I think everybody needs a strong why to get out of bed in the morning bristling with energy and ready to tackle the obstacles of the day. Here’s Yeti’s why i get out of bed in the morning.
When I was younger and single I used to want to spend all my time on beaches in Southeast Asia surrounded by good-looking young women. I ran my own bar businesses in those days and was fortunate to slop into a decent amount of money for my very few expenses. I was saving a ton. I drove a hand-me-down 15-year-old Hyundai Accent called “The Gorila” by the long line of owners (later I’ll post about just that car as it’s a story unto itself). Thanks to making cash, saving, and living frugally, I was able to indulge my dream and live on the beach in Southeast Asia years ago.
Fast forward a decade and now with a wife and two kids I suffered the creep in expenses and again want financial independence. I love working and will always hustle (with mini-retirements built in every decade or so) so I’m not trying to avoid hard work. However, I don’t want to bust it just to make ends meet. The hard work has to have a purpose. I want to build something and give back to the community. During this Covid-19 debacle I was able to make a deal with my Chinese suppliers (I run a small Amazon seller’s business utilizing my contacts from over a decade in Asia) to get a good price on surgical masks. Just last week, we donated them to local NYC hospitals, which was really fulfilling. I learned a lot about the obstacles in getting PPE to the right destinations. I want to be able to do more of that kind of work going forward. Helping people. It starts with my nuclear family, then radiates to family and friends, then community. When I can help other people I feel more complete and my own personal success just seems to come along for the ride.
When I ran RAndy’s Bar in Seoul from 2009-2014 I was struck by how successful the bar became almost effortlessly. Sure it was done on the backs of hard work like getting it physically built and the profit from each beer sold, but emotionally it was done by taking a bunch of expats from different cultures and language backgrounds and putting them in one spot with one common goal, feeling accepted for who they each were as individuals. That’s why the bar was so successful. The magic sauce wasn’t the alcohol, it was the emotion. It wasn’t the mixology of the drinks, it was the mixology of the people’s feelings. I had accidentally put myself in a position to offer a lot of people a second home and that’s what they needed. During one holiday celebration I looked around to see dozens of people from different places laughing and chatting and falling in love. I The success stemmed from each customer feeling like they belonged.
All of us in Real Estate who rent to tenants are in that same business of satisfying people’s feelings and providing where there’s a need. It’s not just types of countertops, kinds of flooring, and numbers of bedrooms. Like the Compass slogan says, we are helping people literally “find their place in the world”. There’s something incredibly gratifying about this process. I know it was long-winded why, but that’s why I get up in the morning.