Since he was five years old, Ka Sundance knew he wanted to spend his life traveling, not working. "I admire people who can do nothing," the entrepreneur tells CNBC Make It. Like so many young people, he dreamed of a life of leisure and adventure.
But, unlike many, he realized his ambition.
None of that came easy. In fact, the story of their success begins with a setback. Their second son got sick. He suffered from chronic asthma, a condition that doctors said would be nearly impossible to eradicate and would likely afflict the boy throughout his life.
Ka, skeptical of the prognosis, tried something unconventional. He and Katie put their son on a regimented diet of raw and vegan foods. And it seemed to help: The boy felt better.
Friends were impressed and, more, curious. They wanted to know what the child was fed and how it worked. So Ka made a website where he blogged about the diet and began amassing a following. Enough people seemed interested that he also decided to sell his recipes in an eBook.
The eBook sold.
"This little success with the eBook gave us the confidence to get a one-way ticket to Costa Rica," he says. He and Katie, pregnant at the time, were inspired by the potential of online marketing and set out to learn more. They took their three children and left home for the first time without the intention of returning any time soon.
At this point, they were still struggling financially. Ka was tens of thousands of dollars in debt and he estimates he was only bringing in around $400 US a month from the book sales combined with the occasional carpentry job.
So, in an effort to live free of financial constraints, he and Katie pivoted away from a focus on food and started offering lessons for aspiring small-business owners.
As they explain on their site: "We're super passionate about helping other passionate entrepreneurs and small business owners with a vision to run their own online businesses in a way that it isn't overwhelming and doesn't rule their life."
"I became a transformational coach," Ka tells CNBC Make It. "I don't just help people. I help people to help other people."
At first, he only offered such lessons in person, but he soon realized that, by recording himself and offering courses online, he could make his system much more efficient.
"I charge less money, work less hours, help more people and make much more money," he says.
A membership to his "Do What You Love Club" costs $27 a month. There are also hundreds of paying members of his "Do What You Love Business School." These students occasionally meet up in person at events, like one Ka hosted this past summer in Berlin, Germany.
For those not interested in buying subscriptions, the Sundance Family also offers programs like Social Media Rockstar Academy. Customers pay $299 to enroll in courses that will train them how to acquire a social media following on platforms like Facebook and YouTube.
Ka and his wife have made over $300,000 off these businesses this year alone.
Currently, Ka says, with their substantial following and the success of the business, he only has to work 5-10 hours a week. He no longer practices carpentry, either, although the family is building a house in Costa Rica. "But that's really for fun," he says.
He says everything the family has accomplished and its philosophy could be described as the "Tarzan Method" of swinging from vine to vine.
"You don't know the exact goal. You don't know the exact destination. You sure as hell don't know the exact plan or strategy. It's all irrelevant," he says. "Just move."
"The one who wants, finds a way," he quotes. "The one who doesn't, finds a reason."
Stumble forward if you have to, he says. "Life is short. Do it now."
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