I love to share amazing stories of success to inspire others. The following is an interview with Sean Ray, a realtor with Urban Leasing in Houston, TX (and soon to be Dallas as well!) His story and rise to success is so inspiring, it’s almost unbelievable! (But it’s true!) You’ve got to check this out: Sean shares some of his personal tips for paying off massive debt and creating the career and income he always dreamed about...in less than a year!
How I Met Sean
I worked with Sean briefly at a fine dining restaurant a few years ago, and what stuck out to me was his determination to “make it big” and unyielding belief that he would. The restaurant gig didn’t work out, but since then, Sean has experienced an incredible rise to the top of the local real estate scene. He’s paid off tens of thousands of dollars in debt and is on track to double his previous year’s income.
It isn’t luck — Sean has studied his profession, networked his you-know-what off, and will drop anything to help a friend or client. (I know this because he assisted my mom recently when she was looking for a new place but was unsure where to start.)
I think that Sean’s story is so awesome that it needs to be shared. No matter where you are or what you do, self-confidence can be life-changing and it is something that we all need to work on! Read on and be inspired!
How to Develop Self-Confidence That Will CHANGE Your LIFE
Can you give us a little background on yourself? What were your career goals growing up?
I grew up in a small town North of Dallas. I was a very wild and hyperactive kid that did not do well in school. My mom was and still is the angel that got me through each day when I came home wrecked from getting bullied by students or teachers for being such a weird kid. I wanted to be a Zoologist growing up so I could just spend all day hanging out with animals.
What made you decide to change direction?
As I got older I got more and more addicted to video games. I still loved animals but I started feeling like the true calling for happiness is the feeling of creation. I thought it would be cool to create new worlds, stories and characters.
I started going to college for that and got into psychology classes. After taking the psychology classes I realized that my new passion was the study of the mind and why people do what they do.
To practice what I learned I started getting into acting and modeling. I thought being an actor was the best way to go. That way I can study the human mind and behavior in a more hands on way. Then after a few movies I realized I was not very good on camera and moved into Sociology to study groups of people.
This trend of constant changing kept me going throughout my 20’s until I got into a network marketing company called ACN. Although I really didn’t make any money in the three years I was with them, I learned so much about myself and people that it was the missing piece of the puzzle. I learned about personal development and how much the mind has control over your daily life.
Once I started pushing myself to the limit each day, I think life recognized that I was ready for a new mountain to climb and it put a gentleman named Brent Johnson in my path. He believed in me and told me to come work with him at Urban Leasing and Realty. I was making maybe $1100 a month at the time and was $40k in debt so he ended up paying for my license and test. For that act of kindness, my life was never the same.
What steps did you take to ensure that you were successful?
I got to a point in life where I was a single grown man with a college degree living at home with my parents and waiting tables. I got fired from waiting tables. At that point I said I couldn’t live this life any more so I packed up a backpack and drove to Houston that night. I slept in my car till I met someone that let me sleep on their floor. I found a waiting job and started my Houston life.
I feel that the “jump off the cliff and grow your wings on the way down” mentality is the hardest but best way to go about life. Cut any safety harness you have and know that if you fail you might not survive.
After I started in real estate I took that same mentality. I told myself I will work like others won’t for a solid year so I could have a life like others don’t from then on out. Currently, I am not the best at doing the fundamentals and I feel that is okay. Instead of focusing on the 20 things I am weak on I just focus on the three things I am strong at.
I make sure to market myself well, I answer my phone/text/emails like it is a quickness game, and I make sure to keep a positive attitude/attract only what I want in my life. I only surround myself with positive uplifting people as well. That helps a lot. As soon as someone starts telling me more about their daily defeats vs their daily victories I stop spending time with them.
Describe a typical day for you.
I like to wake up and listen to some kind of positive affirmations and think about my day and goals. The days I can wake up before 6am are the best days. I do work for myself so it is so easy to lay in bed everyday till noon. Knowing that I am my own worst enemy is a great motivator in keeping yourself self-motivated.
I almost always make three eggs and take one yolk out. Take a shower and sit down in the shower and meditate on my day and visualize what I want to happen. I focus on the number I have to make each month in sales and make it part of my identity. Then from there I just pound out the emails, follow up with past clients, tour clients in my car, take people out for lunches. I try to end my day with doing Muay Thai boxing or listening to a book on tape through audible.
What are your short term goals? Long term goals?
Short term goals are that I want to double what I made last year. I currently have already matched my last year’s income and I still have 6 months to go. I am expanding into Dallas in August and I want to hire a team of positive, driven, happy and giving people. I was so happy to start seeing success when I did. Then I realized I like showing my mom how to make a great income even more. Now that my struggle chapter is over I want to help as many people as I can end that chapter as well.
Long term life goals kinda sound crazy but they are fun to think about. I want to be a full time real estate investor by the time that I get married and have kids. I would like to be a full time stay at home dad and live off the rental incomes. I would like to have a net worth of a million dollars before I have children as well which I hope will be in my mid to late 30’s.
Once the kids are in school I want to open up a Martial Arts chain that focuses on personal development more than anything. I would like to franchise that idea and have the first large martial arts chain that teaches kids how to be successful in life. I would like to use that money from the successful franchise to design and build a self-sustaining future city. I feel if I can get enough investors that city can be the model for new master planed developments.
What advice do you have for anyone who is thinking about changing careers or going into business for themselves?
All I can say to them is what I know worked for me. I say first in foremost you need to have this unyielding belief in yourself. No matter what.
Second, you must stay hungry/starving no matter what. Complacency kills. Don’t believe your own hype. Just because you are making $100k in your job and you are the most successful person you know that doesn’t mean you are making as much as you should. Success is growing yourself and your income each day to test your own limits. You were made to be abundant in all aspects of life. Don’t let someone else determine how much you are worth.
DO KNOW that you will fail…a lot! Be okay with that. Fail forward and learn from each failure because they will be amazing lessons for later.
Lastly, take advantage of the market and timing. Yes I do agree that you should do what you love and money will come but I also believe in business. If real estate is hot right now do real estate. If you see an gap in the market and you find that you can make a product to fill that gap…make it! Put it on the web and sell it everywhere you can.
There are so many more millionaires being created each year now thanks to how easy and connected people are. You can be one of them.
Sean’s advice is intense, but he makes many excellent points that can be applied to many different situations. One thing I completely agree with is that complacency is the enemy of success—even if you’re not trying to start you own business, complacency, or “settling,” will keep you from being truly happy. Stay positive, stay moving, and stay growing!
Below are two photos of Sean: the first is when he was just starting out in real estate, and the second is Sean today. You can absolutely tell a difference in his entire presence! And he has a nicer suit 😉
I want to thank Sean for taking the time out of his busy day to let me pick his brain! Click here to connect with Sean on Facebook for more tips for success, to buy a house, or just to say hi!
Looking for more reading on self-improvement? Check out Make Money, Live Wealthy: 75 Successful Entrepreneurs Share the 10 Simple Steps to True Wealth — I found it to be an easy read and full of great tips…I wanted to start making changes right away!
Read last month’s post featuring Aubrey Cash of LadyFish Boutique, who shares her tips for balancing motherhood with starting your own business.
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