Knowing the Ropes with: Josh van Berkel

After a decade of working in radio throughout New Zealand, ranging from small provincial communities to nationally syndicated stations, Josh decided it was time to change how he lived and started on the road to becoming completely self-sustainable by means of creating residual income and helping others do the same.  
After 10 years in the corporate world, he transitioned into running his own trade-based business, and in his spare time has bought and sold a number of other enterprises, as well as establishing a sales based business, which is currently across 10 locations throughout New Zealand. Josh has been involved in public and motivational speaking for many years and has a wealth of experience in corporate fundraising events, large-scale international sporting events, and music festivals.

Josh Van Berkel

So Josh, Thank you for being the first interviewee of our "Knowing the ropes" series on Dusty's Log. I'd like to start by asking when did you realise you wanted to become what you are today? What was your lightning bolt moment? 
 There were a lot of little 'A-ha' moments along the way that eventually led me to where i am today, but I think the defining moment was an argument that I had with my wife back in 2010! We had just had our first child, were living in Auckland on one income, and money was tight. I came home one evening and my wife had blown out our budget by around $60 on something ridiculously frivolous and non-essential (like nappies!) and it just stressed me right out.
I ended up going for a walk, just to cool off - and once I got honest with myself I realized something: that I wasn't angry at my wife for spending $60 extra on nappies (flip - what was she feeding our kid?!) - I was angry at myself for putting her in a financial position where she felt bad about buying nappies for goodness sake! I had this thought: "What about if instead of stressing out about over-spending by $60, you put that same emotional energy into coming up with a way to make an extra $60?" That was the genesis of my journey really.
What steps did you take to break out of the corporate world and go it on your own?
Well I quit my job a few months later, and moved the family back home to ChCh. I sat down with my wife and together we wrote a description of what we wanted our lives to look like in 20 years. One of my statements was: "I want to do what I want, when I want, where I want, with whoever I want." We both realized pretty quickly that was never going to happen in a normal job, so I started looking at getting into business for myself. 
What are some of the biggest hurdles you've had to overcome?
Inexperience is pretty huge, and there's not much you can do about that. Straight up stress can take its toll. Not knowing how much money you'll have next week or where it's coming from, especially when you're starting out. Spending money to make money feels counter-intuitive when cash flow is an issue!
Do you have any heroes or any one you look up to and try to emulate? If so, who?
I'm a massive believer that you become the sum-total of the 5 people you spend the most time with. When we first start out in business we might not have access to the sort of people we would like - but that's where books, ted talks, podcasts etc are super helpful. John C Maxwell is someone I spent a lot of time with (although he has no idea I exist). If I had to pick one person to say "That's who I want to be if I ever grow up." it would be John.
Josh Van Berkel and Family
What does an average day consist of for you?
That's hard to answer as my days can vary quite dramatically! I have a few plates spinning which keeps things varied, but an average week would probably look like 20 hours 'on-the-tools' with my trade-based franchise (keeps me grounded and gets me out of the house). I work with people that want to create residual income via the network marketing business model, which probably takes up approx 5-10 hours a week, and then my personal development interests; motivational speaking, writing blogs, training etc might be another 5-10 hours a week. The rest of the time is hanging out with my wife and kids (they're home-schooled so we spend a lot of time together). 
What advice would you give your 21-year old self?
Start building an income producing asset now, that will last. After 10 years in the entertainment industry, devoting myself full-time to my career, relocating my family numerous times - I resigned and walked away to do something new. The day I resigned my income went to $0. After 10 years of working hard and essentially mortgaging my life - I had created nothing that lasted. That just seems crazy to me now! If I had just redirected 5 hours a week over that same time frame, (watched a little less TV perhaps) into building a residual income - I could have resigned and never had to work again. At the age of 30. 
How can you become self-sustainable? What are some of the ways and means of doing so?
Well - there's two main forms of income; Active Income, and Residual/Passive Income. Active income is income based from your activity - a salary, wage, commission would be an example. You get paid if you work. If you don't work, you don't get paid. Residual income is income you get paid over and over again for work you've done previously. An example would be inventing a product and earning a percentage from every sale made, releasing a hit record and earning a cut from every sale made, or building a property portfolio and earning rent on a property you bought 10 years ago - that sort of thing; it's work you've done previously, but continue to earn income from.
Unfortunately I wasn't clever enough or creative enough to invent a product that made millions, or write a song that millions of people wanted to listen to. And I didn't have the capital to invest in the property market in the short term - which I would imagine is the case for most people. In 2014 I was introduced to network marketing as a means of distributing products and creating residual income. A 200 Billion dollar global industry that most people either don't know about or don't understand, (I certainly didn't) yet Forbes magazine calls it "the best kept secret in business", Robert Kiyosaki calls it "The perfect business model" and Warren Buffet said it was "The best investment I've ever made." As an entrepreneur, a businessman, and a family man - I have never seen an opportunity to become self-sustainable like that offered by the Network Marketing industry - I'm a huge fan. It's affordable, low risk and I've never met anyone that I felt couldn't be successful if they applied themselves.
Okay, we've reached the quickfire round of this article now...
What do you do for fitness?
I have a gym set up in my garage; weights machine, treadmill, rowing machine etc. I think that would be really good for fitness - if I used it...
What is your favourite beverage?
An ice-cold Lemon, Lime & Bitters on a hot day is hard to beat!
Favourite Jack Dusty Item?
The new Barrelman Cap 
Favourite thing about New Zealand?
I just think it's uncomplicated. That could be because we live on a 10-acre lifestyle block out of the city, and I predominantly work from home and my children are home-schooled - but it all seems very simple, in a good way.
What keeps you inspired?
Freedom - the power to determine action without restraint. That's my ultimate goal, to build a life without restraint. The two biggest restraints on most people's lives are time and money - not enough of both. If I can build a life that has plenty of both, and help others do the same - I'll be a happy man.
Quote that you live by?
Oh man, that's a hard one - there's so many - but the first that popped into my head is: "If you always do what you've always done - you'll always get what you've always got." For things to change, we have to change. We have to adapt, grow, evolve - and be prepared to take risks and get uncomfortable.
Josh, Thank you so much for taking the time to speak with us today. Finally, What would you like to leave our readers with? Give us a closing statement...
Don't settle for anything less than an extraordinary life. It's there for you, it's yours if you want it.
To find out more about Josh and for any speaking or business enquiries please visit www.joshvanberkel.com 

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