District 4-Members of Ground Zero-An Interview with Dan Pena

in Real Talk

Everyone understands that working hard, discipline, and networking are major components to succeeding. There is lots of basic advice offered for aspiring moguls, entrepreneurs, and wannabe millionaires. This article is not that, in fact it will do its best to get you as the reader to understand that you may not want what you are asking for; to be successful-truly.

Let’s be honest for a moment, most people when they say I want to be “famous” “rich” “own my own business” Or “Self-made” are not really asking for those things. What they are really saying is I want enough money to buy what I want, live comfortable, and not have to work.

In “real life” many people asking for those things are doing so because they are struggling and want to make it stop. They are, starting from ground zero-lucky to be paying bills every month without shifting dollars around.

What they fail to realize is that ground zero is an uphill battle and many give up before they ever really get started, not understanding that the basics of working hard, discipline, and networking may put you in the top 20% above the poverty line, simple will not due to be in the top 5% which are the people whom generate the countries wealth.

Moreover, how many of us have seen someone work themselves to the bone but still only live modestly, what about the discipline do most broke people not have; it takes discipline to work a job you had for years (especially if you hate it)? How many times has someone worked for a millionaire full access to ask any question they want (ask any celebrity assistant) and yet while they are parking next to millionaires Bugatti’s they themselves drive up to work in a Nissan SUV with all of the trimmings-for comfort (get it)?

This article is going to attempt to breakdown how to get from ground zero to millions. Yes, Kyle Jenner is a young billionaire but she started with millions not a great leap if you think of the opportunities that come with being handed millions of dollars for the continued branding of a well-established multi generationally brand name (on both sides). Harsh I know, but I need to drive the point home.

This article speaks to the ground zeros, those who feel like a dream is just not practical. Those of you who think that wealth is either inherited or reserved for special individuals touch by God in a way that only a few are intended. This article, is also for those that have been trying but never quite get there.

We will explore this topic as District 4 presents-How to get off the ground an interview with Billionaire Dan Pena:

Q. So let’s talk Dan Pena-You were born in the barrios of East LA, you now live in a 15 Century Castle in Scotland? Responsible for the creation of 15 Billion Dollars of wealth as far back in 1993, you are a billionaire that truly started from the bottom? What happened?
A. Well, you are an example. You yourself have made big changes since the first time I met you. You went from that common none paid “for free” model to a more profitable subset model. And I had abandon that model and still continue not to use it.

Q. The question of your wealth is confusing people say you are the trillion dollar man but that is not your net worth?
A. No. I have created that amount of wealth but it is not my net worth? We [our businesses] are without my most recent transactions, currently at billion and something, but almost a trillion [after calculation for our latest venture]. Rounding it has a nice ring to it. We will make it to a trillion because it is not like work (he gives way to thought before continuing).
When I am at the club I am looked at with great distain, you know because they [persons with generational wealth] do not like to talk about money.
I took $800 bucks and turned it into 450 million!
Funny thing is the lower the IQ the more money you seem to make (he gives a knowing type grin).

Q. Ok, wait, now explain that?
A. You take an engineer for example, a real one not the one that got his degree on the internet (he chuckles) but an actual educated engineer. Engineers are analytical, and they are trained to be analytical. Uh, because quite simple if you make a mistake, if you are building a bridge or building a rocket ship or whatever a lot of people will die (he pauses in gesture, motioning with his hand). You are trained to be safe.

Q. (interrupts) Trained to be risk adverse, and to be caught up in the details?
A. Yes. Trained to spreadsheet things to death.

Q. Meaning?
A. Trained to over analyze things. Proralisis by analysis.

Q. Which means, you don’t have to pull the trigger you can just analyze it all day?
A. Exactly. You know, you’re hitting the send button but that’s not taking action. So, you over analyze you study all the possibilities of what could go wrong- and if you do that long enough, you will come up with just the right amount of reasons not to do it at all.
Taking action is not doing a spread sheet, taking action is not listening to a podcast, and taking action is not reading a book, ok? Taking action is actually, taking action. Just F&%king do it!
If you are a lawyer, an engineer, an accountant, a doctor, a scientist, an uh, PHD etc.-You have learned to study and take action in a certain fact pattern that “fact pattern” is not like a gun slinger at the OK Corral just pulling his gun and shooting. It is more like ok which way is the wind blowing, is the sun on my back or on his back, how many are there on that side, you know? You go through all these computations. But a good entrepreneur goes mostly by his guts, Ok?

Q. I understand you can decide on a deal in 60 seconds, and be correct?
A. Well, yes. Because I know you only have two times to make a first impression one is the way you look and the other is the first things that come out of your mouth. Many look the part but once they open their mouth they engage in self-sabotaging activities. I will meet a person and shake their hand and immediately I know this is not it, I can see death in their eyes. Let’s just say we aren’t the people we were when we had to earn.

Q. And that is devastating us?
A. We are not pulling the trigger and we are not taking risk which is how we survived. Instead we are having self-esteem issues and being told that you should not be aggressively seeking. Comfort is the new weakening.
We pause here for a moment to take in what this man who has generated almost one trillion dollars is explaining to you as the reader.
Comfort is the new weak, how self-esteem must be healthy in order to trust yourself enough to follow your instincts, and that over analyzing is dangerous for a person with nothing to lose, you simply risk building fear and that will block your progress.
Dan goes on to say, that he truly believes that the young people today rely too heavily on being all inclusive and over accepting. He gives the new no win sports model for the youth as an example of how doing so has produced generations of young people who fall apart over their failures rather than understanding rebounding from perceived failures, creates greater possibilities for generating wealth. This is because your self-esteem grows, thus you take more risks, and feel comfortable being uncomfortable. Adaptation teaches you to create and not simply follow..

I leave you with this quote from Dan Pena:
“Don’t under any circumstances, ever second guess yourself-The best way to predict the future is to create it yourself!”

Edited by Alex Love, Interviewed by Brian R.

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