The Mexican Fisherman and the Banker

This is an eye-opening personal revelation, worth contemplating, from my longtime friend Jared Maidenberg.

You can hear Jared explain his recent move here…

The Mexican Fisherman 🎣 Story

Years ago I read a great book that greatly impacted me, “The 4-Hour Workweek” by Tim Ferriss.

The book talked much about living life Now vs the “deferred life plan” that most people follow. You know the whole…work 40 hours+ a week for 40 years to hopefully one day, someday, enjoy life, travel, etc as you retire on 40% of your income (that was never enough in the first place).

Tim talked about mini sabbaticals , not putting off life for “someday” (someday never comes for most) and how living a good life is actually a lot more doable than most realize and offered a different perspective on this whole work-life balance thing.

After finishing that book, I decided that I would live my life by a different “set of rules” and not do what most people do. I decided to live my best life then and there and set up a life I didn’t need a vacation from.

And the story below, the parable of “The Mexican Fisherman and the Banker,” greatly impacted me and has always stuck with me for years…. and I was just reminded of this story yesterday as we sat on the deck of a new friend’s beautiful casa overlooking the Pacific Ocean… with all the fishing boats in the bay sharing why we’ve all decided to relocate to beautiful San Juan Del Sur Nicaragua.

This is the story that started the “be more with less” and lifestyle design movement for me.

While I knew all work and no play wasn’t the way, for years I thought I would forever be stuck in the cycle of working to live.

I thought I would always have a car payment, credit card debt and not enough month at the end of the money. I thought I had to work harder to make more, buy more and have more. At one time, I really thought that would make me better somehow.

This story is my inspiration to slow down, reassess, and get real about how I want to live life and it speaks to me now more than it ever has.

Last night I had the beautiful awareness that this is now My Life and all I had to do was step into this ….. 💫🙏🏼


An American investment banker was at the pier of a small coastal Mexican village when a small boat with just one fisherman docked.

Inside the small boat were several large yellowfin tuna. The American complimented the Mexican on the quality of his fish and asked how long it took to catch them.

The Mexican replied, “only a little while.”

The American then asked why didn’t he stay out longer and catch more fish?

The Mexican said he had enough to support his family’s immediate needs.

The American then asked, “but what do you do with the rest of your time?”

The Mexican fisherman said, “I sleep late, fish a little, play with my children, take siestas with my wife, Maria, stroll into the village each evening where I sip wine, and play guitar with my amigos. I have a full and busy life.”

The American scoffed:

“I am a Harvard MBA and could help you. You should spend more time fishing and with the proceeds, buy a bigger boat. With the proceeds from the bigger boat, you could buy several boats, eventually you would have a fleet of fishing boats. Instead of selling your catch to a middleman you would sell directly to the processor, eventually opening your own cannery. You would control the product, processing, and distribution. You would need to leave this small coastal fishing village and move to Mexico City, then LA and eventually New York City, where you will run your expanding enterprise.”

The Mexican fisherman asked, “But, how long will this all take?”

To which the American replied, “15 – 20 years.”

“But what then?” Asked the Mexican.

The American laughed and said, “That’s the best part. When the time is right you would announce an IPO and sell your company stock to the public and become very rich, you would make millions!”

“Millions – then what?”

The American said, “Then you would retire. Move to a small coastal fishing village where you would sleep late, fish a little, play with your kids, take siestas with your wife, stroll to the village in the evenings where you could sip wine and play your guitar with your amigos.”

Sometimes the life we desire and dream of is much closer than it appears, if we only change our view.

Cheers mi Amigos ☕️

To learn more from Jared, including the the full insights and wisdom from our raw and unfiltered conversations, be sure to add yourself to this exclusive list..

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