. And I learned through the year that earning more money is a great way to get out of debt. Often when it comes to debt reduction, obviously, that’s the important part of cut your expenses, spend less than you earn, you know, make sure you’re paying off your debt, you can snowball your debt if you want or focus on it however you want. I did all of those things, and I kind of set myself up in that position. But then to pay off my debt quicker, focusing on earning more money, whilst just keeping my expenses low. It’s like, kept my expenses low. That was done, I didn’t have to worry about it, I’ve learnt to budget and it’s just like, just make more money. And so by focusing on making more money, and my income going up over the course of the year, it’s just been like being able to pay off the debt faster than I would have otherwise. Yeah,

Ben 6:03
I love that, bro. Obviously, it’s something we’ve talked about in previous videos as well. Like, there’s two sides to that. And one is, you know what we both do, which is budgeting, consistently saving and investing. But there’s a flip side to that as well. And we’ve talked about in heaps of other vids like a side hustle a second job, a bonus structure and negotiating that with your employer starting a little side business, it’s just, you know, that makes it a hell of a lot easier, right? That’s one of them.

Ryan 6:32
And I just feel like it’s a piece of the puzzle that people are missing, and no one’s really talking about because when it comes to debt reduction, or even when it comes to saving a deposit, or even when it comes to achieving financial freedom through property, people like working your job, save invest in property, here’s the path to financial freedom. But people often tend to leave out the increase your income in the meantime. Because if you can increase your income without increasing your expenses, you’ve got all this extra money to invest and to play with and to move yourself forward faster. And I know that’s been a big part of both of our journeys is increasing our income over time. To make it easier. I just feel like it’s not talked about enough. And even I’ve been doing interviews with investors, and a lot of them are just kind of, you know, they’re focused on the property, which is super awesome. But it seems like sometimes they just miss the actually need to grow my income. as well.

Ben 7:26
I had the craziest call with one of our clients race, he’s in Melbourne, he’s bought a few properties with us. And he was saying that, you know, he’s like a data geek like I am or like you are like, he just loves the nitty gritty of certain things. And he was like thinking about ways to get financially free sooner for him. Now, you know, I mean, you aren’t stock traders, I don’t know a single thing about it. But he’d run these calculators where he was basically looking in a year’s time to pull a couple 100 grand of equity out of the properties that he’s bought in Brisbane. And then to put that money into the index fund in the stock market for the next X amount of time. Like I don’t know, if he was looking at five to seven years. And, you know, based on average returns over this next period of the soco that we’re going into from his spreadsheet, and I don’t know what it looked like, he was sort of saying that he’d be able to pull the money out and basically pay off one of these properties completely outright. And I was just blown away by like, the different ways that people think about how to get to where they want to be. That was sort of the first time I’d heard someone talk about like that joint strategy of like, using stocks to pay off properties faster. It was really cool.

Ryan 8:32
Yeah, that’s cool. What about you? What else have you got? Um,

Ben 8:36
you know, I think these are sort of three of the things that are write down. You know, we’ve all heard it before, but I’ve just watched this cycle go through now the absolute best time to buy property is when everybody else is freaking out. Now, if I look at the the course of this year, this is basically what it looked like it would you know, it’s the same bell curve of anything in life. And it was almost like a reverse Bell this year, to be honest. And I was like, in February paper was still casual. In March, people started to freak out in April, May and June, people were literally fighting over toilet paper, which you’ve lifted in previous videos, it’s just, you know, want to have that cheek feels now like the wrong type of back in May

Ryan 9:22
do is found in the back of my cupboard was that some of the toilet paper that I bought during the COVID time? Not that I’d stopped out like I bought mine in the meantime, but it was, it’s not the good one that I like, it’s not the clean x. It’s the quilting, which I’m not a fan of. I’m like, oh, I’ve been trying to get through this stuff and get rid of it. Like, the end of the year and I’ve still got some I’m like, ah,

Ben 9:45
store it for the next 10 years until something happens again. But um, it’s just it was just so funny, man. I want to have that cheeks looking. She’s like, man, I really overreacted on that day. It’s kind of like, what I’ve realized is that another one of the lessons he people follow the herd to their detriment. And so it was really uncomfortable for me and the clients that were confident enough. And that understood the cycle well enough to buy between sort of, probably march through to June, July. But we were able to buy properties at that time for almost 50 k below what they’re selling for now, in suburbs worth 450. k, like it was this very, very, very short window of opportunity that is now closed. And we’re sort of right back to the pricing that we were saying last last sort of July through December in 2019.

Ryan 10:35
Well, that’s it, I recently watched their core logic update for the end of the year, and prices in a lot of areas are very close to their pre COVID levels. And so it’s like you had this period of time, short period of time where prices were lower. And as you said, people were fearful in the market, which makes negotiating easier, and getting discounts easier as well. And then now, you know, we’re seem to be on an upward trajectory, again, markets harder, which makes it harder to buy properties under market value, and all that sort of stuff. And I just think it’s, as you say, investing when people are fearful. And we are put in a clip here from 2018, which I just found yesterday, where we’re talking about the mid cycle slowdown two years ago and predicting this, obviously, we didn’t know Coronavirus would happen, but we knew that something would happen to the market. So I’ll insert that now.

Ben 11:28
What we’re coming into over the next two years is the mid cycle slowdown and what a mid cycle slowdown point represents people feel like the whole world is going to fall on its head right now where generally stock markets will get hammered in the next two years, particularly the American one which is run away in the last couple. And so what happens is stock markets get hammered business sentiment and, and consumer confidence declines. And we enter this point where property prices in some markets can go flat. Some markets, they’ll decline but as someone who’s got a 15 to 20 year strategy that wants to use smart timing to buy Yeah, far out. There’s an opportunity. I love that bro. Like, you know, and it’s not mine and your education. It’s just because we’ve followed Phil Anderson, Fred Harrison and Ray Dalio. I’ve actually just got something in front of me that we’re going to talk about in our next video together when we talk about the market. And this is a this is something that he wrote in 2017. Word for word, he’s like, be careful from December 2017, from December 2019, through to February 2020. This will mark the mid cycle, slow down starting point. And honestly, like, hey, sent me that in 2017, you know what I mean? Like it was so easy to move through this marketplace with that knowledge. Yeah, and his knowledge is based on 250 years worth of research in America. Fred’s is based on 350 years in Europe. And it’s like, we’ll never know what the triggering event will be. But we knew that, you know, the stock markets around the world were completely overinflated. And economies weren’t as strong as they said they were. And you know, all we needed was an event, which has obviously come through to freak people out. And then there’s that mass panic and sell off. But, you know, you and I talked about this at the start of the virus, it’s kind of like, if you look at these previous events, they only normally last for nine to 18 months, and then I sort of posture, property prices only normally dropped by Max 10%. In the mid cycle, stock markets normally dropped by 38%, but then pop back out within 18 months. So understanding that has given you an awful lot more confidence this year, maybe you the confidence to just keep going hard at your business and made the confidence to buy a couple more properties for myself.

Ryan 13:40
Yeah, well, that’s it. And you know, you and I still had our little moments,

Ben 13:44
I was waking the hell out as well.

Ryan 13:46
It was the data way more closely than we have in the past like each and every month to see what was happening, but definitely had in mind that okay, this mid cycle slowdown was predicted anyway, and the government stimulus and what effect that is likely to have on markets, just having that overall perspective on market cycles. Just gives you so much more confidence as an investor when it comes to the market. Because you understand the bigger picture and a debt cycles and economies and the way that things work. And it’s just I’ve felt so much better this year than I did you know, in past experiences, not that I’ve been through a lot of down cycles, because I’m still too young. But just having those understandings is just so just makes things so much easier, right?

Ben 14:35
Why this information is so important, man and that’s one of my lessons I learnt this year is the media Sokolov now realize he’s always six months behind people like Ray Dalio and Phil Anderson. And it’s always about four months behind Commonwealth bank’s updates and Westpac banks updates. So like he said, like I’ve been following these updates daily and weekly, every step of the way through this year. You know, right now The media is still telling a really negative story about property, about the economy, about the health situation in Australia, because like it’s still fueling a fire that, you know, they’re trying to get like the last legs out of it. But if you look at the full costs, which we’ll talk about way more in the next video, things are looking super positive from CBI vs. Cole logic, not so much for this year, but for the next three to five years. And so, yeah, it’s just super exciting to know that and so, you know, when the media was like, really, really hammering people, most of the carnage had already gone through. And that’s a really important thing for investors to pick up that what you’re saying on the today’s show, or today, tonight isn’t necessarily always the reality that time in the market.

Ryan 15:47
Yeah, well, I remember watching Ray Dalio in April or maybe May, saying that the market had reached its bottom because the government had brought in so much stimulus, the US government had brought in a bunch of stimulus. And he was saying the market always tends to bottom right before the government introduces stimulus. And that introduction of stimulus signifies the bottom of the market. So, you know, what was that six or seven or eight months ago that he was saying that? And then obviously, you know, CBA, and stuff like that have started saying different things in the last few months. And I’m sure media will turn around next year. Do you have other like property related financial learnings, because mine kind of start to get a bit more personal after this?

Ben 16:29
Yeah, mine are all personal after this as well.

Ryan 16:31
Let’s shift into let’s shift into that now if people are more interested in property and how that’s going to be going, and next video, which will release early in January, we’ll be talking about is 2021. A good year to be investing in property. And so I’ll link up to that below once it’s live. But for now, I’m excited to talk about the personal stuff, because a lot of the reason we invest in property or invest in our business, or whatever is to improve our life, to give us more choices, to find more fulfillment, to find that sort of happiness. And so having this emotional journey as well. And then self development journey, I think is equally important as the financial journey. I’ve definitely experienced that myself going from deep in debt nearly bankrupt 18 months ago, freakout moment where all these debts came due to now being in a much healthier position. The growth journey that I’ve been on has been tremendous. And, you know, one of, I guess, one of my favorite, one of my favorite proverbs from, it’s from the Bible, but it’s talks about, it’s better to attain knowledge than silver up better to attain wisdom and gold, I’ve probably stuffed up the saying of that, but that’s just always led my life. It’s like, the money is not as important obtain the wisdom and the knowledge, and then the money will come anyway. And so yeah, one of one of my things this year was that reinforced, what I already knew is that financial freedom does not equal fulfillment and happiness. And so I went through my debt cycle grew, my business reached a point kind of end of October, November, where it’s like, okay, I actually don’t have to work anymore, at least for a bit. And just take a breather, and to be like, Oh, okay. Yeah, it’s a reminder again, that what we are working towards, through property or through business, that’s not going to bring out happiness. The financial freedom itself doesn’t bring the happiness. It just gives you the choices and the ability to pursue your happiness.

Ben 18:38
It’s so true, man. Like, I’ve learned that lesson so many times over this year, as there’s this incredible series on Netflix at the moment. It’s like five or six of the best coaches in the world. And one of them’s the coach of the women’s American soccer team. Like arguably the most successful I’ve read

Ryan 18:56
about this guy is this

Ben 18:58
is so it’s a woman, it’s the women’s Are you someone else. But she basically said the same thing. She’s like, you know, what happened is I went on the car. And I went and won the Olympic gold medal. And then she’s, like, got all the girls in the room the next day. And she’s like, Okay, cool. Enjoy the mountain, which was yesterday, like, I hope you guys enjoyed the view. Now, you know, we’re making our way back down. And this is what we’re working towards again, next. And I think it’s so important like sometimes we think of financial freedom as a destination and everything will be happy. When we’re not in debt when we’ve gotten home. And we’ve got a passive income once we’ve got choices, but the exact same person on that day and it’s it’s a journey lockups of so realize that again, this year that, you know, to maintain your flow is the most important thing to like, maintain things that make you happy or things to look forward to or things you’re working towards, and to recognize those periods that are really important as you He said like he works your ass off for 18 months to figure it out. Yeah, it’s also equally important to take a rest, a pause to recover. And then to build that capacity to go again and to start looking forward to the future again, as well.

Ryan 20:13
Yeah, well, another one that I had is you have to work to find what you enjoy in your work like, so you have to work hard to find out how to enjoy the work that you do. I don’t know that I hear that right. But basically, for me, in my experience, building the business leading up to getting it to a good point, there was so much external motivation in terms of growing my income, getting out of debt, seeing the business grow, in that aspect, that that was extremely motivating and getting out to work every day. I knew. Sorry, I knew I was pushing my financial situation forward. And that in itself was amazing motivation for me, and made me super excited to go to work because I knew I was changing my life. And then as soon as I reached the point where it’s like, I don’t actually need to do that, I had to take a step back to say, Okay, I’m not inspired anymore to get up and go to work, because I’ve got this fire under my butt.

Ben 21:08
Oh, no, just surviving

Ryan 21:09
Yeah, of needing to survive. And so I’ve had to go through a period of working out and working hard to find the joy in my work. Because I don’t want to not work again, like I did when I was 28. And just go to the beach every day. It’s like, I want to grow my business continually. I want to grow my wealth, I want to build my property portfolio. I know that’s a big desire of mine. But I also don’t want to burn myself into the ground and hate my life in the process. So it’s been a work, it’s been an effort to work out, okay, what is it about my job that I enjoy? And how can I approach this mentally, so that I find joy and fulfillment in my work, and so really, not much has actually changed? In the day to day of what I do, I’m still making videos, I’m still writing articles. But the approach that I take to it, and the joy I find out of it is different. So rather than it being just monetary, it’s like creativity, creatively, and looking at it and being like, how can I push myself creatively? How can I enjoy writing something that is going to help people? or How can I improve my videos, and so just, I guess, taking that slightly different view on still doing the same stuff that I know is in my plan that’s going to lead to success? But yeah, just finding that right motivation for it.

Ben 22:21
I love that, bro. Like, you know, some people think that when you’re running your own business, it’s all like roses, and it’s going to be everything you wanted. But there’s parts of us that are really challenging this, you know, success is like just the same thing repeated consistently for longer than the average person is prepared to repeat it. Yeah. Like, how many articles have you written in the last 10 years, bro? Well, you know,

Ryan 22:42
I mean, how in the last, like, 18 months, it was like 600 articles, right? And so he died yesterday. Oh, my business is doing really well, this month, like better than I expected. Because there was, you know, a bunch of things happened. And he’s like, oh, why is that? Do you think it’s COVID? related? I’m like, no, it’s the fact that I just wrote 600 articles over the last year.

Ben 23:02
Like that. The rest? You know, one of the big things that I learned is so closely tied to what you say because I’ve like rediscovered that joy this year. I’ve said this to you before off camera. But back in 2017 when I was having the meltdown, because I had that same realization that I thought the top of the mountain would make me happy. Like, I was just so hollow. Like, I didn’t know what I enjoyed. I was shallow as a person. I was so work orientated. And I’ve like had to rediscover that. And that’s one of the big lessons I’ve learned is she like, it’s okay to choose what you want. Um, I think I forgot about that. Like, for example, this year has been the biggest year that we’ve ever had in the business. I think we’ve worked with 164 people this year, which is just insane. Like, that’s like 164 people whose lives are going to be exponentially better in 15 years time because of like, the work that we’re doing now. And

Ryan 24:00
I do want to say here because I was just watching the core logic update now talking about Brisbane and how Brisbane is growing. And they are saying, you know, the main region of Brisbane that’s growing the best is the Morton Bay region. And I was like, we’ve been investing and helping people invest in Warren both for years now. It’s like, yes.

Ben 24:15
Yeah, you know, I was looking at some properties yesterday and some of them have gone up by 200 k in the last year and a half like people made some good coin, which is awesome. We never expect short term gains, but it’s certain parts of the cycle like they come. But you know, what I’ve decided for the new year for myself is like, I’ve finally built the property portfolio that I needed to achieve my long term financial freedom goals. So like as an investor at this stage of the cycle, I’m taking my investment hat off for now. Hopefully you can also help me accountable to this if I like, get excited about a new project in the new year.

Ryan 24:52
does not hold you accountable to this. I just find out that you bought another property through Instagram, Lisa posting about it.

Ben 25:02
But you know, what I’ve learned is like in the business in the new year, like, you know, there’s so much going on in the world and the universe that I have no control over. And I’ve surrendered to that fact. But, you know, I can control when I’ve decided that enough is enough in certain parts. And so we’ve decided as a business to just work with 10 new clients a month in the new year again, which is something that I did in 2018, but then forgot, you know, and and it’s just a, it’s just a really nice thing to choose that like, we’ve got, like, we’ve gone from like a pretty toxic culture internally, just because we’re all over stressed and overworked to like a really good culture, like, I’ve got the surfboard out there, you’re going to go for a wave at lunchtime with Simon. Like, it’s just slowly starting to feel like the life that I saw it to be five years ago, when I started this thing, as opposed to like, sometimes just being on that treadmill, that more will make you happier, or something or more will will create different results. If you’re not I mean,

Ryan 26:00
yeah. And that, like, I just, I’ve got a few points that I could go off that I’m just not sure where I want to take it in. But I think the next one that I would say is something that I realized is that you have to live with intention, and just you talking about toxic culture and changing that because you know, it was too high stress and like to create a great culture in a business, you need to do that with intention, that’s not just going to happen by itself. And the same in your life is that things aren’t just going to happen, you’re not just going to wake up one day and be financially free, or wake up one day and be content and happy. And so actually having that intention in your life. And living with that intention is just so important. And one of the ways that this kind of came out in my life in just a little way, I hadn’t sang for it, I can’t remember, but it’s just putting in that extra little percent of effort each and every day. So for example, if I pick the kids up from school, and we could just come home and chill out, they can watch TV, we can do dinner bath bed, you know, that’d be a good afternoon was like by putting in a little bit of extra effort or preparing dinner earlier. So then we can go to the pool, or to the beach or to the park or go and do something a bit more exciting. It just makes your life that like, major step better. And the same way, the weekends as well. So often you just find yourself just chilling out doing nothing. But it’s like, it’s always hard to put in that extra intention and put in that extra effort to go exploring or going to the national park or do whatever it is we want to do. But when you take that step, and when you do it, you create these amazing memories that like I don’t remember the days at home where we chilled out and kids play devices and watch TV. But I remember the day that you know we walked for six hours in the National Park to find this like hidden pool with the kids and like they just had they had a ball we all had a ball and it’s just like all this amazing memory but that only comes from intention. And then the little bit of extra effort that comes with that you have to make to make your life better.

Ben 28:12
It’s so funny you say that man like that’s my next one which is it’s important to look after yourself and the relationships in your life that are important to you like I I really neglected relationships because same as you I’ve got the three little kids at home. I just expected like good friends and family to always be there because that they always have been but I didn’t realize like how much of a driver in those relationships I’ve always been in by not picking up the phone in the last couple of years because of like, where my focus has been like with you as well with everyone it’s kind of I’ve just really remembered how important relationships are to me and how much I would like my life is full of with other people and similar to myself, like I’ve learned each year to be kinder on myself. I have started to meditate like I do yoga and Pilates and surf and I’ve just I’ve let go of a lot of the stories that I had that might have been mine might have been someone else’s this year. And that’s been incredibly powerful and just dropped such a weight off my shoulders. Like I truly believe now that everything is going to be amazing in the future like and I know that so we decided that like especially with like the cynical like click clinical person that I am personality wise, but I just I’m back to where I was in my 20s early 20s which was I just know that everything’s gonna work out and I know that if I consistently show up, put that tiny bit of extra energy you just talked about into relationships, my family, my health, looking after myself, and also just surrendered to what I can’t control. I’ve been reading so much stoic stuff like Marcus really says stuff this year and like stillness is the K and and like a bunch of other books like ego is like a bunch of a bunch of different stuff. I’ve got the other Auto, but like, I’m just, I’m loving this idea that I don’t have to, like, constantly fight, I don’t have to live in that stressful state, I don’t have to, like, believe the thoughts in my mind out my absolute reality. Like, if I’m feeling flustered, like I’ve learned through my psychologist issue that I can just take your breath, I can check in with myself. And it doesn’t have to be this one our morning routine to do that. It can be a quick breath, a quick body scan, and then you know, get back on with the day. And those things are like really transforming my mind. Like I found through the meditation, I’m having this tiny moment like I’ve got a quick reaction time machine know, to just like, spray. And it’s like, it’s giving me a half a second before I spray. You know what I mean? It’s giving me these tiny moments ago. Yeah. Is that the best thing to do right now. And, you know, I think that’s just what happens when you get out anyway, everyone, but it feels really good. Like, I’ve just, I think I’ve just recognized what is important to me. And that, like he said, I’m willing to put in that extra half a percent to like, make my life richer, and the people’s lives around me richer again. Yeah.

Ryan 31:08
And then I also think one of the things that I learned, which I haven’t hadn’t been doing this year is that self care is not just important, but it’s also an important part of productivity. So people like you and I who are just super driven, we’ve got these goals that we want to achieve, I often feel like self care gets put by the wayside. Because if I’m spending an hour to meditate, or to go for a walk on the beach, or light some candles and have a bath, it’s like that’s an hour, I could have been spent working or, you know, moving my goals forward. But I guess I’ve learned throughout the year that if you failed to take care of yourself, which I definitely done over the last two years, that impacts your productivity quite negatively. And so I would have periods where I would go super solid for a month, get a lot of work done. And then I would just be completely emotionally drained. And the next month would just be a massive struggle. And so for me, like, as you said, success is that consistent effort over time, and being more consistent than other people, and it’s just easy, just consistent at it, and you’ve got a good plan, then it’s going to happen, but taking care of yourself. So you can be consistent, I think is really important. And that’s something that I want to go into the new year with a more focus on. Okay, what do I actually need? Like, what does self care even look like to me? Because honestly, I’ve got no idea I think it would down at bend along and you’re like, you know, what, what does your ideal life look like right now? What do you want? Well, I just didn’t know I didn’t have an answer for you. And so I got to discover that this year. But I know that it’s important.

Ben 32:46
It’s funny, you say that man, because you’ve just come out of a state that I came out of into, I should have just fucking came out of last week as well. See, if I’m being real with it, I you know, you and I both been in this higher bar, work hard mode for the last two years if I know exactly when it kicked in, kicked in, when that fella got on the news and said that the Australian property market was gonna crash in 2018. And everyone freaked out. And I bought into the heart because I’ve got to speak to people that are freaking out every day. And that happened. And then banking got really hot. And then there was an election and then there was the Coronavirus, and it’s like, I just got caught up in other people’s mentality because they don’t they scared, I like allowed that energy into my life. And I’ve just decided like to just not let that energy in anymore to like, you know, rise up, make that decision to just live above the line and to just choose what I want. And sometimes when I’m in that fi state or when I’m in that anxiety or just hard work state to get out like survival. I can’t think clearly like, actually, in Clinical Psychology, being anxious is almost like having three to four B’s like it switches off your frontal lobe and your ability to have logical decision making. And now that I’m aware of that, it’s like, I wasn’t able to make clear decisions for years. But now that I’m starting to get some perspective, again, I’m like, I know what I want. And that is an amazing life with my family and friends, little adventures and surf trips. I want to be like moving well and feeling good, like not doing the stuff that I do which is like hardstyle exercise that that hurts me more like softer stars in the new year. I want a meaningful business light. We just updated the board yesterday. And we’ve written for the new our positive contribution and it’s like the number of laws we’ve changed since we started is 730 people now like that’s like an amazing as like the total value of the properties we’ve purchased and I missed some data for a year but from what I can say it’s over $240 million plus and there’s a full missing year, year and a half that I can’t find. There’s like and then we’ve got this other one which is like dollars donated to charity. So As a business, like we’re really moving into that state where like a percentage of net profit will go to charity. And then once a quarter, I’d really like to get out as a team and like, do meaningful, like life enriching work. And it’s just like, my goals aren’t like more properties or more success or more dollars in the bank or more business. It’s like, how well can I live over the next five years? Like how, how many times can I drop my kids off to school? How many like epic weekends away? Can I have with them and weekends at home to just like, that’s what’s important to me. Now, it’s so different than what we’re talking about five years ago, when we were just like, go, go go, you know.

Ryan 35:40
And there’s like, I’ve got one more that I’ve written down, but just a couple of things came up as you were talking, and one of them is spending more time with people who raise your energy levels and raise your energy levels up and less time with people who take your energy levels down. So

Ben 35:55
I get away energy days.

Ryan 35:57
Yeah, well, we were talking about it, I think we’re walking in coronella, talking about how, you know, we need to bring energy to other people as part of our business. And what we do is we help guide people and bring out energy to them and our good energy to those people. But then you do that in the business. And it’s great to help people but then also in your own life. It’s not that you need people to bring energy in, but there’s certain people that you hang out with, and you’re like, walk away from that feeling alive, feeling more more centered in yourself feeling more, knowing where your future is, and what you want to do. And those people on I just explained it as though they raise my energy state or they raise how I feel. And so I need to get around and find more and more of those people in my life that are raising up my energy.

Ben 36:47
I love that man. Like I read a book earlier this year called the sell the same prophecy, which I picked up when I was in a mate’s wedding it to warmer and warmer. Yeah. It was a nice wedding. But we stayed the night and I went the next morning, like cuz I was the only one at the wedding that wasn’t smashed. I was like up super early and went out for this break and found the slot. My favorite thing is to find these like weird, dark, straight bookstores in these little towns and just like spend an hour looking through books. Yeah, which I never get to do in my personal life. So when I’m away, it’s like nice. And, you know, the most common way that people feel full is grabbing energy from other people. And it taught there’s chapters in this book that talks about it. But then, like, there’s a higher level of awareness or consciousness where it’s like if you stop trying to get or take energy from other people to fill your own cup, and you start like, and it sounds really weird, but like, you go for a surf and like you like the sun, the wind, the water, like you can ground yourself, like with bare feet, you can like even touch trees and stuff like that, like Bay nature. And the Japanese talk about it side of the Chinese, it’s like bathing in nature, they call it and that’s why like, they’re able to work consistently 12 to 14 hours a day, six to seven days a week, it’s because the culture is different. There’s no work in life, and there’s no grabbing energy from other people. It’s like, energy is found everywhere in nature. And it’s like it’s an infinite endless supply. And when I read that book, it really changed my mindset to like, I want to have good quality people like the conversations we had last weekend, which is so like life enriching. And also just banter with the boys as well. And like that balance is important. But just knowing that, like there’s this, you know what I mean? Like this son is putting enough solar out to power, you know, 16 times the amount of energy we need every day in the world with 9 billion people. It’s like, I can just look at my fingers

Ryan 38:45
probably more than 16 times. But

Ben 38:48
it’s crazy, like the capacity to harness it is just insane. Well,

Ryan 38:53
there’s actually psychological studies that say walks in nature and getting out in nature makes you more creative. And they’ve actually like done split studies with people who went for a walk in the city and people who went for a walk in the park or in nature, and how good are they at solving creative tasks. So it’s definitely a thing. But also, you know, that’s, I found something that brings a lot of energy into my life is gratitude. And we talked about it out in the surf more down bend along, which is just, I’ve got this little ritual that I do when I go surfing with friends, when I was a strong Christian. And it was just like, I pray before surf, just saying like, thank you for these amazing ways, thank you for this opportunity to go in this and to spend time with the people that I’m spending time with and it’s just I always go into the serve with this level of gratitude. And I feel like you do the same thing and some of the people we served with maybe weren’t as grateful that day. Whereas to get out there and to just be grateful and enjoy it as you said experience nature as well. But I just find that level of gratitude, whether it be for surf or in the surf but also just In life, if I’m just sitting down and I start to speak out, or even just think about or write down the things that I’m grateful for, even in the hard things, even when there’s things in life that suck, and that are emotionally tearing me apart, it’s just I focus on what aspect of that I’m really grateful. And it just brings me so much energy and completely shifts my view of the world and I’m just so much more ready to tackle the day than when I’ve done do that.

Ben 40:27
It’s funny, you say that man, like, I just love hearing that, and I forgot about it. But when I go for serve at lunch, I’m gonna do that again. Because it’s gratitude is I think the most important thing to like, and, you know, something that I’ve been reading with the stoics is like, they had this practice of when really, really bad shit was happening. Or, and, you know, 2000 years ago, it was a lot worse than is the highlight table literally coming in and just killing table like, left, right and center all the time. You know, I can imagine the general can, consciousness wouldn’t have been as high a though when everyone’s in survival mode around you. And it’s like, they’ve got this practice, which is gratitude, when like negative things are happening. And I’ve started to do it, when I get these bouts of anxiety or waves coming through me. It’s like, I’m super grateful for this. anxiety, as weird as that sounds like, I’m grateful for the fact that I feel like I’m having a heart attack. Like, I accept it. And like, it’s just detachment from the the feeling the emotion that it’s causing in the body. Like That was the last one that I had, like, I’ve learned this year again. And this is what’s always been a strength for me that I’ve fully forgot for 10 years, like, life isn’t that serious? Like, I’ve been living so seriously. And, you know, I do have young kids, I’ve got businesses, I’ve got properties, I’ve got tenants, I’ve got all of these advisors around me that, you know, there’s a lot of shit going on. But it’s like life isn’t that serious? You know what I mean? Like, lots actually amazing. And, you know, I’m getting back to that playful state. And hopefully I can maintain that good or bad things coming in the future. You know what I mean?

Ryan 42:02
Yeah, well, that’s it you I think that’s something that’s come up for me this year, as well is that young, you only get this one life, right. That’s it, or some people may believe that there’s more after this. But you know, you have this time on the earth to be who you want to be, and to live the life that you want to live. And that was my last point, it’s which is Be true to yourself, and your truth. And your alignment, there was a sign that I heard from someone which is, in 100 years, like you, and everyone you know, is going to be dust or you know, spread out to 200 years, like even your children, even your grandchildren, like everyone will be gone like everyone that you know, or passing history, that you’re worried what they’re thinking about you like that, they’ll be gone, you know, and it’s just like, you get this one chance to live your life and live your experience and be true to yourself. So don’t live a life that society wants you or your parents, one of you or someone else is projecting onto you to say you should want this, like, actually live your truth, and what is right for you. Because I just don’t want to get through my life and to look back on it and say, I wish, I wish I live differently. I wish I did something different. I want to look back and say, Look, I may have stuffed up a lot along the way, I may have made a lot of mistakes on my journey, which I already have up until this point. And sure I regret those mistakes. But I want to look back and say, you know, I live true to my values and true to who I was. And I did the best that I could. And so that was I guess my biggest thing this year, which is I need to be true to me. And I don’t exactly know who that is. But I’m trying to work that out. But just I want to live a life like that. And I know that I am a good person I care about giving to other people and helping other people. And I’m so proud of that part of me. And I’m excited to bring that out even more but that’s also in alignment with how I want to live my life not how other people tell me I should live or I should give or I should run a business or whatever.

Ben 44:07
I love that very like that’s just so in alignment with where I’m at the moment like the number one thing that I find my life on now is like how like to me like how closely I can live towards my values and like the type of person I can be.

Ryan 44:25
I’m loving the board shorts in the background.

Ben 44:28
Yeah, Nash’s, but it’s Yeah, man that’s like everything to me like living that virtuous life. Like the character of the person that I am. It’s just the decisions that I make. I remember saying that to Zach in 2018. I’m like, I’ve got no idea who I am. Like, who am I like zelena star and he’s like,

Ryan 44:47
Who am I?

Ben 44:48
I don’t know. I guess I’ve got a lot to ponder. And he’s like, you just you are literally your values and your daily choices. So just like me make choices towards the person you want to be and like live your values and everything else will work out. And one of the best piece of advice I’ve ever got in my life.

Ryan 45:09
Yeah, so we spent a while there on personal stuff, but I feel enriched, I really enjoyed that chat and that conversation and an ability to share that.

Ben 45:20
I love that man. Like, this is what it’s all about, right? Like, being who we are. And hopefully some of the people listening to this can connect with it. And I suppose people that don’t would have exited out of it 15 minutes ago.

Ryan 45:33
Well, that’s it, we spent about 15 minutes talking about finance and property stuff, and then half an hour talking about the personal stuff, which once you get into the investing, and once you get into business, and like being good financially, it’s like, you realize, that’s all the stuff that matters. And that’s all the stuff that I need to work on. And so that’s why I tend to say, you know, once you achieve financial freedom, that’s when the journey begins. It’s not when it begins, it should begin along the journey, but it definitely shifts things and makes you go, oh my gosh, there’s so much else that I need to think about and work on. So it’s been really cool to share this.

Ben 46:08
I remember like, Nia, hey, you know, here’s one of my wife’s good friends said to me, like she paid off her home really, really young, like five or six years ago. And she’s like, I walked out the door, and no one was at a high five, me. She’s like, no one gave a shit. And people don’t like, I don’t care what my friends are up to, I don’t care what like, I just want to enjoy meaningful time. And like, you know, like, it’s just, it’s so simple. That was like, investing is simple. Life is simple. Just like a big thing that we’re saying in our business at the moment. It’s just like, get out of your own way. Like, if you can just get out of your own way and just allow things to happen with the right plan and trust that it’s going to work out. Like if you’re prepared to do that for 15 years at all. Will you know what I mean?

Ryan 46:57
Yeah. So I hope that you out there listening, have enjoyed this, that you’ve taken something from this and you’re like, yeah, I need to apply that to my life or Yes, that resonates with me. We encourage you to take some time yourself to reflect on what have you been your biggest learnings through the crazy insane chaotic year that was 2020? What did you learn from that? What are you taking time to start doing lockdown teach you what have you learned about yourself or your finances or your personal growth or relationships? Take time to look back at that stuff and to be grateful for the year that was the insane year that was and be grateful for it and what came over and we wish you the absolute best year you can possibly have in 21 Thanks again, Ben, so much for sharing. Thanks, man.

Unknown Speaker 47:45
Good to have ya.

Ryan 47:46
All right, everyone. Until next time, and until next year, stay positive

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