We had the good fortune of connecting with Cary Hokama and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Cary, is there something that you feel is most responsible for your success?
The most important factor behind my success is my relentless, almost obsessive pursuit of becoming my ideal self. The two most potent factors of this has been have been self-belief and persistence (with a burning desire). The goals and dreams I’ve set and the achievement of them are a phenomenal byproduct of my own pursuit of these two. My current success or realities is nothing more than what I believe about myself and what’s expected by design for my future. Further, the concept of self and self-mastery is single-handedly the most important element behind what one considers “success” because the word is very personal and subjective. To free myself from attachments of what society considers “success” has also been a form of success to me. When people ask me today, “who is your hero?” Without hesitation, I now tell that person, “my hero is my future self” The tension can be that it can be looked at as a selfish act. But if you’re not your best version, if you’re not living to your fullest capabilities, how can you be the best friend, child, parent, mentor, employee, business partner, etc.? Love him or hate him, Kanye West stated in one interview that left an indelible mark in my mind. “If you’re a fan of Kanye West, you’re not a fan of me, you’re a fan of yourself – because my music is all about believing in yourself.” Recently, he became a billionaire, according to Forbes. Although I’m no where near Kanye with fame and fortune, I can echo with that paradigm 1000%. I performed my very last show as a lead singer of a rock band in March of 2008. I’ve been entertaining on the stage for a good 8+ years up until that point, and hustled many side gigs and business ventures all those years. I always strongly believed that my purpose was adding massive value to people so that they can experience personal breakthroughs. It took me another 8 years to get back onto a major stage, but this time as a speaker, author, and mentor. I’ve shared stages with some of the world’s best entrepreneurs and leaders of our generation. Today, I’ve built up a couple of businesses, have invested in multiple companies, and I continue to speak and create content with disruptors, game-changers, and inspiring people so that my audience can take their genius, have clarity, and take action so that they can create the results they want. Teaching and sharing my content also helps me grow, exposes my blindspots, and expands my mindset to see what else is possible? I attest to this journey by belief, persistence, and and intense, burning desire. My goal today is to become one of the greatest storytellers and communicators that this generation has ever seen. My moonshot in achieving this is by growing my lifestyle & personal development media company to operate globally and high-lighting the world’s greatest masters, hidden gems, leaders, and artists through cinematic storytelling.
What should our readers know about your business?
I’m most proud that the people I’ve worked with fall in love with their own life. My greatest personal joys have all come from the people who share with me that they now feel confident, strong, proud, clear on their life-goals, or that they are now obsessed to becoming the greatest version of themselves. I have no idea what sets me apart from others because I’m not them and I can’t have a 100% understanding of what others do. What I do know is that my own life trajectories as well as my businesses have completely shifted when I dedicated my life to mastering myself and helping others do the same. The money will always be up and down, left and right, but the trajectory has always been an upward climb towards the ideal – and it feels so fulfilling. The challenges have always been mental- how do I overcome rejection? How do I stop comparing myself to others who are more successful than I and stop feeling less than? Though these thoughts surface from time to time, I’ve learned to better shut these inner-conversations out and focus on the growth and lessons I’m blessed with every day. Without sounding like a guru, I 100% agree that prayer, meditation, and practicing self-awareness effectively malnourishes the self-deprecating thoughts that ultimately lead to self-sabotage. I’ll gladly share with you, two uplifting phrases I tell myself over and over when hit with negative self-talk: 1) “I may not be where I want to be, but thank God I’m no longer where I used to be” – Tim Storey 2) “I’m glad to be where I am because where I am, is where I’m supposed to be. ‘m just too dam good to stay here.” My inner-prep talking has always been the way to overcome my challenges and setbacks. The spark of this, of course, can also come from a conversation with another, watching uplifting content from people who are uplifting, I can get that from hearing a song, or reading a book – it can come at any moment. For the past 8 years now, I’ve also written in my journals. I have stacks and stacks of composition notebooks in my office room. In these notebooks, I write 10 things I’m grateful for in great detail, 10 visions and affirmations I’ve written for myself for the future and what I believe in, and I take notes from books and content I’ve learned from inspiring people I consume on Youtube. I call this my power hour and I do this first thing in the morning. People always ask me why I’m always so upbeat and positive daily and I always say it’s because I spend the first few hours of my morning celebrating my own life and empowering myself. Again, this leads to confidence in my view of my own self, and that leads me to stay persistent and consistent in the happiness of my pursuit – notice I didn’t say the “pursuit of happiness” I’ve learned along the way that love and kindness will always win. There’s no other way to deep success and fulfillment. I’ve also learned the semantics in making money. My mentor, Roger Salam, said that there are only two kinds of people in this world who “make” money. 1) the government 2) counterfeiters You and I don’t “make” money. You and I “have” money. Money is an idea that is backed by confidence. Cash, credit cards, cryptocurreny never existed back in the day, right? It was created later. In essence, money is just an idea that is backed by confidence. Therefore, we need to change the relationship and meaning that we have with money. Simply put, money is a byproduct of adding value. The more people you serve, the more value you add, the more problems you solve for others whether directly or indirectly, the more money you will have. This discovery alone (and this was not that long ago) changed the monetary trajectory of my life and business forever. Today, I help ambitious people master their craft (life’s work) so that they can rise to the challenge and get their greatest work out into the world. I mentor people personally, via group, and also create content via podcast, cinematic storytelling, and hope to scale it to where millions of people around the world are consuming the content I create and manifesting their greatest potential. I want the world to know that I’m a man who’s fired up to leave a lasting legacy of impact. I exist to build kings, queens, and the greatest champions that this generation has ever seen. I want my family to know that I love my life and look forward to dying on a completely empty tank of gas. The greatest gift you can give to the world and to those you say you love most is for you to live to your fullest potential.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
As a preface, I react to this view a bit differently because the destination has very little to do with the company and where the communication and vibe goes. Growing up in LA, I’ve seen and visited all the major landmarks, hot spots, and such things so please don’t judge me for not doing anything touristy: That said, I’d facilitate the following: – Breakfast at Terranea Resort in Palos Verdes with a light hike up the PV cliffs (ponder while looking over the Pacific Ocean and look for whales, dolphins, etc.) – Trip to Santa Barbara for good food, wine, walking up and down State street, beach vibe) – Lakers game or Dodgers game for sure with good seats with dinner after – More & more foodie runs and eat at all the local eateries in my hometown of the South Bay (some of my fav places include Sushi Chitose, Sushi Inaba Manhattan Beach, Tori-Hei, Torrance Bakery, Sweet Rice, – Trip to Redondo Beach or San Pedro to eat good fresh seafood and have a drink at Tony’s – Many bbq’s and at-home cooking (rib eye caps from Costco has been my favorite to serve lately) – I would also love to revisit places I haven’t been to in a long time – Disneyland, Huntington Library, etc. – But what I enjoy most now is company and food…that is culture to me. And since I have so many talented friends who own restaurants all over SoCal, I’d spend time going to all of these restaurants with my friend, document each visit, share about good times, and create a nice piece of content around it. Game over, we’d be fully happy and fulfilled with just that.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
There are simply too many to list here (in the few hundreds), but I want to thank some key people and platforms for where I am today! – My wife for believing in me and always supporting me – she’s the one who nudged me to write my book – My first personal coach and mentor Hendre, for giving me the confidence to start my business – The amazing personal development teachers I’ve listened to and watched on Youtube (Tony Robbins, Les Brown, Jim Rohn, etc.) – Youtube and Podcast for allowing the content to be free and abundant – Social Media (FB, IG, LinkedIn, etc. for allowing the possibility of instant connection and communication globally) – My parents for showing me the greatest example of sacrifice and selflessness – World shakers who are “crazy” enough to change the world and the landscape of it.
Other: My book, Own Your Self: http://bit.ly/caryhokama My Podcast: Own Your Self: https://apple.co/33gicud