Take the Distressed and Make it Better

I love every holiday, no matter its origin, religious preference, or the day on which it falls in any calendar year. And yes, birthdays are holidays too — even if I don’t get to take off work. Life is good, and these holiday days can give us an excuse to do something great and craft an exciting world for ourselves and others.

One person that takes the distressed and makes it better is Jake Harris. Jake takes distressed commercial real estate and fixes it up, making it livable for someone. Unfortunately, early in Jake’s career, he got a little overextended — okay, a lot overextended. But what went wrong for him? When we talked back in May this year, Jake broke down his journey into a bite-sized piece that we can learn from and follow.

Jake Harris had some great mentors — in the form of Robert Kiyosaki, Tim Ferris, and GoBundance that helped him be able to get back on track. You’ll want to listen to this podcast.

One of my favorite sayings from Jake Harris is that everyone is crazy once you get to know them. Seriously, I repeat this to myself often, and I’ve expanded the concept to people, places, and things. Whenever I see something broken down, whether it’s property or a person — I think cray-cray — and enjoy the experience. Jake and I met at a Front Row Dad’s Retreat, and I learned some of that “enjoy life” attitude from Jake.

In the last year, Jake Harris has written a book: Catching Knives: A Guide to Investing in Distressed Commercial Real Estate. Take a look — Here. Jake and I both wrote books during the pandemic because of the realization that we had a little time to squeeze in something we hoped would make a difference to our relationships — like family and friends.

Most of the Time — We Just Don’t Know What We Don’t Know

One of the most incredible things that I learned from doing my podcasts and then thinking back and writing about my friends is that there are some mighty big lessons to be learned in my life. Also, if I watch carefully, I can learn and understand some things — maybe by osmosis, and avoid a few “life-whacks” that we all get to experience.

 I Think I’m Smarter

When you’ve had a lot of success as I have, or as Jake has, sometimes — if you’re not careful — you may begin to think you are smarter than someone else. For example, Jake Harris ran into Robert Kiyosaki and said to himself that he thought he was smarter than Robert and all of his other advisors. Robert told Jake that a crash was coming — but Jake thought, “you guys don’t know that I’m just so smart.”

After the crash came and Jake was in financial trouble, but he went back to grad school and learned what he needed to know for his business. So he got a degree in international real estate and finance to help double down and give a gift to himself.

Goals Determine Our Direction — But Systems Bring Repeated Success

Jake is really clear on the multiplier effect, how, why, and how-tos. He helps people begin to see how life can snowball on itself for the good or the not-so-good. We both feel that one of the most incredible things we contribute to society is the ability to be service-oriented in our lives and our companies.

Ramifications of Money Printing

We talked about ramifications that are coming to our country with all of the money printing that has been going on. We asked each other questions about how all of this artificial economy can hold up when the government stops printing the money and how this is a time like we’ve never seen before.

Where do You Come Up With Experience?

One of the ideas that I like from Jake is that we can gain many years of experience through reading. He pointed out that we need to ask ourselves if we are basing our judgments on our own experiences of maybe 15 years? Or are we wise enough to do a deep-dive study and develop much sounder judgments from other people’s experiences in the market?

Jake brought up a sobering thought:

A national bank kind of component was a roll-out in the early 20s that led to the roaring 20s and then the Great Depression.

I forgot about that thought until I listened to my podcast with Jake again today — and I’m glad I did. Jake mentioned going back and reading Ray Dalio’s book, Principles. I’ve read this book and I, too, can recommend it to you.

Jake also brought up how helpful Tim Ferriss’ book 4-Hour Workweek — which is totally NOT about slacking off to four hours of work in a week. Instead, this revolutionary book is about ten times-ing everything in your life and using that leverage to build your life and how to make everything work.

Be Cautious — But Not Fearful

I have learned and want to always think about the fact that we have to be very cautious, but to make money, we must not be fearful.

Jake has helped me see that we all put on that “normal” facade and “I’m a regular guy,” but that we’re all pretty crazy.

Find Your Genius

But as I like to point out to everyone — crazy or not — I believe that everyone is blessed with God-Given-Gifts and that you can tap into those gifts if you will. If you take a moment to think about your gifts, skills, and talents — and own them — you will find your genius.

When you find your genius, you will be able to get into the flow and time will disappear, and you’ll be doing what you were created to do.

If I Could Give a Gift to You

So — that’s what I’d like to give all of you this holiday season. I’m metaphorically sprinkling you with the magic of this season and asking you to take time out of your busy life and think about what you are grateful for, and what are your God-Given-Gifts? How are you sharing those gifts and serving others around you?

Find someone you can lift in some way — and help them. Look around and ask who has picked you up in the past? That might be someone in your life or someone in a book, but especially at this time of the year, we can pause and be grateful.

Image Credit: Ron Lach; Pexels; Thank you!

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