ITF 80 | Building Wealth

 

If people want success, be it in their profession or the pursuit of financial freedom, they need to live with intentionality. To build better wealth, they need to be ready to face their fears. In this episode, Craig Curelop discusses investing, intentionality, and life insurance with Better Wealth Solutions Founder and CEO Caleb Guilliams. Caleb looks back at his journey, learning from mentors along the way. Full of valuable insight, seekers of financial freedom will need to listen to Caleb’s words.

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Building Better Wealth With Caleb Guilliams

Z is not here now, which is extremely upsetting, but it is okay. She had some bigger and better things to do. We tried to record with Caleb and my internet was bad that we could not even publish it. This is 100% on me. This is going to be a solo show with me. Caleb provides tons of value. He is a great friend of mine. We talk a lot about life insurance, his journey, how he took the college approach and how he did not do it the most efficient way, but not the way that a lot of other people think. I’m not going to be able to sit here, banter, and talk with myself like I typically went with Z. Let’s get right into the show.

Caleb Guilliams, welcome to the show. This is part two because we did this before but my internet sucked so badly that we have to do it again. Thank you so much for coming on a second time.

This is part six because in that interview that did not work out, you kept coming on and off. It was like a new interview every time. It is an honor to be here. I’m grateful to you. This is going to be a blast.

We are going to have a full stream interview with no internet problems. We have done it six times. Seven times a charm. This one is going to be the best one yet. Why don’t you tell us how you first heard about financial independence?

I have to credit two books, Robert Kiyosaki’s Rich Dad Poor Dad. That was probably a common theme with a lot of people coming on here, and The Richest Man in Babylon. Both of those books opened the door for me to be like, “Money can start working for us, what an asset is, the mindset of money follows value and the discipline of paying myself first.”

Which book did you read first? Was it Rich Dad Poor Dad, or The Richest Man in Babylon?

I read The Richest Man of Babylon first. My dad is not very entrepreneurial, but he knew enough to be like, “You should read this book by Robert Kiyosaki.” I remember listening to it because reading was tough for me growing up. It still is. I remember listening to it. I was hooked within the first 30 minutes of listening to the book. I was like, “This is going to change my life.”

I also read Good to Great, which is a staple leadership book at that same time. That was the moment where I went from not knowing anything about business or money to going all the way to writing down in a journal to be like, “I want to build a business that helps people with money.” I was inspired and grateful for the information that I was learning at the age of sixteen. I know some of your readers might be younger, and I’m jealous. Overall, I feel grateful that I got to learn this before 20 or 25 because it set me up for success.

Is that when you read Rich Dad Poor Dad and The Richest Man of Babylon at sixteen?

Yes.

You are the age of a sophomore or junior in high school of most people, and you already have this idea of financial independence. You are on the track that a lot of people are on now because a lot of the 15 to 16-year-olds now might not be reading books, but they are on TikTok, Instagram, and all that. They are following people who are preaching this stuff. That idea is in their heads. When I was in high school, 15 to 16, all I cared about was sports, girls, and getting good grades so I could get to a good college. I was not even thinking about financial independence. What did you do? When you were 16, 17, 18 after you read that book, what were your next steps?

One of the things that I want to remind you of is I was homeschooled growing up. I had reading disabilities. I hate the word disability, but I did not even think I was going to get into college. It was one of those things where I was the oldest, mature, hard worker, but I also had some insecurities. I was super small. I had a hard time reading.

I was homeschooled. I was the best and worst in my class because it was just me. I did not know where I was very much at. When I read those books, it gave me hope from a standpoint of no matter what happens, I feel like some of these things that I’m learning, I do not need a college degree to be successful. It gave me hope. That created more reading, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.

I got a job at a bank, which was super pivotal for me. From there, that is when it was one decision after another compound. If you would have told me at 15 or 16 when I was reading these books, you are going to take over a bank’s investment department at 19 years old and start Better Wealth when you are 21. I would be like, “Craig, you are insane.” That is what I want to encourage in people. You do not necessarily need to have a five-year goal. Do activities that compound. If I look back over the last several years of my life, that is exactly what happened.

That was a good little sneak peek of what we are going to get into here about your story. What you said is exactly right, but people think they need to go and get that four-year education. For the first two years, you are learning a bunch of bullshit that you are never going to need to learn again. They call them a general education.

The majority of America doesn't talk about money, and that's why we're broke and miserable. Click To Tweet

I learned about the history of death or something like that. It was about how every single culture deals with death. It was cool and interesting, but do I remember anything that helped me in my life? It is not. Why not take the dive, and get a job? Maybe it is even like a lower-end job and works your way up. How did you get this job at a bank? How old were you when you first started? I suspect you did not jump in at nineteen and start taking over the investment division.

When I was seventeen years old, I was working at a chicken farm at the time. Sadly, I did go to school. I give my mom and dad props for this. They are like, “Caleb, we got to start thinking about what you are going to go to school for.” At seventeen years old, I did not even know what I wanted to go to school for. Maybe Business or Finance.

I met this guy named Dick Judy. He was on the Board of a Community First Bank. He was one of the head business department leaders at a university. During one conversation, I walked in. I was nervous that I had forgotten to turn my car off. It was below zero in Wisconsin, and my car was running. My mom helped me write out questions to ask Dick Judy.

I want to share this because people that know me are like, “Caleb, you are a great speaker.” I was nervous. I did not even know how to say, “Hello.” Within five minutes of talking to Dick Judy, he was like, “Young man, you need experience. I’m going to help you.” He picks up his phone, Craig, and gets me a job with one phone call at a bank as a dealer. One thing that I learned is sometimes your net worth can be in your network. There is so much more fuzzy ROI that comes from people that you know. I worked as a teller at a bank. I learned to meet people. Remember, spelling was difficult for me. I learned how to take phone calls and look up accounts.

The other big blessing in disguise was money was not taboo. I know your Social Security number, how much money you make, and the account that you are hiding from your spouse. One thing that I learned that I did not even know was valuable at the time is every day I’m working with money, and I’m showing people money. That set me up for a solid foundation because the majority of America does not talk about money. That is why we are broke and miserable.

A couple of things you said there that is important is we harp on a lot. You said your network is your net worth. You have probably heard that saying before, but seeing that in action and showing you how true that is, where you hear the motivational speaker saying that but one phone call got you a job as a teller.

I have talked to many bank tellers before. I can tell you that the feeling that I get from most of them is that they are going to show up, do their 9:00 to 5:00 job, and leave. They do not care to ever grow. They are going to collect their paycheck. It is probably interesting to see what people have in their bank accounts, but they are never doing anything with it. What did you do at age seventeen? Do you not have to be eighteen to get a job like that?

You do. That is the power of a connection. I have never applied for a job in my life. The two jobs that I got before starting BetterWealth were people’s word of mouth. At the chicken farm, there are probably some laws that were broken because I do not know about gutting chickens. This might be the most valuable thing I say in this interview for your readers is I was an HR nightmare because I got paid $8 an hour.

She was like, “Caleb, you probably could make more money working other places.” I’m like, “Mom, I do not care about money at all.” I went back to Robert Kiyosaki. People, if you get paid per hour, you will always be broke. You will never be wealthy. If you can get paid for the value that you create, you will become wealthy.

I was at an institution that had a loan department and an investment department. We were super involved in our community. We had some of the best people in the community doing banking with us. If I could not leverage that for myself, it would be insane. I became an HR nightmare because, as a teller, I got to the bank usually the first, and I usually left the latest. I would work on the weekends. I would go to networking events. I would start writing commercials. I started working in our loan department and investment department.

I became an HR nightmare because I would show up to meetings, not getting paid because I wanted to listen. They were like, “Caleb. We can only pay you for X amount of hours.” I would punch in for those hours and work for free elsewhere. They were all freaking out, and I’m like, “I do not care because it became super clear that this was way better than a college education.” I got to learn how loans worked, wrote commercials and read commercials on the radio. That is incredible as a 19 to 20-year-old. That ultimately set me up for some amazing opportunities when I turned nineteen.

You were able to go any job that you were in. If you can go above and beyond 100% at it, you are going to get promoted. You are going to have more responsibilities. It does not matter if you are a 17-year-old bank teller or if you are a 40-year-old guy that has been there for a while if you can show that focus. I love that about your personality too. 17 to 18, you were hustling at this bank, showing up and putting in 110%. At nineteen, you are the head of the investment firm. I suspect that you have got some people underneath you at this point.

What ended up happening is I was the investment assistant. I thought I arrived, Craig, because I’m going to school and I have a business card and a bank cell phone. It is super cool. One day, I remember my life changed because the investment director who manages people’s money told me, “Caleb, I’m taking another job.” He left.

ITF 81 | Building Wealth
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

 
We at the bank had nobody to fill that role. The CEO, who is like a second father to me, took over Community First Bank when he was 28 years old. He was super young. It is the fifth generation. Many things got lucky for me. I do not want people to think anyone could do this. There was a lot of luck involved, but he took me under his wing. He said something cliche but true.

He said, “Caleb, people do not care how much you know until they know how much you care. You are well-loved at this bank. I know you are going to take care of people. Nineteen years old, here is the second-largest office at this bank. Here is a big phone, computer, and the 300 plus clients. We manage their money, do not screw it up.” That ripple effect.

I did not have anyone under me, but I was running a department of the bank and was very much in leadership at nineteen years old. Through that, Craig, I learned so much about listening, the value of starting with why, the value of humility, the value of asking for help, the value of seeking out competent mentors, and not just the mentor that I should get learning from. That was the journey that has set me apart from how we think and on the road of building BetterWealth.

One thing I like about you, Caleb, is that you are not afraid to get vulnerable. Is that another thing that you learned when talking with people? Would you be there for your clients in that way? Almost not even a transactional way like many investment managers or bankers are.

I’m glad you said something about that because there would be people that would come into the bank. They would have their ten minutes of horror because they were like, “I have grandchildren older than you are. How are you going to help me?” What we do not do well in our society is talking about things that matter. We are surface-level. For the first time, I would be asking them, “If money was not an issue at all, what would you be doing? What is your why?”

I would remind people that we are all going to die someday. In life, we should live to the fullest. I had this mission statement because I read The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. The second habit is to think with the end in mind. They talk about what would be on your tombstone. My mission statement is simple, to help people see and reach their highest potential.

I believe, Craig, that majority of people are living to a fraction of their God-given potential because of money, how they think, how they communicate, and the lies that they tell themselves. At nineteen years old, I did not know everything about money, but I got people to start thinking. I probably had 1 in 5 people cry in our first meeting.

You uncovered things that other people would not uncover.

That is what inspired this BetterWealth because we are not getting to the root of the issue. Most of the money, how we articulate wealth, and what we want, we are saying one thing. We are saying metrics, rate of return, and all these things that we do not care about, but those are the right answers on the test. At the end of the day, it is like, “What do you want?” I always got it, but I was like, “We are going to die someday.

Leaving the bank was super scary for me, but I’m like, “I’m going to die someday.” I may “regret it”. I might make a mistake and have to come back, but I had to realize that these are my fears. These are the reasons why I was afraid to take action. If I was okay to look myself in the mirror and say, “I’m afraid, but I’m going to move forward,” I refuse to live life with regret.

I realized through working with people and talking about retirement planning, the majority of people regret life. That is something I have zero tolerance for. I will not regret life. That is a choice every one of us can make in our life. If there are things that you are doing that you think you are going to regret 60 years from now on your deathbed, stop. You have one life. What the hell are we doing?

What are some of the things that you were doing that you may have regretted? Is that why you quit the bank?

I graduated college a year early. To give you my quick college rant, I stayed at home. I wrote the end asset while living at home. I’m living at home with safe money. I graduated in three years. I worked full time. I was involved in two college clubs. Unfortunately, I got almost perfect scores because of how my personality works.

If you determine your life based on what other people see, you will always lose and be a victim of other people's opinions. Click To Tweet

I’m very involved. I have been grateful for that season, but I do not know why I cared so much. I graduated college. I was like, “I worked so hard for a piece of paper that I can’t even find.” That hit me. I’m working at the bank. There are things that I want to do. I’m obsessed with leverage, and I want to do podcasts. I’m learning all these things about money and life insurance. I’m like, “I can’t talk about this. I want to work with people in other states.”

I’m a 20-year-old kid that looks like a 15-year-old. There is so much stuff I want to do, yet I love the credibility that I have at the bank, but I’m not able to do half the stuff because of compliance and all this stuff. I remember looking at my mission statement, which says to help people see and reach their highest potential.l I’m doing this on a fraction. I’m living to a fraction of my potential, and I’m thinking, “Why am I here?”

I’m here because of my parents and everybody. No one is going to look at me and say, “You are slacking. You are 21 years old and running an investment department.” I’m like, “I knew in my heart that I was not living to a fraction of my potential.” I decided, to do that, I needed to have independence, freedom, build a brand, build leverage, and start sharing people this concept.

This was several years ago. The internet, Zoom, and all these things were not like it was now. I was told, “Caleb, you look fifteen years old. You need to have gray in your hair. You need to wear a suit. You have no credibility. You know nothing. Foolish.” Quite frankly, Craig, I’m grateful for me being naive, but I knew in my heart I was going to regret staying.

That is an example of me saying no to a good opportunity because internal motivation had something greater. The thing that we need to be careful with is if you are determining your life based on how other people are seeing you, you will always lose and be a victim of other people’s opinions, but there is something greater. If you can be internally motivated and have your identity come from something internal, you are going to be happy regardless of what happens.

What you may have done is you may have looked down the hall at that 58-year-old CEO that started there at 28 and was like, “I could be like this guy and end up 15 feet down the hallway.” That is not what you wanted. It sounds like a community bank is pretty small. You are not going to impact as many lives as if you were to quit and do your thing. I know that when you quit, you did not have any real estate. Maybe you had a small amount of investment. I suspect you were not financially independent when you quit.

No, I had $20,000 in the bank.

How were you comfortable making that leap with no passive income, with nothing?

My expenses were practically zero. I was still living at home. Our first office lease was in the basement of a Papa John’s building. The first six months lease was $250. Services and products are the only outputs that can be created. I knew that if we could create the service, and I say we because there are two people that believed in the mission. They came by my side. I was not financially free, but I knew that business was my ticket, the asset, the platform to get X, Y, or Z. It was clear. I could not articulate intentional living as we do now and what is wealth.

Here is the other thing, Craig, my motivation does not necessarily come from being financially free. My motivation comes from impacting the people that I know are possible. As long as I’m on this road, I love waking up every morning. I love what we get to do. I am clear like, “This is a success for me if I can be doing that.”

I do not know if that answers your question, but it was pretty crazy, and it was very much bootstrap. Now we have fifteen people, we have clients in 49 out of the 50 states. We are making quite a bit of money. I would say I’m at the financial freedom mark. Even though that is not necessarily the framework that I like, I say that because if everything stopped, I would be unfulfilled. If I look back over several years, it is insanely humbling to see the growth of wealth, relationships, and people like you in my life.

Another thing that is interesting is you saw this need based on the bank. No one was digging into the person’s why because their why is going to drive their money. Once you figure out the why, you figure out what their decisions are. How do you help them fulfill their life purpose or whatever that is? At that bank, you are going to end up like the CEO. That is the best thing that could happen.

The worst thing that can happen with you quitting is you end up back at the bank because you are 21 years old, and you have got the lead investment part of a bank experience that you can adapt. There are millions of community banks out there. You can take that experience anywhere. Take that one-year risk while you can because you had nothing to lose at 21 years old.

ITF 81 | Building Wealth
Building Wealth: If you can be internally motivated and have your identity come from something internal, you will be happy regardless of what happens.

 
The only thing I had to lose was my pride. That was the thing that I had realized. Think and Grow Rich is another great book that I recommend people read. They talk about some deeper fears. My fear of failure and my fear of poverty, as I was doing exercises and being like, “Why am I anxious?” If I fail, my family and my friends are going to say, “I told you so.”

For some reason, many people determine what they do with their life because of that. For me, I was able to say, “Am I okay?” Put it being wrong. It was yes because my pride was on the chopping block. There is so much growth between what I said because a lot of people are letting that one fear or anxiety determine how they live their life.

I had a lot of people, myself included. That is why people start off slow is because they care what other people think. If you can strip yourself of that and not compare yourself to others, you are going to live a much happier life. You developed such a successful business. I want to get into that a little bit but now that you are where you are now, how do you continue to stay motivated, to keep going? You are financially successful. When is the time to call it quits, have a family, kick back and relax?

April asked me all the time. April is my wife, for those of you reading. I do not know the answer to that. I have never been more motivated. It is interesting because I’m way less hype-y than I was several years ago, but I’m internally more convicted than I have ever been to the point that I’m making decisions that make us, in the short-term, less financially stable. I know that there are some amazing levers that we can pull that, if what I think is going to happen, could give us the ability to serve more people.

To answer your question, we are going to die someday. I had someone close to me die of cancer. He was way too young. He left three kids under the age of eighteen. It was one of the most purifying things that ever happened to me because I realized that life is incredibly short. I say that a lot, but it is true. I want to live each day intentionally.

Now, the best potential that I have is to be doing business, building teams, and continuing to create things that I believe offer value. That is a win across the board because they are going to create, serve, empower a lot of people and create ripple effects. It is also going to create a stream of cashflow coming back. That will be quite unfair if I’m being frank.

I love the game. At the same time, where I’m not good at, and this is the transparency part is knowing when is enough, enough. Chillax, relax and go on vacation. You are two years ahead of me because I feel like you are in that season. Something about Hawaii or something sparked for you. That is something that I look up to you greatly because you embody that next season that I think I need to learn.

I’m happy to help. Everybody gets through and needs to be in that hustle stage for a while. Do not forget that once you get to your destination, you can’t turn off that switch. Let’s get there as fast as possible. Instead of being a sprint, it becomes a slow jog. As you are jogging, you are looking around you. You are enjoying the sights. You are breathing in the fresh air.

I’m now not going as fast as I used to go because I want to spend time with grace and with people like you, Caleb. I want to go on vacations and do all this fun stuff while I’m young and able because I know that I can sit in front of a computer screen for the rest of my life if I want to. I will never be too old to do that. We understand why BetterWealth was started. The underlying reason is to help people achieve their life mission and live the life of their dreams rather than subscribe to what America wants them to. What was the first thing BetterWealth did? What was that first product?

It was life insurance. People are probably like, “What did you say, life insurance?” What I will say as a teaser is I worked at the bank. I invested in the market. If you asked me at seventeen years old, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” It is a hedge fund manager because I looked on a list of the top paid people, and it is like, “A hedge fund.”

All these people are making a ton of money to invest. I’m managing other people’s money. I’m like, “I want to do that.” On this journey of learning about money and all this stuff, I realized that when set up and used properly, life insurance is not an investment, but it is an amazing foundational asset where banks, corporations, and wealthy people store money and have a bunch of benefits with that money but also ultimately use it to reinvest.

I intuitively knew that a lot of people could articulate this. A lot of people think this is a scam. A lot of people do not understand what I’m learning at such a young age is it’s one of the most misunderstood assets out there, and rightfully so because a lot of people are abusing it. I’m like, “What if we could help people save more money, be in control, use that money to invest in things that they care about while also maximizing math, which is called compound interest? What if we could do that while protecting the things they truly care about?”

We have to think about our death in everything we do because we will all die. I’m like, “When you set up and use it properly, life insurance can grow for the rest of my life. I can have control over that to reinvest in things. It gives me all kinds of other benefits, like protection, options in retirement, as the ability to help me save more.”

Life insurance is over-hyped and often oversold, but it's a tool that can create a multi-dimensional aspect with your dollar. Click To Tweet

Life insurance is not an investment. I do not need to bad-mouth real estate, 401(k), or other things. I can show people how to use this as part of their portfolio as a foundational asset that long-term can get their money to do more than one thing. That was one of those things when I realized that. I did it for myself. I saw other people got results. I was like, “This could be the message that we could get this thing moving.

Our first $1 million easily was built on selling overfunded life insurance. My book, The AND Asset, is on strategy. That was the thing that we focused on. From there, that is when we started the investment company, the tax company, and the other retirement plan company. Now we have a coaching arm. We do workshops. All that other stuff sprung out of that idea of understanding and articulating life insurance in a different way than most people do.

Another way people have heard of this is the infinite banking concept or the infinite banking theory. Can you describe that in layman’s terms, like the way you described it to me in the way that I was able to understand it, and to someone that knows nothing about life insurance?

Life insurance is a contract between you and an insurance company. It is a unilateral contract that says, “If you do your end of the bargain, the insurance company will do their end of the bargain.” In understanding life insurance 101, we have to understand the difference between the companies out there and the difference between contracts.

When a lot of people think of life insurance, they think of term insurance, which is a unilateral contract that says, “When you pay a certain amount of premium for a certain amount of time, think of renting. If something happens to you, like you die, the insurance company’s on the hook for a big death benefit during that time.” Ninety-nine percent of term policies do not payout, but the philosophy is to buy term and invest the difference.

There are permanent contracts that say, “You are going to pay for the rest of your life and get a permanent benefit.” A lot of times, the disadvantage to that is you are paying a lot of money. You do not have much growth, and you are going to die. You could probably do better by buying terms and investing the difference.

What is interesting is, as I was learning, there are ways to max fund or optimally design that contract that minimizes the death benefit conversation and maximizes the living benefits or cash conversation. In other words, it is how do we create or design a contract that gives you the most amount of living benefits in the most amount of cash but keeps its insurance. Why does insurance matter? When set up and used properly it has some of the greatest tax advantages in the tax code. Section 7702A says, “When set up and used properly, your money can grow tax-deferred, be used tax-free, and get passed on tax-free.” That is incredible.

A lot of people call this the rich man’s Roth because Roth IRAs act much the same way, but the problem is there are income limits, some people can’t contribute to it. Life insurance, when overfunded, you can put as much money as you want based on some income limits. Overall, that was the epiphany. The epiphany later happened when I was like, “I can overfund this. I get a lot of cash early on.” We are talking about more than 80% cash value in the first year. That is different than a traditional life insurance policy.

I can borrow against my money, my cash continues to grow, and I get all the benefits of life insurance. Craig, I became way more convicted when I realized that there are many more benefits than cash internal growth and the borrowing against that. That is important. When we think of life insurance, there are sixteen plus benefits that your model that your life gets better when it is at the foundation. In other words, we are able to get the lifetime benefit of life insurance, and we are able to utilize capital to invest in real estate, the market, and ourselves. That output is greater than having your money doing one thing rather than more than one thing.

The way you explained right there is exactly how I could understand it because every time, I would keep coming back to the conclusion of, why do not I take my money and invest in the stock market? That seems like it would do the same exact thing because you are earning a similar return as your life insurance policy would. You said right there this is growing tax-deferred. You are not getting paid on any capital gains taxes, nothing like that.

It is continuing, growing over time. 6% to 7% may not sound like a lot, but compounds that were 30, 50, or 70 years. If you guys are young reading this, you are talking millions of dollars. Not only that, but as that grows, Caleb, you also mentioned that you could borrow against 80% of that. As your 7% compounds, 80% is going to end up being more than you ever put in. You are able to take out more than you put in.

In my model, it is your 6% or 7%, invest that in real estate and in other assets that are going to earn more than the loan that you take out, which the loan I have got is 3% or 5%, something like that, but it is low. That is how you build extraordinary wealth. It is being smart with your money. Efficiency is one word that you would like to use a lot.

Efficiency is getting to the desired result with less friction. The epiphany, for me, is we need to be efficient across the board. Life insurance is over-hyped. A lot of times, it is oversold. It is a tool that can create a multi-dimensional aspect with your dollar. The one thing I want to say is you are right. When people ask me, “What is the downfall to this strategy?” There is a couple. Not everyone qualifies.

ITF 81 | Building Wealth
Building Wealth: Life insurance is not an investment. It’s an amazing foundational asset where banks, corporations, and wealthy people store money and have a bunch of benefits with it.

 
We have a close friend of ours that is unable to qualify because of something in his past. Not everyone qualifies for this. In the first couple of years, you have less money than what you would have in a bank account. Those are the disadvantages. The advantage is when you get to that year 4, 5, 6, 7 mark, you now have an economic warhorse that is giving you greater access to money. It is going to continue to work for you. You are looking at the cash value, which is awesome.

There are many other values to life insurance that we do not necessarily care about now, but we will care about 30 years from now. Those are things like, what is the cost of having those types of benefits? We are not even factoring that in the model because you are looking at the internal growth and being able to borrow against it.

Those are the kinds of things that I go, “This is not the best thing in the world. It is not going to solve your marriage problems or business problems, but it is an amazing place to save money.” I personally save over six figures a year into this. It allows me as a business owner to save money and grow conservatively but gives me access to capital to invest in the things that I care about. That is business and relationships.

I do not think this is like house hacking. House hacking can change your life. In 3 or 4 years, you can become financially independent. You are not going to become financially independent in 3 or 4 years from this strategy. You are giving your money to jobs. You are making it more efficient. That is how wealthy people get wealthier because they are listening to podacsts and learning things like this.

House hacking is an asset-based activity that can change your life. This is the foundation. The foundation is going to be as big or small, depending on your activities, like house hacking, building business, or whatnot. That is a perfect example. I’m grateful that you articulate that because there are people out there that over-hype any strategy. It is unfortunate because it gives us all a bad name.

What do you exactly do for your clients? Let’s say you have never met me before. I am going to walk into your office and be like, “Caleb, sell me on your stuff.” What value are you providing the individual other than selling them a life insurance policy because I know you do a lot more than that?

Our vision and mission at BetterWealth are to unlock intentional living. We do that through multiple different ways. Efficiency is our favorite keyword to use. What we want to highlight is the inefficiencies, the friction, and the barriers that are getting in between you to accomplish what you want to accomplish. If people came to me and said, “Caleb, how can I best work with you guys?” I would point them to BetterWealth.com/Xray. It is our best way to show people exactly where they are at. This is what is interesting.

A lot of people, when they get time to sit down with someone, they are like, “What can I pitch them? What can I sell you? What strategy can I enlighten you on?” What we say is, “The first thing that you need to know is you need to know all the inefficiencies that you are experiencing now. You need to see a snapshot on where you are at.”

“You need to know your key financial metrics and all the inefficiencies from how you are looking at debt, your cashflow, your investments, and your protection.” You need to be told that. The epiphany happened for me when I went to a doctor and saw for the first time an X-ray of what should happen and where I’m at. I’m like, “Why can’t we do this with money?” To make a long story short, that is the first part and then we ask you, “How can we help you?”

Some people go through the X-ray, have their financial team, or they do it themselves. That is amazing. We give. We also selfishly know that there are some people like yourself that will go through that process and say, “I want you to help me with life insurance, with my investments, with income protection.”

There are many options that we can help with. At the end of the day, the way that we begin is by looking within and seeing what is going on and where can we create the most amount of value? The only way to do that is to show you exactly where you are at and the things that are dragging you behind based on what you are telling us.

One of the many things that I think you do that are genius is that through that financial X-ray, you are diagnosing people with their financial problems. You are educating them on their financial situation. What you are doing is, one is what is wrong, but two, how do you fix it? You are not saying, “I can fix your problem. Sign up for this $1,000 a month thing. Buy this life insurance policy.” “Here are some places you are inefficient. These are the ways that would solve it. You can go do it yourself, or we can help fund a policy with you.”

I suspect that through that financial X-ray, you are building trust and credibility. People like you. Probably 50% of getting there is if people like you. That is an incredible business model, but the way that you approach people in their financial situation can be taboo and a sticky topic for a lot of people. You approach that wonderfully.

Money will follow the perceived value and the demand for a service or product. Click To Tweet

A book that I love is $100 Million Offer, Alex Hormozi wrote the book. He talks about how can you create an offer where people feel stupid saying no to it? As a team, we write down what are the things that we like about the financial industry. What are the things that we dislike? The dislike column was way bigger because people were pitchy. They are not adding value and not creating an offer that is irresistible.

They are trying to sell you and trying to convince you. I’m like, “Is it possible to have none of that? Is it possible for me to serve you without convincing you of anything?” If I’m convincing you of something, there is something inside of me that says, “That does not feel right,” because I’m trying to push my own agenda in the way that you think.

At the end of the day, we as a team was like, “What if we could show people exactly where they are at. Show them how to audit their taxes, investments, cashflow, and inefficiencies.” We are going to create so much goodwill that the value that we create on the backend is there are some people that do not want to implement it themselves.

I personally do not want to implement it myself. There are some people that do. We are never going to try to convince them to do anything, but we know if we can provide so much value, there is going to be a percentage of people that say, “I appreciate how you guys are approaching this. Can I hire you for X, Y, or Z?” It is selfish, but it is the better way to build a business.

Everyone wins, but people feel so much more comfortable working with us because we truly do mean it. We are not going to sell you anything. Yet, you are going to choose to do work with us most likely because you are going to be blown away, we are going to show you things that you have never seen before. We are going to provide value across the board.

You are not selling them anything. You are providing value. When you provide value, people want to work with you more, and they want to give you money. It is the same thing with real estate. Our real estate business with the FI Team. When a client comes in and wants to talk with us, we are going to hook you up with an agent that also has investment property that can lead you through that entire process. We have the calculators. We know everything about the Denver area. Who are you going to work with? Someone that can give and you pay them the same amount or someone that wants to take your commission? Lead with adding value in any business that you have, you need to do that.

I’m going to say one of the things because you are getting me going here. If you are someone reading this that is starting a business or wants to be successful, here is a quick framework for that. Number one, provide value. The only thing that you can create is a service or a product. Ask the question. Money will follow the perceived value, the demand for that service or product.

Number one, is your business, service, and employment creating value? Number two is the people that are able to create wealth are able to create leverage and amplify that value. There are multiple different ways. When we think of leverage, we think of bank loans. It can take a real estate deal that would work good with cash and make it great with leverage.

Leverage also is like this blog post. We are having a conversation that more than one person is going to read. If this conversation is valuable, which I hope it is, by us recording this, this is a value amplifier. There are many amplifiers out there, whether it is writing a book, social media, speaking on a stage, or it is the power of relationships. A quick mental framework is to think about number one, “How can I create value? Am I creating value?”

Number two is, “How can I amplify that value because there are a lot of people that are trying to amplify things that are not valuable. There are other people that are truly providing value, but they do not have any leverage on that.” They are going to go to their grave, being valuable to a few people, but they are robbing America and society of the good that could happen if they got their message, their service, or product out to more people.

We had never heard that before. That shows that everyone has got a story to tell. There is a book out there. It says, “Document everything you do. Someday you can write a book, share your story, hop on podcasts, and all that.” Do not think that your story is the same as this other person’s.

It does not matter. Your story could hit the right person at the right time for them, which is why it propels someone else. Caleb, I know you have inspired a lot of people. The power in that is gratifying. We are heading into the final part of our show. Before we get there, do you want to leave the readers with any last words of wisdom?

ITF 81 | Building Wealth
The Gap and The Gain: The High Achievers’ Guide to Happiness, Confidence, and Success

 
You are going to die someday. Live life with no regrets and figure out what is truly fulfilling, which is probably going to do something with serving the people that you love the most. Do not lose focus on that.

That is your way of saying, “YOLO.” Let’s get into the Final Four.

I do not remember any of the Final Four questions, and I was already on the show. I’m getting excited for this.

The first question is, what book are you reading now?

I’m reading multiple books. The book that comes to my mind is The Gap And The Gain by Dan Sullivan. It is an amazing book.

I read that book. It is an amazing book. Let’s talk about it because that book is powerful. For those that have not read it, you should read it even though I’m about to ruin it for you. It is that you are where you are now. Everybody looks to where they want to be. They are always trying to hustle to get to where they want to be or be where they are right now looking backwards and saying, “Look at how far they have come and living in that game.” The improvement is much more satisfying, and you can live a happier life that way. With BetterWealth and with your success, Caleb, do you find yourself living in the gap or in the gain more?

I find myself living in a gap a lot. This is an example I use a lot. I would not trade places with the world’s richest man not because of my time, people in my life, and perspective. Instead of saying, “I’m not at where I want to be,” realizing through gratitude that I’m under the age of 30, have the friendships, the opportunities, and I’m healthy. That is amazing. That is an example of that.

The other big thing that I got from that book is listing out when you are in the game and successful, and these are the things that are happening in my life. It is like, “I’m not going to live my life based on what you think I should be successful or what social media thinks I should be successful. These are the things that I truly care about, and I’m living a successful or intentional day when these things are happening.”

The other big a-ha moment that I got was your morning starts the night before and being intentional about saying your wins. We might not think, “I have any wins.” If you had wins, what would they be? That whole point is every day is a blessing by the fact that we are alive. Those are all things that I know, but it was good in convicting reading because I realized the way I lead a lot of times and especially myself and in my marriage, I am leading out of gap thinking. That is where you are going to help me a lot.

Something that I have grown a lot in the past couple of years is that exactly, with maturity and as you start going down this path towards financial independence and start having more money. I did own real estate several years ago from now. I look back at that and I’m like, “I have built all of this in several years.” We are going to be several years from now, who knows, but I know now I’m happy and living in that.

I find myself living in the gap a lot when I go on social media and I start comparing myself. I rewired my mind. I’m weird. I can switch this stuff on and off. I do not care about what anybody thinks. I’m not comparing myself to anybody else. If I ever find myself doing that, I’m slapping that shit right out of my head. I have Grace, my wife. She is keeping me accountable for that. She will give me the backhand with all three of them damn rings.

What is important is when you are comparing yourself to other people and looking at other people on social media and say, “No, I do not have as many followers as them. Why do I not have as much passive income or as many doors?” Whatever it is. That is when you are in a bad place. You need to recognize that, put your phone down, go for a walk, and look at the game. Look how far you have come in the past couple of years, and continue on your journey. The second question, what is the best piece of advice you have ever received?

The best piece of advice is based around this concept of you being your greatest asset, do not diversify your ability to show up, and invest in yourself. It is all a combination of that. If you realize the majority of people are devaluing themselves and how they show up and what they invest in the people they hang out with, I got that early on. That is one of the reasons why I’m in the position I am now.

We're more valuable when we can give of each other and to each other more. Click To Tweet

Number three is going to be, what is your why?

To help people see and reach their highest potential?

I know you have said that a whole bunch of times, but let’s think a little deeper. Why do you want to do that?

It is rooted in my faith. I believe that we are all created in the image of God. We are here for a reason. If I had to only give one thing to the world, it would be to people realizing that and realizing to be like, “I am living to a fraction of what I was created to be.” I feel like it is a disservice to yourself, the world, and the creator.

That is the deeper meaning to that. When I think of the highest potential, it is more than self-actualization. It is something deeper of being of service and serving other people. To piggyback off that, one of my favorite quotes is, “The value of your life is always measured by how much of it was given away.” It is like, “We are more valuable when we can give of each other and to each other more.”

I could have thought of this idea, and I may have heard it before, but imagine when you die, you are going to go to the pearly gates. You’re going to meet God or Saint Peter, whoever it is. You know more about this stuff than me. I know that. Imagine if they paint you a picture of what your full potential was, like 100% Caleb.

You were standing there at 80% Caleb or 50% Caleb. Many people might even be 20% or 30%. I’m thinking about how you would feel in that situation, knowing that God gave you this talent that you can only live up to 50% of it. Maybe do that exercise. I came up with it on the spot. I might need some refining, but I think that might be interesting

Ed Mylett said something like this, “Hell is a definition of someday meeting who you could be and not recognizing that person or being a different person you could be.” It is another practice to be like, “That is deep.”

We are going to pull back a little bit. I’m going to ask you a question. What would you call a male ladybug?

This is where you get the shot. I go deep in two areas. I have no idea.

This is you up to your imagination. There is no right or wrong answer.

I would call it a ladybug.

Where can people find out more about you?

Social media is my first and last name, @CalebGuilliams. Our website is BetterWealth.com. If you want to check out the BetterWealth X-ray, you can go to BetterWealth.com/Xray. My email, which I check and will respond to anyone that emails me, is Caleb@Betterwealth.com. Craig, anything that I can do to serve you and your readers, I feel incredibly blessed and grateful to be here. I’m excited for this platform that you are giving me the ability to share a message that hopefully helps one person live more intentionally. Those are the ways that people can find us.

ITF 81 | Building Wealth
Building Wealth: Every day is a blessing just by the fact that we’re alive

 
You have provided a tremendous amount of value here. If you got any questions on life insurance, Better Wealth, how do you live a more intentional life and tons of other things, give Caleb a follow. Reach out to him. Shoot him an email. BetterWealth has helped me save tons of money. I appreciate that. It allowed me to live more intentionally through your workshop. That was a kick in the butt there for me. I appreciate everything you do. Thanks again so much for coming. Round seven was amazing. Luckily, we are not having to do round eight.

Maybe in round eight, I will remember the four questions. I’m going to google right after what is a male ladybug called.

I’ll talk to you soon.

Take care. Bye.

That was Caleb Guilliams, everyone. He is such an inspiration to many people. He was getting started and knowing the stuff at age 15 and 16, getting that bank teller job at seventeen, leading the bank at age 19, and being able to have the courage to quit at age 21 to start BetterWealth. Now he is allowing unlocking people’s fullest potential. They can live the life of their dreams through efficiency.

Whether it be life insurance, tax savings, or all these things, Caleb has personally saved me tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars from the tax benefits that his tax strategies that his company has allowed and taught me about. It is such a privilege to have had him on the show. Go check him out. If you have not already, please.

If you liked and loved previous episodes, please leave us a five-star rating and review on iTunes. Send us a message on Instagram. I’m @TheFiGuy. Zeona is Zeona McIntyre. Let us know how we are doing right. We want to make sure the show is good and it continues to get better for you. With that being said, we will see you all next time. Thanks so much, everybody.
 

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About Caleb Guilliams

ITF 81 | Building WealthAfter taking over the entire investment department of a bank by the age of 19, Caleb saw firsthand how 98% of Americans were financially failing despite “professional” financial advising.

After 3 years of traveling the country being mentored by the most successful financial minds, Caleb discovered a better way to build wealth.

Leaving his prestigious position at the bank, Caleb founded the company BetterWealth, authored the best-selling book “The AND Asset”, hosts the Better Wealth Podcast, and speaks to thousands around the world. One of the youngest leaders in the industry, Caleb is quickly becoming The New Face of Finance.