Life Changing Finance #5 – Know Yourself First

What’s up, this is Tai Zen again. In this video, I want to share with you another life-changing financial strategy that I’ve learned growing up and trying to make in the financial world. I’m broadcasting from the city called Atlanta, this is the capital city of the state of Georgia, which is located on the Eastern part of the United States.

I’m broadcasting from the Northern part of the city that’s known as Buckhead. So in this video, I want to share with you 3 strategies that I have used throughout my entire life since I started learning how to make money, and I know that and Eric G and Doctor B, everyone that’s on my team at, we all use and employ these strategies.

Matter of fact, if we did not use these strategies, we will not be working together. This strategy is outlined in the Art of War by general Sun Tzu, some you may know that he wrote the famous book on strategy and on success. During his time it was called the Art of War, but actually, if you read it, it’s actually a book about success and how to create success and it can be applied towards creating a life-changing amount of finance in your life.

And just a quick reminder, in case you have not watched the first episode of this series on life-changing finances when we talk about making life-changing finances, we’re not talking about creating like a 10%, 20%, 50% raise in your job income or something like that. We’re talking about making the kind of money that completely changes your life.

And usually, it allows you to free up your time and allows you to have the extra money to do other things in your life. So in this in this lesson that general Sun Tzu taught in the Art of War, he talks about knowing yourself.

The first thing, in order to create a win, you got to know yourself, you got to know your enemy, your opponent. And then you got to know the terrain or the environment in which you’re operating in.

I’m not a soldier, I’m no warrior, I’m not in the military or anything, so I would not know how to use it in those environments, but I do know that I have to battle every day, every week to make money to support my family, my kids and things like that. So I do know how to use those strategies that he’s talking about inside what I’m doing.

So in the next 3 videos, including this one and 2 more videos, each one is going to be dedicated to each one of those topics that I just discussed that was taught in the Art of War by general Sun Tzu. In this video, I’ll talk about knowing yourself, in the success video, I’ll talk about knowing your enemy or your opponent, and then in the third video, I will talk about knowing your terrain or the conditions in which you operate in and the environment in which you will have to deal with.

So in this video, knowing yourself, why is it important that you have to know yourself very well in order to create a life-changing amount of finance? The reason for that is that if you don’t know yourself, and when I say know yourself that means that knowing what you want in life, knowing your goals, of how much money you want to make, knowing the kind of spouse that you want to have in your life, knowing what you will tolerate and what you will not tolerate, what you will say no to, and what you will say yes to, and it’s all going to be bundled together, I’m just gonna throw it out there as a mixture and then you can see what I’m talking about.

Because usually, I find that if you just talk about 1 example, sometimes people don’t understand you completely, but if I throw out multiple, dozens of examples or a bunch of examples, then you will start to see the common denominators and then start to see the big picture. So knowing your skills and your talents is extremely important because people including myself wasted so much time trying to do things that you’re not good at.

When you create life-changing finance, you want to take the path of least resistance. And I’ll give you several examples of what I did that was very difficult. So when I was growing up, when I came to America from Vietnam, one of the things that my parents did was they put me in to work in the fruit and vegetable fields to pick fruit and vegetables.

So I have picked up tons, I’m not joking, when I say tons and tons of cucumbers, cabbage, string beans, blackberries, blueberries, strawberries, cherries, apples, pears. So we used to work on the farms in Salem Oregon when I was an elementary school and my parents after school, they would drop us off in these farms so that was my older brother and I can pick fruit and vegetables and we will get paid like 98 cents, 95 cents to pick a whole crate full of strawberries or blackberries or raspberries, things like that.

And we will eat the hell out of it too because we were young in elementary school so we would do that. And obviously it was fun and enjoyable, but it never made us any money, we eat the freshest berries though, but we never made any money. We save them some money in our family and then later on my dad moved us to a city called Fort Worth, which was located in the state of Texas, Fort Worth is next to the city of Dallas.

So most of the time when people live in Fort Worth, they don’t really say they live in Fort Worth, and when they live in Dallas and that whole area is so close together, it’s like 30 minutes away from each other and the city is so big that they just call it the Dallas Fort Worth metroplex, or the DFW area.

So the reason why we moved there was that somebody told my dad that we can work indoors in a tailor shop where we can so close to people. So during that time when we moved down there, I was in junior high school.

So from the time I was in the 5th grade to the time I was in high school, which is between the 5th and the 9th grade and in parts of the 10th grade, after school, my dad would take us to these places where we would sew clothes like this, and we were not very good at it but we did it. So my brother and I would sow about almost 2,000 of these a week, these garments and for a dress shirt, we would crank out about 700 to 800 of those a week.

And my dad calls it a tailor shop or a garment shop. But in America, in English, we would call that a sweatshop. So we were not very good at it, we made some money, like a T-shirt like this during the 80s we would get like 70 cents or 60 cents to sew a garment like this.

And then for a dress shirt, for a nice dress shirt that they would sell for like $100 at the store now, my brother and I would get like $1 and 10 cents, $1 and 15 cents for it back then. Now keep in mind back then they would not sell the dress shirts for $100, they would sell for $50, $60, $70. But back then we would get paid like $1 and 10 cents, $1 and 20 cents per garment, so we did it by piecemeal.

Now we were busting our ass trying to so these garments each week, and we were paid by piecemeal, so that means the more garments that we sow, the more that we get paid. And then by the time we got into high school, my dad had saved up enough money to where we would buy a machine shop near the city of Houston, and we would work at a shipyard, building commercial fishing boats. And we would repair and build commercial fishing boats.

And during that time, my brother and I were very good at repairing and rebuilding and building commercial fishing boats. However, it did not make a lot of money, none of these things that I’m telling you we made a lot of money in, none of it. We just did it, it was all manual labor.

We sucked at everything we did except for building boats, we were very good at doing that, but it did not make us a lot of money. Then, later on, we got into hustling drugs on the streets and selling drugs and firearms and stupid nonsense like that when we were teenagers because we thought that would be a fast way to make a quick buck and we sucked at that too.

We got in trouble for that, I won’t go into details about that or go into a long story about that, but it didn’t make us any money. During that time by accident, I ran into a Catholic priest and he saw that I was gifted in art and painting and drawing because he saw me doodling around. There was another individual inside that church that also saw that I was gifted in art.

Now, how they saw that I was gifted in art, I have no clue, because up until that time I did not do a lot of drawings, I did not do a lot of artwork. So I did not realize that I was gifted in art because it’s not something that I spent a lot of time in, but then this Catholic priest, he was from Poland and he was in Texas at that time and he has seen pretty much all the famous artworks in Europe and he said that you are very gifted in art and should pursue that path.

And I listened to him because he was helping me, I was very poor at that time when somebody helps you when you’re broke, you tend to do what they ask. So he asked me to paint some religious murals for his church and he spent several thousands of dollars to buy the oils, the brushes, and the paints and canvases so that I can do it for his church.

And I did do it and it turned out to be really badass. So I’m not beating my chest, I’m not bragging or nothing, it’s just something that I was gifted with to be a badass artist and then I ended up teaching art while I was painting there for his church and everything, and it turned out that I was a badass art teacher as well. Now like I said, I’m not saying this to brag or to beat my chest or to impress you guys what my talents are.

And then he bought a lot of books, a lot of videos and he brought me tons and tons of books and videos so that I can read up about how Michelangelo, how da Vinci, Raphael and all these famous Caravaggio, all these famous renaissance artists, how they painted, how they draw and how they sculpt and everything. And it turns out that the more I read and study about them, the better I became as an artist.

And till this day, I don’t think I’ve seen any artists in real life. I’ve seen them in books and magazines and TV, but in real life, I did not meet an artist and I thought that could paint or do better than I can. And like I said, when I say that it almost sounds like I’m being cocky or arrogant and I just want to remind you, I’m not saying that to impress you, I’m sharing that with you as a lesson.

For me, art was effortless, you can tape a brush in my elbow and I can paint better than most people, it just comes easy. Art was one of the first things that I did in my life that was the path of least resistance, I didn’t even have to try, and I was a badass artist.

If you don’t want me to see how you paint, if you don’t want me to paint the same way or learn your skills or steal your secret pain techniques, don’t ever let me see you do it because the minute I see you do it, even for 30 seconds I will be able to go home and do it, I don’t even need to practice it. So if you don’t ever want me to steal your art techniques, just don’t do it in front of me because if I see you do it, more than likely I’ll be able to go home and do it.

So now let’s take an example of something that I did that was not the path of easy that was least resistance, the path of most resistance. So because I was building boats when I was in high school and then worked at the shipyards, I thought that since this was easy for me, let me go to college and study how to be a mechanical engineer so that I can go out and be a professional.

Like I was building boats and my dad’s machine shop and my brother and I were doing it very easy, like all the stuff that the other guys at the shipyards did, they struggled and me and my brother, we did it very easily. So I decided, you know what, I had this idea that since I can build boats real easily, let me go to engineering school so, at that time, I tried to enroll to go to the Naval Academy in America, which is one of the most prestigious, high-level education in the world at the Naval Academy.

However, when I applied to it, they did not like my SAT scores, so I was not qualified and I made shitty grades in high school, I was not an A student. So they said I was too dumb to go to their Naval Academy. Keep in mind this is one of the most prestigious academies in the US, if you graduate from the Naval Academy, you are set for life or any of the foreign military academies in America, you are pretty much set for life.

The reason why I wanted to go to the Naval Academy is not that I wanted to be in the military, I’m actually against being in the military. The reason why I wanted to go to the Naval Academy was that it was the only place I knew of that builds hover crafts, hydrofoils, submarines and just really advanced things that go in the water.

I’m very fascinated with machinery and technology that goes fast in the water. I really don’t care about anything goes fans on land, I think that’s easy, I think anything goes fast in the air that’s easy to build, but things that go fast in the water, I want to be a part of it and I love submarines, hydrofoils, hovercrafts, things like that that go fast in the water.

So because of that, I try to get accepted to go to the Naval Academy, but because I was too stupid academically, they would not accept me. So my second choice was to apply to go to a university called the A&M University in Texas, it is one of the prestigious universities in the state of Texas.

But my scores were not high enough so I had to go to community college first before they would accept me to go there. Every which way that I tried to go to a higher level form and get a formal education and engineering, I mean every path that I took, it was a massive hurdle and obstacle for me because I am not mathematically inclined, I am not scientifically inclined.

So because of that, any route that I took that involve math or science, it was just a huge struggle for me. However, anything that required something that was more brain oriented, like the arts or like for example, a martial art. When I started studying a Wing Chun, the same martial arts that Bruce Lee studied, it came very easy to me.

That is not something that I struggle with, if you show me after a few times, I can pick it up and I can do that martial arts skill. So pretty much every martial art instructor that I have ever spent a little bit of time with, they all love me because as soon as I teach it to me, I can just pick it up very quickly. So that’s the reason why I share that with you.

So martial arts, arts, things like that, it’s just effortless for me to learn it. A matter of fact, I don’t even have to think, I just watch it and I just do it. Now when it comes to computers and software and technology like that, that is a battle for me.

Like my friend, the Oracle of Cryptocurrency, the Honorable Grandmaster, he always tells me to go and learn to code because they pay a $150,000 to $200,000 and if you become a director or a project manager, they’ll pay like $300,000 to $400,000 dollars in America if you are good in software engineering, and I suck at it. That is the path of most resistance, that is not the path of least resistance for me.

So because of that, I struggled all the way up until my mid-thirties and the reason why I did not become wealthy until my mid-thirties and have life-changing amounts of finance in my life was that I kept going down the path of most resistance because I didn’t know my strengths, I didn’t know my weaknesses, I didn’t know what I was good at, I didn’t know what I sucked at. So I never went down a path where it was the least resistance for me.

So I want to share that with you because if you know yourself, it makes it so much easier to create life-changing finance. Now that’s about when it comes to your raw talent, let me talk about other things about knowing yourself. For example, I know we’re kind of foods I eat, I know what kind of clothes I like to wear and what fashion stuff that I don’t like.

So If you come and asked me to wear skinny jeans, my absolute response is no. Be able to say no and yes and make a decision immediately is a huge skill, it’s such one of the most valuable skills to have when you’re trying to create life-changing finance because most people waste so much time on things that don’t benefit them and don’t help them create a life to change finance and by knowing yourself you can easily say no to things that you don’t have to waste a lot of mental energy on.

Hey, do you like to eat pizza with cheese? No, I don’t like it because I hate eating cheese. Do you like to wear skinny jeans? No, I don’t like skinny jeans. Do you like to go see romantic movies? No, I don’t like it.

Girly movies, I don’t like it. Do you like to drink a small crack? No, I don’t. So when you make a decision like that quickly, it comes from knowing yourself, you can quickly say no to things and then that way you get it out of your way so that you don’t spend mental focus on it.

For example, I don’t like to create money going into multilevel marketing, I don’t want it to go through Ponzi schemes and pyramid schemes and multilevel marketing stuff. Anything that has to do with that, I don’t like making money in that area, so as soon as I hear that, boom, I’m out of there. I don’t like to trade or invest in things that have a widespread.

Between the buyer’s price and the seller’s price, if it’s too wide, it’s not 1 penny, 1 or 2 or three ticks, I don’t like it, so I say no to that immediately. So anything that I can say no to, I try to say no to as quick as I can so I don’t have to waste mental energy on it.

That way my mental energy I only have so much every day that I can use and I want to dedicate that either to spending time with my wife and kids or to spending time creating life-changing finance. So I hope that this short video here helps you understand, to know yourself.

Because if you like it, give me a thumbs up, if you don’t like it, give me a thumbs down. If you have friends or family that want to create life-changing finance in their life, make sure you share these videos with them and tell them to subscribe to my channel. And in a future video, I’ll talk about knowing your opponent, your enemy or your competition.

And then a separate video, I’ll talk about knowing your terrain and your environment and how it makes a big difference. So to summarize things, know yourself so that you don’t waste time on frivolous bullshit, you spend time on the things that mattered that actually create life-changing finance. Thanks for watching this video and I’ll see you in the future video.

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