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How to Live Outside the Matrix Through Real Estate Investing

Real estate investing can be both varied and exciting. There are so many directions you can go to find your passion and build wealth. It can also be a demanding field, taking a lot of time and hard work, especially at the beginning. There are lots of “get rich quick” schemes and gurus trying to convince you where to put your money, promising huge returns if you just act now.

In the middle of all of this is our guest from episode 23 of the Executive REI Show, Jerome Myers, whose goal is to help people live outside of the matrix, and to live a centered life. Jerome is a corporate drop-out who got tired of making every decision based on the bottom line and maximizing profits for shareholders. Instead, he wanted to find balance, and find his passions, while helping others do the same. He shared his best tips on how to live a centered life as well as some insights and advice for real estate investors.

Living a centered life

Jerome is known for wearing a shirt that says “I took the red pill.” For those that don’t know, this is a reference to the 1999 movie, The Matrix, and represents the choice to learn something new through potentially unsettling truth (red pill) or remain blissfully ignorant (blue pill). To Jerome, it’s a symbol and proclamation of living outside of the matrix, and living outside the business of life that pulls us away from what we value the most.

Jerome Myers
Jerome Myers

Jerome has created a model for living a centered life. In a sea of coaches, gurus, and experts calling on you to do this, that, and everything, Jerome encourages people to find the balance an

d center. His model is based on six levels, listed below. The first three are the source of most people’s stress in their lives. But by working through them, you can get to the higher levels and achieve a life of balance and feeling centered. The six levels are:

  • Self-image: This is about getting clear on who you are, what you do, and how to stay accountable to yourself in those things.
  • Relationships: Once you’ve mastered self-image, you can work on your relationships. Relationships are important on a personal and professional level, and you need to be able to show up as your authentic self.
  • Work: A healthy self-image and strong relationships ensure that your “cup is full” and you can give it your best at work.
  • Health: Taking care of your health is essential to well-being. It incorporates your physical and mental health, and includes things like meditation and building healthy habits and routines.
  • Prosperity: More than just financial—although financial is part of it—prosperity allows you to have an abundance. Out of that abundance, you can give to other people and reach the last level.
  • Significance: Through giving back to others out of your overflow, you can achieve significance and meaning in what you do.

By focusing in on these six different areas and making necessary tweaks and changes, you can set yourself up to operate as an “apex performer,” as Jerome shares. Some people will get really stuck in one area, where others need to work on a few. Ultimately, it’s about being aware and introspective in those areas of your life that you need to work on to be centered and focused on what matters most.

Focusing on relationships

Let’s focus in on one of Jerome’s six levels: relationships. Now, relationships are integral in life and business—we know that. But when thinking about real estate investing, specifically, why are relationships so important? Real estate is a relationship-based field, where you need to be able to connect with and communicate well. Building strong relationships is the key to a creating a network that will help you find more opportunities in real estate, too.

Jerome shares his belief that relationships have to be give and take—they have to be a two-way street. Now, both parties might not equally give, but there needs to be value on both sides so that it is not parasitic. Further, if you are giving your time, energy, and effort in a relationship, you need to be giving from a full source. It’s like the instructions they give you on a plane: put your own oxygen mask on before helping others.

Achieving a flow state through morning routines

One of the ways Jerome “fills his cup” to give his best in relationships is through his extensive morning routine. It’s well known that some of the most successful entrepreneurs have really honed in on their morning routines, perfecting them to achieve optimal performance during the day.

Jerome is no different. His morning starts at 5am and he moves through a cycle of meditation, reading, practicing Spanish, running, audio learning (i.e., podcasts), and then journaling. This routine, especially the meditation time, centers Jerome for the day and helps get into the flow state.

A flow state is one where you don’t even feel like you’re working. You’ve been able to organize thoughts and processes and focus in on the task at hand. In a flow state, where time slows down and you’reable to recognize patterns that get you to the outcome quicker. Some tips on achieving this flow state:

  • Find a morning routine that works for you. Not everyone will be able to follow Jerome’s schedule, and different routines work for different people. The point is to find something that works for you to fill up your cup in the morning and set you up for success during the day.
  • Use silence to your benefit. Some people may pray, others meditate, and others journal. There are so many ways to cultivate silence and use it to slow down, block out distractions, organize your thoughts, and get into a flow state.
  • Don’t look for the hacks. It’s not about a simple step 1, 2, 3 that magically makes you focused and successful. Instead, cultivate practices and habits that help you achieve these things—it takes effort and it takes time.

Talking real estate market assumptions

This is the Executive REI show, so we did talk about real estate investing! As mentioned, Jerome is a real estate investor in multifamily homes. We talked about that ever-present question of, “What’s going to happen with the real estate market?” Like most people, Jerome is expecting a downturn within the next few years.

It’s for this reason that he doesn’t agree with the assumption that a lot of people are making that rents will continue to go up with no limit. While the market has enjoyed massive growth and huge returns, it’s not sustainable. So, investors need to be wise, have a plan, and make sure they are focusing on preserving their capital, not just focusing on those huge gains.

Starting out slowly in real estate investing

Another assumption that Jerome doesn’t agree with is that you can start out in real estate with no experience or money and just latch on to someone who does and become successful. Instead, Jerome suggests that people start out slow, learn what they can, and grow in both knowledge and experience. His biggest piece of advice for people getting started in real estate investing is that they “don’t need to catch Moby Dick on your first fishing expedition,” and it’s okay to start small.

Here are some tips on how to get started in real estate slowly as a new investor:

  • Understand that “wealth is built on a sure thing,” as Jerome puts it. This means, understand the deal you are getting into and don’t go for things that are too risky. Know your numbers, choose deals carefully, and try to manage out as much risk as possible.
  • Find the best opportunity for you. We discussed the differences between joint ventures and syndication. Jerome favors the former because it is required that each partner is actively involved in the deal. This is a great way to learn about the business and start from the ground up when you don’t yet have experience or a network. If you do have those things, syndication might be a good option for you. Either way, do your research to understand what you are getting involved in and choose the best option for you.
  • Don’t just rely on self-education. While going to conferences, reading, and listening to podcasts is valuable learning and knowledge, it shouldn’t be your only source of education. Instead, invest in courses that will teach you the basics so that you can apply a framework and build your business up for success. Learn from the experts and those who have gone before you rather than trying to hack it yourself.

A lot of this advice boils downs to: don’t let your ego get ahead of you. It’s important to have a realistic outlook on the challenges and difficulties of real estate investing. Don’t rush into it with an inflated ego or sense of your own knowledge and skill, especially as a beginner. Take things slow, learn from others, start with small deals to build your experience, and then expand from there.

If you are interested in connecting with Jerome, head over to his website at You can check out his four-step guide to get into multi-family investing or listen to his podcast, Multifamily Missteps.


Michael Holman

Michael Holman

Michael has extensive financial and operational experience. He is a licensed Certified Public Accountant and has a Masters of Accountancy from Brigham Young University. Before working at Overland Group, Michael worked at Ernst & Young on some of the largest real estate and technology companies in Utah.
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