This is episode #426, and my guest today is Ramon Gonzalez.
I hope you’re ready for some DEEP conversation today, and Ramon and I get pretty deep on mindset, focusing on your unique ability, and just all around being true to yourself.
Real estate investing is an easy business to lose yourself in. By that, I mean…work so hard that you forget about what’s important to you. That leads to a few potential issues. First, you just may end up successful financially, but have a hard time enjoying the fruits of your labor, as you have taught yourself to enjoy the struggle vs. being at peace. Or even worse, you’re so focused on the challenges you face in this business that you get discouraged and never event find success.
This is a powerful episode that you’ll learn a lot from, regardless of your level of experience.
Please help me welcome Ramon Gonzalez.
Mike:This is the flipnerd.com Expert Real Estate Investing Show, the show for real estate investors, whether you’re a veteran or brand new. I’m your host, Mike Hambright, and each week I bring you a new expert guest that will share their knowledge and lessons with you. If you’re excited about real estate investing, believe in personal responsibility and taking control of your life and financial destiny, you’re in the right place.
This is episode number 426, and my guest today is Ramon Gonzalez. I hope you’re ready for some deep conversation today as Ramon and I get pretty deep on mindset, focusing on your unique ability and just all around being true to yourself and being a good person. Real estate investing is an easy business to lose yourself in. By that, I mean, work so hard that you forget about what’s important to you. That leads to a few potential issues. First, you just may end up being successful financially, but you have a hard time enjoying the fruits of your labor as you’ve really taught yourself to enjoy the struggle versus be at peace. Or even worse, you’re so focused on the challenges that you face in this business that you just get discouraged and you never even find success.
Both are failing and we don’t get into this business for that, right? We get into this business for the freedoms that it can provide. Just don’t lose who you are. This is a powerful episode. You’re going to learn a lot from it today. I even learned a lot from it and it’s my show. So regardless of your level of experience, you’re going to get a lot out of today. Let’s go ahead and get started. Please help me welcome Ramon Gonzalez. Ramon, welcome to the show, my friend.
Ramon:Excited to be here with you, Mike, man.
Mike:Yeah, yeah. I’m pumped up and we have a lot of stuff in common.
Mike:And I think we kind of preach from the same script so this is going to be really cool here. I’m excited to talk about a lot of things that I talk about inside of my inner circle is that we haven’t already talked about a lot of these things on the show about just being a true giver, connecting people, the importance of mindset, a lot of things that you and I talked about a little bit about here before we got started that’s going to make for a great show today. And really, the type of conversation that only a couple of more veteran folks can have like you had to get some arrows in your back to like learn these lessons, right?
Mike:Yeah, yeah. Well, hey, before we jump in, tell folks about your background, if they’re listening to the show and they don’t know who you are yet.
Ramon:Sure. Ramon Gonzales. I’m from Miami, Florida. I used to work corporate in General Electric maybe from 2000 to 2004, went to school down here in Miami, then I moved up to Connecticut. Born and raised in Florida, Miami. Never left anyone, never seen snow, you know, come from a lower middle-class family, right? Never really traveled, right? So first time seeing snow was up there and I was up in Connecticut for three or four years, finished that program and then started buying and holding real estate in Connecticut on the weekends, weeknights.
I think that for the guys that, you know, one of the things that came up at one of my recent masterminds that I went to is one of the guys is working a corporate job and was saying, “I’m want to quit this and do something else.” I said, “I looked back at that corporate job.” I don’t know about you, Mike, if you get started doing the real estate [inaudible 00:03:07] corporate, but I think there’s a gift in having that corporate job and then doing your side hustle, if you will, because you are super effective. I used to do more than four hours than I ever did because I had to.
Ramon:I was always very bankable. It was very easy for me to go get financing because I had that corporate job that all the banks loved, you know.
Ramon:So I think a lot of guys now, like with the mindset, they kind of like diss that job and I used to do that too. In retrospect, I would not do that. I would really be grateful for that opportunity and made me a better person and figure out how to maximize it and I think I did, but my attitude as I did it wasn’t great. So either way guys, so I did that. I bought and held a bunch of multifamily in Connecticut. Market started to shift. I got out of that, moved back to Miami. I still wanted to do the buy and hold thing, but the market didn’t allow it so I shifted, started wholesaling, started buying and reselling.
I started to buy [inaudible 00:04:05], it got caught in a couple on that down cycle. Luckily, it didn’t hurt us that much because I knew it was coming from the economic background. I just didn’t know when so when we got caught, there was a couple of properties and we could hold them through the down cycle. When they came back out, we sold them and made all that money back and then some but fortunately for us, it didn’t put us out.
Took a couple of years off, got back in with my wife. My wife, you know, quit her teaching job, she got back into the business with me and then . . . so during my mini-retirement there, I became a semi-pro beach volleyball player and I almost competed . . . a lot of guys know don’t know. I almost competed on a bodybuilding, like in terms of like just kind of, you know, because I was really focused on that.
I hired a trainer. You know, Mike, you’re hustling, you’re working hard, you’re working 60, 70, 80 hour weeks and as a market shifts, you kind of like . . . sometimes I would let go of my health, one of the things that just kind of suffered and I said, “You know what, I’m going to get this dialed in.” So I hired a great coach and we got that dialed in. And then once I got it dialed in for six months to a year, I made it a habit. I still kind of work out religiously and etc. But anyway, so got back to Miami, couldn’t buy and hold, started flipping and then retired for those two years. My wife came to work with me. We tried to build an organization.
So when I first started here in Miami, I didn’t really . . . I wasn’t keen. It was just me doing deals and kind of like that. But then I started to build a team with my wife and then again, you know, hire people, hire staff, hire acquisitions people. We did a lot of fix and flip, buy and hold, and then again as the market was low, we took all the money from the fix and flip, bought and held as the market took up. And then as the market started to overheat, late ’15, ’16 and ’17, we started selling and we started shifting more into fix and flip because that’s what the market did.
So just being able to adjust as what the market gives you. So for example, when we were fixing and flipping in 2012, ’13, you have to really give the market a nice product. But now that same product, I don’t have to make it as nice because there’s very low inventory and also even faster so I can pay more and . . . but just shifting those things and then, you know, on the low end of the market, I would do higher end houses, but at the tail end of the market, I’m doing lower-end houses because that’s where the demand is.
So you have to be strategic in terms of how you do this because you really as you evolve, Mike knows this, as you become more of a money manager and a financial sort of capital, then really a real estate investor, if you will.
Mike:Yeah man, I love everything you just said. I’m not able to have these conversations with a lot of people that understand kind of where you are in the market cycle, right? And a lot of people, especially a lot of wholesalers, like they just try to wholesale everything like they’ve got one tool and they just keep, you know, using it in all market cycles. And it’s like right now the retail market is hot. Like you said, you got to move out of some of the higher end stuff because if anything is softening up . . . you know, every market is different around the country so I hate to use a broad brush. But in most markets where things are softening up a little bit, it’s kind of like the not entry level. Entry level houses are the last to go because there’s a lot more demand for those. Right?
Ramon:And no one’s building them [crosstalk 00:06:56].
Mike:[crosstalk 00:06:56]. For a couple of years now, we’ve been doing kind of what we call “wholetailing” and we just clean them up a little bit and sell them on the retail market. But like you said, you know, five years back when we rehabbed, every rehab was all out, stainless, granite, nicest house on the street. Now we’re selling, we’re basically wholesaling into the retail market because inventory is so low, at least in Dallas where I’m at. And so yeah, you got to understand those cycles and where you’re at and just pull a different tool out of your tool belt based on where you are in the cycle, right?
Ramon:And you know, it’s weird, Mike, is I still know a lot of those guys that have like one hammer wholesaler, they never really amass any wealth. Because I love wholesale, but wholesale is a transactional tool to build capital and time to go invest somewhere else. I love the wholetail model. All we did, I mean, I think in ’17 or ’16, we did about 20 deals, made close to a million bucks. So these guys, “I want to do hundreds of deals,” why? The brain damage. We were in and out, Mike, in 90 days, 90 days in and out for money out, for money back in, 90 days.
Same thing, you take them down, you put them back on the MLS, but you have to adjust that strategy and you have to know where you’re at in the cycle, what pockets are hot. You said something that was really interesting, Mike, in terms of what price point. The best price point, there’s no new supply coming on for that low-level entry market buyers. So there is a ton of demand, no new supply. You don’t want to be in the hood, but you want to be right below where the FHA cut off is. You want to be right in that lower middle sweet spot, and you know exactly what I’m talking about.
Mike:Yeah, yeah, yeah.
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Ramon: . . . wholetail model. All we did, I mean, I think in ’17 or ’16, we did about 20 deals, made close to a million bucks. So these guys, “I want to do hundreds of deals.” Why? The brain damage. We were in and out, Mike, in 90 days, 90 days in and out for money out, for money back in, 90 days, same thing. You take them down, you put them back on the MLS, but you have to adjust that strategy and you have to know where you’re at in the cycle, what pockets are hot.
You said something that was really interesting, Mike, in terms of what price point. The best price point, there’s no new supply coming on for that low-level entry market buyer so there is a ton of demand, no new supply. You don’t want to be in the hood, but you want to be right below where the FHA cut off is. You want to be right in that lower middle sweet spot, and you know exactly what I’m talking about.
Mike:Yeah, yeah, yeah. Well, let’s talk a little bit about this idea of being a connector because I know that you are. I am. I’ve always been. I’m always that guy. We have our Investor Fuel Mastermind. Everything we do, I’m like, “Hey, I know somebody that you need to know. Let me connect you guys. You need a lender in this market, I know exactly who to use.” I just, you know, that’s something that I’ve always done. I started in high school, I was the guy throwing parties on the weekend and selling cups and stuff like that. You know, I’ve always been pulling people together and serving them and so it’s a whole different game now. But just talk about the importance of kind of being a giver and connecting people, and you know, the impact that ultimately has on your business and your life.
Ramon:I love connecting people. I love helping people. I love serving people and one of my big rules of connecting people, it’s got to be, you know, someone I’ve already used, I know, like, and trust and they’re cut from the same cloth. They play the long game. So if I can connect that team together and we do more together, one of my biggest things, how do we do more together? Because I’m clear that I don’t want to do everything. I’ve done that before and it leads to burnout. It’s frustrating and so I do what I do best and I find great people to do the rest.
And then if I can’t connect someone, I’ll find out, “Hey, you need this person,” even if it’s on my team sometimes. Like sometimes like I had a lender of mine like, “I don’t have anywhere to place your money right now. Let me connect you with this guy. I trust that guy because I put money with him and connect you two.” Like, “Why would you do that? You just lost out on all this money.” I go, “But did I, really? You’re happy, he’s happy. If I ever need a favor . . . like not that you owe me, but you guys are going to, you know?”
Mike:Yeah, no doubt.
Ramon:Yeah, it just works like, so it’s . . . and it’s initially challenging at first like because I didn’t come from an abundance background. It’s something I’ve had to really embrace and at times, Mike, it’s still . . . scarcity still shows up for me. A lot of guys, they go, “Ray, you’re just so abundant.” You should talk to my wife.
Mike:It’s a battle, it’s a battle and I agree with you. I agree with you, yeah. I did not grow up with a lot either and it’s a challenge sometimes to overcome that, but I’ve seen it work so I know the power of having that abundant mindset. So, you know, I even teach people this for new investors, a lot of times, it’s hard to find good contractors, right? But sometimes what I teach people is like, “Look, start . . . if you have a good experience with them, introduce more people to them.” And it’s counterintuitive because sometimes you’re like, “Well, I want that roofer to be available when I need them,” but the truth is, is no individual investor is going to keep one roofer busy, right? So it’s like if you send them more business . . .
So this is what’s happened to me over the years, is you know, a specialty contractors that I’m just one of many customers, whenever I send them business now and whenever I need them myself, they say, “You know what, Mike, I’m like six weeks out right now, but I can slip you in next week because you’ve been good to me.” Right? That stuff just comes back around and I’m not even saying that I do that on purpose to say I’m trying to build up a whole list of IOUs with somebody, but that’s just generally how it works.
Ramon:I mean, one of the guys that follow Eric Thomas has a good way of putting it for you and I, Mike. It’s like you build up credit in the space. You don’t know whatever you need credit but build up credit in any space. So like I’ll never come somewhere without looking at first add value. I’ll never let the . . . take something without first adding value. If I’m in a relationship, I’m going to look to out give that relationship and not just because I’m trying to play a strategy, it’s just because it’s who I am.
Mike:Yeah. And this is a small world, ultimately. If you do the right thing, it comes back around. Karma is alive and well.
Ramon:Well, that, Mike, and like we hadn’t connected until recently, but I know guys that know you and they talk well of you. You know guys that know me and talk . . . so it’s like all of a sudden like the “law of attraction,” will connect you to the people that are like, “Look this, I’m going to connect you to more people that are just like you,” because it’s how it works.
Mike:Yeah. Yeah. Let’s kind of talk a little about mindset and we’ve talked about it a little bit here, but just having the right mindset because a lot of people don’t, right? They have either a scarcity mindset or they don’t really even know why they’re doing what they’re doing, but share your thoughts on kind of how critical it is to have a great mindset and kind of how to get that clarity in your mind so that you’re kind of running on all cylinders, if you will.
Ramon:So I’m a big fan of the miracle morning. I’ve been doing that consistently. Meditating is something I’ve been doing recently. I use a program called Holosync that was given to me by Rich Dad personally, but by Robert Kiyosaki and I’ve been doing that consistently for 30 minutes to an hour a day depending on a day. I may have done maybe not one day here or there. So the meditating, the getting clear on what you want and then kind of like looking at your emotions, guys, and really figuring out what is it that’s driving that and then what you’ll find, it’s like an old rooted BS.
Like I think a lot of guys think that there’s like one part of us that’s running you. No, there’s a skinny guy, there’s a fat guy, there’s a guy who wants to be lazy, there’s a guy who wants to work, and also there’s a guy . . . like we have all these parts and really, what you’re looking for is not how to break them up or make them wrong.
When you make them wrong, guys, whatever you repress . . . this is something I kind of made up somewhere, so maybe you’ll like it. Whatever you repress somewhere will manifest somewhere else. So if you’re repressing something over here, it’s going to manifest over here and the way it’s manifesting is probably in a way that you don’t want.
So let’s say, for example, I’m going to share a personal story. I hired a psychiatrist to help me with this piece and she said, “Look, you’ve got a crazy side that wants to go out and party and have a good time, but you’re repressing that because now your identity is I’m a dad. I’m responsible.” She goes, “You need to feed that side. Just find a more elegant way to feed that. Find a more elegant way to meet that need. So go out with your wife and hang out and have a great time and go rent somewhere.” Just kind of what we’re doing tonight. Let’s go out and have a good time, and you know, so you can find another way to meet that need more elegantly.
But there’s a part of you . . . when you repress a part of you, your soul knows that you’re repressing it and then you’re going to kind of self-sabotage. So that’s been something that’s been really key for me lately. I’ve been showing it too much. I don’t know if that was [inaudible 00:15:46] at all.
Mike:We don’t edit anything, man, so you can’t take it back.
Ramon:No. I’m [crosstalk 00:15:53].
Mike:No, it’s good because a lot of people that get into this business . . . a lot of people that get into any business, right? And they’re like, “Well, now . . . ” even in corporate America, right? Like, “I have to act like somebody that I’m not now.” Let’s do that, right? Where like I have to, you know, people might’ve been listened to this show or other podcasts and say, “I want to be like that person, therefore I need to act like them.” And there’s a lot to be said for learning from other people, right, and modeling, right, but you don’t have to be like them, right?
Mike:You’re your own person and if you like . . . I think what you’re saying is if you try to be somebody you’re not, then you’re going to get burned out and that’s never going to work out anyway.
Ramon:Mike, and you know this, brother, no one can do you as well as Mike can do Mike. No one can do you as well as you can do you, so just do you. Find out who you is and double and triple and quadruple down on that and own it. And then what ends up happening is people will actually appreciate you and do more business with you because they know who you really are. And then people can tell if you’re like, you know, we spoke about this, if you’re BSing them around. They can tell if your heart’s in the right place and if it is, you’ll attract more . . . It’s when you’re trying to be someone you’re not and then you’d just being fake to yourself so you attract fake people and it just becomes a big . . . I’ve seen guys do this and it becomes a cluster.
Mike:Yeah, no doubt, no doubt, no doubt. So how do people get . . . could you talk a little bit about meditating, some exercise, things like that? What are some other ways that people can just kind of get their mind clear and I guess kind of never lose sight of what their goal is? Because a lot of times we just get caught up in the day to day and you kind of forget why we’re even doing it.
Ramon:One of the things I do is I’ll have like a weekly talk with my wife when we go back to, “Hey, let’s go back to what this is together,” right? So really having someone on your team where you know, where you have, you know, like we’ll go today and tomorrow, we’ll discuss this, “Hey, babe, what are we doing the next 90 days? What does this look like for you?” And what will usually have like five realms, you know, fun, faith, fitness, finances, so she knows what’s going on in the loan business. Like she doesn’t know everything because I’m running the business, but she knows where money is, when it’s coming in, when it’s coming. She understands that if something were ever you know, to happen, I mean, she knows what’s going on.
So, you know, and the fitness piece, so I tell her what my fitness goals are and we discuss this, and we hold each other accountable, but also what is the why behind that? Right? So like if fitness is important to you. Fitness didn’t become important to me until I attach it to a big why, and my big why was I really wanted to inspire people that that as you age, you can age gracefully. And I still play sports competitively and do certain things and it’s just like to set the example and like I’m ready to live my life to my fullest potential in that area. So I don’t really want to hear people say, “Oh, you know, you’re getting close to 40, you really can’t do that anymore.” Right? I’ll still go and it’s not like I’m proving you wrong. It’s like human body, we’re capable of so much more by living to our fullest potential. And I think that’s in all areas. Find out what that why is for you and it’s different for somebody else.
Like being a great dad. One of the things that changed my life is, you know, being a dad. That first year, I felt like I had missed that whole thing with the baby because my wife exited the business. She was the COO, she exited the business, and then I took over her role and you know, after a year, I was like, “Babe, I’m not really enjoying this,” so I just kind of gave it all up, started doing the loan business and it was a transition. But what showed up is now I have, you know, my phenomenal time with my daughter, I’m present with her, I’m an amazing dad and to the level that I want to be, to the level of dad that I want to be. I’m not comparing myself to anybody else. I’m saying I need four or five hours with her a week of just awesome her time and then I need time on the weekend of just here and me time. That’s what I want.
And that’s how to show up for me and I’m really happy and every day we kind of go to the park and we do . . . like so . . . and again, it goes back to unique ability and figuring out what you guys want, you know, as far as your listeners. If you guys are comparing yourself to somebody else, comparison is the worst form of scarcity, right? Because you’re coming from a scarce place. Now, the only reason that I think the universe, God, whatever you want to call it, made a comparison is so that it could inspire a desire in you to get something but not, “Hey, Mike is better,” right? If it is, “Hey, I want that car, or I want that house,” great, but it’s not . . . you’re not. There’s no comparison. You’re unique. You’re a unique soul.
Mike:Yeah. Let’s talk about that, the uniqueness thing. Let’s just say there’s two people listening to this show right now. We’ve got some veteran folks, maybe some friends of ours that are listening right now want to hear what we’re talking about. Then we’ve got some newer folks that are new to the business and trying to understand this.
And I’d like to talk to the newer folks about your unique ability, right? You focus on what you’re good at. And it’s hard because when you’re new in this business, a lot of times, you might be a one-man or one-woman band for a little while as you’re getting things started so you got to do things that you don’t like to do. But eventually, you got to find your way out of that because if you’re doing stuff that you’re not good at or that you hate, your business is suffering, no doubt, and you’re suffering too, right? Like you have to do crap that you don’t want to do.
So let’s first talk to the new person and say a little bit about what that means and how you find a way out of those roles that you don’t like and you’re not good at or both.
Ramon:So I’m a big fan of initially, first, like leaning into that. I see a lot of guys now in the space, you know, that starting because the industry has evolved, Mike. When you and I started, it was a lot of mom and pops, but now there’s like more legitimate companies or organizations, right? So it has become a little more challenging. There’s still a ton of opportunities if you can be better, right? At the same time, if you’re new and you’re starting out, I’m a big fan of, look, you’ve got to put your nose to the grindstone and learn some of these things and do it in a positive attitude knowing that you won’t do it forever.
But if you’re coming from a negative place and you’re just trying to get it done and you’re not creating a process or a system as you do it, the truth is I can take Mike Hambright’s system and put it into my business and it may not work the way I want it to work. Guys, you have to create your own system. Even at running comps, I have a way with running comps here. This is how we do it here. This is how I like it. You know, this is my flavor. I have a little bit of cinnamon. Sure, I can take Mike’s [inaudible 00:21:35] and use his system, but I have to add my flavor to it, guys. Your business and your system have to come through your unique voice. So as you’re working jobs that you don’t “like,” learn to like them and learn to create systems in them so you can then ultimately delegate it and then they do it the way you want it done.
You’re not advocating. For years, I advocated to someone, I gave it to somebody like, “Here, handle this,” and it would always blow up in my face. So it wasn’t until I took it in-house, loved the process, created process, laid systems and held them accountable, but I made my own process. I wasn’t going to say, “Hey, go look at this “fortune builders thing” and copy their system,” or “Go look at Mike Hambright’s system and copy it.” No, this copy and paste shit does not work. You can certainly leverage and certainly “shortcut” a little bit but it’s got to be unique to you guys. The business you’re creating if you’re new, is going to be a reflection of the owner.
Mike:No doubt, no doubt. And the problem is, is if you allow somebody else to define how those things should be done, then those people leave and then what do you do? Like you got to say, “Well, you figure it out now. Here’s how they used to do it, but you just figure it out.” So unless you kind of build . . . That’s one of the problems with our business. I know you came from a corporate background. I did too. Like if there’s anything that that instilled in me, it’s the need for systems and processes so that you have a real business.
Like a lot of us, a lot of real estate investors, they don’t really have a business. Like if they leave or they step out, the business just ends, right? Nobody knows how to do anything. And the problem is, is without building those kinds of standard systems and processes and in knowing how to do each thing, almost having like a, you know, we use some cloud-based tools now, but checklists for exactly how to do things or here’s steps exactly, the videos, whatever it is, without that structure, it’s all in your head and the business will live and die with you.
Ramon:I learned it from Ed Mylett [SP], which is a guy you should follow, if you haven’t heard of a guy named Ed Mylett. He says, “Don’t scale chaos,” and that’s what I see a lot of guys doing. They’re scaling chaos. And you ultimately it’s kind of you feel like the road runner that kind of looks at that box and like the whole thing in the whole box blows up, you know, like, you know, so just again, be intentional with what you’re doing. And it’s tough, guys. I mean, it’s . . . I’m not going to say it’s tough. It’s definitely a process because as you’re building that, you also have to generate revenue, right?
Ramon:So embrace it because, Mike, I don’t know about you, but sometimes I miss that part, man, of the hustle and then the doing the deal like and then like working on a system at night. You know what I mean?
Mike:Yeah, no doubt, no doubt.
Ramon:Meeting with a seller. I missed that stuff at times. So embrace it.
Mike:Yeah, yeah. Hey, man, so let’s turn the tables a little bit. Let’s talk about the unique ability for some of our friends, some of our veteran folks, people that might be listening right now, or people that maybe they’re not our friends yet, but they’re people that do a fair bit of volume, because I feel like what happens is a lot of people still are not focusing on their unique ability. They’re still doing a lot of things in the business they shouldn’t be doing or there’s this stigma in the industry that you must only be a real investor if you are in the trenches every day. And therefore people end up doing stuff that like . . . We all aspire to run a business that will kind of run itself, that you sleep at night and you’ve got money coming in. Like we all say that early on. But then when people get there, they’re like, “Oh, you’re not real anymore because you’re not like in the trenches digging with the rest of us.” And it’s like it’s weird, right?
It’s like poor people will bitch about rich people but then rich people, they don’t . . . rich people will say, “Man, you don’t see how hard I worked to get here.”
Mike:Kind of arrived and then they’re not cool anymore, you know?
Mike:But just talk about that to the more veteran folk that . . .
Ramon:Yeah, definitely. I mean, I think, you know, when you . . . as you were talking, Mike, I was thinking of a quote by Jay Z, he was saying that . . . he had a meme, like, “Hey, I worked this hard to be the same,” right? Like who does that? Who puts in 10, 12 years of work to come out the same? Who goes to the gym and puts in for 10 years to look the same as what you did? It’s silly. So in terms of unique ability there’s a book, it’s a concept by Dan Sullivan. There’s a book called “Unique Ability 2.0,” you can pick that up. And it walks you through an exercise, it’s really three things, StrengthFinders, Kolbe, the Kolbe Index as well as . . . the best thing that I . . . the one thing I got the most value from that book was really identifying my peer group and then asking them, “Hey guys, what are the things that you guys see that I just do naturally that I may not be aware of?”
Usually, unique ability is something you just do naturally and you don’t even know whether you’re good at it, you just kind of do it. So like for me, a lot of them were market cycles, being able to like walk through a deal. So I can look at a deal, start to finish and see all the headaches and pitfalls of the deals and kind of see the exit. Like, I can kind of just play that game. I thought everyone could do it, right? And my wife was always saying, “Ray, no one thinks like you do.” Like they don’t think like that.
Ramon:But I thought it was a . . . So I started to create checklists and systems so I can have somebody else to do that. Being a connector, coaching people and really like telling people the truth, the divine truth. Like really knowing intuition, like I just know this guy’s . . . something is here, something is off and I can cut to the core of that message of like, “This is what’s off. You’re saying it’s this and you’re saying it’s that, but here, you’re just a complicated person and you to feel significant, you do complicated deals and now you’re stressed out because revenue is not coming in. But really, the basis of it is that you want to be complicated and you want to be significant, that’s what’s going on.”
And so as you can cut . . . and usually, you know, what the weird thing, Mike, is that whatever you’re coaching someone else on, there’s usually something in you too. Like it’s weird. Like it’s . . . I’m just showing you my unique ability and how I got to it and once you guys focus and triple and quadruple down and you just get better and better at it and then you’ll find that thing. You’re just easier in your life.
So like for example, one of my unique ability I used to think was being an operator. I was dead wrong. I didn’t like managing people. I didn’t like managing process for systems. It was something that I “had to do” and I said, “You know what? I don’t have to do that anymore. Now I can find great operators, invest in them, make sure that they know what they’re doing, they’re better at it than I do and I just bankroll them.”
Mike:Yeah. That’s awesome. That’s awesome. Let’s talk a little bit about . . . Let’s kind of take this to another level of about people that feel like they’re doing things that they have to do, but you know enough now to know that you . . . because you shifted, you just said, “Hey, I’m not going to do that anymore.” Like not a lot of people do that in their business because they’re like, “Well, I have to do it. Like I don’t have another option.” The thing is, is like we all have options, right? A lot of times, we don’t realize that we have options until somebody gets really sick or a key person in your business leaves or something happens to them. Right? You kind of wait until something really bad happens to realize that, “Wow, we could do things differently. Yeah, it’s not as hard as I thought.”
But back to just kind of like your . . . I hate to use this cheesy cliché all the time, but like your why, like why you do this. You know, sometimes people don’t think it’s okay to stop or pause or shift gears or whatever. In this market right now, there’s two things going on, two big things going on. A lot of people want to get started in the business and it’s harder than it has been, but there’s people that get in and they’re just crushing it right now and that always inspires me about the old veteran guys that are like, “Oh, it’s so hard right now. I don’t know how anybody’s being successful.” And then you have these new people that don’t have bad habits that are crushing it. But let’s just kind of talk to these two people again of the newer people, how to stay focused on why they’re doing it and some of the veteran folks, don’t forget why you got into this business, right? Let’s talk a little about why they’re doing it and kind of just basically back to their why, like what is this all for?
Ramon:Yeah, we’ll talk about why for both, but one of the things that when you said before or against the why, you said that I really find unique about what you said, Mike, because it was a great point is, I think that guys like us, Mike, and other guys and ladies that are listening, however they’re making income, becomes their identity. Like I am a real estate fix and flipper. I am a wholesaler. And you have to box yourself in. And, you know, if you ask like any spiritual person or any leader at a high level, your soul didn’t come here to do one job for the rest of your life. I mean, that’s what’s harder. Like this idea that you have one job and that’s all you do for the rest of your life and you don’t have [Bob 00:29:32] and as your family changes, and as you age, like you don’t want to do something different, that’s silly.
There’s no mastery in that. You don’t want to grow. You to want to contribute. You just want to the same thing over and over again. But we do feel like we’re trapped because the way we make revenue becomes our identity. It’s like this is who I am. And then you start getting caught up in this self-worth equals net worth bullshit and it’s just, it’s a vicious cycle, man.
Mike:Yeah, I think some of it is it’s just, it’s easy to . . . A lot of people don’t like change. They’re like sort of to say, “This is what I do,” and I’m not saying that I’ve got it all figured out either for sure.
Mike:But I kind of realized fairly early on because people would say, “Oh, you’re a rehabber or you do this or you’re . . . ” even in real estate. I’m like, look a real estate is . . . there’s not a lot that I do outside of real estate right now, honestly. But I’ll answer them and I say, “I’m in the opportunity business. I’m in the opportunity business. I find ways to create value and it could be outside of real estate. It just happens to be in real estate now.” I don’t really have any plans to move out of real estate, but I think just kind of that it’ll make you feel more comfortable.
People are listening to this right now and they feel like they’re trapped being a wholesaler or a rehabber or a lender or not being a lender, whatever it is. It’s like I think if you just kind of step back and say, “Look, I’m in the opportunity business. I buy low, I sell high, I add value, and therefore I can make money from that,” then I think it’ll give you some breathing room to say that, “Maybe I don’t have to do things the way I’ve been doing them for so long.
Ramon:Great. I think the biggest things, one of my key insights is I journal. Journaling huge, guys, in terms of mindset because you get to journal it out is you’re unique . . . Your wealth plan should be in alignment with the unique ability and it should feel good as you’re doing it, guys. You can’t have a happy outcome to a shit road, so it’s struggle, struggle, struggle, struggle, struggle. Guys, it doesn’t make it like, I just learned this recently and I’m like, “Damn it, you can’t have a road that leads to happiness if it’s . . . the whole road is filled with struggle. And enjoying the journey . . . The journey is the quest should be joyful and the results should be expansion and growth. And guys, freedom is your natural basis. You’re chasing this thing called freedom, but what happens with guys like you and me, Mike, and it still happens is now you think you had to go get this freedom and now all these other emotions have to show up and you’re like, “Oh, fuck.” Right?
The truth is you were born free. It’s an illusion you’re chasing anyway. I don’t know if you want to speak to that, but.
Mike:Yeah, no doubt. I mean, I think about the . . . I don’t know if there’s a short way to say this but I thought about that reason just from people that I know that don’t really have a lot, but they’re happier than some people that I know that have a lot. It was because there was so much struggle, they were so caught up in the struggle to get there that they never really enjoyed it and now that they’re there, kind of air quote here, it’s hard to enjoy it too, right? Because they didn’t enjoy . . .
Ramon:Mike, I’m one of those dudes. I don’t know if you kind of like, it was a struggle and you get there and now that because everything is a struggle, but you don’t really know how to enjoy . . . you don’t really know . . . You’re kind of like [inaudible 00:32:28]
Mike:Yeah, man, I struggle with that personally.
Ramon:Yeah. So again, this is kind of like the more experienced guys will have this challenge. Some of the newer guys I would say when you identify your why to tie it back to your question is, guys, enjoy it. Like so even the things you don’t like, find something that you can enjoy, tie it to a bigger outcome. You know, find a way to enjoy the process because you can’t have a great outcome to shit process.
Mike:Yeah. You know what’s interesting, I have a buddy of mine, Matt Andrews. I don’t know if you know Matt. Matt’s a great guy. He’s one of the founding members of my Investor Fuel Mastermind to just highly respect this guy. Everybody loves when Matt comes and shares the story because it’s very inspirational, but he didn’t . . . what I’m about to say here is, I’m kind of deriving from what he said, but he said every year he does a SWOT analysis on his life. Like how good of a father am I? How good of a husband am I? Spiritually, how have I done? And whether it’s a SWOT analysis or a scorecard, you know, in real estate investing we’ve got . . . I’ll just set it around here somewhere, but every week we meet, we have a scorecard, like how’s our business performing?
And in our personal lives often, we never have that. We don’t have like how am I doing? And it could be like a happiness, like just score yourself every week on a scale of 1 to 10, how happy am I? And I’m not doing this, by the way. I’m kind of talking to myself right now telling me what I should do maybe, right?
Ramon:I agree, man.
Mike:But it’s like if you said, “Hey, on a scale of 1 to 10, how happy are you this week?” And you see over time, I just keep putting down like fours and fives and it’s like something’s wrong. Something’s wrong here, you know? Just like in your business and your business, we say, “Hey, man, I’m not at an eight. If I’m not at an eight or higher, we’ve got to do something.” But in your personal life, it’s like, why not do the same thing? Right? How good of a father have I been this week? How much time have I spent with my family this week? Start to kind of measure those things, just have a scorecard. Nobody needs to know that you have it, have it in your back pocket. But when you’re putting those numbers in and they’re low, something’s broken. Right?
Ramon:And you know, what’s weird, Mike, is I love what you said is a lot of times, it’s like we think, you know, whenever I talk to guys, you think that the person that doesn’t relate to the business. Dude, if I’m not right with my wife and we’re having an argument, there’s no way I can generate revenue and kind of be at the highest vibrational frequency to go do that and perform at the highest. There’s no way. It’s like I just suffer all around. If I’m not connected with my daughter and I haven’t seen her in a long time, we haven’t had one on one time, dude, I’m miserable.
So we live in this kind of harmony, if you will, and each harmony is different for everybody. Everybody’s music is different and really like your soul knows if you’re not living in one area. So kind of like what would make your soul happy? The question I’ve been asking myself lately and giving myself permission, like a lot of times, guys . . . I don’t know if you struggle with this, Mike, in the past I haven’t given myself permission to like go do that. “Hey, go . . . ” you know, whatever it is, buy yourself something. Whatever that is that would make your soul want something and when you deprive it, it just affects everything else.
Mike:Yeah, yeah. That’s awesome, man. Hey, thanks for spending time with us today.
Ramon:Yeah, man. Anytime and I love that you’re a great giver and it was more of a spiritual piece, but I think it’s real. I think a lot of guys are talking about it and . . .
Mike: It’s funny like we can’t . . . you can’t . . . from my perspective, we can’t talk about this stuff enough. I mean, we can talk about tactics of real estate investing, which we’ve done. By the way, this is episode number 462 so we talked about every topic at this point for the most part.
Mike:But this type of stuff, this is why we all get into this business. So my perspective is you can’t, we really can’t talk about this enough because this is what we’re all shooting for, is to live a better life. Sometimes we just forget it for a little while.
Ramon:And the weird thing is if you’re not in a good place emotionally, mentally, spiritually, you can’t implement any strategy at a high level anyway. Your strategy is a lot less effective.
Mike:No doubt, no doubt. Ramon, if folks want to learn more about you or track you down somehow, where do they go?
Ramon:I’m on Facebook. I was doing a Facebook Live every week so I started getting back on track. You can follow me at Facebook at Ramon Gonzales. You can follow me on Instagram at the official Ramon Gonzalez there. And what else? We do a mastermind once a quarter. We were doing it once a quarter. We just kind of slowed down for the lifestyle for the summer. So that’s something I got [fan 00:36:25]. I said, “Why am I doing this once a quarter? I don’t know that I really am committed to those ones in a quarter. What I have to prove to somebody? I don’t have anything to prove to anybody. I’ll do the next one mastermind when I’m ready.” So whenever that is, I’ll be. That’ll be.
So I do masterminds. I was doing them once a quarter, I don’t know when the next one will be and for right now I’m just enjoying life. I’m taking a month off here in July to go hang on the beach and just enjoy time with my daughter and my family, man.
Mike:That’s awesome, man. Well, we’ll have links down below for folks that are listening, if you can write it down, how to get to Ramon. And then we’ll also add some links back to some of the books we mentioned, “Unique Ability,” “Miracle Morning,” with Hal Elrod, good book too. So we’ll add some links down below here in the show notes. Great to see you, my friend.
Ramon:Great to connect with you and I’m excited to develop a relationship with you and if there’s anything I could do to help and serve you, Mike, you or your listeners, I’m here for you, brother.
Mike:I appreciate that. I appreciate that. Everybody, this is episode number 462 with Ramon Gonzalez. Great stuff here. I hope you pick something up here. We talk about topics like this every once in a while, but probably not often enough, so I thoroughly enjoyed it and I hope you did too. If you haven’t yet, please subscribe to us on iTunes, Stitcher Radio, Google Play, even YouTube, wherever you watch us or listen to us at. Of course, all of our shows over 1500 different podcasts now, you can find on flipnerd.com. So if you could, subscribe, give us a little love with a positive rating, we’d appreciate it. That’s the fuel that keeps us going. So everybody, have a great week. We’ll see you on the next one.
Ramon:See you, guys.
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