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Dylan Ayala | Make Your Passion Your Career

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Hosted by
Mike Ayala

On this episode of Investing for Freedom, Mike sits down with business partner and professional wake surfer, his son, Dylan Ayala! Dylan discusses how he made wake surfing his career and what he envisions for the future. Enjoy!

“I have a lot of friends who do something that they love, but not full time. I think a lot more people can do something that they love full time.”


0:00 – Intro
1:31 – Dylan’s parents have had the greatest impact on Dylan’s life
4:25 – Dylan’s best piece of advice is to never give up and to do something you love as a full-time career
5:48 – Dylan talks about how he got into wake surfing and what it’s all about
8:50 – Sometimes you don’t know exactly where life is taking you
11:11 – Dylan talks about getting a coach and what that has done for him
11:48 – Dylan’s first competition is the only one he was nervous for
13:01 – Dylan never felt pressure from his parents to follow a typical path of going to college or getting a ‘real’ job
19:23 – Dylan built his own business, a wake surfing school
20:55 – Dylan talks about some of the traveling he has done
24:06 – Mike has been a great resource for Dylan, but you definitely don’t need a dad in business to become a business owner yourself
24:46 – It’s hard work and there’s plenty of ups and downs running a business
25:55 – Dylan grows by reading books, listening to podcasts, and hanging out with people who push him
28:41 – Dylan discusses what he sees in the future and how he plans to diversify his market, including an online coaching course
33:36 – Dylan talks about some of the people he coaches
34:58 – Dylan describes what he does to keep fit and healthy before events
36:05 – Dylan talks about what his favorite book is and what it taught him
40:02 – When Dylan told Mike that he wanted to work for him, Mike encouraged him to take a chance at wake surfing
42:37 – Money is never the problem, you need to figure out the real problem


Website: www.dylanayala.com
Wake Surf School: www.wakesurfschool.com
Instagram: @DylanAyala
Youtube: Dylan Ayala


Mike Ayala: Thank you for joining me on the Investing for Freedom podcast. Today I’ve got one of my favorite business partners. I think you guys are going to love this show. We’ve been talking about doing this for a while, but not only is he one of my favorite business partners, he’s my child. I Got Dylan Ayala in the studio with us. Dylan Thanks for coming on.

Dylan Ayala: Yeah, of course. Thanks for having me.

Mike Ayala: This should be fun guys. For those of you that don’t know Dylan is my oldest son. He’s almost 21. You’re going to be 21 in May.

Dylan Ayala: Yeah, May.

Mike Ayala: That’s pretty wild. Dylan is also a professional wake surfer currently ranked number five in the world in men’s pro division, right?

Dylan Ayala: Five.

Mike Ayala: Yeah, that’s cool. It’s been quite a journey. It’s been fun watching him, but also like Dylan has figured out how to take a passion that he has and also turn it into a business. So, we’re going to dive into all that. But before we get into that, we’ve got to do the four questions that I did with everyone. So, who’s had the greatest impact on your life.

Dylan Ayala: I would say you and mom, just because you guys taught us how to of course do what we love for a living and just always supporting us, doing what we love. So it’s been cool being raised by you guys, and I think you guys have provided a lot of opportunity for us learning wise and just opportunities that I don’t think I would have had if I had other parents raising me.

Mike Ayala: Cool. So, if you could narrow it down to one thing that has had the greatest impact on your success, what would that be?

Dylan Ayala: Probably never quitting, even when things get hard, just keep going. If I were to quit, probably wouldn’t have been where I am today. Just never stopping.

Mike Ayala: Yeah. That kind of continues on. That’s a good lesson. So, what was your greatest setback and what did you learn from it?

Dylan Ayala: Probably 2017. It was my first year competing and my goal was to win worlds amateur year and ended up doing really good the whole season, first competition I got second place and I wasn’t too sad about it a little bit, but as the season kept going, I was winning more and more. And then worlds came and I ended up getting second place at worlds and it was, I was pretty upset just because I had done so good the whole year, but it taught me a lot, the following year working harder and just getting through that. So, I’d say that was the greatest setback.

Mike Ayala: Yeah. That’s really tough being number two in the world, huh? No, but that was a big setback for you. And I remember, you know, I remember this really clearly. I was actually even a little bit bothered because the guy that took first, he was kind of like, just whatever, but you had had it on your vision board, like to be number one in the world and you were, you know, you were grinding and working and so that was a big setback for you because you had worked so hard.

Dylan Ayala: Yeah, definitely.

Mike Ayala: But also I was, you know, not only as a dad, but just from the outside watching, like, I was super proud of how you, you know, you got yourself, you picked yourself up and just moved on. So yeah, that was really cool to not watch the setback part, but to see you bounce back and then go on and do what you did. So, where’d you go from there?

Dylan Ayala: So, went home trained really hard, harder than I ever trained. And then the next year I had to move up because I actually, I’m pretty sure got ranked first in the world, like ranking. So, I had to move up to semi-pro and started competing in semi-pro 2018 won every competition that year, including worlds.

Mike Ayala: So, you came back fierce. That’s cool. What’s the piece of advice you find yourself sharing with people the most?

Dylan Ayala: Probably kind of same as the other question, not quitting, just doing something over and over persistence and you’ll get there, but piece of advice obviously doing something that you love for a living. I have a lot of friends who do like something that they love, but not full time. And I think a lot more people can do something that they love full-Time.

Mike Ayala: That’s the one thing that I’m super passionate about and has really inspired me watching you, because, you know, we’ve got one life to live and there’s no reason to hate what you’re doing. And, you know, sometimes for seasons, you have to do certain things to put food on the table or whatever. But man, sure makes it a lot better if you can figure out how to do what you love every day. And that’s one thing, just kind of moving into the interview, part of this that’s one thing that has been super fun to watch with you is just watching you figure out like the business side of this. So, I get asked all the time we were talking about this before the interview, people ask me all the time. Well, like, does Dylan just rode from the time he was little or like, how do you get so good. So just kind of tell us, so first off I mentioned this in the opening, but why don’t you tell people like what you do, all about wake surfing, and then like, tell us when you got into it. I mean, is this something you did when you were two?

Dylan Ayala: No. So, I remember you got a bow when I was like, how old? 13, And I was 11 then. And was that the Bayliner?

Mike Ayala: Oh, no, that was even earlier. That was a couple years before that.

Dylan Ayala: Yeah. So, we went to the Lake quite a bit and not quite a bit, maybe like five times this summer and tubing a little, but I was always kind of scared of the water. I don’t know why. And then you got to Moomba and I never did wake surfing or wakeboarding, but I remember we went to Florida on a trip on a cruise and I tried ocean surfing there and I was like, I really like ocean surfing. But I can’t do that in Nevada. So, I know you had a boat. So, I was going to try wake surfing and tried it. And I really liked it that first summer. I remember just watching like tutorials on YouTube, how to do tricks and stuff, but I didn’t have like the right board at the time. And I didn’t know. So, I would just practice or like watch those and try and do it. I couldn’t do it though, but, and then we moved to Arizona, 2017 and prior to that, I’d probably surf wake surf, like probably 20 times my whole life, but always watching those YouTube videos. And as soon as I got into Arizona, we went on a boat demo with action and they had a nice board, a nice wave. And the first time I got on it, I was able to do like airs and stuff. I think just from watching those tutorials over and over and getting on the right board, doing it right. So as soon as I got on that board, I was actually able to do like air, some carves, and I just fell in love with it right from there. I didn’t really have any friends when I first moved to Arizona either. So, I spent a lot of time out on the water because that’s what I loved. And I don’t know, I just didn’t really have anything to do either. So that’s how I got into it.

Mike Ayala: Yeah. And there’s such, there’s many lessons here to unpack that don’t and I’ll kind of work through, but you know, one of the things that I think was super interesting that Kara and I talk about all the time just being led and, and you know, sometimes we don’t know where life is taking us, but a lot of people, even when they find out we live in Phoenix, they’re like, how the heck did he learn to surf in Phoenix? Like people don’t necessarily understand. But I remember when we went to McCall, Idaho that year with your friends and you showed me the Nautique G23, right. Which was this boat you wanted, there’s these little things that happened along the way. So, you showed me the Nautique you got excited about it. Then we decided to move to Arizona, really, for no reason, it’s not like we transferred here with a job or whatever. And you guys were excited, even though you guys were in high school, like you guys were all excited about moving here. So, we moved here and then we go to action watersports. And there’s a brand-new G just like calling our name. Do you remember that? We’re walking through that white G, so the reason why I’m saying all this though is like, sometimes you don’t exactly where life is taking you. And you’re just making steps along the way. And you don’t really know, you don’t really know what the outcome is. I think a lot of times, and this is something that I talk about a lot at investing for freedom, but the questions are, what do you really want? Why do you want it? What are you going to do to get it? Measure results and adjust. And so sometimes we’re so goal-focused that we think we know exactly where we’re going in life. But the other side of that, the reason why adjusting is so important. And I talk about this all the time on investing for freedom is because we don’t, even though we have an idea of where we’re going, we have to be open to adjusting, right. When we decided to move to Arizona, did you know you were going to be a professional wake surfer?

Dylan Ayala: No. And I remember in wrestling, I was going to stay like two months longer in Elko to, for wrestling. But I remember I was growing out my hair to move to Arizona just because I don’t know I was moving. And I told myself if I was able to drop down to 106 weight class, then I would stay and finish the wrestling season. But I wasn’t able, I was able to drop down to like one 106.1, like one ounce off. And my coaches were like, if you were to cut your hair, you would have made it like, kind of being a little rude. But so, I just was like, okay, I’m done. I’m just going to move now and just kind of went from there. But I do think wrestling taught me a lot of lessons about like never quitting and when things get hard and stuff. So that was good.

Mike Ayala: I actually, I remember that on a lot of shirts in wrestling about never quitting. It’s like a big theme there. But the interesting thing is this is like unfolding. I mean, it’s easy to look back and see all this happen. But when we went on the demo with action water sports, they brought out a pro wake surfer and I could see like your eyes light up and, and see the potential in that. And then the other thing that we did too, or that you, I mean immediately, you wanted to get a good board. And they invited you to compete, which you said yes to.  But also, you started taking lessons. And that’s a big thing that we’re constantly talking about. You’ve got to have mentors in your life. So, talk to me a little bit about, you know, what that whole experience of getting a mentor and a coach and all that did for you.

Dylan Ayala: Yeah. It was awesome. It was cool having a coach. Obviously, I had a little bit of a baseline understanding of wake surfing, but not as many years as they did. I’m pretty sure they’ve been probably surfing for 10 years plus. So, I was able to learn at a much quicker rate, just having a coach. So definitely at getting those coaches were awesome. I probably took around five hours from that group and then probably another five from a second. So, it definitely advanced my riding quickly. A lot more quick.

Mike Ayala: Were you ever nervous about competing?

Dylan Ayala: I think the only competition that was a little bit scary was my first one. I felt super rushed in it. Like as soon as I got up and I thought that I had to land like the 360, I thought I had to land that trick. I don’t know why. Well, because it was a hard trick, but wake surfing, you get judged on different things. So, you don’t have to always have a hard trick to win. But I was just like, I remember going out there and doing the 360, falling and then trying it two more times falling both times. But yeah, I was a little nervous the first one.

Mike Ayala: That’s interesting. So, what’s your favorite part about being a wake surfer?

Dylan Ayala: Probably the wake surfing doing it. Yeah. I really like wake surfing.

Mike Ayala: Just the actual sport. That is Cool. So, I’m going to shift on you a little bit. So, you became an athlete. This is what you do for a living basically, right? You didn’t go to college and you’re not going to be a doctor.

Dylan Ayala: No.

Mike Ayala: Have you ever felt pressure from us? I think this is a good point. Have you ever felt pressure from us to go be like a doctor or a lawyer?

Dylan Ayala: No, not at all. I never really liked school growing up. And you guys knew that and like still pushed me to do good in school. Like still do my things, but you never told me that I had to go to college to get a good job, or you show me that there’s other ways to make money by not only going to college. And I’d say at least 90 to 95% of the kids in school that I was around thought that I was wrong. They didn’t think that you’d be able to work for or make good money if you aren’t going to college.

Mike Ayala: Yeah. It’s such a, it’s something that’s so ingrained in us. Like, you know, go to school, get good grades, go to college, get a job work till you’re 65 or 70.

Dylan Ayala: Yeah. And I never really like fought people on it, but I remember telling, be in arguments every day. Telling people that you don’t have to go to college.

Mike Ayala: That’s interesting. And so, you know, we’ve always been of the school of thought, like I think your mom and I you know, if you guys wanted to go to college, like if one of you wanted to go to college because you wanted to be a dentist or a lawyer or an engineer or whatever, like we’re not anti-college, but at the same time, like you don’t have to, you don’t find your success in your grades or your college degree or your career even.

Dylan Ayala: Definitely. Yeah. You never pushed us.

Mike Ayala: So, you’ve been able to, so I guess just first and foremost, I get asked this all the time. You do have some pretty good sponsors, right?

Dylan Ayala: Yeah, definitely.

Mike Ayala: Let’s talk about that a little bit. So, we mentioned action water sports.

Dylan Ayala: Yeah. They do a lot for me. They gave me a boat at cost, so that makes it easier being able to get a little bit of a discount on a boat, but they also shoot a lot of business my way helping me out find new clients and just a really good dealership to have.

Mike Ayala: That is so cool. And then this is pretty exciting. So, you’ve got a sponsorship with Jet Pilot. Let’s talk about that a little bit, like your board opportunity and all that stuff that you were able to do.

Dylan Ayala: Yeah. So, in what year was it? So, 2018, Okay So I rode for Soulcraft 2018 and then I was going to take a year off from riding for any board sponsors. Just kind of figure out what I want to do board wise. But so, I finished that year kind of rode a year free, kind of saw where I wanted to go see what I wanted to do. And then end of 2019 or beginning, it might’ve been beginning of 2019 Jet Pilot approached me and they wanted to make a 2020 like board line wake surf boards. And they wanted me to help them out with it. So, I took it, and they gave me my own pro model and I also got to help them with their other boards. So, they were kind of entering the industry and it was really cool to kind of show them the sport and be able to help them make cool boards.

Mike Ayala: Yeah. And that’s cool. One of the things that I’ve always been pretty proud of in business, I think there’s for you and I have talked about this before, but I think there’s four real keys to any successful business and that’s taking care of the employees taking care of the owners, taking care of the vendors. Yeah, so when you think through that, so employees, vendors owners and investors. So, when you think through that having this relationship with Jet Pilot has, has been pretty cool, but I guess the thing I was really pointing out there is just like having great relationships with vendors. Like, as you were able to transition, you know, you were working with a previous vendor that helped you make your pro model board. And so that board, once that board got launched you won some kind of award, right? Jet Pilot did.

Dylan Ayala: Yeah. I won King of Surf. So, it was best surfboard in the Alliance Wake Magazine.

Mike Ayala: And the Alliance Magazine is a pretty, like that’s the industry magazine, right?

Dylan Ayala: Yeah. Yeah.  For wakeboarding wakesurfing.

Mike Ayala: So, this is what’s really cool. I mean, again, through a series of events, this didn’t just happen. There’s a lot of work behind the scenes, but you’ve been able to start a business around this. Because I mean, you probably can’t survive just on your winnings from wake surfing.

Dylan Ayala: Yeah. Definitely not, definitely not on the winnings, but yeah. So, I was graduating 2018 and that was my semi-pro year. And you guys kind of started talking to me about like what I wanted to do after. And I remember we were in your old office and on the whiteboard, you wrote down how much it would cost for me to do wake surfing forever. And it was a big number and it scared me, and I like kind of wanted to quit from there. Like I was like, I don’t think I could do this. It’s crazy. But yeah, I started a wake surf school. So, teaching people, my pro model helps make money too. And then just doing social media stuff as well.

Mike Ayala: Okay. So, let’s back up. Cause you just went over like, so we basically put a vision on the board of what wake surfing would cost every year. And that scared the living heck out of you. And you mentioned you almost gave up, but then you just went right to, so you started a business, what’s your business called?

Dylan Ayala: Wake Surf School.

Mike Ayala: And how do people find you?

Dylan Ayala: Website, www.wakesurfschool.com

Mike Ayala: And so, what do you do at Wake Surf School?

Dylan Ayala: Teach people.  It’s a few different customers. Some of them are competitors. Some of them are just coming out for fun. My favorite is competitors. So, people that are wanting to get better at the sport, like in competing, I really have a fun time coaching them. And I also do some traveling clinics too. So, I’ll go to like Asia do clinics there. And then this summer actually went around the country, doing lessons in my truck camper.

Mike Ayala: So, let’s back up to Asia. Where like, where have you been in Asia?

Dylan Ayala: The first place I went was Japan. That was 2018. And then I went back there 2019, my pro year and I did a clinic there. I had a relationship with Keiko, and I asked her if I could do a clinic teaching. And she said, yes. So, I got like probably 10 to 20 different people there. I don’t remember the exact number that wanted lessons, posted it on my social media. And then I got like DMS from other people in Asia that would want clinics. So, I didn’t even know that people would want it. So, from there, I think I went back for like a couple of weeks to Arizona and then went back to South Korea and then I went to Taiwan and then Hong Kong.

Mike Ayala: Wow. Yeah. And you’ve been to some of them a couple of times, right?

Dylan Ayala: I’ve been to Japan a couple of times.

Mike Ayala: That’s cool. That’s a lot of fun. So, you’re not just going there for free though. This is like, you’re making money at this. Doing what, doing what you love. That’s pretty cool. So, if people, you, you said that you spent some time traveling in the US this year, so you go into other cities.

Dylan Ayala: Yeah. Other cities, other States. This was my first year doing it, but we went to Texas, Colorado, Utah, and Nevada. Yeah, I think that was it, but spent a lot of time, like the whole summer traveling. It was cool.

Mike Ayala: So how Did you come up with this plan? Like work me backwards because you didn’t just, I mean, are you living in your boat or you?

Dylan Ayala: No. So, I was my, I got an apartment as soon as I grad or like a year after I graduated right under a year and had that for a year. And then I wanted to after my lease on my apartment was up, I wanted to go to Asia and do some clinics there and then COVID happened. So, I wasn’t able to do that. So, I was planning on being homeless for like three months in Asia. Not really having a home going there, teaching for like three months, saving up some money and then coming back and getting a truck camper and then finishing like a tour around the country. But I didn’t get to go to Asia. So, I just skipped the first step, got the truck camper and then started traveling.

Mike Ayala: That’s cool. So where did you go this summer coaching?

Dylan Ayala: First, we went to Austin, Texas. Then we went to Dallas and then came back to Arizona for a couple, for like a week or so then to Lake Powell, then Salt Lake, then back to Elko, see some family did some lessons there too. And then we went to Colorado. Yeah. Colorado and back to Texas.

Mike Ayala: Nice. All living in a truck camper. So, you have like a YouTube, you’re talking about social media. You’ve got like a YouTube blog too around all this. Tell us, where can they find that?

Dylan Ayala: If you just look up my name, Dylan Ayala on YouTube, it should pop up.

Mike Ayala: Cool. And we’ll link that in the show notes too, so people can check it out, but tell us the kind of stuff that you do on that.

Dylan Ayala: I do some camper stuff and also wake surfing, but like the camper stuff is more of just like living in the camper, what it’s like. And it’s pretty fun doing YouTube videos, it is probably my favorite. One of my favorite things.

Mike Ayala: That’s cool. So, are you going to be doing a tour of this next year?

Dylan Ayala: I think so.

Mike Ayala: So how do people like stay on track with that? Just Instagram, figuring out where you’re at or what?

Dylan Ayala: Yeah. Social media, Instagram. I’m not exactly sure if I’m going to do the tour again this year or not, but I think I will.

Mike Ayala: And how do people find you on Instagram?

Dylan Ayala: Just @dylanayala.

Mike Ayala: Tell them the story about trying to get your Instagram handle.

Dylan Ayala: Yeah. There’s this guy from Mexico and he had my same name and I asked him if I could have it. And he said, no, but then I offered to pay him. I think I paid him $600 bucks for the Instagram name.

Mike Ayala: That’s pretty cool. So just hearing all this, you know, obviously I’m biased, but wanted to bring you on to just talk through this. Cause you’re not even 21 yet. And you know, people out there might be saying, you know, yeah, well he has this dad or whatever, but you work your butt off. And you know, you told us to begin. You said to begin with that, you know, we’ve helped you guys a lot, but I’ve had a lot of business partners that helped me too. And so, would you say that you have to have a dad in business to have your own business?

Dylan Ayala: No, definitely not. Yeah. You could still learn.

Mike Ayala: What would be your advice to people that, whether they have a dad in business or not like, what’s your advice to young people if they want to start a business?

Dylan Ayala: I would say just getting into the industry. You want your business to be around first learning about it. I don’t know. I guess it’s different for everybody, but definitely just like learning as much as you can about the industry before you start would help a lot.

Mike Ayala: Is it always like roses and fun times? Or what’s it like running a business?

Dylan Ayala: No, it’s a lot of work and a lot of ups and downs. Lots of like, you’re doing really good, like one month. And then like the past two months I haven’t had a boat at all, so it’s been tough, but I’m just figuring it out. It’s a lot of fun.

Mike Ayala: What’s wrong with your boat?

Dylan Ayala: The transmission went out.

Mike Ayala: Yeah. And so, this is thing, like, you know, business in general, it’s challenging, right? Because you can’t plan that. It’s not like you just have five boats sitting around, right? So how do you emotionally deal with that?

Dylan Ayala: Well, there’s not really much I can do about it. So, I’m just doing my YouTube, trying to do like other things to make money while that’s, cause that’s like the big one that makes the most money. But if I don’t have it right now, just cut back on everything else. Just still doing the things that make me little bit of money on the side.

Mike Ayala: So, being the age that you are, how do you, like, how do you grow and learn? Cause I’m sure a lot of your friends aren’t business owners, right?

Dylan Ayala: Right, yeah. I like reading a lot. I’ve been reading books, podcasts as well, but I think hanging around people that like are wanting to go that direction is also really good. Hanging out with people that push you and you push them as well, it is good.

Mike Ayala: That’s cool. So one of the things that I’ve learned and I’ll just kind of interject this, but one of my mentors always says, if two partners have the same strength or they bring the same thing to the table, one of them is not needed. And so, I’ve enjoyed being a business partner with you because you know, you don’t need me to go out coaching, right? Yeah. But it’s been, it’s, it’s been a win-win for us too. And obviously you’re our son and we want to see you do well. But at the same time, I want to throw this out there for the audience. At the same time this has been a benefit to us too, because like we own the boat. We talked about buying the boat in 2016, but I’ll throw this out there for those of you that are listening right now. And, you know, you understand tax depreciation and all that. When was the last time that we went on the boat as a family, did we spend a lot of time on the boat as a family?

Dylan Ayala: Not anymore. It’s probably been a year.

Mike Ayala: Yeah. And so, this boat is basically like a work truck, right?

Dylan Ayala: Yeah, definitely.

Mike Ayala:  Yeah. And so we were on a cruise with the real estate guys and a lot of the people that were in that network kind of got to know that we were your dad and mom and we were watching a competition on the iPad. And one of the guys there said, Mike, are you going to, are you depreciating that boat? And I was like, so depreciation is a tax benefit. Which I think we’ve talked about a little bit, but the minute that we started www.wakesurfschool.com, which is your business, but we helped you kind of start it. And we became partners in that business.  Not because we want to make money off of your business, but because we’re an ownership in that business together. And so, we’re able to take a boat that’s truly like a work truck and get tax benefit from it. So, there’s a lot of reasons. You know, the reason why I want to throw that out there is, cause it’s obviously we want to help you in business as our son, but there’s a lot of reasons why people get into business. And I just want to say that, because if you’re thinking about starting businesses with your kids out there, there might be other benefits and reasons to support their dreams and causes too, other than the fact that, Oh, I’m just his dad. Well, I think we’re actually pretty good business partners.

Dylan Ayala: Yeah, definitely. I agree.

Mike Ayala: It’s been fun. It’s been fun watching you grow and see your growth. So, do you think you’ll, what do you kind of see in the future? You think you’ll be doing this forever or what’s your …

Dylan Ayala: Yeah, definitely. Wake surfing. Like I love wake surfing a lot. But coaching definitely is a lot of work. So, I’d like to expand my brand a little bit, always be coaching, but not so much hands-on coaching, maybe have different coaches. I like to go into like the YouTube aspect of it too. Just kind of being more free. Like I’m still very free doing wake surf lessons and whatever it is, but I like to be a little bit more free.

Mike Ayala: So is that a big, obviously you’re on the investing for freedom podcast, so it’s a big thing for me. But is that a big thing for you? Like time freedom or what’s financial freedom? All of it, what is it?

Dylan Ayala: Time freedom mostly, financial freedom as well, but I don’t care to like, to be super, super-rich. I just want to, like, I don’t want to be bored. Like when I’m free, I want to be able to like, still go wake surfing. Still do things that are fun. Like, I don’t want to just not have anything to do. I still want to have fun.

Mike Ayala: You know, a lot of people get scared when they start thinking about, you know, starting a business and risk. And when you were talking about the white boat, like we put how much it was going to cost, like to be a wake surfer. And you said that kind of scared you, right?

Dylan Ayala: Yeah.

Mike Ayala: A lot of people would just roll it up and just quit then. The thing that I’ve watched even recently, you know, you said the last couple of months have been slow, those are opportunities to learn. So, what is during the slow times, what are some of the ideas that you’ve come up with or we’ve talked about or whatever. It’s during those times that you actually adjust and make your business better. So, what are some of the ideas that you’ve come up with to like diversify your income?

Dylan Ayala: Yeah, definitely like YouTube. And like, there’s a lot of opportunity in YouTube with like affiliate marketing, like, cause those videos will be shown for years and years to come. So right now, I’m just doing that every single week. And knowing that a few years from now it’ll pay off, like I don’t plan on making money off of it. Well, I already do make money off of it, but not living off of it within the next few months or anything.

Mike Ayala: That is cool. Also you know, we’ve talked about like getting a second boat, cause this is, so this is business 101, but people get scared because they don’t want to take all the risks, but like even not having a boat for two months, we’ve come up with a way to possibly get a second boat. And you know, action watersports has said that we could rent, like we could rent the old boat. So, coming up with other ideas to adjust when you’re a business, when you have a setback in business, like you’re figuring ways to work through that.

Dylan Ayala: Yeah. I forgot about that.

Mike Ayala: What’s some of the other ideas we’ve come up with recently?

Dylan Ayala: Online coaching. That’s been pretty good. I’ve been doing it a good number of those.

Mike Ayala: Tell us about that.

Dylan Ayala: Yeah. People will like record themselves, wake surfing, and then upload it to like a Google drive or whatever. And then we’ll sit down for like an hour, it’s by the hour. So, we’ll go through all of their stuff. It’s been actually really cool because I can like show them what they’re doing wrong right then and there. It’s actually a little bit easier. The only thing is they can’t improve it right away. But they see it easier. I think. So, it’s been cool.

Mike Ayala: And do they get a recording of that so they can watch it later?

Dylan Ayala: They do record it and they usually record it.

Mike Ayala: So, I recently started taking golf lessons. Well I started golf lessons at the end of last year on the golf course, like with a pro, but then a few weeks ago I started taking lessons in this thing called golf tech, which you’ve got your coach there, but he’s also videotaping it and he’s doing an overlay and he does voiceover. And so, when you’re done coaching, so number one, you can see what he’s talking about, but then you get a video of that later and that’s been so helpful. Yeah. Because it’s one thing, it’s one thing to be getting coaching, but you can’t see yourself. It’s another thing to have a video of that. And like you said, that’s so powerful to be able to tell them right then.

Dylan Ayala: Right. Yeah and I remember like when I first started wake, surfing, learning new tricks and stuff, video was the biggest help for me. Just watching videos, hours and hours.

Mike Ayala: So, if people, so basically it doesn’t matter where they live. They could sign up for your video coaching.

Dylan Ayala: Yeah. People in Asia all over.

Mike Ayala: How would somebody sign up for that?

Dylan Ayala: Just through my website, Www.wakesurfschool.Com.

Mike Ayala: Nice. That’s cool. Do you enjoy that part of it too?

Dylan Ayala: Online coaching? Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. It’s really fun.

Mike Ayala: And then you have like a wake surf community too. That’s been pretty powerful.

Dylan Ayala: Yeah. I started a Facebook group. It’s called wake surf tips and people go there for tips on their tricks or whatever they want tips on in wake surfing.

Mike Ayala: That is cool. So, you’ve also like been able to get around, I mean actually coach some pretty successful people with like high mindsets, right?

Dylan Ayala: Yeah, it’s been really cool. One that comes to mind is this guy in Austin, Texas. And he was a dirt bike coach. And I used to ride dirt bikes a lot too, but he explained to me when he was a coach, it wasn’t just the motocross, it was the whole lifestyle. So, he would coach his riders for like doing the small things right. So, when they’re on the dirt bike, they do the small things right too. So, it wasn’t just motocross that he was teaching. It was a whole lifestyle around it. He even told me that he would go to this hypnotist before each race and get hypnotized and he’d go over the whole track and memorize everything.

Mike Ayala: While he was hypnotized.

Dylan Ayala: Yeah. It was cool.

Mike Ayala: That’s cool. So, what are some of the things that you’ve done? Not necessarily hypnotism, maybe you’ve done that. I don’t know. But what are some of the things that you do to keep yourself in shape, current healthy, etc.

Dylan Ayala: Yeah. Obviously working out, weightlifting, but visualization before my runs, meditation. I probably did at least like 15 meditations over like three to four days at worlds. And it was actually really cool. It was the most that I ever like put into that and it was cool to see the results. Cause I actually like, even though I got fifth, I was really happy with how I rode. And I remember the first, I knew that I was going to have to do really hard tricks and combo them as well. Not only do those hard tricks but do them comboed. And I remember falling, and then a shove, and I was like doubting myself. Like I can’t do it again right when I get up. But then I was like, I have to. So, I did it, landed it and I was really pumped. And then second pass. I did a big spin, like first trick and I just felt really good. I was so happy.

Mike Ayala: That’s awesome. What’s your favorite book?

Dylan Ayala: Breaking the Habit of Being Yourself.

Mike Ayala: Whoa. Who wrote that?

Dylan Ayala: Joe Dispenza.

Mike Ayala: Wow. I haven’t read that. Pretty good. What’s like your biggest takeaway from that?

Dylan Ayala: So, it’s about like how people get into stuck mindsets. So, like say something happens at work that’s like bad and they feel that emotion, people actually get addicted to emotion. So that’s why people can do stuff for like a little bit amount of time, like changing something in their life and then they go back to it just cause it’s a chemical. Every time you feel an emotion, it’s like a chemical in your brain that gets released. So, people go back to like their old emotions and they get stuck in a rut because they aren’t, they’re living in fight or flight. So, they’re expecting something bad to happen to them. So that’s why bad things always happen to people. Whereas if you like uses meditation and I know mom does his meditations, but if you use his meditation and like, it’s kind of like the law of attraction, but you put yourself into that. Say if you wanted like a car, you would feel the emotion of having the car already and then it puts you more inclined to do something that somebody that has that car would do.

Mike Ayala: Wow. That’s cool.

Dylan Ayala: It’s a cool book.

Mike Ayala: That’s awesome. What’s it called again?

Dylan Ayala: Breaking the Habit of Being Yourself.

Mike Ayala: Nice. I like it. So, what else have we not talked about that we should talk about? What’s like your biggest struggle right now.

Dylan Ayala: Biggest struggle is…

Mike Ayala: Your future is so bright; you just have to wear shades.

Dylan Ayala: No, probably figuring out like there’s a lot of paths that I could take.  And I don’t know, trying to figure out what I want to do. Like I know that I’ll always want to do something in wakesurfing. I just don’t know exactly what yet.

Mike Ayala: You feel a lot of pressure around that or is it just sometimes?

Dylan Ayala: Yeah, definitely a lot of pressure. Just because if I don’t make this happen, then I’m going to have to go get a job.

Mike Ayala: Have you ever had a job, really?

Dylan Ayala: No. Well working for you a little bit, but other than that, no.

Mike Ayala: You’re just so into your freedom. You’re going to be that guy when you’re like 60, that say I never had a job.

Dylan Ayala: Yeah. Yeah. I would get a job if I had to, but a lot of things would have to go bad.

Mike Ayala: And I can say that, you know, for the audience that’s listening, it’s not like you’re lazy. I mean, you work your butt off. It’s just about freedom. Which actually I was really excited to get you on the podcast. And that’s why, because it’s fun. It’s fun to see a guy that’s not even 21 yet. And you’ve been working on this for a couple of years. That’s doing what you’re doing and I’m proud of you because you’ve chased your dream. And you’ve made it happen. And again, people listening might say, well, you know, he’s got Mike for a dad, but that’s not, we don’t like make the path for you. You have to go to, I mean, we’ve helped you. But it’s the same. I’ve had bankers helped me. I’ve had investors help me. I’ve had business partners help me. That’s basically how we, that’s our partnership. And so, it’s not like dad gave you or mom gave you a business. You have to earn it. You have to work it. So, I remember a point in time. I think it was, it was either December or January of last year.  Like the year before. So maybe December of 2018 or January of 2019. And you were pretty frustrated and you’re like, I think I kind of want to just come to work for you. Do you remember that? What was our Conversation?

Dylan Ayala: You told me I could, if I wanted to it’s up to me, but you made it clear that if I do it, I’m not going to have another chance at this. So that was cool. That probably changed the whole trajectory. Just that one saying like, I only have one chance and if I don’t make it happen, then I’m out of luck.

Mike Ayala: Yeah. Well, and it was really like, I like that. That’s probably exactly how I said it. But you know, the frame of reference was really like, you can always come to work with us. But you can’t come back and be a wake surfer, you know, quit for five years and then you decide, you want to come back?

Dylan Ayala: Yeah. I’ve seen it happen to like wake surfers are like, they take a year off only, and they’re just forgotten.

Mike Ayala: Yeah. It’s kind of a big deal. Well, I’m super proud of you and I’m proud of, you know, the hard work you put in and chasing your dreams and how you’ve invested for your freedom. And investing for freedom is not just about, you know, the amount of the money is never the problem. And so many times I want to say that to my audience, like money is never, ever, ever the issue. It’s always the desire. So, it’s like, what do you really want? Why do you want it? What are you going to do to get it? Measure results and adjust. You’ll find the money. Just even like, you know, recently we were talking about getting a second boat, so you’d never find yourself in this position again. And so, we were actually at Lake Powell. And we’re just talking, and I was like, I think I could find you an investor that would just finance a boat for you. And I made a little list of investors that I thought would want to do it. And we reached out to one and actually he was your contact. Not even mine. I become friends with him because you met him. Yeah. And actually, for those that are listening, it’s really cool to have a son that introduces you to really successful high-minded people. In fact, Blake Clark, he was on the podcast a few weeks ago. I met him because of you. And there’s a guy Ben Anderson in Denver that I’ve had a couple of calls with. Because of you.

Dylan Ayala: Yeah. Both of those guys are awesome.

Mike Ayala: And Tyler Reitz, because of you. So, you know, I’m super proud. I’m bragging now, but I’m super proud to, but that’s what business partners do. And that’s what, you know, having the mindset like you have is important. But anyway, back to figuring out the boat issue immediately found an investor to get a second boat for you. Super cool. So, money is never the problem, it’s coming down to what’s the real issue here. Why haven’t you been able to make money the last couple months?

Dylan Ayala: Because I didn’t have a boat.

Mike Ayala: Yeah. You missed out on thousands and thousands of dollars of revenue because you didn’t have a boat for two months, right? And it’s not like we’re getting a second boat just so you can have it.

Dylan Ayala: Yeah.

Mike Ayala: Yeah, we’re going to be able to make money on a second boat. And then we’re even thinking the other day, what about like the jungle boat? Like this is, you know, how your brain works all the time, but just other ways that you can add to your yeah.

Dylan Ayala: Yeah. Definitely getting other options too.

Mike Ayala: So, the hard work and the dedication and the vision and all that, that’s like 95% of the battle. The money is never the problem, right?

Dylan Ayala: Yeah. Definitely not the money. Definitely just doing the same thing over and over.

Mike Ayala: Cool. I like it. Well, any last words of advice?

Dylan Ayala: I don’t know. I don’t think so.

Mike Ayala: I think you’ve said it all, but man, I just think, you know, the biggest thing, just watching you chase your freedom and be passionate about life. It’s super cool.

Dylan Ayala: Thank you. Thanks for having me on.

Mike Ayala: Yeah. And so, if you want more information on Dylan, you can find him at www.dylanayala.com or www.wakesurfschool.com or at Dylan Ayala on Instagram.  And then just search probably his favorite, as he said, just search Dylan Ayala on YouTube.

Dylan Ayala: Yeah. YouTube is the best.

Mike Ayala: Yeah. And my personal favorite video is when Hannah had to dump the sewage tank on the camper, you guys should go watch that.

Dylan Ayala: Yeah. And I didn’t even tell her that she was going to do that in the video. That was funny.

Mike Ayala: That is funny.

Dylan Ayala: Yeah. I like YouTube.

Mike Ayala: Cool. A lot of good stuff. Well, I’m proud of you.

Dylan Ayala: Thank you.

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Episode 76