What To Do When Things Get Hard

Sometimes in life things don’t really go to plan and the sh*t hits the fan and me and Ben have both have that happened to us over the last 12 months. What do we do when times get tough and things get hard.

0:00 – Introduction
1:03 – Some problems are mental, some are situational
2:22 – We always think life will go in a perfect upward trajectory
6:12 – Putting money away for a rainy day
7:29 – How Ryan deals with difficulty
10:58 – What Ben does when the going gets tough
14:24 – Looking at the worst case scenario
19:11 – Dealing with economic hardship
20:40 – Stop living hand to mouth
21:45 – Having a vision for your future helps you cope with the current moment
23:45 – Getting professional help when you need it
25:30 – Making life better slowly
27:15 – Start tracking the actions that will get you the results you want
30:30 – Growing over the decades
31:50 – Making wealth building a part of the fun of your life
35:50 – Sometimes you need the challenges to teach you and make you stronger
37:10 – Having quality people in your life that lift you up
40:30 – This is us, everyone is going through stuff

The Happiness Trap Book – https://onproperty.com.au/happinesstrap

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Transcription:

Ryan 0:00
In life, there are good times. And in life, there are bad times. And both me and Ben have been through our fair share of bad times. And in the last 12 months, we’ve both been through some really hard stuff. So as we sit here today, literally around the corner from a granny flat that we just looked at, for a client, this is the location spot, right near their house, basically walking distance from the house. But while we sit here, we thought we’re just talking about, again, what are some of the things that we do? What are some of our coping mechanisms? And how do we deal with stuff when stuff gets hard, because I feel like for both of us, when stuff gets hard, you know, we actively seek to solve that problem, so that we don’t just kind of run away from it.

Ben 0:43
Yeah, like I was listening to or reading something from Seth Godin the other day. And he said, like, there’s three things that you can do in any situation, one is confronted and try and fight, you know, another one is to run away. And then there’s always a third option to which is to just accept exactly what’s going on. And then to slowly work through what’s going on, if you can. Now, some of the hard times that we’ve both gone through mental, you know, I’ve had anxiety, and I think you’ve had bouts of depression through your life, then a lot of people watching this would be able to relate to one of those things, sometimes on the same day of the week. You know, and then there’s other things that are just shit that come up in your life that no matter how positive you are, they’re not self created. It’s just like, you know, one year I had my tenant burned down a granny flat, like another year of business sell fell through like another year, the market got really hard in the business, and I wasn’t sure if I could keep doing what I love doing. Like, yeah, all of these things come up. And it’s just kind of like how you respond to them, or how we have,

Ryan 1:46
and especially in business, compared to when you have a steady paycheck, your things do fluctuate, yeah, and so you go through periods that are really good. And then you go through periods that are not so good. And it’s not necessarily that you’re not doing the required action that brings the results sometimes, like we talked about, it’s like playing Moneyball, you’re playing the odds. And eventually, the harder you work, the odds work in your favor. But sometimes you just get unlucky, and hard stuff happens. And that can be really difficult. And I think, you know, talking about my life, and the hard stuff that happened, you know, we always just think life’s gonna go in this like perfect upward trajectory, and things are just going to get easier and easier and easier. And I guess in my life, that happened for a long period of time, like that happened throughout, like my 20s. And then working in the business around like, left full time work to work in the business around 25. So my income dropped there. But it grew back up financially free around 28, through my businesses, until about 3031. And then at the same time went through a marriage separation and a business downturn. At the same time, and having to move into state, it’s like, oh, I’ve just gone from this, like, great position to life, lifestyle, lifestyle hard now. And it’s, it’s also frustrating, because it’s kind of my own making, and that like just thinking that life’s gonna keep going like this, and not actually putting money aside for a rainy day. So that meant that I didn’t have money put aside, which meant that I ended up in debt, which are now paying off and now kind of being like, Okay, time to continue running my business, but then also maybe get another job on the side, too, just to get some extra income coming in, to wipe out their debt faster. So that I feel less pressure,

Ben 3:34
for sure. And, you know, it’s when that pressure comes on, and, you know, similar to you like, but you started things a lot earlier than I did, like, I didn’t even start my first business till I was 28. Like, my first successful one.

Ryan 3:49
I don’t get that we’re not the same age. Yeah, like,

Ben 3:52
I’m 34, like, understand 34. And, you know, you did a lot of those things, like when you were you’d achieve financial freedom for your business, I was just literally starting in my business. And, you know, like, like, I’m so grateful for the run that I’ve had as well, like, you know, so many things that have happened that, you know, have been pre determined by me, like I’ve learned, and I’ve spent so much more time than the average person learning how to do business and learning how to do property. And I’m grateful for that. But even like, the year that I finished uni, was the second worst of, you know, great. Effectively, the GFC was the second worst event since it’s like depression, Jesus, I struggled to get that. But you know, like, I came into the market in his time when everyone was scared, and I didn’t even know about it, and started to buy properties in a in a market when that market hadn’t done anything for 10 years. And I think back in like, it’s just been this incredible run of trial and error. But through that 10 years of investing, man, I’ve like really stuffed up some stuff and I’ve got fired from jobs. And, you know, last year was a hard year. For me, because I went through a lot of anxiety, which was just, I think the result of pushing hard for way too long for too long, you know.

Ryan 5:09
And I think, when it comes to the hard stuff, it’s, I remember, like the other day, you’re talking to a client who was in a great financial position in terms of how much they had earned, but didn’t really have much to show for it in terms of their life, and in terms of what they’ve done, and so when hard times hit for them, it kind of reset them back to zero. Whereas, you know, you over the last 10 years being constantly buying properties. And so when times are good, you’ve kind of been setting yourself up. Yeah. So then when you do go through hard times, like going through, you know, a business sell that fell through while you’re doing a renovation, he has, like, you’ve got buffers in place, to kind of cover that sort of stuff for you.

Ben 5:53
And I think, you know, like in terms of some of the things that we’ve learned, because we don’t want this video to be like, Oh, poor us, like, I’m so grateful for my life. And, you know, I know you are for yours as well, and stuff comes up. And this would be like a year, that makes us both stronger without a doubt. But, you know, I watched my mom and my dad fight about money every single night, and day, until I was about 12. Because I didn’t, you know, because interest rates were really high. And because property prices were moving really quickly. And because they didn’t invest and because they were dependent, until I got a bit older, on you know, jobs that other people were in control of their financial situations. And because they didn’t put any money away for a rainy day, like I just, I just chose like really early on that I didn’t want to be like that, because of the way that I observed them being I was like, I’m never ever going to show my kids that. Because I’m like, I don’t I don’t I didn’t need to save that as a kid. Like a lot of people watching this didn’t need to say their parents fighting about money. probably still money, you know what I mean? Like, it’s, you know, I just wanted to create an environment, which was like, I knew that the good times don’t last forever. And my wife calls me squirrel. She’s lucky just to constantly, even in summertime, putting the nuts away for the coming winter. And I’ve been doing that for 10 years, even longer. And I love it like, but it’s also, you know, thinking that way comes with a price as well, which is short term gratification and material, I suppose.

Ryan 7:25
Yeah, well, I guess I guess for me, I was not a squirrel. And I talked about this in a video that I did on the best business advice I didn’t take. Yeah. And so when I left pharmaceutical wrapping, I spoke to a young business owner there who like ran the pharmacy for his dad, but had a bunch of different other businesses up near Newcastle. And he said to me, he said, while the money’s there, take advantage of it, and basically milk it for all it’s worth and double down on that. Because it’s not always going to be they’re basically saying like, when the goings good, like, met, take advantage of it, but then prepare for the bad. And it was like what, so when the going was good for me, I kind of lived I lived in that. And I guess for me, because I went on that journey, achieve the financial freedom through my business, and it was like, I’m not happy. So I didn’t have the motivation to be like, Oh, I’m gonna keep pushing this and put money away for a rainy day, because I’m just like, Oh, this was a goal. I’ve been searching for my entire life, and it didn’t fulfill me. So I had this like, mini breakdown, mental breakdown of like, what am I What am I doing with my life? So I regret not taking that advice. But at the same time, you know, I went through such an intense self discovery journey over the next two years. So I can’t really say that I regret it. But I think when the times get tough for me, one of the things that I do is I try and use it to strengthen me. And I try and use it to grow. So rather than running away from hardship, or running away from pain, even in relationships are like feel the fields. Yeah, so I’ll like take it all on and like, let the intensity of the situation over what like overwhelming, overwhelming and like, just wash over me. And like rather than like trying to be in denial or block it out. Or like, I don’t know if this is healthy or not. But apparently, this is really weird what I do, you know, but go into the depths of that despair. And just it’s, and I do that until I can accept it until I can be grateful for it. And so it’s like, I go through that and that’s really hard emotionally. And then when you do it enough, you kind of become almost numb to it. It’s like you can only cry for so long, you know? And so and then you get to the point of Okay, I’ve cried about this, and therefore, I’ve been overwhelmed about money enough that it’s like, okay, things suck. But then I don’t know somehow I get to a place where I’m like, things suck. But I’m so grateful for the journey that led me here and I’m so grateful for what happened. I do that in relationships as well as in finances today. they’re like okay i’m not in the financial position that i want to be in which sucks but then like kind of accepting that and be like i am so grateful for the journey that got me here even though that journey was filled with a bunch of mistakes that i made that got myself into this hardship yet i could have avoided it’s like okay back then i wasn’t the person that i am now i didn’t know those things or maybe i didn’t want to know those things you know i can blame pass ryan you know and he’s he’s done some really dumb stuff and i’m sure future ryan’s gonna do some really dumb stuff he

Ben 10:31
had a real good time that passed around as well

Ryan 10:34
then it’s like yeah i guess being even though it sucks being grateful for the journey that led you there that led you to the person that you are and then when i find when i’m grateful then i can start looking forward and to say okay what’s the solution out of this mess how am i going to get out of that

Ben 10:50
but be set myself up so i’m never in this position again on love that man like it’s such a powerful way to do things like you know i find when going gets tough for me like what do

Ryan 11:03
you do

Ben 11:04
i think i just i have a really really strong work ethic like a stronger work ethic than most people do and so i will i should learn to speak as well i could just bombed in this but i just i work my way out of my problems like cause i grew up watching a dad who didn’t sit in it and accept it or run away he just full blown forward like literally like what you know like i have a tendency to just like you know lean into something and approach it really really head on and and i realized that’s one way to approach things it’s probably not the healthiest way because leaning in or fighting something it’s kind of like pushing a rock up a hill like you can do it but it takes something from you as well yeah where i’m trying more as i

Ryan 11:50
guess like i let the rock roll over me and completely crushed me and then how am i gonna pull myself off i gotta fix the broken bones and then move forward

Ben 12:00
but you know like most of the issues in my life that have come up have either been like character related to myself or my mindset and they’re ones that like i didn’t deal with in a healthy way for a long time like i either overtrained or i drank too much alcohol like being strong or i ran away on holidays or i like just ignored it and you know and now i’m like just unlike i accept like some of the ways that i’m feeling and i’m just trying to like be in the moment like be present and a lot a lot of the stuff that i learned that happiness trap book have really helped me understanding to defuse things and breathe properly and have like live my values day to day

Ryan 12:44
yeah i’m going to link up to the happiness trap book down below which i haven’t read yet but ben’s recommended to me so i’m gonna get onto it and read it but yeah i’ll link to that down below where you can go to onproperty com au forward slash happiness trap and that’ll link you probably through to amazon where you can purchase it if you want

Ben 13:01
you know when i’ve gone through like the hard economic times like i’ve never been you know i’m super grateful for my financial position i’m in now

Ryan 13:09
but you worked hard for that

Ben 13:11
i’ve worked real hard and real focus for that but i have no problem simplifying like so last financial year like last year you know there was a there was something that came out on the tv where an economist said that the market was going to drop on today than either something or a current affair by 50% in the next year and literally like the leads in our businesses which had been like 80 a month for as long as we’d started just dropped to like 2020 a month for like three or four months while people were like waiting for this intimate like crash imminent and you know i sat down and and just went okay first first of all i freaked the hell out secondly when what is you know business as usual what is ideal what is like the next best ideal and what if i just was delight i couldn’t do this anymore and because i knew like a b c and d that was like i realized that i was gonna for the short term be somewhere between c and d and so i just cut the cost back d worst case scenario days worst case like i was being super real about

Ryan 14:20
it i was like this is what i have been through lately as well is that okay let’s let’s look at the worst case scenario and assume the worst case scenario what would i do in that scenario yeah and then look at like an okay situation and then look great and it’s like don’t expect the great it’s kind of like okay expect worst case and do what you need to do that you can survive in worst case and wait to see whether you actually just in the lower end of things not in worst case

Ben 14:45
does that mean yeah for sure and it’s sort of it’s sort of nice to know that worst case for me is you know a rental of my properties yeah i get my stuff together for a period of time and i get a job and that’s that’s the same think that everyone watching this like, well, that’s

Ryan 15:01
that’s me as well, like my worst case is okay? Because business revenue does fluctuate with me it’s like, Okay, if I’m gonna have a few months where business revenue will be down, which is my worst case, it’s like, What do I do? Okay, I’ll need to get a job. And then that’ll pay for my life as well as pay off debt by itself. And then slack. So then it’s like, I’m not reliant on the business, and then anything the business does make would be crazy. And so, so even though I’m not in worst case scenario, right now, I’m kind of acting as if I am. So I’m going to get like, I’m job hunting at the moment. And looking for stuff,

Ben 15:37
like a six month contractor like tide you over?

Ryan 15:39
Yeah. And that’s it. And it’s like, if the better case happens then great. But if I end up in worst case scenario, then I’ve already taken action to be okay, in that scenario.

Ben 15:48
Yeah. And you know, that’s, that’s one thing that I realized about my personality is, I’m prepared to have a look at the hard stuff way sooner than most people and then immediately make changes. So I think it takes me a lot takes

Ryan 15:59
me like an extra six months. Yeah, like, when it really hits the fan on like, Oh, I should have three months ago.

Ben 16:07
But it’s not the, you know, maybe it’s the first time you’ve been through this where for me, I’ve I’ve seen my date go through this, like I remember in the GFC, I remember going out for this long lunch with him. And he was talking to me about how much cash he had sitting in his general business account and how cranking he super was. And then I remember saying in two years, three years later, he’s super had literally halved. And the cash in the business said he’d lost 70% of it, because he’d been basically going backwards for three years just to survive. And lucky, he had that buffer. Yeah. And in his industry, like 50% of people went under in that time, or were bought out by bigger companies who were consolidating. So I’ve sort of seen it. And I just, I’ve read too much about history to pretend that everything’s always good. Like, things go up, things go down business cycles, property cycles, shares cycle, and I’m, like, I’m so aware of that for the last 200 years in Europe, Australia and America. Yeah. And so, you know, I don’t know if it’s a good thing or a bad thing. But my approach is always just keep saving, keep investing, keep creating more streams of cash flow that are not made dependent, so that if the worst worst, worst case scenario happens, I’ll be cool. But you know, that takes what,

Ryan 17:22
what, what did you do when you looked at those different scenarios, and you saw the worst case scenario,

Ben 17:26
and made me feel good, because the worst case was like, I’ll still keep my properties, I’ll still be able to have a job in my business, just me and my sister. And I’ll still be swayed. or worst case, I’ll go get a, you know, high paying job, and I’ll be swayed.

Ryan 17:40
So worst case didn’t happen for you, though. No. So

Ben 17:42
you know, scenario was, you know, effectively at that time, we were working with about 15 clients a month. And then, you know, my next worst case was okay, let’s just do five to seven a month. And then you had that conversation. Yeah. And after doing like, so many clients for so many years, that was a big adjustment to my ego, I think I was tied into the idea of helping lots of people every month, because this isn’t just the business. For me, this is a passion. Yeah. And then I went five to seven looks really nice. And I don’t have to work 70 hours a week to do that. And I don’t have to be stressed out all the time. And, you know, I don’t have to let that one person that comes through every month that I, you know, really don’t like working with work with. Because I’ll be you know, taking on seven a month is just, it’s easy. I can really profile people properly. Yeah. And then I reduce the costs in the business by literally 50% in two weeks. And then I reduce the cost in my personal life by like, 45% in the next two weeks, and I went, holy shit, I’d been living like an idiot. Even though I’d been saving heaps of money. Yeah, I’d still been blowing it out the back end, massive way. And I was just like, now my life is super tight. Like, there’s nothing that I’m paying for that is unnecessary. Yeah. And it’s like, that gives me confidence. Because, you know, effectively 150 grand, you’re better off by those decisions that are made. And that’s like worst case money, like put that away, you know, for the next rainy day and get through that time without the fear.

Ryan 19:07
I think that’s funny, because what you did in two weeks, and then two weeks, so four weeks is more like six months. It takes me to do that sort of thing. Yeah, like just to drop the ego and sort of let it go. And to be like, okay, massively cut all expenses in everything and just like, bring it back. It kind of I guess, because I haven’t really been through economic hardship in my life at all up until this point. It was like, Yeah, something that I had to learn going through like my parents, my mom worked full time. My dad was a house and she really good coin like she was well like middle class Australians. Yeah, but not struggling. Like my parents didn’t fight about money or maybe thought about that my dad was spending too much. But like that was our fights not that we didn’t have enough. So it’s like, yeah, it’s it’s been an obviously it’s a muscle that you develop and something One of the problems that I have is like a human is that I have to experience things to understand them, I find it very hard to look at other people’s experiences and, like, understand it,

Ben 20:10
which is like that’s because I love that about either you’re so in the present moment, and so experiential, where I’m, I can get anxiety because I’m constantly looking at the future. And like, in my head, I’m doing like five scenarios in any moment in time. And that gives me anxiety. And sometimes I think it would be beautiful to have a plan that you can loosely follow, and then just leave purely in the moment and experience the ebbs and flows of life. But the other thing for me that’s really helped is, I’m in real estate every day, for 10 years, like, that’s what I’ve been doing. And I just watch these people take their take the, like money that’s coming in and just spray it on stuff. And I was just the whole time I’m like, Man, you know, you’re 50 years of age, and you’ve been living hand to mouth 50 years, like, you know, so many people in real estate, you know, unfortunately, like the people that sell the properties that we buy, I just, they blow their cash man on like stuff that they can’t afford before they can afford it. And like Lisa and I leave, like really modestly, until recently when we, for the first time upgraded our home. But, you know, I made sure when I made that upgrade, I had a big freakout. And then I sold four properties to pay for it. And I worked my business really, really, really fucking hard to like

Ryan 21:30
I had a freakout moment and sold stuff that you maybe shouldn’t have.

Ben 21:34
I shouldn’t have sold. I shouldn’t does anyone property move that early today? You know, I still regret that one.

Ryan 21:39
And I think, um, one thing that’s been really helpful to me when times get tough, is just being like, look into the future. So rather than just looking at, okay, what’s happening in the next like, 10 minutes or 10 days, you know, look at, okay, what’s life going to be like in 10 months? And what’s gonna, What’s life gonna be like, in 10 years

Ben 21:59
having a vision to your future? How have you found that, like, has that been helpful? so

Ryan 22:04
helpful? Because it’s like, okay, I am, like, if I’m struggling at the moment, and you get overwhelmed by stuff, you know, the saying you can’t see the forest for the trees is too busy looking at the trees. And so then it’s like, Okay, take a 10 year view, will you still be in this position, you know, will cashflow still be tired? No, if I do the things that I need to do to get there, then it’s okay debts gonna be paid off, I’ll be building up my savings again, I’ve learned so much through this journey about how to manage cash flow, how to manage my business, as well about investing and market cycles. And I’ve grown so much as a person that I can say, okay, in 10 years, all of the stuff that I’m stressing you out today won’t exist. Yeah, like you won’t, like part of the stuff that’s really hot at the moment is going through a separation is that mean? Hell have our kids 5050 and so it’s like, it gets hard to work in the business when you’ve got your kids during the school holidays? Yeah, in 10 years time, Sasha will be 19 Well, she won’t even want to know me. Now, she will still hang out with you know, brands will be 17 Lux will be 14 it’s like life’s gonna be so different, even in that aspect. So sometimes I, I stress out looking after the kids have made like, I, I want to work on my business right now because I want to grow that. But then it’s like, okay, in 10 years, that they’re not going to, they’re not going to be this age where they want to hang out with me and go to the skate park with me. Yeah, you know, and so it’s like, take advantage of the stuff that’s there. But then also know that okay, cash flow wise, in 10 years time stuffs gonna get easier

Ben 23:40
because of my nature man and I fully I love what you just said like, I address things as they come up and when i when i when i didn’t realize this, but I think I’d been living with anxiety for a long time.

Ryan 23:53
Definitely recording let’s still

Ben 23:54
read. Yeah, okay, cool. I’m sorry. You know, I’d been living with anxiety for a lot longer than I knew it was anxiety. And as soon as I was like, Oh, this is like anxiety and I can’t help myself anymore. Like the things that I did for crutches just weren’t working. I went and saw the GP and then he gave me a referral for like 10 pre sessions with the site. And now I go to the psychologist about once every three to four weeks as maintenance it’s kind of like people eat well people train regularly. Like sometimes also looking after your mind with someone who’s objective that can help with proper tools is is valuable to me and I’ll just I don’t suffer it on a week to week basis anymore, but I I go to him to stop the massive like flow so that you know when I have an issue it’s a very short term one. But he’s taught me the principles in Act which is like modern way of thinking about psychology and it’s really just if you understand what you truly value like I know you as well as you know yourself and you know me probably better than I know me. You know, like in some way Like, I value in my life, like my family, I value contributing to people through business, I value creating wealth because I, I grew out really, really poor, like I value looking after my mind, my body and now my spirit better. And what he’s helped me do, which is made me feel so much better when things get bad. If I just live my values on a daily basis, like life’s luck gets slowly better. And it’s likely by making slowly better financial decisions, if I’m, you know, slowly trading better content in my business and helping people achieve things, you know, in a better way. Like if I’m spending lots of time with my kids, and going on trips and training and doing all those things and yoga in the morning, and like creating a good routine to start the day. Yeah, all of a sudden, when these big events happen, it was only because my ego was attached to like, the way that I saw my past self. And it’s like, now that my ego was just crushed because of anxiety. Like, I just felt so low and with no confidence beat for literally years that I didn’t even know about. It’s now like, holy shit, like, I’m feeling stronger. Again, like I’m feeling more able to deal with stuff. And like, like I was saying, off camera, like I had a really hard week last week. But that was just like stress, because I lost the key team member, Crystal, cuz she’s having above at the moment, which is so cool. And just readjusting to that. But it wasn’t actual anxiety. It was just Hey, I’m doing two people’s jobs at the moment. And that normal stuff, yeah. And it’s kind of like, you know, anyone that’s going through anything tough. like sitting in it, accepting it, knowing that there’s help out there, if you’re really struggling, and then slowly and systematically improving the areas of your life that make you feel good. Yeah, it’s fucking awesome. Like, I’m so proud of the stuff that you and I have done in the last five years. Like, I love the lives that we get to live. And, you know, I know,

Ryan 26:57
short term thing, you know, what I mean, and stuff that we did over the last six months has been epic, epic, and the people we’ve been able to help and the stuff we’ve been able to pull off has been really cool. Despite a lot of stuff happening in both our lives throughout that period. It’s been, I think, one like, last thing that I would say, is, when you are in a hard financial position, it’s like look at, they call it your lead indicators. So a lot of the time we look at the results. So where’s my cash out at the moment? Where’s my cash flow? And that’s the results. And you track that and get stressed about that. But it’s like taking a step back and say, Okay, what are the key actions that you need to take that are actually going to influence the results. And so you still obviously track the results and do your best there. But it’s also start tracking your actions, and start monitoring that and tracking that. So work out, okay, what do I need to do to get the result that I want? And then keep yourself diligent with that and track that. So for me, I guess I created like KPIs or key performance indicators in my life. And in my business, that’s like, okay, these actions are what is going to solve this problem, or at least what I believe is going to solve it. And you got to always assess that is what I’m doing actually creating a positive result. But yeah, then tracking that and say, okay, each week, have I done the things that I need to do? If not, why, and how can I do better next week, and just make sure you’re constantly doing those things to move forward.

Ben 28:20
I love that man, like, you know, understanding what the key drivers are, that are going to make a difference, or the big rocks and then just doing those things. And, you know, simplifying down to, like, these are the three things that I need to do this month to actually change this, and only doing those things until you’ve done.

Ryan 28:36
That’s the hard part is like, okay, I can see that these are the key things to do. But the payoff for these things is six to 12 months time. So it’s like, you’ve also got to manage, okay, I got to keep things afloat. Now, while I do the stuff that’s gonna, like this problem is going to be solved in 12 months. Yeah, because of the actions that I’m doing. But it’s like, I still gotta keep, I still gotta stay afloat for that 12 months until I get there.

Ben 28:59
Yeah, I get that, like what I did when my, when I thought my business was, like, you know, in a way worse position than it really was, was, you know, I effectively, you know, reduced all of those expenses, like I said, and I had to like, and then I committed to a mountain to pay myself first each week, which I’ve been doing for 10 years now. Like, I just, I don’t save money, I just pay myself first. And then I went through systematically every part of my life and just figured out what actually truly on and focus on those things that actually make me feel better. Like, you know, I’ve stopped drinking at the moment. I’m gonna drink in the future for sure, because I love having to deal with the boys in my friends and family. But for right now, that was giving me anxiety. You know, another thing that was triggering me was having high overhead costs in my personal life plus my business. So I just stripped all of them out. I know that I’m running as lean as I can be in the way that I am now but I could also make it a lot leaner, if I had to. and i’m just consistently building up this buffer of paying yourself first which some of that goes into offset some of it goes into debt reduction some goes into investing in other assets that create more income but that habit over 30 or 40 years fucking makes people wealthy and changes their lives man yeah it’s just it’s just in that 40 years there’s gonna be some really hard years some shitty five year times even but like long term he he just do those things i’ve found everything changes

Ryan 30:29
well that’s the thing you’re not even 10 years into your property investing journey and but the habits that you’ve built up and the stuff that you’re able to do today 10 years in is so much better and so much bigger than what you could do 10 years ago

Ben 30:42
oh man 10 years i was like earning 45 grand a year and just saving like a madman

Ryan 30:47
and so imagine yeah we just continue with those habits even if you don’t change as a person now but continue doing those things for the next 30 years till you’re 65 what you’re going to be left with which will be massive and then obviously over that time you’re going to change and grow and get better

Ben 31:02
i’m not doing it for who i’m going to be at 65 like and neither are you and i’m not gonna stay in this position because like what i get a kick out of in life same issue is learning and growing and changing and feeling that pain and accepting it and learning from it and moving forward and it’s like i just want to contribute like i’m not i don’t invest in property to be wealthy i do invest in it to create a passive income stream to take the pressure off my past self that’s like don’t be broke but it’s like i’m not doing property or business to be wealthy i’m doing it because i can’t do anything else like i love this shit but it’s not an ego that needs to do it to survive anymore it’s i just genuinely have chosen that this is something i value so much that i just want to help other people do it and that’s also

Ryan 31:49
easy man it’s also fun for you and this becomes the experience of life like you’ve created a life where wealth building is your experience of life and how you have fun

Ben 31:58
yeah it’s part of my fun i really actually enjoy it

Ryan 32:01
like a separate part of your life that you’re waiting until you’re 65 to enjoy it’s like the act of doing it is fun and that’s the same for me like the act of doing this is fun and so it’s like even though i’m in the crap

Ben 32:14
out right trenches man anyway yeah

Ryan 32:17
yeah but it’s fun like the challenge is fun the requirement for growth is fun changing as a person is fun i love change i love getting challenged i don’t like going through hard emotional stuff but i will embrace it and go through it almost intentionally because that’s going to lead to a better life and i see that growth as being enjoyable and being fun and so you

Ben 32:40
know i want people to recognize something that often most people in their space particularly online don’t honestly talk about and that is the fact that it is in this beautiful rosy perfect thing like honestly bro like when i went like when i’ve just started a business and i went on my honeymoon like i just bought i think my sixth or seventh property then and the way that i used to do it was so dangerous eisah literally put everything on the line like if i could borrow money to buy a property i would go to $0 in my bank now i just bought a property when i got fired and then i needed to start my business i think i had 20 grand in the bank which was spent on the wedding i remember getting on the plane for the honeymoon and checking my bank account and having 500 bucks now we were like going to stay in the four seasons in hawaii which 500 bucks we cover about like an entree and you know that was at a time and then i rang up my sister when i got to hawaii and she’s like oh ben a couple of people have just signed up and i was like oh my god like thank you like i can have a honeymoon enjoy it and it’s like that has happened to me because of the high risk way that i used to invest like that’s happened to me a number of times like you know like

Ryan 33:56
i guess that’s the position that i’m in now it’s like when things go bad it’s like oh my god i’m not gonna be able to afford things and then it just like the universe comes through for you and you’re like oh thank you that buys me more time to i’m gonna fix this and not be in this situation long term

Ben 34:10
yeah like it happens way more regularly than you know and then you learn from the experience and you grow from it like when i was 19 i went to europe for two months with my mates and i went into the travel agent paid off like the flights and accommodation that we’d booked which was like two nights and then i saved money and i saved like four grand or something which was heaps for me because i’ve never had money before and then she’s like you might need a credit card so i went to the bank and got like a 20 grand credit card and then i got to i got overseas and within like two weeks i’d spent my 3k because i didn’t know how to manage money and then i just got on this credit card and went on a shopping spree this drinking spree is like seeing the world thing and i got back in 20 grand a credit card debt basically i think it was like 12 grand but then i didn’t realize that they accrued interest like immediately and all of a sudden it was right up here and between 19 and 20 i literally worked for an entire 10 months where every single i was working two jobs even at 1.3 and every dollar that i earned went straight back into paying off that debt and when you when you start realizing what interests can do to smash you like it just hammered me and literally that nine months i did nothing but pay off that debt and party on the weekends with my friends and it was the most depressing thing that’s ever happened when the money that i earned which was good money the same as you are now yeah if you didn’t have debt your income would be insane and that was where i was at and i made a commitment at that point like there’s these life changing things that happen which we call challenges and

Ryan 35:43
i feel like you kind of sometimes have to go through that like some people some people are smart enough and strong enough that they don’t have to go through that to learn that lesson and that they just manage money really well i think you’re learning the hard way on credit card like and then like i’ve been so fortunate in my life to get to my early 30s before i had to go through it you know you know

Ben 36:05
and it makes you so much stronger because you will pay yourself first like i will pay myself first going forward after that event i will keep my costs low moving forward to the point where i can you know manage them

Ryan 36:18
you know that’s it i’ll keep my costs low like once the debts paid off it’s like i’ll focus on building up buffers

Ben 36:24
and i’ll focus on that money to create extra income streams outside of the

Ryan 36:29
code and it’s just like the whole thing is create redundancies in your life extra cash flow extra things so that if something does get hit you’ve got all these like all of these backup plans not just one so like it’s like have the savings yes but also have extra income streams yes and my income streams my passive income even though business business took a hit have saved me and for me to be in a position where my business if i’m working on it to grow it it’s still mostly passive so if i was to go to work for six months or 12 months i would effectively get two incomes the business would still come in but then i would get a job income as well and so it’s i went from being in a i’m in a really terrible position and then a friend tells me see that no you’ve actually got this amazing opportunity right now because of the business and the passive income streams that you’ve created for yourself so even and that was the forest for the trees sort of thing and i was just so in the trenches that i couldn’t see that and then i you actually have an amazing opportunity to take this and what you’ve got right now which isn’t great but actually you know build out of that grow out of that and being a really strong financial position in not an extremely long period of time this sure sounds like it was cool to have to have people in your life like that’s another thing i guess when it gets hard is having those people in different people with different perspectives different people with different perspectives and then people who believe in you for sure and people who believe in you when the things are the worst they’ve ever been and when you’re like i you know

Ben 37:58
don’t keep going and they’re like dude we’re doing it

Ryan 38:01
like i’m not strong enough with this and they’re like you’re one of the strongest people i know i’m like i’m not but why are you making me feel that are so thanks and then yeah offering your perspective and offering you encouragement on that has been like a godsend to have you in my life and to have other people in my life that do that for me i think without it you know sometimes you do just get in that rut and in despair and to have people that will lift you out force you to look up lift up your head and see what’s on the horizon like and that i i care about you i love you despite all that like i’m still proud of you

Ben 38:36
even though you’re in your worst situation you know like the financial positions people are in is like the last thing that i think’s important in life personally like i was watching with my wife the other night on netflix the new queer eye for the straight guy and these are five guys that are just absolute legends in different ways that all they do in life is lift other people up they’ve all got their own shit going on and sometimes you know they’re professional tv presenters but the cracks come out and i can see like i can see what they’ve all had to deal with to get to this point and where they are and what they’re overcoming in their lives right now because once you’ve had some bad shit happened to you you can say when other people are struggling and pretending that it’s not cool when it’s all cool but it’s not and i was watching these guys and all they do is lift other people up and i’m like wow like if i create enough space in my life between the buisiness to just be authentically me and same with you like where we just every single day get an opportunity to help someone figure shit out and actually make their life better like what a what a vision and why to live your life

Ryan 39:40
exactly

Ben 39:41
yeah i love it and there’s you know if you feeling like shit go see the gp and gets get a referral to a psychologist and it’s not wait going and doing that it’s actually take strength and character you know check on queer eye for the straight guy and just have a bit of a cry and watch these incredible people changing other people’s lives that have nothing. Like nothing, there’s so much worse off than any of us. You know, sometimes real shit does happen. That sucks. Like being in debt, sometimes it’s just depression or anxiety in our heads. But honestly, man, I feel like stronger every day because like, I’m working my way out of my stuff. And you are and everyone watching this shit is though,

Ryan 40:21
yeah, so I guess, you know, a bit of a rambley chat here, every now and then we like to get a bit real and just talk about life. Because like that is us. That’s the way we do business as well. Like, if you’re going to do business with us, you’ll get us like, this is what this is what you

Ben 40:36
get separation.

Ryan 40:38
And that’s the thing as everyone is going through stuff. And you see so much online these days about, someone’s super successful with their Ferrari. And it’s like, you know, even they go through mental issues, like mental difficulties and other difficulties in your life, you never know what’s going on. And so I think we just want to be real that, you know, we go through hard stuff, we all do, and that we’re all in this together, we’re all helping each other. And property investing is an exciting part of that. You know, but it’s just one part of that. And you

Ben 41:11
know, what property investing has done for me, it’s enabled me to figure out a bigger version of my future, like, because I know that I’m gonna have passive income for life through property and businesses in the future. It enables me to go, Okay, if I was financially free, this is what my life would look like, I have a vision of like, hanging out with my kids and traveling around the world with them. And traveling Australia, I have a vision of moving really well. And surfing and spending great time with my friends and family and my wife, like I have a vision of helping other people make their lives better. And it’s like, if I didn’t have that bigger link to the investing gives you because you’ve got to think long term. You know, I could have got caught up in my own head multiple times on this 10 year journey. But it always feels good to have a bigger picture. You know what I mean? That being financially in the free will give you now it’s just waiting for it to happen. Yeah.

Ryan 42:05
And so we’re going to finish it off there. We hope that this has been interesting for you, we hope that you’ve enjoyed. I’ve definitely enjoyed it. This is meant to be a 20 minute video that’s going for like nearly an hour. Yeah, I love that. But that’s just us being real. So what I’m going to do now is link up to another rambling video that we did in the car on the way home last month, which was talking about how property investing is meant to be boring, but go ahead and make your life interesting. And so I thought that was a really interesting one. And people seem to like that. So I’ll link up to that one. But we wish you the absolute best, not just in your property investment journey, but in your life journey and your financial freedom journey. And we do what we do, so that other people can be financially free so that they can go and live their truth and do the best things that they can do with their life. So we wish you the best as you go out there and try and do that. Sometimes things are shared, you know, but we just work through that. So, all the best to you and until next time, stay positive

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