The next interview (and probably the last), is with Jason, a young man I met in Medellin. I had to interview him not only because he is making his own money and traveling the world, but because he’s only 22 years old. The true nature of his hustler status is apparent once you read that he gives career advice to older professionals, without ever having a career of his own. Let’s take a look…
Can you give us a little background on your age and the type of environment you grew up in? What are some things that influenced you earlier in life that put you into the position you are in now?
I am a financially independent 22 years old traveling the world full-time while working 22 hours per week running two successful online businesses. I started with $50 running my own web-based businesses since age 16 but currently run a career services business (Resumes/CVs, interview coaching, etc.) and an online retail store selling physical products. I started traveling independently on my own at least 4 months per year on my own dime since age 19.
I grew up comfortably in an east coast suburb as one of five children. All the basics were easily covered from birth: weekly tennis lessons, SAT class, summer camp, and one of the top rated public schools in the nation. I was a complete suburban stereotype. I never felt comfortable given all of these advantages. And since I wasn’t naturally gifted in any school subjects like most of my peers I didn’t buy into the cycle that if I got good grades everything else would take care of itself. But for a while I didn’t know what else to focus on either.
As a privileged teenager, it’s pretty common to go on an international travel/volunteer program. It wasn’t my first time abroad, but at age 15 I jumped at the opportunity to go on my first cultural exchange program to Costa Rica. The highlight of this trip was living with a Costa Rican family in a rural town for three weeks. I ate rice, beans, and eggs every day, shared a wooden plank bed with the host family brother, and showered each day with a bucket of cold water. The experience was uncomfortable and I could barely communicate with the family, but the feeling of independence from back home in the United States was an invaluable emotion that is probably what has motivated me ever since.
Talk about your ideal girl. What does she look like? Where is she from? What’s her personality like?
I am still figuring this out. One of the many consequences of my lifestyle is that I rarely have enough time for a proper relationship. My experiences are limited to the countries I have traveled, and even then I can’t claim to know most of the cultures on any level deeper than your average tourist. There is just not enough time.
But a benefit of travel is that I know what type of girls I do not want a relationship with. As I travel more I find myself traveling a little more closed-minded because I have more experience in knowing what I don’t want. As a result I often put myself in situations where I am less likely to encounter certain types of women. An easy example is that I especially avoid going out to bars or clubs popular with tourists and expats. In these places I have found that the girls want something from me; sometimes for the Western stereotypes I can offer if they are fascinated by my culture. Other times they just might be more attracted to something different because a lot of the countries I visit are so homogenous. Either way, I think that many girls who go to these places have some kind of agenda, whether those examples I gave, or countless other reasons that have more to do with circumstances rather than us actually having any sort of connection.
Describe your travel experiences and strategy.
My style of travel is constantly changing because of an increasing income, language ability, and travel experience, and work obligations. It also depends on what region of the world I go. What I do, spend, and eat in Tokyo is much different than what I do in La Paz.
I first traveled independently after my freshman year of university to Ecuador and Colombia. In Ecuador I lived out of a dorm room in a party hostel for three months and traveled on the weekends. I volunteered during the weekdays and put in a probably less than ten hours a week in my own businesses. I made very few local friends but at this point my Spanish was also very basic. My travel experiences were also very limited so I was eager to go everywhere, from small towns to remote jungles.
Fast forward year after year and my Spanish continues to improve conversationally. I earn more money but I also work more hours. Sightseeing is becoming repetitive after having been to a lot of jungles, small towns, churches, and temples. I have also done most adventure activities from white water rafting and caving to even more adventurous ones like skydiving and bungee jumping. But I also get to know fewer places for longer, making stronger connections to people in fewer places.
What kind of lodgings do you stay in?
Location is most important to me. No matter where I stay, I always try my best to find a place closest to the action. I have always stayed in places below my means because I don’t like the idea of spending much on the place where I will sleep. But this is changing as I spend more and more time at my accommodation mostly because of an increased workload.
I have stayed in countless hostels, occasional budget hotels and boutique hotels, student residence, friend’s apartments, and with a couple CouchSurfing hosts. These typically cost around $4US-$60US per night. I even slept in a park and one time in the corner of a hallway. Those were free! In less than a week I will rent my first apartment abroad with amenities like a gym, pool, doorman, and maid.
How do you approach integrating yourself into a new culture with regard to food, language, local customs, etc.?
The longer amount of time I stay in one place the easier it is for me to feel a closer connection to the local culture. Language is also a key. I didn’t realize how effortless it was to communicate with locals like I did in South America until visiting places like Ukraine or Bangladesh where my hands had to do most of the talking. In terms of actually meeting new locals it has usually been by going out to bars with other backpackers and meeting new local friends there.
What do you fill your days with?
I’ll usually start my day whenever I wake up around 9AM-1PM. I put in around three hours of work every day and then do whatever I please. Often times I then go for a walk around a new part of the city I am in. If there’s something special that I want to do, like the Machu Picchu for instance, I’ll plan an entire day around it. Recently in Thailand I spent a few weeks learning Muay Thai because I wanted to get in shape and what better place to practice? In South America I typically went out for drinks around 3-5 nights a week.
Do you have a basic strategy for meeting women while you travel?
Nope, I’m pretty typical in that I go out to bars/clubs like everyone else. I used to think that being a foreigner really helped make me unique, but I think people care about this less than I used to think. Maybe I have just become comfortable being different so much that the reactions now seem normal?
How do you make a living? How did you get into it? What are some skills you had to learn?
I have been self-employed since age 16 (more details here). I never received any formal training so a lot of what I have done is just educated research mixed with trial and error. Along the way I have honed my internet research skills and drastically improved my writing ability. These skills together are very useful when it comes to advertising and marketing. They are also skills I take advantage of daily since they directly relate to the services I run.
My career services company specializes in writing resumes, curriculum vitae, cover letters, and coaching clients on interviews to an average of 60 new clients each month, The company has created and revised over 1,000 resumes and curriculum vitae since 2007 for everyone from recent college graduates looking for their first job or professionals with 20 years of experience ready to take the next step in their career.
The second business, an online gift store, provides 15 categories of over 400 products including printed t-shirts, cologne, watches, sunglasses, tactical gear, lighters, and other categories. Since 2005, the store has completed more than 3,000 orders and counting. I am able to manage this business online because I have arranged for manufacturers and wholesale distributors to ship products directly to each of my customers’ only after I make a sale.
There are people twice your age making far less money than you do, and not even close to being independently mobile. What do you attribute your success to?
I have only ever really had 2 passions: travel and business. I was one of the lucky people to find myself in the right circumstances to discover these passions so early in life. These are the kind of interests more suited to older people, but I was too impatient to wait for others to tell me when I could get started on pursuing them. So I started on my own initiative. It was difficult, but I enjoyed the process of building these businesses. While 22 may seem like a young age, it’s only after 7 years that I reached this point where I can live like I am full-time. There is no big secret. I worked really hard and it took a long time.
What’s the most important thing you’ve learned so far in life?
I think my answer changes every few months but a more recent lesson that I am learning is the importance of family and life-long friends. For so long I wanted to travel aimlessly, leaving behind any semblance of a home base. I wanted true independence, traveling from place to place, only visiting old friends and family on occasion. While I have done this many times in the past I never actually gave up my home base of friends until this year.
I can report back that after four months of aimlessly traveling without the comfort of a home base in the back of my mind, this concept just doesn’t work in my reality. The past four months of travel were the same as any other year. The difference is that after all of these amazing experiences I had few people to share them with that I would ever see again.
What are your future goals? How do you see your life playing out in the next 10-20 years?
It’s now been a month since I am back in the U.S. staying with family. This is the first time I have actually chosen to return to the U.S. and I am thoroughly enjoying my time with familiar faces. But most friends now live in other cities and I see there is little for me at home unless I chose to invest the time and effort in getting my own place, making new friends, etc. My passion is travel so I don’t want to just hang out in the U.S. forever either.
What I eventually want is to develop 2-3 of my own bases (friends, apartment, etc.) in foreign cities and split my time in each throughout the year. I’d then take shorter, 1-3 week mini-vacations to new international destinations whenever I please.
In less than one week I will be on a plane leaving the U.S. to another country where I will rent an apartment and get this new goal started.Tweet Follow @rooshv
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The travel and business lifestyle looks good, but the lack of personal connection and women seems a bit worrying.
Or maybe he’s like 99.99% of people and prefers to keep his personal life personal.
Jason was one of the first guys I met in Medellin last year, and I remember learning about his online businesses back then and being amazed that someone so young (still in college) was so independent — sitting right where I was but 10+ years my junior.
“What I eventually want is to develop 2-3 of my own bases (friends, apartment, etc.) in foreign cities and split my time in each throughout the year. I’d then take shorter, 1-3 week mini-vacations to new international destinations whenever I please.”
This is my current ideal situation as well. Medellin is my first base, and I anticipate some place in Brazil will become a second when I get there next year. Then shorter trips to other parts of the world as possible.
Sounds like a good plan, but I’ve been there and realized that the country-hopping lifestyle (even between 2-3 “home” bases) gets old after a while. If you want to have kids (notice I didn’t say get married, just have kids), then you need to stay in one place for a period of years if you don’t want to disrupt your kids’ lives.
But hey, the guy is only 22. Roosh is only 30. Both have more than enough time to decide where they want to be in another 10-15 years.
It’s pretty easy to start businesses & bum around the world when you can fall back on mommy & daddy warbucks.
He’s just biding time till he gets his inheritance.
I’ll punch my boner if that dude has cleared more than $50k (total)in the last three years.
“It’s pretty easy to start businesses & bum around the world when you can fall back on mommy & daddy warbucks.
He’s just biding time till he gets his inheritance.”
Being a hater is a little passe, no?
I know this not to be true in Jason’s case. I also know that there is nothing easy about starting a successful business.
Second, there is a huge tax incentive, for income under 90k, to live abroad around 300 days per year. Meaning, you pay none. Therefore someone making 50k living abroad has the after tax income of someone making approximately 80k at home. That means that if you can travel, you would be very uninformed or else need a great reason to stay in the country.
Hydrogonian makes a good point about being out of the country and the tax advantages that brings. This doesn’t even include the lower cost of living in South and Central American countries. Combine the two and you can live like someone earning in the mid-$100 range. The only drawback is that you don’t have the same access to medical care, but if you’re a young guy, you really don’t need it (just the basics for infections, broken bones, etc… which you can often pay for in cash).
I understand that the first 90k is free of FOREIGN-EARNED income. If you’re making money off your american business, where the money is getting deposited in american bank accounts, you’re still on the hook for all that. But if you are a bartender in Brazil, then that’s different.
Privileged kid running around the world making a few bucks on the side. Great for him but take his “businesses” with a grain of salt.
Roosh, I don’t know. I’m going to ask an accountant. I’ve been considering taking my business out of the country, while still working for U.S.-based lawyers. I’m going to check with an accountant to find out if my income is foreign earned.
You should do the same thing.
I understand that the first 90k is free of FOREIGN-EARNED income. If you’re making money off your american business, where the money is getting deposited in american bank accounts, you’re still on the hook for all that. But if you are a bartender in Brazil, then that’s different.”
I wonder what the story is if you have an internet marketed business registered as a foreign corporation, which ostensibly sells product or services to the world, but most of the customers are USA citizens. For instance, Jason could have his business registered as a Singapore corporation, have an office in Colombia, and do 80% USA citizen resumes and 20% Filippina nurse resumes. Id be interested to know how that would be taxed.
It’s a bit ambiguous:
“The source of your earned income is the place where you perform the services for which you received the income. Foreign earned income is income you receive for performing personal services in a foreign country. Where or how you are paid has no effect on the source of the income. For example, income you receive for work done in France is income from a foreign source even if the income is paid directly to your bank account in the United States and your employer is located in New York City.”
If I teach a workshop in Brazil, that’s foreign earned even if it goes through my U.S. bank account. But if I wrote a book about Brazil while in Brazil, I really can’t write that off as foreign income for the rest of my life. The spirit of the law seems to mean foreign salary, wages, and services.
Nice find, Roosh.
It’d mean, though, if you moved abroad and opened a travel/game consult service, you’d be tax free up to $91,500.
Never knew that.
“if you moved abroad and opened a travel/game consult service, you’d be tax free up to $91,500.”
It would take him the rest of his life to make $91.5K on “game” service.
Where’s G Manifesto? That clown likes to pretend he knows smth about business too.
“The source of your earned income is the place where you PERFORM the services.” I think this means that if his buddies are churning out those resumes in the US and fork the profits over to him in Brazil, that’s taxable U.S. income.
If, on the other hand, he hires some Colombian hobos to do the job IN Colombia, that’s foreign earned, even though he’s got 80% American clients or what not.
Good for Jason. I appreciate that he realizes that he had a pretty good set-up with how and where he grew up, but that wasn’t enough for him. Instead of simply riding out a good thing, he used some of those advantages to start his OWN thing. Sure, he may have had the safety net of home to fall back on, but when things got hard he still gutted it out and did his own thing. Again, even though he comes from a somewhat privileged background, he’s still enterprising and ambitious. His background didn’t give him that – that came from within. There are plenty of privileged kids that are lazy fucks, and sit around waiting for their entitlements, or get helped by their parents, or their parents’ circle of connections.
Bottom line on the tax angle is that Roosh should take advantage of it if he can. He might even be able to write off his travel expenses as being necessary to the work he’s performing out of the country (i.e., travel to meet with clients). He should definitely talk to an accountant and possibly a tax/corporate lawyer. Maybe he can do a swap for services – Game advice for Tax/Legal advice.
self employed at 16 is pretty impressive.
Amen to the quip about experiencing freedom. one thing I’ve learned throughout my life is that there’s nothing more valuable – freedom is worth any price. Move out of your parent’s basement asap.
It sounds like as long as you live abroad, even if you work form say a laptop and your customers are all US based, then you qualify for the foreign earned income exclusion. In fact, I find it difficult to fathom how one wouldn’t qualify as along as you were out of the country for the minimum time.
I live in Jason’s hometown and am familiar with the school he attended. Yes, its a good public school. But going there is based on living within a rather expansive area, and not a function of any special privilege. Also, SAT lessons and sports are standard for almost every suburban kid who has some ability. I appreciate the fact that Jason has a realistic global perspective and hence sees himself as privileged. From a global perspective, that’s true. Its good of Jason to be grounded enough o realize that. But from the perspective of living in the USA, its pretty standard middle class stuff. You guys going on and on about privilege, and devaluing his efforts accordingly, sound jealous.
Dude sounds cool, but when you say he’s a hustler, I’m thinking he came up from the bottom slanging dub sacks, scamming, bartering for and flipping stolen leather jackets, play stations, etc., like my homies.
same age but different life experience, it would be my motivation to kick my pointless life and go Travel.
Thanks Roosh for this interview
There are a few skeptics I see.
I assure you all this lifestyle is possible, because I’ve done it myself. I was lucky enough to get a legit work-over-the-internet job editing academic papers with a Korean company. I was only working about 3 hours per day on average, pulling $50 per hour and about $30K per year. I travelled the world, ‘jumping’ from city to city, spending the day exploring, then retreating to a public/university library in the evening to do the editing work on my laptop. The company was able to keep sending me a regular stream of papers non-stop for 3 years, and they never failed to send work on a daily basis and always got full pay wired to my bank account, which is the equivalent of a ‘jackpot’ in the freelance writing world – in short I got lucky.
The lifetyle was really cool at first. I felt like a spy or adventurer, I felt kinda invincible really, an arrogrant cunt, looking at all the people trapped in low-paying 9-5 office crap while I was free to roam where I pleased with most my day day free, and cash-flow was always assured.
There were some down-sides though: there were daily dead-lines, so this always neccesitated a bit of desperate hussling when I first got to a new place. I had to ensure I had access to the internet at all times, so I always had to quickly hussle when I got to a new place to locate wi-fi and a good quiet study area , it meant I couldn’t stray too far off the beaten track.
And it did get old after a while. Checking in and out of hostels with people constantly coming and going, the hassle of airports, the need to constantly have to hussle to locate wi-fi and meet dead-lines, and the lack of stability, depth or lasting connections, after 3 years it defintely got old.
Eventually the work did dry up (the company had to let me go) and basically it’s been a big ‘crash and burn’, since I’ve been unable to secure any other regular source of net-based income. Now I’m stuck back home, thrown into a deep depression and going nearly insane with the mundane 9-5 stuff that I thought was only for the little people (not me). I don’t know ordinary people can live like this to be honest. Obviously, I’m hussling like crazy to try to get a new web-based business going again.
I can tell you all that travel is the best use of your money by far (material things soon lose their value, but ‘experiences’ will be with you forever – time filled with interesting events is the one irreplaceable commodity, and I don’t regret a single moment of the time I spent on the road).
Biggest hussler on the boards as far as I can tell is G Manifesto, but I’m not totally sure he’s on the straight-and-narrow if you know what I mean? LOL Making enough money from an entirely web-based business to travel the world and doing it completely legit is HARD. But I’ve proved it can be done.
^^ The G Manifesto makes stuff up.
Congrats to Jason and Roosh for living their lifestyles. I don’t begrudge them anything. As Ricky Raw says, “Don’t Hate. Congratulate.”
The only thing I want to know is who is paying a 22-year old for resume, CV, and interviewing tips? Seriously, one can find a lot of free resume/CV/interviewing information online.
People will pay you to research for them. The answers for writing a great resume are out there, but it takes hours to find a really “good” resume that can take a mediocre candidate and make him or her shine brighter than someone who graduated from an Ivy League school. I’ve seen the difference between a good resume, and a truly great resume. A great resume is based on two things: (1) knowing what information to present, and (2) how to present it.
Here’s an example. A good resume states your experience, often in a 1-paragraph form under each of your employers. You list what you know, learned or managed, blah, blah, blah. A great resume selects key skills and tells a 1-sentence story in bullet-point form how you acquired them – with an emphasis on the money you made or saved for your employer.
The same thing applies to interviewing tips. A good candidate can explain what he or she did at a former employer, skills learned, etc… A great candidate will speak about such skills with enthusiasm and demonstrate how those skills will: plug-and-play seamlessly into the new employer’s environment.
I’ve worked for Fortune 500 companies for many years. During that time, I’ve met some people with mediocre backgrounds who learned how to do the one thing that most people will never learn – how to really sell themselves.
This is cool what the guy is doing. He is clearly not as into game as he is into business though.
[...] Roosh – “The Most Important Thing a Man Has“, “Lifestyle Interview with a Bonafide Hustler” [...]
Hustler does not have to be an ex “gangst” NoRcal. A Hustler is anyone who makes shit work and hustles to get ahead. This kid is Def, a Hustler.
Though I do agree he started out with silver spoon in hand and much higher than “middle class”…I mean tennis lessons, SAT prep courses? haha that shiz is foreign to me and really was true middle class.
“Eventually the work did dry up (the company had to let me go) and basically it’s been a big ‘crash and burn’, since I’ve been unable to secure any other regular source of net-based income. Now I’m stuck back home, thrown into a deep depression… Obviously, I’m hussling like crazy to try to get a new web-based business going again.”
^ See that, bitches?
That’s what a normal person without mom & dad’s money and security blanket has to go through to live a globe-trotting, non-9-to-5 life. It takes them 10 times the effort.
Roosh, stop interviewing travelling rich kids with “businesses”. They are a dime a dozen. They are all alike & think they are special because they have 2 ounces of motivation & don’t go shopping all day like some other rich kids.
Fuck, Roosh is 10 times the hustler & has bigger balls than any rich kid because he has to deal with the bullshit of family expectations, health insurance, future financial security, lack of money, and whatever tomorrow brings.
If Roosh goes down in flames, there is no reset button, there is no bailout from mom & dad other than a mattress in the basement. He is a bigger gambler & hustler because he is putting it all on the line. He may end up living a life of fulfillment or he end up sick, lonely, regretful & broke. No one knows what will happen. It is his life & future that’s on the hook. He ain’t some rich kid that’s just playing around & whiling away time while waiting to collect mommy & daddy’s chips.
You homos need to realize that these people aren’t hustlers. They are half fags who travel to third world countries because the women there don’t expect as much from their men as women from the US do. Basically these queerbos are not-so-good football players, can’t get a gig in the NFL so they play in Canada. You dig? The problem isn’t American women. It’s just that these gamefags never got laid and wound up blaming the girls instead of taking stock of their own lives and realizing that they just weren’t cool or interesting enough for women to be attracted to them.
You queerbos talking about his 2% motivation can suck it. You fucks living in the US of Anal Rape all think everyone who’s not totally gutter or totally rich is a douche. I’m gonna stand up for the silent majority and say fuck ya and fuck your bullshit. Not everyone wants to sit in a fuckin’ office listening Michael Bolton on the drive back from work. Some of us like travel and some of us like foreign pussy. When you have a foreign girl screaming “si papacito!!!” then you’ll understand. Until then have fun with your warpigs.
I think that you should not acknowledge people like Anonymous up there. Roosh has been getting a lot more haters lately, which I think means he is doing something right.
Although these interviews are not my favorite posts, this one did make me aware of Jason’s blog which is interesting thus far so thanks Roosh.
Back to idiots like Anonymous. These blogs are entertainment. Most people work and live normal lives, including myself. You should reread your post and think about how ridiculous you sound.
(TLDR version at bottom). The guy’s story sounds legit as I did the same thing from the age of 13-20, minus being middle-class or traveling abroad(I’m 24 now), before joining the military. I started with $300 I made at a summer job and began dropshipping on Ebay. Profit margins sucked so I moved on to bootlegging video games, dvds, etc. and selling modchips bought from a distributor for about a year before Ebay began singling me out and mass-banning my accounts.
I did a lot of research for a few months, both googling and dumpster-diving behind video game stores at night for names, addresses, and phone numbers of wholesalers, all useful info for legitimizing myself and finding a distributor who would sell to me at wholesale prices. Ditched Ebay for the most part and I began selling through Craigslist and put up ads at local colleges to retain more profit for myself. Made about $5-10 per video game sold, not bad for a 17-year old, and made sick amounts of money on launch dates for new consoles, but ultimately decided to call it quits as I felt like I didn’t have much of a social life or hobbies anymore and didn’t want to end up being some kind of hermit, and that’s when I made my decision to join the Air Force to fill that void in my life.
Moral of story: the online business thing can be done as I have done it in my teen years, it just takes a fucking ton of time/effort sifting through bullshit information and scams to find those hidden nuggets of valuable info.
TLDR; Started dropship business, sold bootlegs on Ebay, moved on to selling legit video games in real life, quit to join military and see the world, meet new people, do cool stuff,etc.
Roosh I think the guy in this interview is full of shit. If it was that easy every american male would do it.