Posted July 26, 2021 in Podcast
Wealth is a Choice with Damion Lupo
Preparing for retirement isn’t easy — specifically, growing your wealth! My guest today is Damion Lupo: a best-selling author, financial mentor, and a real breath of fresh air who has totally rewritten the wealth-building rules.
I was first introduced to Damion through a mutual friend, Mike Iola, which I’m truly thankful for. Finances are never an easy topic to think about let alone discuss, which is why Damion’s straightforward approach to cut through the clutter is exactly what we need.
In this episode, we talk about how to break through your financial shackles, how Damion got started in his financial business, how to get started in crypto, and much more. Let’s get into it!
Who is Damion Lupo?
Damion was born in Montana and raised in Alaska. Growing up around Anchorage, he worked in Arctic oil fields for years before relocating to a totally different climate:
“I currently live in Arizona in Red Rocks. We call it ‘Little LA’ because it’s full of California, and it’s getting fuller every day. There’s traffic jams like rush hour in LA. It’s not awesome!” – Damion Lupo
Growing up in such rugged surroundings, the biggest impact on his life as a young man wasn’t his parents: In particular, he recalls hiding often as a child, and his father yelling daily. As he says, his father wasn’t so much “inspiration” as he was “perspiration.”
Instead, Damion looked to his teachers:
“There were a number of teachers that I remember, especially in high school [where] I started having a lot of adult conversations pretty early. I resonated with the administration and the teachers more than the kids.” – Damion Lupo
He distinctly remembers a period in high school where the teachers went on strike. At the time, Damion was the student body president, leading 40,000 students in one of the largest school districts. Because of his position, he was interviewed by the local newspaper. The reporter asked him, “What do the students think of the strike?”
“I looked at [the reasons for the teacher strike] and I said, ‘There’s actually no money here for what the teachers want.’ The teachers were saying the administration was lying, and the administration said, ‘We’re not sure where you think we’re going to get this money.’ I went in, and of course there’s an expectation that kids are always on the side of the teachers because they love the teachers, but I was on the side of the truth.” – Damion Lupo
It seems from an early age Damion had an eye for financial literacy — and brutal honesty. Throughout the strike, he — like the school administration — agreed that the money the teachers were looking for just couldn’t materialize out of thin air. In the end, as much as he admired his teachers, he decided he couldn’t support their strike.
In fact, it’s where he also decided upon one piece of financial advice he continues to leverage today: Don’t whine. Act.
“I tell people to stop whining. I use Larry Wiggins’ book cover as a mantra. I say, ‘Shut up, stop whining, and get a life. Your life is your own fault.’ … My advice to people is to look in the mirror and tell yourself the truth … But they don’t want to talk about the money truth in their lives, the financial mess they’re in, their health, their relationships — the truth is hard, but you can’t fix a lie.” – Damion Lupo
Breaking Free from Our Financial Shackles
Damion’s mission in life is to help people break out of what he refers to as “money shackles”, beginning with looking at how they’re saving for retirement.
“Most people have their wealth tied up in retirement accounts. Well, it’s two places: it’s the house we live in if you own a house, and it’s retirement accounts. That’s the middle of the bell curve for America and where the money is. I’m not counting social security — I’m talking about assets like when you look at net worth.” – Damion Lupo
Damion sees these two as part of a speculative delusion around a system that feeds on people. It’s the old Wall Street system, but most people don’t know there’s an alternative — one where you are the one in control of your money. Unfortunately, says Damion, Wall Street has done a great job convincing us “we’re too stupid” to run our own money.
“If you ever try to get your money out of Wall Street, it’s brutal — they do not want to give it to you. What I’ve been doing for the last decade is giving people control of their retirement money with the eQRP. It’s a type of a retirement where you get to take all your 401ks and IRAs, and you get to control them and invest in whatever you want. Real estate, cryptocurrency, Bitcoin, gold, private companies — it’s amazing when you realize that the code has been in place for almost 50 years to give people control, and they didn’t know.” –Damion Lupo
Can you believe there’s an alternative way to invest your money that doesn’t involve a 1970s Wall Street? Most people’s response is, “Why didn’t I know?” But Damion makes you wonder: Do you really think Wall Street would tell you how to get out of paying them fees?
How Damion Started His Business
Dealing with taxes, the IRS, and hundreds of tax codes isn’t something most of us are particularly fond of, and yet Damion has created a whole business around it. Is this something he stumbled onto, or did he take advantage of a gap in the market?
“Part of it was an accident. One of [my companies] is a precious metals company. We sell gold and silver, and this guy came to me and he said, ‘Hey, I want to use my retirement money to buy some silver.’ I sold the silver and [thought], I bet a lot of people would like to do that. I could sell more silver, so I need to figure this out. That’s when I really started digging into the tax code and realized there’s something missing here — people don’t even know that this is a possibility.” – Damion Lupo
The second part of Damion’s story is a more tragic one. When his dad got sick and passed away, Damion painfully watched his father’s last few years dwindle away as he hardly did anything — not because he didn’t want to, but because he didn’t have any money.
“He played by the rules. He [was a] military guy for 20 years, had his government 401k, then he retired and he was broke. I said, ‘This is not right — what happened here?’ It was because Wall Street sucked the living crap out of him. It was a painful thing to hear [my dad] physically say to me, the last time we had a conversation … he didn’t have the resources to do the things he wanted to do. I have a problem with that.” – Damion Lupo
It’s easy now to see where Damion gets his passion for his work to help others avoid the pain his father experienced in his retirement years.
Damion’s major focus is helping people with eQRP. (For a detailed understanding of whether this is for you I highly recommend visiting their website.) Damion is dedicated to working with you if you don’t see yourself as a victim of your own circumstances.
Is Crypto Worth Exploring?
The buzz word in the financial world at the moment is “cryptocurrency,” and as someone that doesn’t know too much about it myself, I’m curious what Damion’s thoughts are about it, and about how we can educate ourselves better.
“I always tell people, if you want to know the truth, don’t go to Google — Google will tell you whatever you want to hear and reinforce your echo chamber. A great place to start is Coinbase, because one of the things you can do on Coinbase is learn and get paid to learn. All these different people that are creating these platforms, tokens, or solutions go to Coinbase and [pay] you to know about [their new product].” –Damion Lupo
Why You Should Listen to This Damion Lupo Podcast Episode Right Now…
Guys, this is such a great interview with Damion Lupo — especially for anyone interested in building financial literacy. It was a great honor to chat with Damion, and knowing him personally made this particularly special for me.
To conclude this episode, I asked Damion one last question: If he had to give a TED talk on something he wasn’t known for, what topic would it be? This was his answer:
“It would be about the nature of conflict. Conflict is based on tension globally, in anything from war to economics to politics. Doesn’t matter, when you start letting go and you start settling into the moment, and being and hearing and connecting, then tension goes away, and conflict dissolves.” – Damion Lupo
With the amount of conflict in the world, I think a TED talk on that is certainly warranted.
I hope you’ve been inspired by this conversation and feel intrigued to learn more about how to take control of your financial future.
To get more wisdom from Damion, visit his website. You can also follow him on social media: he’s on LinkedIn, and has his own YouTube channel as well. I definitely think you should head over to his educational site where you can get more information about saving for retirement and eQRPs.
Thank you so much for reading this post. If you found value from this episode, it would mean a lot to me if you would take a few seconds and write a five-star review and maybe share it with some of your friends on Apple Podcasts. I’d be so grateful! I’d also love it if you would tag me, @kyle_depiesse on Instagram with your greatest takeaways from the episode!
Cheers to your success! I’m rooting for you.