Chasing Financial Freedom

From Wall Street Hustling to Entrepreneurial Freedom with Paul Halme

January 04, 2023 Ryan DeMent Season 5 Episode 1
Chasing Financial Freedom
From Wall Street Hustling to Entrepreneurial Freedom with Paul Halme
Show Notes Transcript

On this Chasing Financial Freedom Podcast episode, we have a special guest – Paul Halme! Paul started as a stockbroker for a major Wall Street firm, but after several years he decided to ditch Wall Street and make the move to entrepreneurship. He specializes in helping entrepreneurs organize their finances and giving them the knowledge they need to purchase assets to help secure their financial future. Tune in to find out how to use Paul's wisdom and insights to get your finances on track and start creating passive income!

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From Wall Street Hustling to Entrepreneurial Freedom with Paul Halme

[00:00:00] Ryan: Hey guys, Ryan DeMent from Chasing Financial Freedom Podcast. I hope you guys are having a wonderful day. Welcome to 2023, the first episode of the year. Our guest is Paul Halme. Paul helps entrepreneurs build a reliable well system without the frustration of not knowing what to do. We're gonna have to dig into that because as an entrepreneur, that has a lot of loaded questions in there, guys.

Paul, welcome to the show. Happy 2023. 

[00:00:28] Paul: Hey, thanks for having me, Ryan. I'm excited to be here, ready for 2023. 

[00:00:32] Ryan: You're more than welcome. So before we get into all of that great stuff, tell the listeners a little bit about yourself and just a little bit of your journey, and then we will start digging into what you're doing.

All right, cool. 

[00:00:43] Paul: Yeah, I grew up in a small Midwestern town in South Dakota and way back in the day, one of my best friends was like, Hey, you know what? I think I want to go fight in UFC someday. Cause we just watched UFC one. I'm like, that's a big goal. Okay, cool. He's I'm gonna move to Dallas and try it.

And I was like, man, I'm gonna graduate from college and oh, try something different. So I ended up coming to Dallas doing Jiujitsu, and I met these guys that. . They were trained during day and they dressed nice and had money and I'm like, what are you guys doing? Oh, we're stockbrokers. I'm like, oh, I'd like to do that.

And they're like hey, you have a degree. I'm like, yeah. So went over there and interviewed. This is back in 2001 when they were hired everybody. And so I got a job as a stockbroker. Did that for six years, and then just had the calling of an entrepreneur helping my best friend made to the ufc and he had his own gym and I was helping him.

I was like, man, you got a lot of freedom as entrepreneur, you might work more, but I like this. So I ended up leaving. my dream job to become an entrepreneur. And it was a battle, but it was a decision that I'm really happy I made, and I've been doing that ever since. And that was back 2003, 2005.


[00:01:34] Ryan: What made you just pick up and wanna hit the entrepreneur trail? Man, 


[00:01:38] Paul: was crazy. Like my whole life. I grew up without money. I didn't under my family, never talked about money, and I got this job was a broker, and I'm like, I'm talking to millionaires all the time and I'm having this, learning, all this stuff.

This is the greatest job ever. Like it, hands down, was the best job I ever had in the corporate world. But then you hit that point where it's I'm capped out. It's like done. It's unless I wanna go into go get an MBA and go into management, I didn't wanna do that. It's like sales, you hit your limit.

And I was just like, man, this is not as much funny more, you're working your butt off for a three or 4% raise and hopefully not getting laid off. So it was like, and I started hanging out with entrepreneurs and I saw the freedom they had and I was like, I really wanna try this.

And my wife was super supportive. I could have done it without her, she was like let's just try it for a year. And I was like, man, no one's gonna give us a one year lease. You're crazy. And then literally two weeks later, she calls me at work, she's Hey, I found a place that I'll do a one year lease.

And I was like, guess it's real. I talked to big game, now I gotta go . 

[00:02:26] Ryan: Did you just leap right in and just said, Hey, here I am, and I'm going? 

[00:02:30] Paul: No I babysat. I'm always cautious. I did both for two years, which was, that was better. That was rough. That was really tough. I'd work all day at the job and then come home, say hi to the kids real quick, eat something, slam some coffee, and then go teach Jiujitsu for three hours.

I was like, man, I can't do this much longer. So after about two years, we were like, you gotta make a decision. And at that time, my best friend had won the Ultimate Fighter four, and he was gonna beat. traveled a lot more and fighting. I was like, man I need more free time so I can go travel and do these things.

And the good thing was I left on good terms with my broker and it was like, you, your license don't expire for two years. So I was like, in the back of my head I was like, okay, I got two years. I gotta make this thing work or I'm going back cuz you know, it's like I got a wife and two kids to support. . 

[00:03:08] Ryan: So I gotta ask the question cuz I know I've thought about it.

How many times did it actually cross your mind that you potentially would have to go back? 

[00:03:16] Paul: Oh, . Oh my God. The first year, like every other week. It was so bad. I did, I look back and I joke across people. I said I did everything wrong. Like I went rid of this space, had no students, now when I talk to people and they're like, Hey, I'd like to open a gym.

I'm like you think you do? I'm like, go find a CrossFit place or a dance place somewhere that has mats and say Hey, can I sublease on off hours? I said then if you can get 30 to 50 students, okay, cool, now you're making a little bit of money, you can go open a gym. And so people, that's the path I send people on now.

Cause the way I did it was I had to work way too hard and it was super stressful, , but it was what I needed at the time to make me jump, 

[00:03:47] Ryan: and do you think you would've, if you could go back to that time, do you think you would do it any other way? I know you would wanna set it up differently, but would there be what could you take away and learn from those that just ripping off the bandaid and opening up a shop?

[00:04:01] Paul: Yeah, I definitely would've gone through and found a place to sublease at and just get a core base. Cause I have no core base. Like when I opened up, I had zero students. I was like, this is not a really good plan, . And then I had to convince people like, oh, hey, there's gonna be lots of people training.

You're the first ones. And then, it's a time. But once you get that momentum going, if you can get to that 30, 40 members, it's okay, now you've got enough money to pay some bills, pay the rent. And then you're building momentums. People are seeing the classes full of 

[00:04:23] Ryan: people. So what was the biggest.

I would say hurdle, but cuz I know this is a problem that I struggle with is I was never a salesperson. So I always struggled with it. So when you open up, you're opening up and you don't have clients you gotta go out and sell and market. Would you say that was your biggest opportunity or did you have other opportunities that you had to work on?

That was the 

[00:04:46] Paul: biggest ones. Cause I grew up, I was like every other college kid I'm never gonna sell anything. I'm never gonna sell out. You don't allow to do all that. And then you get in the real world, you're like, I need money to feed my children . So it's like I'm learn sales. And then it was cool because once I learned sales, ethically selling is it's not even really selling.

We tell people, it's like someone's coming looking for a solution to their problem. And if you can. You're not selling, you're guiding them to a solution. So once I embraced that mindset, selling became a lot easier and a lot more fun. And then marketing back then was insane compared to today.

People tell me, oh, Facebook ads don't work. And I'm like, you realize when I opened my gym, I had to do a new yellow page ad every six months. And that's all I had. That's it. It was like, it was so hard. Now we've got so many tools and you can become like, I call it our market. You can become five mile famous.

I think I forget who said that. One of the marketing podcasts too. But it's like you can literally, now with social media and YouTube like that, you can become famous in your area for what you do. And it's not even that expensive because you can get such a good reach and do it. So there's a lot of good opportunities out there now.

[00:05:46] Ryan: There is and one of the biggest things that you can look at and this is, I'm on that journey over probably the last four or five months I've been thinking about what's my big, my next big step in, into putting myself out there. And I haven't announced it yet, but by the time this comes out, it will.

But I wanna create a group of a hundred thousand like-minded people that want to take change head on. They want to be, through authentic account. They want to be able to grow in their lives and not stay on the couch and be a Netflix binge. They wanna be a climber. And people think I'm crazy that I want to help other people do that.

And it's I get pleasure out of that and that's why I do these podcasts too. I get pleasure out of it. Is it going to drive business? Sure. Potentially could, but it's not my end result. My end result is helping others. And it's not, I don't want to help one, two, or five. I wanna help a hundred thousand people.

So it's pretty scary for me right now. So we're, we'll see what happens. 

[00:06:37] Paul: No, I like it. That's awesome. 

[00:06:39] Ryan: Cool. Marketing. Let's go right into it cuz I, I really like that. You have Yellow Pages and that's all you have. And yeah. And you're you look close to my age. So we're, that same age and so forth.

We didn't grow up with a computer. Sales, selling and marketing was hard back then in, in being able to bring somebody in. So how did you bring value and how did you show people that you had the right skillset or whatever? When I say whatever, it shouldn't be whatever, that you are either gonna be the right sensei instructor, if I'm using the right terms, I'm sorry.

To be able to teach them, . 

[00:07:11] Paul: Yeah, it was tough cuz like I said, you didn't have any marketing. It was like we would do yellow page ads and the little signs where it's free jiujitsu class and then you get in trouble by the city. You just didn't have a lot of options and like back then it was like gorilla marketing.

Like my wife just gets so annoyed. But all of our cars would have the name of the gym and get a free class and the phone number, and then thank God the internet came along, you could do more stuff. Cuz back then it was like, you had to get people to come in and then it was trying to, you.

The big thing I learned right away is when you get people in the doors, you really gotta find out what they wanted and then you had to show 'em, you could provide it. Cuz if the numbers were so low back then that you had to convert everybody into a student or you weren't gonna be around very long. So it was, it taught me a lot about digging deep and trying to find out why they wanted.

Cause everybody's oh, I want to get in shape. Then it's why do you want to get in shape? Because you know when my kids wanna play, I can't keep up with them and I wanna be able to enjoy it. So when you dig deeper and you find out. Really brought 'em in, then it made it a lot easier.

It was getting those, I forget who, what it was, but getting those next level problems. Cause everybody's oh, I just wanna get in shape, or Oh, I wanna lose 20 pounds. Why is that important to you? There's a reason why. And I was like, my, my spouse doesn't like me anymore cause I'm overweight.

It's oh, cool, we can fix that. I got the solution. Come in and train three days a week, walk two days a week and don't eat. And it's you can make it fun for 'em. It's, and so being able to solve those problems made sales so much easier. And then the evolution of marketing, like I just can't get over what, how much it's changed in the 20 years I've been in business.

It's it's just absolutely 

[00:08:28] Ryan: insane and it's a lot easier to put yourself out there with social media and so forth. What would you say, are you doing anything different in your marketing today with social media? Oh yeah. 

[00:08:42] Paul: Yeah it's like night and day from back then. Now it's trying to do more of the Gary V style of just being everywhere all the time.

Being the only choice in town. But the thing is, I tell people, it's as you get yourself out there and you're aware of this one, you have to get developed thicker skin cuz people just love to. crap on your ads, talk crap on your posts. , it's and that's this part of life.

It's oh man, it's I just feel bad for that person. Man, something must be, what's wrong? Are you okay? I'll do that. A lot of times if I get like a real jerk on an ad, I'll be like, man, are you okay? You sound really angry. Is everything okay in your, and then I'll be like, oh man, I'm sorry, I didn't mean to go off on you.

Cause it's , but as you developing, you have to put yourself out there. Cause what you want to do, and the cool part with social media now is you can run Facebook ads, Instagram ads, YouTube ads, you can target just your area so you're not spending a whole bunch of money and you're becoming the only choice.

So people are like, oh, hey, I want to take my kid in eventually. Or me they think of you and they see you and it's it just builds that reputation for your. 

[00:09:31] Ryan: So before we get into the deep dive in marketing and so forth, and we'll get into a bunch of that is how, I guess the question I'm gonna, I'm just going out there.

Yeah. So I talk to entrepreneurs daily and some of them, are still working their full-time job and they've got a side hustle and they don't have capital to run ads. How can you help them or give them some guidance on that to where they can start putting themselves out there and that keyword is omnipresence.

Cuz everyone's starting to use that be there everywhere. Yeah. But that comes from consistently posting on social media and putting your face out there for people to see it. . 

[00:10:03] Paul: Hundred percent. And we caught, and we always caught what the people in our industry sweat equity. It's yeah, man, if you don't have capital, it's if you have money, you don't have to make that much content.

You can just make one piece of content and run ads on every platform and you're done. And then people are like I can't afford that. I'm like, all right, cool. So you need to do a video or a post, three, four times a day on every platform. They're like that's a lot. That's a lot of work.

I'm like, It's one of the two. You can't do neither and hope people come to your business. So we, but we try to give 'em a positive spin on it. Like you can do it. And I've had clients that didn't have money and they'd do way more posting, way more content. And then they would get their reach out there and people would get to know them.

And it's okay, now you made a little bit of money. Can you do $3 a day in ads? A hundred bucks a month? Oh yeah, I can do that. And then you start amplifying the content that's good. And then they get out there, they start seeing the results and they're like, okay, I gotta spend a little bit more money.

[00:10:49] Ryan: So how can we as entrepreneurs, Successful or set ourselves up for success with Facebook ads or any type of paid advertising. Cuz there's a lot of people out there say, Hey, you run ads with me and you're gonna make millions. Yeah, I've run ads and I, I've done well and I've done bad, but I've really noticed as I've added more strategic organic content out there, that is where I.

Inroads because I'll take, like you said, you amplify what's working and put those in your ads and that seems to be a great base. And if I could go back eight years, I would've, I knew that I would've done that, but I've, I completely failed. Cause I spent thousands upon thousands of dollars on ads that did not work.

Oh yeah. And it's tough. 

[00:11:30] Paul: Two people like, oh, you gotta run these conversion ads and it's gonna be $20 a lead. And people are like, man, I can't afford that. And if they do, it's are the leads that great? But it's like you can, for so much less money, you can build your. . , going back to what Gary V says is build your brand.

You can do it with awareness ads, with reach adss. And the cost of those is so much cheaper and cuz really all you're trying to do is get your name out there. You know what you do. I think it's, Frank Kern calls it was it TV on your phone or whatever. It's you think about like when you see TV ads, it's oh yeah, that's the furniture guy.

Oh, that's the furniture guy. You can do it on your phone for pennies on compared to that you can literally be like, I think he uses it a case study, some furniture guy somewhere where he did stuff for and the guy was, They weren't even running conversion ads and the guy's are my ads working?

And he's since you started working with us, what's, how are your sales doing? Oh, we're up 25%. We made more money. And he calls it redneck analytics. He's yeah, we grow more business. But cuz you can do so much, just by doing awareness. 

[00:12:19] Ryan: So talk about the different types of campaigns that you can actually do.

Yeah. Oh, it 

[00:12:22] Paul: gets crazy. You can do awareness, you can do brand recognition or brand, I think it's called brand recognition conversions, video views. You can do all, there's so many different ones you can do now and then the really cool thing if you have a local business is Google Ads.

Like I tell people, don't sleep on Google Ads cuz they're gonna Google you. And now Google Ads smart campaigns, which have simplified, the Google used to be just the pain in the butt to deal with. But now you can create smart campaigns for your local business. , you can do so many things, like you said, behind me present cuz I wanna be, somebody comes in my area and they're looking for something, they're not gonna go on Facebook or Instagram.

They're gonna go to Google on their phone and they're gonna Google CrossFit in Fort Worth or Jiujitsu in Dallas, things like that. So I tell people you gotta be there too. But then doing your social media advertising too. But like you said, also you have to have good organic because people listen to, how many times have you seen an ad, like on Instagram or.

And instead of clicking the ad, you actually click on the name of the business and go check out their page. I do it all the time. Cause I'm is this real? Is this a scammy one? You go to the page and you're like, this page's dead. There's nothing on here. I'm not buying anything for this thing. So you always tell people, it's make, like you said, make your content goods. People want to check it out. Oh, okay, that's the insurance guy or that's the restaurant guy or the jujitsu guy. You can be whoever it is in your town. 

[00:13:30] Ryan: So if I'm an entrepreneur, I don't have very much capital to go into paid ads.

What would be some ideas that I would go after to grow my business? Local business? Let's just talk about something. Something's local. . Yeah. 

[00:13:42] Paul: The local networking is the biggest thing. And I'll, I'm horrible at this. Like one of my business partners is really good about this, is gonna networking with other businesses and being referral partners oh, you market for them, they market for you.

You make a post about them, they make a post about you because that's solid. Referral traffic of if I say like you as if did juicy. I'm like, oh man, this new chicken place down the street is super healthy and super good and super easy. Then my people are gonna go there and then they're gonna, they could run an ad or a post to an ad, a post and be like, oh, hey, if you're looking for Jiujitsu, Paul's place is the best place, greatest workout in town.

So if you don't have a lot of money, you can go work deals like that and market for other businesses. And they're gonna then the law, reciprocity, they're gonna be like, they owe you a favor. And they're like what can I do for you? Cause back in the day we see you you probably seen 'em before, like rack cards.

All the gyms are doing , they do the GMCs, laundry, mats, subways, all. And now instead of doing that, just go and be like, Hey, I'd like to make some posts, and refer people to you. And then they're like, oh, hey, can I help you? And building off of that, the corporate ones probably will say no, but like the smaller mom and pop ones will definitely, because they want more business too.

[00:14:39] Ryan: Man, that's, that's so great for local because that's I wish we were local. We're not. But the biggest thing is being able to get your feet on the ground and going out there, old school, connecting with people face-to-face conversation. With the entrepreneurs that you're working with today, are a lot of them working on local businesses or are they more web.

[00:14:58] Paul: Majority are local business and then we've branched out and now we're helping more web-based people. And it's fun though because, we built everything around local businesses, how to do that, and then we'll get people that are doing like, Hey, I'm doing a coaching program now, can you help me?

Or, Hey, I'm doing a consulting program, can you help me? And then we'll work with them too. But the majority's still local. . 

[00:15:15] Ryan: Brick and mortar. Yeah. Brick and mortar. Okay. How have they, how have your clients fared during, the up and down of pandemic and now, recession and all this other stuff going on?

[00:15:25] Paul: We had a staff call today we were talking about that we're like, people are talking to clients is I tell people it's man, I've been through. Nine 11 as a stockbroker, I'm like, I'm getting fired. , it's literally six months after I got hired. Then I quit my job and then the 2008 recession happens and I'm like, this is unbelievable.

I've never experienced anything like 2020 that I tell people that is the worst that, it is like they take literally trying to crush us. They were like, you cannot do business or you will go to jail. I'm like, at least in a recession, I can still sell. I can go out there and I might have to market a little bit harder.

I might have to, cut a little expenses off and be like, okay, we don't need these things or we need this. But if I can still market, as I tell clients, if you could still market and sell, you're gonna be fine, especially in a recession. And we call it separation season. We were talking about that with our staff today.

It's , it's gonna be a separation season. Cause you're gonna see it. What happens when the recession comes? People are gonna be like, oh, I gotta stop marketing. And it's so you're gonna turn off your pipeline for the next six months. It's gonna take you six more months to ramp it up. So you're basically gonna lose a year of business.

During the pandemic, we had no choice. They turned all we had. If you ran an ad and the Karens would be on there oh my God, you're trying to kill people. It's no, I'm trying to feed my family and keep my gym open. You're evil. And I was like, alright. No ads for. And we're literally still, I, what, a year since things opened up, year and a half, whatever, we're still rebuilding because people don't realize when you shut off that pipeline and you're not building that flow it just literally handicaps you for a very long time.

[00:16:42] Ryan: And sure does. And even if you're brick and mortar or if you're web-based, you gotta be putting content out no matter what on a daily basis, like you said. I'm with you. I follow Gary v and I agree four to six times a day. You should be posting and believe me, , it takes a shit ton of work because I'm doing it.

I'm the content creator for all of my businesses. And guess what, , it takes a lot of work and a lot of creativity, but if you get organized, you can actually do it. And I'm about, so last year I put myself on a 12 month goal to. Post four to six times a day. Did that done? Now this year, I'm gonna up that to six to eight times a day.

And strategically put in I added shorts in some medium term or medium length video. We've got some images going on, and then just some basic quotes and some basic posts. I'm gonna see where that takes us. It's driving traffic, it's helping people. But the thing, the biggest thing that I take away from it is the consistency.

I noticed if cuz I got sick a little bit. I got the vid as they say, and got sick and I couldn't produce it. And it stuck for a while. But after about two weeks of not doing anything, you, the bottom started dropping out quickly on engagement. And I was like, it just poof, opened up my eyes, opened up my, my thought process.

This is a long-term thing that you've gotta. Oh, 

[00:18:00] Paul: you have to and then for people listening, they're like, oh, I don't, I'm not ready for that yet. You're gonna get a great opportunity. Cuz when your competitors all like freak out and they're like, oh, I'm not gonna do this, I'm not gonna do that.

This is your time to gain market share of oh yeah, that's that guy that was always posting during the recession and he was super helpful. Yeah, I wanna buy from him. , be that 

[00:18:15] Ryan: person. Exactly. And I think it's Grant Cardone from his first book, 10 X, he talks about in a recession, he put his foot on the gas pedal and kept going while his competitors all withdrew and put the foot on the brake.

And he said, I didn't spend more money, I just spent more time and effort into putting myself out there. And it paid off in dividends. Yeah. And it's amazing. If you just put the time and effort in, it's we'll come back. It's just a matter of. Yeah, a hundred percent crazy. So let's get into your journey and what you're doing, how it's involved.

You quit your job. You're no longer trading and you're, you opened up jujitsu's shop and you gotta get clients. You're marketing, you're working yourself through that. Got 30 or 40 going where? What happens after? man, then 

[00:19:01] Paul: you hit that ceiling of okay, now I gotta find the next thing. So then you start looking for like mentors and coaches.

Cuz I'm a huge fan. You've probably seen Alex from Mosey stuff. , it's it's everywhere now. Mean he's just, he comes from my industry and he's blowing it up huge. But he talks about buying time. You can buy time from other people because. We're all gonna make mistakes. We've all made similar mistakes.

But if you can get somebody in, there're like hey, I did this and this. Don't do this. Do these three things. Oh, okay, cool. I'm gonna do these three things. So I started looking for mentors back in the day. I'm like, who's where I wanna be? And then I would find them. And if they had products that start buying 'em and they start going to their events and trying to learn, I'm like, How do I do what?

You did it faster. And then it's okay, cool. Now we're at a hundred students. Now we're at one 50. Now we're at 200. I'm like, oh my God, actually this is crazy. We have more money coming in than going out. This is fun. Then you start building it, and then of course you do the next dumb thing.

You're like, I'm gonna open a whole bunch of locations. And then you're like oh, this was not, I was not ready for that, and now I'm gonna get rid of the other locations and unwind those and go back down to having one, and then, . It evolved from there. People were like, Hey, you're pretty good at this. How'd you do this?

And I'm like, oh, I did this and this. So then I had another mentor like, okay, now you gotta write a book. Because that builds the social proof that you know you're talking about. So I built, wrote a book about how to make money with the martial arts gym. People would buy that and then they'd buy consulting services and join her mastermind and things like that.

Cause literally I can, I joke her house, like I can take anybody that has any kind of skill and. To have them running a super successful gym in, six months to a year. They're making really good money, making a great life. And it's not that hard because I've done it. I know the system's at work, I know it doesn't work.

It's do these things and track these numbers and one's not working. Improve the other, and then just keep doing that and keep training your staff, keep training yourself, and then building a real business. So it's been fun. It's been a cool e. 

[00:20:41] Ryan: So when did you start jumping into the consulting piece and working with entrepreneurs?

How many businesses did you have open at that time when you said, okay, I'm gonna start jumping into this or did I jump over writing books first, then getting into 

[00:20:54] Paul: consultings and then I was like, man, I can't do this. And I backed it down to one, and then I was just running the one gym really well, and people were like, How do you have, I had time and money.

I was traveling. People couldn't figure it out cause I hadn't won anything major. I was like a nobody and no, no superstar. I'm just a regular jiu-jitsu guy, but I was one of, one of the most successful gyms in the country. People have asking me for advice and then one of my friends, another friend who was like, Super outgoing, super marketing guy, and he was like, Hey, I'm gonna start this consulting thing.

And I'm like, oh, cool. I did this, and this. And he brought me in as a, as someone to help with like traffic and ads and stuff. That's what my niche used to be like. I was known as a traffic guy back when Facebook was wild and you could do cool stuff. We would do crazy stuff and people loved it. And then it was like, then I started evolving with the coaching.

and then we kept building from there. And then it was probably six years ago, six, seven, probably seven now. It's when we really started hitting the consulting stuff and building that up. 

[00:21:46] Ryan: So when you got into the consulting, did you have a barrier of entry to have any type of social proof or people that wanting to work with you?


[00:21:55] Paul: was the hard part. We had no social proof. We were like, Hey, we got GMs too. But it was our cool angle is like, , Hey, this is what we do and we're pretty successful. Do you wanna learn? And people are like, oh yeah, cool. And then, after about three to six months, you started getting. Social proof people were like, oh my God, I did this system.

And I went from, 30 students to a hundred students and now I can pay my rent and take my wife out to dinner. And it was like, it was, they started to become fun. Cause people like, oh man, this thing really works. This is, these guys aren't selling snake oil. They literally have gyms and they're giving us their systems and it's it was fun.

[00:22:24] Ryan: So did you have to design a whole system and put it together before you launched? Or were you just trying to work, person to person or I don't know. I look at it as this, I'm trying to connect, with the individual in my business, cuz we're in the real estate business.

We, we build affordable homes and those people. , unfortunately have been left behind with financial awareness or financial literacy. So I've gotta build a relationship with them to show them that they, there's a path to it, right? And they have to do the work and that, and it's a human to human contact as much as I can.

And Zoom and so forth. But did you see that aspect of building up your social proof or did you go another route? . Yeah, no, it 

[00:23:01] Paul: was a lot of human to human it. First we did the typical, this was back when internet marketing was blown up, so we did the typical, webinar, we're gonna do this and et cetera.

We signed some people up and started building it, and then we were like, all right, we gotta do live events. One of the mentors we talked Hey, you need to do live events. You gotta, rub hands, rub elbows with people, shake hands, talk to people. And then we did that and had a little bit of success, and then we went all in on a big event.

At New Orleans in 2018, and it was, it just launched us into a, the next level because people were there and it was like, they're talking to clients who have had crazy success and they're seeing us present different things about different programs. We had different guest speakers and you're just talking to 'em.

And we signed up a ton of people at that event, and we still have a lot of 'em. We're still clients, even four or five years later. Wow. 

[00:23:42] Ryan: Yeah. This wild. So that's growing the business. So let's talk about how you grew. Consulting business and getting it off the ground. Cuz you, like you said earlier, you can buy other, you can buy time, but now you've gotta scale and work through that process.

How did you do it? . That 

[00:23:59] Paul: was tough. We spent a lot of money, like you said, it's like when you're trying to scale and stuff, it can get real expensive real fast. And my business partner, he doesn't care. He is let's just scale. And I'm like, we're gonna run out of people. There's not enough gym owners in the country, but we went pretty hard, and this was back in 2018, 19, and it was going great. We were spending like, said it was a lot. Cause we were doing the, typical webinar funnels on Facebook and Instagram to book a call and then it was salesperson sign people up, and then we'd have mastermind events and then we just kept building and building.

and I'll never forget like 2019, it was like everything was just perfect and we're like, man, 2020 be our year. We're gonna launch into the stratosphere. It's gonna be great. And then it was like, oh, now we're consulting for non-essential businesses that have no money. It was literally like getting hit in the face with a bat.

As I tell people, it was like, it was just, you couldn't even describe it. It was like, cause you're on such a high and you're doing so good and you're creating jobs and you've got, independent contractors working for you, ads, people working for you. You're like, this is build this whole thing.

And then all a sudden one day it's like you can't do anything. . 

[00:24:56] Ryan: So how did you guys evolve and overcome? 

[00:25:00] Paul: Man we bled out like crazy. I can tell people in full term. We lost 60% of our clients, in the first six, seven months. Wow. Yeah, it was horrible. It was unreal. We did a lot of cost savings, a lot of, trying to help people and it was crazy too, cuz.

the ones that stuck with us and they're like, man, no, we're not going anywhere. We're gonna still, be clients. They made it through everything. Cuz we did, we, I mean we busted our buts, we worked hard. We were trying to do everything we could to help these people. Then the ones of course that were like, oh, I, cancel everything.

I quit. Half of 'em lost their businesses cause they didn't, they just gave up. It's like you can't give up, you gotta keep fighting. It's what you do in this situation. And it was scary though. We just kept losing people, . You get people in different states, like I'm in Texas.

We had clients in like Oregon and California. It was so hard for them to do anything. So it was rough. We, because it was like we tried the whole online thing, oh yeah, you can teach online. Then you realize real fast, jiujitsu and m A is not a Zoom course, , it's, it was just, we were, it was like a perfect storm of just, we were in the wrong situation at the wrong.

[00:25:52] Ryan: But Texas opened up pretty early in all this. So you guys were able to do your thing. So as soon as you as Texas opened up, or your local city or county, whatever you were able to, did, you hit the ground running and hard. Yeah, 

[00:26:05] Paul: we did. I hit it was tricky because you had that balancing act like we, we opened up, but then like even in Texas, you had the people that were like, oh my God, you're doing what?

And it's like they wanna like literally just flame you on social media because you're trying to run a business. Like you can't be within six feet of each other, or you're gonna kill someone's grandma. And it's but we're trying to do fitness. It's and then it was weird because like we were paranoid and we opened up.

I'm like, man, we started off super small, super scared, but I was like, I gotta do something or I'm gonna lose everything. So we started doing small classes and. The crazy people like just wanted to train all the time. They were like the diehards man, I just wanna train. I don't care if I get it.

I mean whatever. And then we were like, and it was so weird at the time, I'll never forget cause we started like a small group. It was like four people, then it was eight, then it was 16, then it was like 30. And I'm like, I was like, man, what are we gonna do when there's a huge breakout? We're gonna have a uncontainable situation, then I'm gonna get flamed on social media, blah, blah.

And then it never happened. We just kept having more people come in and it's and I was like, so wait a second. Maybe there is something to this whole working out and fitness thing and staying healthy. And it was crazy because we had a couple small situations. People would get it, but then they'd be back in a week, nothing really phased them.

And it was wild. It was definitely interesting to go through . 

[00:27:09] Ryan: It's ama amazing what people try to do to you on social media. And if you tune out the noise as Gary V says, tune out the noise, tune out the praise, and just stay down in the middle. You're gonna be fine every single time.

And That's the probably the best way to do it. But that is cool that you were able to build that up and start working towards that. So once you had that momentum going, what happened next? 

[00:27:29] Paul: Then you started rebuilding the business and it was like, okay, we can rebuild this, we can build this back up.

Cause it, it was pretty crazy amount of people that, even though Texas is pretty, wild place. I would say it. There's still people that didn't come back. They were like, oh man, we're gonna wait. It's not safe. And I'm like, all right, cool. No worries. You don't teach their own, I'm gonna keep training.

And it took a long time. It took. I would say we're almost back to where we were before 2020. So it's we lost two years of good business, it was like just fighting to survive, and rebuild everything. So I was joking around with clients today, this morning.

I was like, this is the first year where I'm like, , I'm excited again cuz like in 2021 and 2022, I'm just like, how do I not lose everything , this year I'm like, man, bring on the recession. I don't care. It's I can sell. People are doing stuff, they don't, we're finally past all the craziness.

And so I just tell 'em to keep a positive attitude. And so this is the first year in about three years where I'm like, I'm pumped, I'm excited. 

[00:28:20] Ryan: So I've gotta ask, are you putting together a program or something to get through the recession and help your clients? Yeah, I 

[00:28:26] Paul: started, man, I joke around. I started back in 2018 because, coming from the financial world, it was like, I was like, man, you guys are spoiled.

It's I've been through two horrible situations, nine 11, the, when the markets crashed after that, and then 2008 and I was like, man, I survived and I survived because of the few key things. And then in 2018 when we had the event in New Orleans, my, my key, my presentation was like, how to survive the next recession.

Cause I'm like, it's coming. I'm like, you guys don't understand. We've had 10 years of good and this doesn't happen. And then it's I didn't, no one could predict to 2020, it was gonna be worse than Anthony experienced. And I had two clients. Ones that listened and one that didn't. The one that listened were like, oh, okay, we've got this account, so we've got a, an emergency account set up, a savings account, set up a business line of credit set up.

We've got investments. I'm like, cool. All right, so let's just work some strategy here. What are we gonna tap into first? Hopefully not tap in anything and go that, and then have the other clients who are like, oh, I should have listened to you three years ago, two years ago. I don't have anything. I'm not.

And I'm like I really can't tell. Can I go to the bank? And I'm like, the banks are physically closed. You can't even go to a bank. And people were freaking out. Cause I'm like, like I told you to set this up two years ago, and you just kept putting it off. I've been, preaching this for years, but even in 20, what, 20, 22, when things started getting better, I'm like, all right guys, things are getting better.

But it's this is when you have to start looking at Hey, what do I have set up? Do I have, savings? Do I have emergency funds? Do I have a line of credit? What can I do in case of emergency? So I told 'em to get their minds right for it. But then, Keep that abundant mindset of Hey, you just have this stuff.

You don't have to use any of it. If things start getting bad, then it's okay, yeah, maybe you're not gonna spend more money on answer. Maybe you're gonna spend more time calling old leads and emails and hosting free events and things like that and putting in more equity. Cuz we're all gonna have to work a little bit harder, the ones that wanna make progress during a recession.

And so I'm just trying to mentally prepare them for. . 

[00:30:06] Ryan: So do you think we've been in a recession since? I don't know, 2022. 2021. Late there. Cuz we've been spending way too much. And are your clients feeling that pinch on the other side too? Yeah I was 

[00:30:18] Paul: joking around. I was like, cause they changed the definition of a recession when it didn't fit.

Yeah. They're like two negative quarters, but we had two negative quarters. What? They technically weren't negative. I'm like, they were negative, but somehow the one the next quarter wasn't. I don't know. I feel like we've been in a recession. If you go to a grocery store right now, you just what is going on?

It's we joked around, it's like literally everything is so much more. And I'm like, and I shake my head. I'm like, what is the average person doing right now? I can't imagine. , it's cause the people I hang out with, the clients that I have, they're all hustling. They're all trying to do bigger things.

So they're doing what they're doing well in this environment. But I'm like, for the average person who's just trying to get by this, it's gotta be the scariest time ever. So I feel like we have been, but I feel almost like. . It's like that thing where you delay something, now it's gonna be worse.

It's we're not, yeah. Oh my God, we really are. So I'm scared a little bit, cuz you, I follow the markets a lot in investing, and everybody's talking about q in the q1, beginning q2, could just be horrendous. And I'm like, oh, if that happens, buckle up. But, and then at the same time, you realize, I forget who said it.

One of the, I forget who it was. Oh, I wasn't buffeting with somebody else, but it was like Liddy when they announced the good news about a recession is when they announced the recession. We're usually over halfway through it. So I'm like, cool. Yes, stay positive. So I'm a big person about that on the company.

You gotta stay positive. And it's and then I'll never forget, and it's one of the biggest financial mistakes I ever made in my life. is coming out of a recession, people will make more money than we've ever imagined. . And like I remember in 2008 when everything crashed and I didn't have a lot of money back then and I was stressing, I literally didn't invest.

Cause I'm usually, I'm a big dollar cost averaging guy. Put money away. Don't worry about it. But like in 2000 9, 10 11. I, after in oh eight, I stopped investing cause I was like, okay, we don't have anything, we just gotta keep going. And then I just never restarted. I look like three years of not buying stuff and I'm, I look back at it and I'm like, that was the biggest mistake.

I could have found a way to do a hundred dollars a month in Q or S P Y or something, some index, whatever. But I literally shut it down for three, three of the best years ever to buy. So I'm like, all right, I will not make that mistake. I said, once they announce a recession, it's like we're buying, it's like dollar cost average.

Ramp it up and just get ready. Outta recessions, it creates such, such a huge surge in wealth. It's crazy. 

[00:32:25] Ryan: There's opportunity, especially in the brick and mortar space. There's that b I call it a phenomenon, but it's truly just the baby boomers retiring. And I see more and more businesses coming up for sale that I'm looking for ways to get.

I'm not, I just don't wanna be in real estate or coaching or podcasting. I want something else. I'd like to have five or six, seven revenues, coming in and a brick and mortar, there's some pretty good businesses out there. I grew up in the carwash industry. And those owners that I worked with when I was in the teenage years are now selling them They're baby boomers and now they're reaching out saying, Hey, do you wanna buy the car washes

There's 14 of them. I don't know if I can buy all 14. Yeah. But I'll find a way, but that's just a whole nother, that's just a whole nother way of looking at life is can I find a way? To find more opportunity for my family that would solidify me or help me during a recession. Cuz people are gonna always wash the cars, especially self-service nowadays.

And then I never I've thought about this was doggy car washes and self-service car washes as a thing. Now I never knew this. I understood the doggy car wash, but I didn't know they were a thing now. And four of their 14 have it and it's, they're starting to produce about a third of their revenue on a monthly basis.

I'm like, . That's crazy. That's pretty, that's crazy. But it's cool that, things evolve and that's what we have to do as not just entrepreneurs but human beings is evolve, push yourself out of that comfort zone and go somewhere that you've never been and go after that passion and that, that life that you're looking for.

And we tend to not do it. And with the pandemic, we've pushed so many people behind. it's. . It's unreal. And they're business owners. They're mothers and fathers. There's brothers and sisters, whatever. There's people struggling with that, and it's like my other podcast, chasing Happiness.

It spun off of this one just for that simple fact of let's talk about happiness. It doesn't have to be a four letter word. Yeah. It's, you can live life and be happy, but you gotta do something about. Oh 

[00:34:16] Paul: yeah. It makes me think one of my favorite books, the Alchemist, he talks, it's if you can be happy, and this really changed my life, really thinking about it.

It's actually the screensaver on my phone. It's if you can be happy in the now, Why you chase what you want, you're gonna be so much. Cause I was always the guy that was like, I gotta get here. And I hit a goal and I wouldn't stop and celebrate. I'm like, okay, we get it. Let's get the next thing. And it's I wasn't enjoying it, I wasn't happy.

And I'm like, I'm just chasing nothing. I'm just chasing, numbers on a freaking statement. I'm like this. And it's oh my God. It's like, why am I not happy now? It's I have the greatest. I can't, if you could have told me, 20 years ago I'd have this life, I would've never, like I get paid to choke people and do armbars,

It's I, people pay me for that, and then other people pay me to teach 'em how to run ads and do sales. I'm like, and then I get to travel and take my kids places. I'm like, Dude, it's but at the same time, I have friends that are more successful than me and they're just freaking miserable because they're just chasing, chasing.

And I'm like, bro, I'm like, calm down. Go on vacation. It's do something. And it's oh, I gotta get to this level. I'm like, why? Why do you gotta get there now? And that was a big thing for me. I think it's, as you get older and you start losing people, people that they were grinding and they were doing all this, they weren't taking care of their health. And they have a heart attack and you're just like, yeah, you didn't get to enjoy anything . It's, 

[00:35:24] Ryan: It's. And living in the now is probably the most difficult thing cuz I struggle with it too. But we also I joke about it cuz it, it has to be, I gotta make gravity light of it, whatever, thinking about the past is depression, thinking about the future's anxiety and it's Man, if you don't just focus on today, how are you gonna accomplish the things that you wanna do, but also wake up with gratitude and being thankful for the things you know that you have.

People I, for me, I don't take for granted a roof over my head, close on my back, food on the table, my bills paid after that, everything is bonus. And I, and that comes. The struggles of entrepreneurship because I've, I'm a two-time failure at entrepreneurship. I had to go back to corporate America twice to learn how to be an entrepreneur because corporate America didn't teach me how to be a fisherman.

It kept me fat and happy. Yep. And two failures. A hundred thousand dollars worth of debt. Couldn't file bankruptcy cause I was in the financial services space. So guess what? I had to figure it out. And it was probably the most daunting part of my life. and I wouldn't give it up, but back then I probably would've told you I want to give up.

But I, there was just something in me says, I'm not gonna let life kick my ass. And. We've let that go. And I know I've said this before, but man, the pandemic has really put a lot of people down a rabbit hole that they're not, I don't know if they're gonna be able to get out of Yeah. 

[00:36:42] Paul: I mean, I talked with my wife last night, we were at dinner.

It's I feel like they took two years away from me. It's literally, it's yeah, I'm a fighter and I'm a grinder and I'll work. But it's like they literally took two years of progress away. It's like I'm just now getting back to where I was. two years ago. I'm this isn't fair.

This is, but life's not fair. Everybody's got things to deal with, but it's it was just a crazy time. And like you said, you gotta just keep putting in the time and keep, it's gonna get better, it's one thing we could think about, otherwise you'd go crazy thinking about all the stuff that happened.

[00:37:07] Ryan: Yeah, for sure. What can you share or things that you do with your clients, your entrepreneurial clients to get 'em through times like this? Cuz it's, it can be. . Yeah. A 

[00:37:16] Paul: lot of it's mindset. We talk a lot about mindset, it's like I listen to a lot of positives. I'm listening to podcasts, audiobooks, thinking about, working on your mindset.

Cuz if you're, if you have a negative mindset all the time, it's gonna be so hard to get positive results, I'm a huge fan of that. Like I try to be, like you said earlier, be grateful for things, take a little bit of time like what am I grateful? What am I getting outta life?

Oh yeah. I'm pretty grateful for that, and that, okay, life isn't that bad. Now let's go work on what we need to accomplish, with sales and marketing, and keep pushing. But taking that time to be grateful for things and think positive and work out and, set goals. And I'm a big proponent of that.

It's If you set goals and you work towards 'em, you may not hit 'em, but you're gonna be a lot farther along than the person that's just winging it day 

[00:37:55] Ryan: by day. And unfortunately, when we set goals, we typically set 'em just to survive and they're not I think it was Grant Cardone. I was listening to his book a couple weeks ago and it's all in my head now.

It's yeah, great. The 10 X rule. And I like it. I think it's great. I. If you wanna set a goal of just, let's say $10,000 a month, why is it only $10,000 a month? That pays my bills. So why don't you 10 x that and go a hundred thousand dollars and call that you know where you need to be cuz that will keep you going and motivated.

So if you don't accomplish it, okay? Did you exceed the 10,000? Yes. How much far did you know? How much further did you exceed it? I exceeded it by $15,000. Bam. Boom. Look where you. People think that is failure, but it actually isn't. It's actually success because you just added $15,000 on top of the 10 that you thought you were gonna get originally.

Yeah. So you almost doubled it. 

[00:38:41] Paul: Yeah. A lot of people make sense. They people set goals just for the bare minimum. It's set some crazy goals, it's shoot for the moon and you don't get it. Maybe you end up in the stars or whatever the saying goes. But it's push. Have some crazy goals out there.

Yeah. You might not hit 'em, but drive 

[00:38:53] Ryan: yourself to do it. Stay consistent. Make sure that you're putting your content out there and just, chugging away and making sure you're getting things done. Where can everyone get ahold of you if they want to talk to you? They've got a brick and mortar, they need somebody to rely on as a coach.

[00:39:07] Paul: You can go to my website paul cause you put a lot of content out there. You can ask questions on there. Hit me up over email. And then social media wise, I love Instagram H a l m e. And I'll never ask for crypto because you get those stuff. Only I don't, Instagram is you get those stupid scammer accounts.

They're actually really good at scamming people. So it's I literally have it in my bio now that I won't ask for crypto and they'll be like, Hey, sent your other accounts from crypto. And I'm like my. account that I use says, I'll never ask you for a crypto. Why did you send crypto somewhere? And they're like, I don't know.

You promised 500% return. I'm like I've never promised my life. But people, it's funny cuz people, I'll talk to people and they'll be like, you talking about basic investing? Yeah, if you do this, the s and p average annual terms, like 10.5%, blah, blah, blah, blah. And oh, I don't really wanna invest.

And then they'll be like, Oh man, I said some crypto to this scam thing you're promoting, and I'm like, I didn't promote a scam thing. And why would you believe that? The people don't want to, they don't, I forget who Buffett said it. People don't want to get rich slowly. They want to get rich super fast and they'll buy into these scams and things like that instead of just working on the basics and just, and do that.

So I put a lot of that, but Instagram, follow that one and I usually have some pretty good stuff in my stories and feed and try to update people and give out some good free content. . 

[00:40:16] Ryan: Cool. Really quick and we'll wrap it up, but the funny thing is they'll give people money because they think it's instant gratification.

They're gonna get rich, but the people that are putting out strategic content, which I've experienced many times, they think we're scams, and it's like, what are you doing? , 

[00:40:33] Paul: dude. I've had people like, I'll have a ebook, I'll have a little course, like a $47 course and they'll be like, oh, I didn't buy that thing cuz of blah, blah blah.

But then they'll send the, they'll send $500 to some scam thing that's trying to tell 'em they're gonna get fi, 500% return and be a millionaire. I'm like, the world does not work that way. You're not good, but people will put money into a scam instead of real quality products. It's insane. 

[00:40:53] Ryan: It's crazy.

That's, that could be a whole nother conversation to talk about 

[00:40:57] Paul: that 

[00:40:57] Ryan: could go a long. We could go a long way on that. Sir, thank you for coming on the show. I'm honored and it's been a great conversation. It's been healthy. I hope you do well with your businesses. Thank you, your Honor.

And you help as many people as you can cause I love to be able to see some entrepreneurs succeed. 

[00:41:12] Paul: That's the goal. Thank you. Have a great 2023. 

[00:41:14] Ryan: Thank you, sir.