I was in a taxi headed from Miami Beach to the Airport—and sitting next to me was a billionaire I just met the day before.
We were flying to Puerto Rico where he lived and I had no idea whether this guy was an incredible human being who enjoyed my company and just wanted to continue the fun…
…or a raving lunatic getting ready to murder me as soon as we touched down.
My rationale for going: “Fuck it! You only live once.”
I was reminded of a quote from the movie, Rounders, with Matt Damon.
His character, Mike McDermott, said, “You can’t lose what you don’t put in the middle—but you can’t win much either.”
Needless to say, I went for the ride.
But before we get into the details, let me give you the back story. This is important.
PART ONE (1/3): HOW I ENDED UP IN A TAXI WITH A BILLIONAIRE
It was around 1pm the day before and I was walking down famous Collins Ave headed towards my job at Hyde Beach Pool Bar in Miami Beach.
At the time I was a server/bartender, and I fucking hated it. Don’t get me wrong, being surrounded by half naked sexy women and making $300-$700 a day sounds delightful!
(Photos: Me with long hair “working” during Miami Winter Music Conference)
But I’d been working in the service industry for over 10 years at this point and I knew I was meant for more than making drinks and serving people food 8hrs a day, 6 days a week.
Plus, I hated taking orders from power hungry managers, especially when I knew I was born to be an entrepreneur and run my own shit.
For years I had been reading self-help books like Rich Dad Poor Dad, 4 Hour Workweek, and How to Win Friends and Influence People, which are epic books. But I still felt like I wasn’t progressing, and worst of all, I didn’t know why.
My dream was to break free from the shitty corporate world, start my own online business, and begin traveling the world full-time! Yet, here I was still working for another corporation, stuck in one place with no other perceivable options besides finding another J.O.B. somewhere else.
I was miserable and frustrated, “When am I gonna catch a break?!?!”
After arriving at work, my first two customers of the day were two intelligent and spirited middle-aged women on vacation laying by the pool. It was pretty early and the pool was dead, so I spent a good chunk of time chatting with them.
After a short while, those women ended up meeting another man who we’ll call, “Justin.” Over the next few hours, we all got to know each other better. And by the end of the day, Justin invited the women and I to dinner.
Initially I was hesitant because my first impression of this 50+ year old man excitedly jumping around in the pool like a middle-schooler was that this dude was crazy af.
Plus, the women were a bit older for my taste, so I wasn’t really into it. However, for some odd reason, my intuition kept whispering to me, “JUSSST GOOOOO!!!”
So, eventually, I accepted the invite.
Later on that night at the first restaurant, we were conversing while enjoying cheese and wine. I asked Justin if he ever considered investing in Elon Musk’s company, Tesla.
This was back in 2013, so not as many people were talking about Elon and what he was doing to change the world. I believe the stock at the time was $15.
He replied, “I already invested 4 million.”
(As of today, the price of Tesla is $358 per share… more than 20x his original investment!)
As you can imagine, this caught my attention.
At first I thought this guy was just some shmo trying to impress a few ladies. But little did I know, he was incredibly intelligent and clearly successful. Everything I questioned him on, he had a relevant and insightful answer for. This guy was no dummy.
As we got ready to make moves to the next restaurant for dinner, they all put it on me to decide where we were gonna eat next.
Naturally, I chose Dolce (Dole-chay), one of the best upscale Italian restaurants in Miami which I just got fired from a week earlier for getting into an argument with the GM.
As the host was seating us, we walked right past my old GM and another manager. I smiled with a wide grin on my face, but for some odd reason they didn’t seem very happy to see me.
We sat down and enjoyed a feast for a king—five mouth watering courses—while laughing our asses off over endless bottles of fine wine.
I remember thinking to myself, “These strangers are fantastic!”
Then Justin went to pay the bill.
But since he lost his wallet the day before and his temporary card had reached it’s credit limit, his card was declined. This seemed fishy to me at first, but as you’ll soon learn, he wasn’t lying.
After a while of him trying to sort things out on the phone with the credit card company, I offered to pay for the $400+ dinner so we could continue enjoying our time together and not let money defuse the momentum of the night.
After leaving Dolce, we all headed back across the street to Justin’s penthouse at SLS Hotel. But come to find out, after taking the elevator upstairs, his room key wouldn’t work.
So we headed back downstairs to the front desk, and sure enough, they told him he had an outstanding balance of $3k for the penthouse because his card was declined.
Since his credit card still wasn’t working, they kept hassling him and refused to let him into the room despite the fact that, at this point, it was 12:30 in the morning and him and his three guests had been waiting for over a half hour in the lobby.
Mind you, he’d been staying at the hotel for over a week at a rate of $4k/night since it was during one of the busiest times of the year—Winter Music Conference.
As the front desk clerk continued to hassle him, I upsettingly blurted out, “So interesting how when you have money, it’s yes sir and all smiles. But the moment you run out of money, they immediately kick you out on the street.”
I had previously told the dude at the front desk I worked there, because Hyde Beach Pool Bar is connected to SLS Hotel.
This was a mistake.
He looked at me oddly, then walked into the back room. A moment later the hotel manager walked out, pulled me into the back room, and we started going at it.
I said, “What if this happened to you—wouldn’t you want the hotel to be sympathetic and compassionate to your situation for the time being so you could enjoy the rest of your night or at least get to bed?!”
My comment infuriated her, so she called security on me and demanded that I give her my name.
I refused, knowing that it was my job on the line. Then quickly walked out of the back room and straight out of the hotel, leaving the situation and everyone behind.
But then I thought, “They have cameras, so you’re already fucked—you’re gonna get fired regardless.”
So, figuring I had nothing to lose, I tried to make my way back into the hotel to grab Justin. But at that point, security had already been informed and refused to let me back in the hotel.
I didn’t have Justin’s or any of the women’s numbers and no way to get in contact with them. So I assumed that was the end of that story.
But just as I was about to leave and head home, to my surprise, Justin bursts out of the main entrance of the hotel with a bottle of Dom Perignon held high and excitedly yells to me, “LETS GO TO THE BEACH!!!”
Justin had solved his credit card situation and was let back into his penthouse. But at this point the women had already bounced, so we headed to the beach, which was a few hundred yards behind the hotel.
On the walk there, Justin says to me, “No one has ever stood up for me like that in my life. Thank you, my friend!”
When we got to the shore, we sat down, popped the bottle of Dom, and continued to drink and converse.
Out of no where, he drunkenly exclaims, “I’m a Billionaire!!! … With a capital B!!”
Although it’s a pretty shocking statement to hear, at this point in my life, status or wealth alone did not impress me. And this is still true today. Nevertheless, the outburst was duly noted.
We were pretty hammered at this point, so we began to stretch out on the sand. And before we knew it, we were both passed out.
Next thing I know, I wake up, look to my left, and see two dark shadows quickly walking away from us. I look down and see that my wallet is just sitting there on the sand—instead of nice and secure in my back pocket where I left it.
I check to see if anything’s missing. Sure enough, all my cash is missing—about $200 bucks.
I wake Justin up, and after patting himself down, he realizes his iPhone is missing too. So, as I’m sure you’ve figured out by this point—we got robbed.
As we walk back to the front of the hotel, he tells me that as repayment for losing my job over speaking out in his favor, he wants to fly me out to Puerto Rico where he lives so we can continue partying, and that he’d cover any bills or expenses I may have by giving me $5k/month—about what I was making working at Hyde Beach Pool Bar.
After some hesitation, I agree, so he instructs me to meet him outside the hotel at 11am. It was 4am at this point.
I thought it seemed crazy and too good to be true, but I knew there was only one way to find out. I went home and quickly packed a few shirts, a pair of jeans, some socks, underwear, and a toothbrush.
I was sort of dating an Argentinian girl named, Veronica, who I met at a hostel when I first moved to Miami. She had just moved to the states and didn’t really have a place to stay, so I let her stay with me in my studio apartment on the beach until she could find her own spot.
The next morning I explained the story to her and let her know she could have my apartment rent free for the next 3 months or until she left on her next adventure.
She was pretty shocked by the whole situation, but I had told her from the beginning that I wasn’t looking for a relationship because I wanted to travel and not be held down by anything or anyone.
After sleeping for a few hours, I grabbed my duffle bag, kissed her goodbye, and headed to SLS Hotel where Justin and I decided to meet up.
I got to the Hotel at 10:55am.
I still wasn’t allowed on the premises, so I waited nervously on the sidewalk in front of the hotel with my fingers crossed.
So, as expected, I figured it was too good to be true and decided to head back home.
But, right as I went to turn around, Justin walks out the front entrance of the hotel with a big smile on his face and waves me to come in.
For some reason the security guards didn’t bother me since I was with him, so we took the elevator up to his penthouse and he immediately called his travel agent.
He booked two tickets back to San Juan, Puerto Rico, and before I knew it, we were in a cab on our way to the airport.
I was experiencing so many emotions, I didn’t know what to make of it all. All I knew was that this was gonna be big!
I texted a few friends to fill them in on what was going on. But out of fear, most of them thought I was crazy for trusting this random dude, which made me grow nervous.
“IS this a horrible idea??? IS this crazy???”
When we got to the airport and were waiting for our flight, I looked at Justin with suspicion and said, “Why are you doing this? Why are you taking me with you?”
He laughed and said, “Don’t worry—I’m not gay! We just have a good connection and I feel an energy between us, so that’s it.”
This was really all the assurance I needed because I knew what he meant. There WAS a connection between us. So he was doing what I had been doing for the last few years—going with the flow by having faith that my heart and intuition would guide me in the right direction, which once I started doing, made all the difference in my life.
PART TWO (2/3): PARTYING WITH A BILLIONAIRE
When we arrived in San Juan, his personal driver picked us up and we headed back to his mansion, which was an hour away in one of the wealthiest cities in Puerto Rico… Humacoa.
At this point I was sold, “Okay, this dude is legit.”
The next day we took his yacht to St. Thomas in the Caribbean, reserved a slot at a local marina, and ended up partying our asses off all day everyday for the next week. It was almost too much to keep up with, even for me. But this dude had endless energy.
Come to find out, Justin had just got divorced and was on a longterm vacation to get his mind off things.
And although we had also discussed me coming to work for him, what I was really doing for him was serving as a good wing man.
One night we went to a local strip club on the island and ended up bringing three of the strippers back to the yacht to party with us until the next morning as we all laid on the top of the yacht watching the glorious sunrise overcome the ocean’s horizon.
After leaving St. Thomas, we headed to San Juan Resort and stayed there for close to a week.
One day when we were headed to the pool, I told him I had to use the bathroom first and I’d meet him there.
When I met back up with him, he was already in the pool partying with a large group of beautiful women celebrating a bachelorette party.
Mind you, Justin was in his early 50’s, yet he had the spunky energy of a teenager and all the women we met instantly gravitated towards him even though, initially, they had no idea he was wealthy.
He ended up ordering something like 15 bottles of Don Perignon—one for every person in the pool—and we all had a glorious time spraying champagne on each other and splashing around in the pool.
Later on, he invited all the women from the pool party to dinner, so the party continued into the night.
After dinner, we headed to the lobby and were stunned by a guy and his crew who were randomly jamming out in the lobby using the Hotel’s grand piano and other instruments they had brought.
Come to find out, that guy was Bob Marley’s son, Ziggy Marley.
Justin asked Ziggy if he could treat him and his crew to a late night bite at one of the local restaurants. They were all inclined to go, but bailed last minute because they had to get up early for a show they were putting on the next day.
Crazy random experiences like this was how most of the trip went.
Although I made so many incredible memories while partying with Justin over the summer, what was most defining about the experience was what I learned by getting the opportunity to experience HIS world.
Sure, we did a lot of outrageous partying which was super fun. But that’s not what I’m talking about.
PART THREE (3/3): WHAT I LEARNED PARTYING WITH A BILLIONAIRE FOR A SUMMER
Prior to going on this random adventure with Justin, I despised money and rich people.
At the time I had a limiting belief that money was the root of all evil and those who “hoarded” that money were egotistical conniving materialistic people who didn’t care about the rest of the world—only themselves.
But after hanging out with Justin and many of his uber wealthy friends, I realized that nearly everything I was taught to believe growing up about money and rich people was essentially bullshit.
To my surprise, I found my new rich friends to be phenomenal listeners, generous, caring, compassionate, well read, business minded, and just all around the type of people I enjoyed being around.
I could converse with them on a wide range of interesting topics. And the conversations didn’t simply revolve around gossip or other meaningless shit, but rather around knowledge, growth, and new ideas for various business ventures.
And when I spoke confidently about myself and my audacious goals, my ideas weren’t put down, but instead were supported and celebrated.
I found the experience unbelievably refreshing, because conversations with my best buddies back home revolved around gossip, sports, and how hammered we all got the night before.
And when I tried to have intelligent conversations with them or discuss my goals and various business ideas I had, they would get bored, roll their eyes, laugh at me, put me down in subtle ways, and even shrink in my presence because their goals were small and mostly non-existent.
With my buddies back home, I felt bored, alone, and held back.
But with my new wealthy friends, I felt excited, inspired, and fully supported to think big and try new things.
So I began to wonder what the difference was between my buddies back home and these new wealthy friends I had recently made.
The first thing that seemed apparent was that my new wealthy friends didn’t seem like anomalies or like they had any sort of special innate gifts that naturally gave them super powers.
But rather, they had a radically different MINDSET (or way of thinking) that helped them make better decisions in a variety of situations, which led to better circumstances in their lives as a whole.
They also leveraged a set of MENTAL TOOLS (or specific strategies) that most don’t, which gave them the power to take action, overcome hurdles, and create a life of freedom and abundance.
Ya see, a man with the right physical tools can build a house or fix a car. But a man with the right MINDSET and MENTAL TOOLS can do anything!
And so I became obsessed with studying how successful people think and the most common strategies that they use.
And after a few years of reading, studying, and breaking it all down, I found that there were consistent patterns in mindset, strategies, and daily habits that separated those who thrive from those who merely survive.
Here are just a few of them…
[WARNING: Please realize that the comparisons I’m about to make below are a generalization. But a generalization I find to be true time and time again. And yeah, sure, just like any other group of people, there are rich people who are complete douche bags. But even self-made rich douche bags have a set of beliefs, traits, and skills, that allow them to achieve such riches. So do me a favor and don’t do what most will do… which is get offended. Instead, take note and think deeply about it because, if you want freedom, this is everything!]
- Rich people see opportunities. My buddies back home see obstacles.
- Rich people see potential growth and rewards. My buddies back home see risk and potential loss.
- Rich people focus on what they want (making the shot). My buddies back home focus on what they DON’T want (what will happen if they miss the shot).
- Rich people see money as a tool to increase their options, freedom, and quality of life. My buddies back home see money as “the root of all evil.”
- Rich people are willing to act in spite of fear. My buddies back home let fear stop them in their tracks.
- Rich people see freedom and financial independence as easy to create and the only way to live. My buddies back home think becoming free and financially independent is either impossible or too much work.
- Rich people make money by producing results for others—regardless of the time spent (or not spent!). My buddies back home make money by selling their most valuable and non-renewable asset—time.
- Rich people see work as a way to do what they love to do while serving others. My buddies back home see work as a painful experience necessary to pay bills and survive.
- Rich people focus on the process and enjoying the journey. My buddies back home focus on the result, like making enough money to buy a new car, and therefore experience short lived bursts of excitement, which often puts them in debt for years after.
- Rich people leverage debt to buy up assets such businesses, stocks, investment properties, etc, so they can build wealth and financial freedom. My buddies back home use debt to buy up liabilities such as big homes, new cars, flashy boats, etc, so they can show off to their friends and end up spending the rest of their lives trapped under a mountain of debt.
- Rich people are great at promoting themselves and their business(es) or ventures. My buddies back home don’t believe in themselves enough to promote themselves or their ventures, and don’t want to be “too salesy.”
- Rich people focus on appreciation, gratitude, and serving others. My buddies back home constantly complain, criticize, and condemn others.
- Rich people have big libraries. My buddies back home have big TV’s.
- Rich people are life-long learners who see education as enjoyable and incredibly beneficial in every aspect of life. My buddies back home stopped educating themselves after high school or college because they see education as boring and only necessary to get a job.
- Rich people constantly ask questions. My buddies back home constantly make assumptions.
- Rich people see traveling as a way of life so they can expand their mind and experiences. My buddies back home see traveling as a two week vacation so they can escape their work, and really, their day-to-day lives.
(COMING UP: What I learned NEXT was 10x more important!)
Look, this can be hard to take in at first. I love my buddies back home dearly. But they think and operate in a way that doesn’t serve themselves or others.
And that’s why my only option if I wanted to progress was to slowly distance myself from them and begin developing new relationships with people who thought and strategized at a higher level.
“You’re the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with.” —Jim Rohn
As you can see, the rich friends I met on this journey thought much differently than my buddies back home, which is exactly why they’re able to produce more freedom and abundance in their lives compared to my buddies back home who’re forced to work 9to5’s they hate with little to no control over their lives.
Sure, some rich people just get lucky and are born into wealth. But for the millions of self-made individuals out there, the money didn’t come first. What came first was a shift in their self-awareness and mindset. The money and lifestyle was simply a bi-product of their thoughts and daily actions.
BUT THERE’S MORE… what I learned from Justin and his rich friends WASN’T ENOUGH to produce happiness or a truly fulfilling life.
In fact, there’s something I haven’t told you yet which I’m about to share with you now…
Like I mentioned above, the main reason why Justin was on this big vacation was to get his mind off his recent divorce. But what I haven’t told you yet is that many times during our adventures he would suddenly break down into tears over the divorce and losing his wife, who he loved dearly.
It would often send him into bouts of rage, anger, and sadness, which he unsuccessfully dealt with by drinking himself into oblivion.
This was A HUGE EYE OPENER for me!
What this taught me was that, you can have a bunch of bling-bling and all the money in the world, but still be fucking miserable!
Which is why you hear tragic stories about people like Robin Williams and Anthony Bourdain who had all the money, fame, and love in the world, but still weren’t happy inside.
They knew how to become rich and famous, but they didn’t know how to manage their mental and emotional state. And at the end of the day, that’s everything!
Ya see, on the surface it seems like what we want is material. But what we really want is to feel good.
To be more specific, what we’re looking for is a positive change in our mental and emotional state.
We wanna feel excited.
We wanna feel inspired.
We wanna feel motivated.
We wanna feel in love.
We wanna feel energized.
We wanna feel confident.
WE WANNA FEEL ALIVE!!
And naturally, we believe that if we get that house, or that car, or that girl, or a million likes, or a million dollars… THEN we’ll feel those things.
But getting your hands on that stuff doesn’t guarantee that you’ll feel those things or obtain life long happiness.
I mean, look, making a million bucks and driving a Ferrari is dope and you should absolutely go after what you want!
But what’s even better is being able to feel incredible anytime you want by simply flipping an emotional switch.
What this means is that you don’t have to wait until you become a millionaire to be free and happy.
You don’t have to wait until you find some hottie to be with.
You don’t have to wait until you have a six pack.
You can use emotional “cheat codes” to feel incredible right now!
And here’s the best part: the better you feel, the more confident and capable you’ll be.
And the more confident and capable you are, the faster and easier it’ll be to overcome hurdles so you can get whatever the hell you want.
How do I know? Because I’ve tested it.
After upgrading my mindset by implementing what I’ve shared with you today along with other concepts I’ll share with you in the future, my life went from 0 to 100 real quick!
In only 5 years I’ve been able to…
- Ride my bicycle across country from NYC to LA starting with no money, no plan, and no place to stay, for a super fun cause I created to inspire thousands across America to believe in themselves even if they don’t have all the answers to start. I called it, Bike To Believe.
- Quit a shitty job I hated (serving-bartending) and started my own online business, so I make money doing what interests and excites me—not slaving for others making them money for pennies on the dollar.
- Become fully mobile so I can fund my lifestyle while I explore mother earth! (Being able to work online and take your work with you where you go is a godsend! You should try it…)
- Drop 30 pounds in 3 months and now feel non-stop mental and physical energy (My weight used to yo-yo all the time, but I figured out it was ALL mindset.)
- Live in 9 different cities including NYC, Miami, LA, Las Vegas, Denver, Atlanta, Key West, San Juan, Puerto Rico, and Medellin, Colombia.
- Eliminate negative unsupportive people from my life to make room for those who love and support me.
- Overcome crippling fear, anxiety, and depression so I can feel great and enjoy my damn life! (Also perform better in everything I do!)
- Be personally coached by Ryan Holiday, a brilliant thinker and author, and the youngest Marketing Director of a Fortune 500 company ever—American Apparel.
- And so much more I can’t even describe!
I dubbed this new philosophy and way of life… Ultimate Freedom Lifestyle!
(Yes, semi-corny name but UFL has a much deeper meaning than it may seem initially…)
Ultimate Freedom Lifestyle means FIRST designing a life around what makes you happy—NOT just what makes you money or what society thinks you should do… aka… waste exorbitant amounts of time and money on college, do things you don’t wanna do to please your parents, get a secure job that you fucking hate, invest in an overpriced and underperforming 401k, buy a big house you can barely afford, live the rest of your life trapped under a mountain of debt, and wait until you’re about to die so you can retire and begin living free… you know, the American dream.
SECONDLY you’ll need to develop the mental, physical, and financial power required to build a high performance life that offers you more free and flexible time, global mobility, and unlimited options.
And LASTLY eliminate any relationship, environment, or activity that makes you unhappy, bores you, or slows you down.
But, to be clear…
Ultimate Freedom is NOT about never working again and sitting on a beach the rest of your life sipping mojitos. Let me save you the suspense—that’s boring af.
It’s about abandoning conventional norms so you can spend more time doing what interests and excites you, and waste less time doing what doesn’t.
And no… the journey to Ultimate Freedom doesn’t begin with “3 Simple Steps to Starting an Online Business” because that’s bullshit, which is why so many who try to build an online business end up failing (including me in the past).
Myself and so many others have failed with successfully starting their own online business, because…
The real work begins with shaping your mindset and how you think!
And please trust me on this because I learned this the hard way and ended up spending years banging my head against the wall, frustrated as to why I was still living a life that made me miserable 50-75% of the time.
Basically, I was trying to take shortcuts (aka LONGcuts).
Truth of the matter is, the “mechanics” or steps to starting an online business and creating Ultimate Freedom are relatively simple and straight forward… as long as you put them into action (the hard part).
What isn’t straight forward is being able to overcome common roadblocks that enable you to take consistent action, which you do by upgrading your mindset, developing new daily habits, surrounding yourself with strong supportive people already living the life you wanna live, and getting rid of subconscious limiting beliefs that unconsciously keep you in fear, which stop you from taking action.
Once you do that, the steps to “success” become fairly easy.
But if you don’t do that, you’ll NEVER take action and be stuck for another 5-10-20-30 years wondering wtf went wrong.
“Success is 20% mechanics (the steps) and 80% psychology (your mindset).” —Tony Robbins
Look, whatever your dreams are, TRUST ME, you got this.
Your past failures don’t define you—they’re the stepping stones to success.
If you’re scared and insecure, guess what, the rest of the world is too.
But the good news is, YOU CAN overcome your fears and dive into an ocean of possibilities because you’re more capable than you can even fucking imagine.
And as for those who doubt you and your dreams, eh, fuck’em!
They’re just too afraid to go after their own.
My name’s Kurshot and my goal is to help free you for life. If that’s something that interests you, subscribe below.