I'm a self-made millionaire at 21 — but Gen Z 'lacks the self-discipline' to get rich – New York Post
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He thinks his compatriots are Gen Lay-Z.
It’s not just the older folks accusing zoomers of laziness. A self-made 21-year-old millionaire is putting his generation on blast for being slothful layabouts who “lack the self-discipline needed” to become rich.
“Nowadays, a lot of my generation are spoiled brats,” Andy Kong, who lives in Las Vegas, told Jam Press of his age bracket.
Bucking the Gen Z stereotype of an indolent manchild, the Virginia native notably became a millionaire by age 20 by starting a variety of ventures, from e-commerce firm Project Wifi to BlackWater, a data center that mines cryptocurrency (not to be confused with the controversial private military company of the same name).
Kong’s goal, per his LinkedIn page, is to develop “eminent projects with noble people.” He frequently flaunts the lavish fruits of his labor on Instagram, showing off fancy sports cars and his trips to idyllic seaside getaways.
The young baller attributes his seemingly instant success in the business world to his upbringing by strict Asian parents, who taught him the value of money by making him pitch in at the family nail salon and restaurant starting at age 11.
“That taught me how to value my time, and understand to make sacrifices to get to my goals,” declared the young entrepreneur, who spent nearly every waking hour trying to learn a new skill as a result.
“When most kids were sitting at home playing video games, if I had free time, I utilize that time for learning whether it’s for coding, starting a business, and developing a skill set,” Kong said. “I wouldn’t go out partying because I was working and assisting my siblings throughout the day.”
Unfortunately, he felt as if these values are “sadly lacking” among others in his generation, who are often accused of prioritizing instant gratification over long-term success. “Essentially the overwhelming majority of my generation lack the self-discipline required to achieve a goal and become rich,” he said. “A lot of people don’t realize that until they are stuck in dead-end professions.”
“People have it a lot easier than they had it in the past and everything is given to them on a plate,” he added. “They don’t really know the meaning of hard work and so they don’t have enough self-discipline to set their minds to anything.
“This is why they will never get to where they want to in life,” Kong concluded.
A recent study found that Generation Z are living at home with their parents in greater numbers than any generation in recent history — which experts attribute to, among other factors, to not being prepared to adult. Meanwhile, other research shows that social media and tech use — which is highest among zoomers — is wreaking havoc on attention spans, torpedoing their ability to stay on task.
By contrast, Kong claims to have the mentality to focus on being successful despite all the distractions. “There were lots of things that I would have liked to do when I was a teenager but I went without them to be where I am today,” he said.
This entrepreneurial mindset prompted the Virginian to shun school — much to the horror of his parents who wanted to him do medicine and law — and pour all his resources into building business from scratch. His interest was piqued by seeing videos on how people were making boatloads of money through e-commerce. He decided to watch YouTube videos to learn more, and eventually launched his first firm, Nuclear Node, in eighth grade.
“I don’t believe in textbook learning,” said Kong, describing his philosophy on success. “I have always learned things on my own. If I didn’t know how to work stuff in the restaurant, I’d go on YouTube and learn it.”
He added, “My favorite line is ‘Google it’ because that’s how I do everything.”
Fast-forward several years and Kong had become all but fluent in coding, dropshipping (the practice of accepting customers’ orders without keeping products on hand) and e-commerce work — talents that eventually saw him become a protégé of legendary entrepreneur Kyle Buckner.
Buckner’s tutelage paid major dividends for Kong’s bank account, which, by the time he was 18,held $100,000. He reached the $1 million milestone when he was only 20, Jam Press reported.
Like a baby Elon Musk, Kong also presides over several companies simultaneously. Along with acting as CTO for BlackWater and Project Wifi, Kong also presides over Alqenio.com — dropshipping software for both Amazon and Walmart marketplaces that “automates orders, inventory and returns,” per the site.
Kong believes that it is “only a matter of time” before he founds a tech company worth a billion dollars.
Despite his meteoric rise in the business sphere, Kong claims that there is no shortcut to success, but rather that people need to remain “consistent and disciplined.”
“You don’t see a person in the gym and say, ‘Wow he lifted 100 pounds,’” the young mogul explained. “It’s the dedication to doing it over and over and over again, despite new opportunities, but your commitment that makes it extraordinary.”
He added, “Creative people have a tendency to have shiny object syndrome – moving onto another project prior to finishing an existing one and you have to learn to control that or you’ll get in the habit of quitting rather than winning.”
Ultimately, Kong says he believes that people must learn to sacrifice aspects of life — including family, friends or sports — and find singular focus rather than attempt “multiple things.”