Chapter 23. Shavit Village
More and more people would come for personal counseling with me. I noticed an interesting pattern - whole families began to come to us - with wives, husbands, children, often with their friends. They asked to stay in our house and not for a night or two, but for five days or more.
It turned out that people came not only for business advice, but also to see up close how we lived, how we raise our children, what we ate, how we passed the time, what our family relationships were. It turned out that people were very interested in our lives. Sometimes, it was more interesting to them even than to get the business advice, for which they came.
A thought flashed through me: "Maybe I should build a small compound with nice houses, so my students can come with their families?"
I immediately rejected the idea. It was too big and too heavy for me.
To implement the project would need a large area, a lot of money for construction, huge investments in organizational issues, solving food problems, accommodation, etc. Apart from the money there was a huge teamwork needed there.
No, I could not set up such a project alone ...
So maybe I would organize a team and with them implement the idea? ..
In the summer of 2015 I met with the most advanced club members and introduced them to my idea - to organize together and establish our own village, in an ecologically clean place, where we can gather with our families, build houses, and raise children.
In our village, we can build a hotel, invite people who want to learn from us how to improve their business, family relationships, teach children important skills and just rest and relax.
The club members really liked the idea, everyone was excited about it, but everyone offered to do it their own way. Not everyone could afford to invest in land acquisition, construction, not everyone fully understood what and how they would get and so on.
This often happens - once the word "together" appears in the business, that's where it all ends. A few months later the idea faded.
Two and a half years passed. The idea of building a private village continued to resonate in my heart, but was still very far from reality.
It would have remained a dream, if not for one "accidental" incident ...
Not far from our house there was an oak forest. A real forest.
The state allocated part of the forest for sale. I had a chance to purchase it.
I do not want to tell how I got this information, how I got to know the right people, how I ran to different authorities for seven months, how I persuaded and negotiated with them, how much and to whom I paid. It all does not matter.
The important thing is that after seven months I was able to buy 20,000 square feet of forest.
20,000 sqm of private oak forest! It does not look realistic! It only happens in legends! How could this happen in my life?!
Only now do I understand the depth of the words: "Even the impossible will become possible, when you really want to".
Beginning to build Kfar Shavit. Spring 2018
Magnificent! There was space for building the community! Forward!
Marginal things remained - finding water in the forest, bringing gas and electricity, creating a private sewer system, building houses, solving organic food problems, paving a road...
Wow!... It's easier to set up ten businesses than to build one community :)
I had no experience in building a community, I had no idea what will come out of this whole story, but let's start and then we'll see!
The first idea that came to my mind was to divide the whole forest into plots and give a plot as a gift to all the members of the Golden Club, so that they could come, build houses and spend their time here.
For a whole week I cooked this idea, but decided to give it up, because I imagined how it would end: "You gave him a better plot" ... "but I want another plot" ... "why is my plot at the end" ... "but now I can not build ... "why is he building near my territory" ... etc.
Unfortunately, this is the nature of people and also my students are not angels.
Then I decided to divide the forest into plots and sell them to the members of the Golden Club and also to all those who want to live with us.
But very quickly I gave up on that idea as well.
The reason? People will start talking that Eli Shavit decided to make a buck on his students and sell them a thick forest in Georgia.
Unfortunately, I went through that too. No matter what you do for the people, they will still be dissatisfied with something. What do I need dissatisfied people in my village for?
In the end, after much deliberation, I decided to do everything myself and by my own means.
True, I did something I would not recommend to anyone else - I invested all my savings in this project and even a little more: I had to get into some small debts.
So now I had no way back. Only forward!
I called my village "Shavit Village".
Key 70 for Success
Remember the excerpt from the movie Avatar, when he needed to catch Icarn? He asks, "How will I know it is him?". And they answered him: "He will want to kill you."
That's how it was with Shavit Village. Small projects no longer interested me. I decided to build my new world. Either I would be able to "fly" on him, like on Icarn, or he would want to kill me :) There was no middle ground.
I started my journey from scratch and maybe I would end up with zero. But I really liked what I was doing! Of course it's important - the amount of digits in the bank account, but more important is what kind of person you become on the way to the goal.
I do not know what else I would like to do in life. I'm only 41 and a lot can change, but what I'm doing now is empowering me and I'm not going to stop.
I'm not going to make millions in Shavit Village, but I do intend to change the lives of hundreds and thousands of people for future generations.
I am building a place where all my students, their families and their friends can come to acquire new knowledge, to rest, to know a different reality.
Kfar Shavit. Summer 2018.
It will be possible to live in Shavit Village for a day or even a month. To live, to rest, to eat clean food, to learn business, to improve family relationships, to teach the children new habits - not in theory, but in practice.
In addition to all the money I invested in buying a forest and building the village, I also invested all of my energy in it. As of today, Shavit Village occupies almost all of my time and all my thoughts.
Key 71 to Success
Unnecessary Things - Unnecessary Worries.
I removed from my life all the unnecessary things. Unnecessary clothes, unnecessary objects, vehicles, unnecessary houses and unnecessary people.
I left only the most important. My business, the thing that I love.
What have I been able to do in the Shavit Village to this day?
The most important thing, which it is impossible to live without is water.
The only way to get water in this forest was to build your own private well.
I invited a group of geologists to find water sources. A week later the results appeared - the geologists determined that at a depth of 80 to 140 meters, in theory, there should be water. But there was no guarantee that water would be found there, and if so - in what quantity.
There was no way to check if there was really water or not. There was no way to check how much water there was. To check - you need to dig a well. But it's an expensive process ..
I brought eight different drills and showed everyone the location and conclusions of geologists, but no one agreed to drill with a guarantee of results.
Everyone said: "We will drill a well. Whether there is water there or not - that is not our problem. You will have to pay anyway."
The drilling process is long, noisy and very expensive. If there will be a good result or not - we could only find out at the end of the drilling. At the initial stage it was impossible to know anything.
I took a risk and said "Let's start."
What else could I do? Could I start construction without water?
A month and a half later a well was drilled. On day 47 of the drilling we reached a depth of 112 meters. Theoretically, if there was water in the soil, then the depth should be sufficient.
The workers took out the drill, washed the well for two days and...
The water was flowing!
Thank God, now we had water - real, pure, water collected from the forest mountains, the water that nature itself gives!
We did a lab test and it turned out that we had completely clean water, which you could drink, with which you could prepare food, with which you can take a shower.
The process of drilling the well. Terribly noisy and expensive :)
After we had water I used all of my connections to bring gas and electricity to Shavit Village and I created a private sewer system.
It was time to move on to the next phase.
I initially decided to build one cottage and a Russian bathhouse - a Banya. I wanted to live here for a few months myself, feel, see what it is like to live in the forest and then decide what, where and how much to build.
The construction process, in principle, was conducted calmly, except for one "but" - I love nature. But not as it is customary to love him. I love nature too much - trees, shrubs, flowers and even grass - everything!
When I brought the construction team, I immediately told them I did not want to see tractors and machines in the woods. I do not want the tractor to spoil the foliage carpet.
They asked: "How do we dig foundations for the cottage and bathhouse, how do we bring tools?!"
I said: "With your hands. No tractors, no machines, you will bring all the tools with your hands and dig all the foundations with a shovel. More than that, if I see someone with a cigarette in the woods - everyone goes home together."
It was a shock to them. Digging foundations by hand?! Carrying heavy tools without a car ?! No smoking?! Terrible!
But those were my terms. I paid dearly for them.
A tractor can easily dig the foundations of the house in one day. But the workers dug by hand. 5 people. For 22 days. It turned out to be much more expensive for me than bringing a tractor.
During the entire construction period no machine entered the forest. We did not smoke a single cigarette. In the immediate vicinity they talked about me being abnormal. But I have long been accustomed to various rumors about me :) The main thing is that the forest was not damaged during construction.
After 4 months the first cottage was ready.
During the construction of the cottage and bathhouse, no tree was cut down and in a number of places I "destroyed" the roof of the house, in such a way that there would be no need to cut down the trees. When the trees grow - the roof can be cut again.
Along with the cottage I built a Russian bathhouse - a Banya.
Georgia has no experts in building a bathhouse of this level. To build it, I brought professionals from Ukraine, with all their tools.
I also ordered a pine wood cabin from Ukraine. It is much better and fragrant than a spruce tree hut. When you enter a house built of a pine wood, you smell the smell of pine resin. This is amazing.
The bathhouse came out very comfortable and cozy.
The next important step in Shavit Village - a bakery.
Bread and pastries are an integral part of our daily diet.
I do not want to eat bread from a store, which is baked from poisoned flour.
I wanted us to have our own flour. Clean flour.
Of course, you can buy wheat and grind it at home, but those who sell wheat need to get a large crop to earn more. For this, they grow wheat with chemical fertilizers and rat poison. This is the only way to get 10 tons of crop from 10,000 square feet of land.
But I did not want to feed myself, my children and my guests with poisoned wheat. Therefore, not far from Shavit Village I purchased a large field where I grew our own private wheat.
From our field we get only one ton of crop, instead of 10 tons, because we do not poison the soil with rat poison and chemical fertilizers.
I built a bakery. We ourselves grind the wheat just before baking the bread. The aroma of fresh wheat - amazing. Instead of yeast, we use our private leaven. Instead of sugar - pure honey.
It is bread that can be eaten without fear for your health.
Our bread. From our wheat. From our oven.
In the garden we planted our own apples, pears, peaches, nuts, pomegranates, figs, grapes, cherries, berries and more.
What grows in your private garden, you can not buy with any money. Even in the best stores. Because there everything grows for the money. But in your garden you grow fruit for your family.
The fruits of our garden.
Here's what I've provided so far. I agree, it's still a drop in the ocean. A lot of work awaits me. I hope I can cope.
In the coming years I plan to build dozens of comfortable and modern cottages, a restaurant, a spa, a children's school, a farm, a classroom for lectures and many other small miracles like Shavit Village.
Yes, it may take years, but I'm in no hurry.
Key 72 to Success
If you did something fast, but without quality, everyone will forget that you did it fast, but will remember that it was done without quality.
If you did something slowly, but with quality, everyone will soon forget that you did it slowly, but will remember that it was done with quality.
Already next year I am going to build a separate house for lectures and I will start holding workshops on topics that interest you, my students - business, children, family, personal development, etc.
We have accumulated immense practical experience in many subjects and I think there are quite a few people who need this knowledge. For them, it will be a huge savings in energy and money.
The rainbow of roses and wisteria in Shavit Village.
Honestly, I still do not believe I bought a forest and built a private settlement there...
If 15 years ago when I was sitting in a deep, deep pit, someone would say to me: "Eli, you will have your own private forest and you will build a village in it in your name, with your own money, and people from all over the world will come to you to study business and life"
- I would laugh bitterly...
I did not even have money for milk for my child. I did not imagine how I would survive tomorrow. What village are you talking about?!
But now that's the reality.
Kfar Shavit. Fall 2018.