All about How to Start A Country host Byron Kay. We cover Byron's history and what his beleifs are as well as why he wants to start a country.
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Aloha, citizens of the world. I'm Byron, I'm your host, and we're broadcasting today from an island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, the farthest from any other landmass in the world. Today we're in Honolulu on the island of Oahu. If you think of Hawaii and you think of like surfers and beaches and stuff, this is kind of the quintessential. place where there's just a lot of that, a lot of surfing, a lot of tourism skyscraper buildings, and it kind of, to me, it's, it's very quintessential, but also it's almost like the big city, because where I'm from, and on the big island, the other one of the other islands. There just isn't much going on compared to this place.There's a lot of hustle and bustle as you can see There's a marina here. There's a several of them. There's a lot of boat traffic a lot of people running around big buildings car traffic all that kinds of stuff. So we're here for the weekend. I'm here with zaz my fiance She is at the University of Hawaii today doing a talk with engineering students and I am just chillaxin here in the A.C. in our living room today, which is super nice love that for sure. So, just hanging out, getting a little work done and doing my first podcast while I'm at it. I feel like the first one is the hardest to do of anything, just getting started. So, today, let's get started. So on this episode, what are we gonna talk about?Well, we're gonna talk about me. I'm your host, Byron K. We're gonna have a little talk question and answer. I'm gonna question myself and answer myself. So hopefully it's not too weird. But let's see how it goes. Alright, let's get this show on, this road on the show. So first question, looking back, what is the best advice you would give to your younger self? When you, when you want to do something, do it sooner. If you think you want to do something, do it sooner. I think everything that I've done in my life, I kind of wish I had just done it sooner. Like starting this podcast. I think getting going is probably one of the hardest parts in life, or even ending things.You know, if you know something's not working well, and you, you just don't want to go through the pain of ending it, I think just doing it sooner is probably better. Ripping off the band aid, so to speak. So that would be my advice to my younger self. To sum it up, don't hesitate. That's probably the best way to put it. So what was my life growing up like growing up, and where did I grow up? So, I grew up in Southern California. It was a pretty ideal, idyllic scenario. I grew up in a place called Orange County. It's there used to be orange trees everywhere there. Now it's just houses as far as the eye can see.It's like suburban hell, suburban hell. The weather's pretty nice, but it's just a lot of asphalt, a lot of houses and freeways and it was not a bad place to grow up by any means. It was, it was pretty amazing. For sure. I definitely really enjoyed my childhood and growing up. And so I, I did spend a lot of my time in Southern California growing up.I went to school in, oh, I went, I was in Boy Scouts. So we did a lot of camping and traveling around in Boy Scouts. We rented a pirate ship, a Two Masted Schooner. It wasn't a pirate ship, but Two Masted Schooner. And sailed around the Channel Islands in California when I was in Scouts. And we did canoe trips.And my family was pretty active camping and traveling. So I've been traveling all around I want to say the world, but you know, parts of the world. I did do some traveling and then I went to University My first job was I want to say it was either I think it was valeting cars So yeah, my first job I'd say You know, I think to me, in my mind, the work you do can be very important in kind of shaping or forming you as a person. And, at least to me, and one of my first jobs was as a valet. I worked at a fancy Mercedes car, luxury car dealership. And I was valet and I just parked these really super expensive cars as close as possible to each other. I don't know why they let a, what, 18 year old, 17 year old do this. And I did. And it was kind of awful.It was kind of horrible. And I would never want to have to do that job again. And if you are a valet I salute you because I know it's kind of a tough gig. It can be a tough gig, especially the one that I had. But anyways so then I moved on and I worked at in and out. These are like summer jobs, right?You know, when you're in college and you're just doing kind of whatever you can get without much work experience, they don't necessarily pay the best, but I think looking back on it, if I had to do it again, I'd probably say find those jobs where you can learn. Something from them because when you're young, that's what's important, right?So I worked at In N Out Hamburger If you guys live in California or the western part of the United States, you'd probably be familiar with In N Out Hamburger it is one of the most beloved and busiest fast food franchise or chains in the Possibly the world and yeah, there's just slamming lines out the door All day, every day, and yeah, so I learned a ton.I got really good training there. It was just such a great job, but it was super busy, and I wanted to make money, so I quit the job, and I went and worked as a security guard. The job paid better, but it was the worst decision I think I've ever made and looking back on it. Well, I don't know. That's hard to say actually.It may have been a good decision. Monetarily it was a good decision, but I think, and also I, you know, sometimes I feel like the way to look at things is if you do something that maybe did not work out optimally in life. That is your chance to learn and I definitely learned from this job. So what did I learn as a security guard?I learned that I hate being bored. I absolutely can't stand it. I hate being bored. I need to be busy at work or just in life. You know, unless I'm chilling on the bed watching TV or something, I need to be, I need to have something to occupy me. I think many of us are that way. Yeah, it was just, it wasn't, it wasn't for me. So I learned a lot. Definitely would not work that kind of gig again. But yeah, anyway, so I had some, I had a lot of random, varied jobs. I went to university, I studied biology. Why did I study biology? Well, I think I wanted to be a marine biologist at the time. Did I really want to be a marine biologist?I wasn't sure. You know, this is the thing when you're young, you don't really know what you want out of life. And I think that's one of the, the, the problems with a lot of people when they're young is they don't really know what they want to do, but they're kind of in society, at least today here in the U.S. A lot of people, they're kind of almost like forced to commit to something when they're younger and University I feel like is a pretty big commitment as far as monetarily and time wise I mean, it's four years and or more a lot of people spend more and a lot of money, especially these days and I Feel like if I do it again, I think I would have preferred just work more.But anyways, I studied biology Focused on marine science graduated and I followed my girlfriend to Washington, D. C. and was looking for marine biology jobs out there. I didn't find anything. Ended up working as a server at a restaurant and at a Barnes Noble booksellers, which was awesome. All the books there, I really enjoyed that aspect of the job.And I learned a lot as a server at a seafood restaurant. So that's as close to marine as I got. But yeah, I learned actually quite a bit in that job as well as far as selling is concerned. And so that was a really good experience for me. But I decided that Washington D. C. wasn't for me. I really liked the outdoors and I ended up moving back to L.A. Worked at my aunt's veterinary clinic. I thought I wanted to be a veterinarian. I learned that I did not want to be a veterinarian working inside with sick animals all day. Then I worked at a dive shop because I really wanted to teach scuba and that's what I wanted to do. I decided that, right? So I did that.I taught scuba for maybe eight, eight, eight months or so, something like that. Ten months, something like that. I certified 50 something people and I wanted more out of the job. I wanted more money and I just wasn't super satisfied I think where I was. And I also, I thought I wanted to work more in marine science, like in the academic stuff, field, direction.And then I learned that that was not, you know, later I learned that that was not what I wanted to do, but I thought I did. So anyway, so I went to my boss, asked for more money, and my boss fired me. So I got fired. That was, that was fun. And so then I went and I worked as a marine science consultant, as a consultant, for a consulting company, as a grunt.We worked at a nuclear power plant. And I worked some other places, but they were like overnight jobs where you'd work from six in the evening to six in the morning. That was fun. And I'd sit in front of a microscope for eight hours as well. So, yeah, anyways did that, and then I decided that I, that I did not want to be a marine consult, biology consultant or work in marine science. So I started, and I, I think I kind of got an idea that I wanted to do more business related stuff, so what did I do? I started my own business, and I started a company that basically took Vegetable oil, and this is stuff you use, you know, oil, basically, the stuff you use to cook with, cooking oil. And I turned it into an alternative fuel. But it's not really, it wasn't biodiesel. I just take the straight vegetable oil and we would filter it and sell it, resell it as fuel for people's cars. And it was kind of cool, interesting business model. It was quite popular. I was having trouble getting enough oil for. And I decided I wanted to do more.I wasn't making big enough impact and it was, frankly, it was, it was kind of overwhelming running a business on my own without much understanding of business and whatnot. So, I ended up getting a job in Kona, Hawaii, on the big island of Hawaii, a volcano in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. And I worked researching algae, growing algae oil for biofuel.So, growing oil with micro unicellular algae organisms is boring science crap. You guys don't care. Anyways, so I tried to do that, and the project didn't, didn't work out. We worked with Shell Oil, and it was this huge project. They spent a pile of money in a very short amount of time. I think it took two, it was three years, three year project.And when it ended they laid almost the entire workforce off, and I didn't have a job. I was unemployed, and I took full advantage of being unemployed. It was great. And then I got another job growing algae at an abalone farm there on the big island of Hawaii. And that was eye opening. It was I think it was a flawed business model.I think, if they're still running, they're probably still not making money, but that's okay. They, they grow abalone. And Well, it's not okay. That's what, that was my contention with that business. I didn't like that business because it was, it was not successful. So I, it was just frustrating to work in a business that, that was not working.It's probably the best way to put it. So what did I do? I decided I wanted to start my own business and I kind of was searching around looking for things and this opportunity came up to buy a dive company. So I bought a dive company. And the company is called Kona Honu Divers, and currently I am running that company, Kona Honu Divers, here in Kona, Hawaii.I, I bought it in 2015 and I've been running it since then. In the meantime, I started a free diving company or free diving brand called Kona Freedivers and that is still going and much smaller, but still going. And then I also took over another company with two business partners called Kona Snorkel Trips.And that one is still going as well. So all my three businesses are, are doing really well. And I've, I'm very happy with where I've gotten with them. And so, yeah, that's kind of where I'm at today. I'm running my businesses mostly from my house at this point. I live nearby them all, but I kind of run them remotely.For the most part, I, you know, I pop in every now and then, but they're, they're going pretty good. And so, yeah, I wanted to refocus my efforts. So now I'm focusing on this project, How to Start a Country. This is kind of something that I've been wanting to do for a long time. When did you figure out what you wanted to do professionally? So, I I figured out that I was kind of, I had this personality for business, I guess, when I really wanted to start and run my own business, I guess. So probably back when I was doing the marine biology consulting thing and I realized that, oh, this isn't for me and I started running a business and I kind of realized that I was enjoying that and that that could be a successful thing for me. That's when I really realized that, oh, hey, you're, you might be good at this, you know, you should. probably do more of this. So I think for a lot of people, if you just learn about your personality, that can help guide you when you're younger in life. So if I had to look back on it, I would probably would have tried to figure out what my personality was like earlier and what I was good at.And that's something you can always look, you also kind of learn as you get older. But like looking back, I think if I had to tell somebody else, give them advice, like figure out what your personality is and then. You can kind of figure out what your role is in life and what you can do to help other people and be Successful or happy in your life, you know, when did I get tracked traction with my career?I'd say I got traction I bought the businesses and I think I started to get my traction when I When I started learning about business and then when I really found The right recipe for how to how to run my businesses and whatnot. That's when I really started gaining a lot of traction and making a lot of headway.What was the highest high and the lowest low of my career? Well, I would say the highest high probably when my businesses started really kind of working on their own, you know producing and making, you know, producing happy customers and when they started winning awards, for example, like my dive company.Won the award for the best dive operation in the Pacific Ocean with scuba diving magazine the first time a few years ago So stuff like that just kind of gives you external proof that what you're doing is making an impact and people appreciate it You know, so that's probably one of the highest highs lowest low.I'd say was probably getting fired from the dive shop What did I learn most from this experience from the low? So the look well from the yeah from the low I'd say I learned Well, they came back and they asked me to come back and work again a year later. So they must not have hated me that much. I did actually talk to the owner, and the owner said that after he had a few more employees, he realized how good I was. How great I was. So, I think, okay, this is what I learned. I know. So, I think the person who was managing me, the owner, was not very good at management. And what I learned was that you need to find people that you work well with. I think that's really important no matter what it is you do. Whether it's in marriage in, you know, work, in play, or in family.You know, ideally you have people that you can really communicate well with. And I think what I learned is that communication is very important. When it comes to work or any other aspect of life. So, yeah. Okay, what projects are you working on? I currently, I am working on my companies just improving them, making things better, making things safer.Making The websites better. Yeah, just a number of things like that. Also I just recently came across machine learning and I'm using it, implementing it on my websites and I've had a lot of success with that. And so I'm trying to share the love or share the information or about how this is great new technology that can help a lot of people who have like e commerce or websites that sell things online or that try to influence users online essentially.So those are things that I've been working on. Another thing in my personal life is just getting married. So I have my fiance, Zaz who you will probably meet here soon. And she and I are getting married. Coming up here. So we're making plans all around that, and that's kind of a little bit of project that I'm working on.And then also I'm working on how to start a country. So that little thing that's my other project and that's what I'm talking to you about today. What are a few of your daily habits that you believe have allowed you to achieve success? It's making checklists of things you need to get done. So, you know, like when I get up in the morning, I've even got a checklist, so.Brush teeth, you know, use your if you have medication, use that put, you know, your cream on, floss your teeth, feed the cat, stuff like that. You know, that's like personal and I have professional checklists that I use to make sure that I get everything done that I need to get done. And so that'd be big and also using like a task to do list.So a to do list that you can come back to every day and say, what was it that I needed to do? Oh yeah, that thing. You just focus and try to get those things done and move the needle or nut, you know. nudge or try to improve just a little bit every single day. And if you can improve just a little bit every single day, then years later or months later or years later, you're going to have a massive amount of improvement over time.So, yeah, that's what I would say has helped me achieve the things that I want to achieve. And that's what I would consider success is, is. You know, having a goal and then reaching it. No matter what the goal is. That's, that's kind of my, my marker for success. I haven't had somebody that I've worked really close with that has really helped me with my career per se.I'd say that I've kind of, you know, met random people, but, you know, I've been kind of guiding my career for the most part. I'd say that, Books were probably one of the biggest things that has really helped me find the, the way to think about life and the way forward and how, you know, paradigms for how to operate, how to think about the world and whatnot.So I'd say books are really, really important, informative for me. Books like Think and Grow Rich. Napoleon Hill books like How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie was a big impactful thing on me when I was in college. Books like Siddhartha by Herman Hess that teaches you about the moderation in life and different, you know, how to not be too extreme in how you behave.So many others I can list them maybe in the show notes and also other mentor be my business coach. I've had two business coaches. My first one was, was good. She was fine, but I just didn't feel like I was really getting the juice. So I got another business coast, a coach. He's a big podcaster. I just resonate with a lot of the things, business advice he was giving.So I signed up and one of his coaches has been helping me for a long time now, and he is amazing. He's a young guy 25 now. His name's Andrew and he's...