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IN Travel & Adventure ON 24 Dec, 2015
Imagine SnapChat buys your startup and you are a millionaire now. What do you do?
Garrett Gee, 25, probably used this situation in the best way. He saved all the money, sold everything he owned and took his family around the world on an endless trip.
He had pitched about the same in 2013 on 'Shark Tank'. When pitching investors, the ensemble he wears is a hoodie and flip flops. That's what he was wearing when he appeared on the show as well. He said in an interview, "I wore them in every investor meeting before 'Shark Tank', including my meetings with Facebook, Google, Menlo Ventures, Lady Gaga and more. They were part of a 'uniform' I put together while raising money for my company. To me, it was very important for potential investors to see me for who I am."
But, before coming to the show already $8 million was raised by him in funding from different venture capital firms. His company was launched in 2011. SnapChat acquired it in 2014 for $54 million & Gee became an instant millionaire. He said, "I kept looking at (my bank account), then looking away, then looking at it to make sure it was still there and that this was all real. I took a screenshot for my journal- OK, I took like seven screenshots for my journal. I didn't show my wife- not at first. We were just about to have our second child, so I waited about one week until she was literally in labor. Then, to take her mind off the pain, I pulled out my phone and showed her our bank account. It worked."
After about a year, they were figuring what to do in the future. At that time, he was the captain of the soccer team and still a student, at Brigham Young University.
"We didn't need that stuff. We were young, healthy and didn't need much of anything. So we started joking about putting our money in savings, selling everything and using those funds to travel the world. Where would we go? What would we do? And as we began to add more plans to our bucket list, it just became real."
In the end, a total of $45,000 was made by them which they used for funding their travels. He said, "We will move until that runs out. We will see how long it lasts. Perhaps some of my entrepreneurial skills will come into play, and I'll figure out a way to make that money stretch further and further. Or, if I am superb, $45K will give me enough time to make our travels fuel themselves, or better yet, profitable. Anything is possible, right? Just keep intentions pure and attitudes positive."
He said, "We hope to learn more about life and become better people. We are excited about the memories that we will undoubtedly create together and the opportunities around the world we will have to serve others. Already it has become apparent that the world is a big, open place with endless mindsets, cultures, and beliefs, none better than the others - just different."
Then, they were working as missionaries for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. They got married in 2009.
He said, "(Being frugal) just comes natural to us. It makes us uncomfortable to be thoughtless with money. We still buy the cheapest flight we can find, even if that means waking up at four a.m., and we still only drink water with our meals. I believe the best way to show gratitude for the blessings in life is humility and one of the best ways to show humility is live frugally."
Currently, they are vacationing on the beaches of Bali, Indonesia. When he was asked what does he credit his success to, he said, "If you were to ask me in person I would say, 'Oh it's all luck.' But, that would be a lie just to get past the question. The truth is it's all hard work. There's a ton of serendipitous and successful events where stars have aligned for everything to come together. But even each of those 'lucky' happenings can be traced back to extra efforts and hard work, additional efforts to network extra late nights. So the harder I work, the 'luckier' I get."
He said, "I'm very open-minded to the option of not settling down. I'm open to non-traditional forms of education. I wasn't a brilliant student. The typical school system made me feel stupid and bad about myself and gave me less confidence in my ability to be creative and valuable. But, nonetheless, I loved school for everything else. I loved the social life. I loved sports. I enjoyed the challenges. So, it is a toss-up. I want the best of the best for my children so hopefully I'll soon be able to figure out what that may be."
First of all, you should be impressive. Success graces those who are talented and sincere. In short, who deserve. Next, you should be yourself. Stop copying others and retain your individuality. Lastly, you should be successful. You can enjoy the real success along with your family and health.
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