Welcome, I’m Jason Vitug!

Jason Vitug Yoga Pose


  • Bestselling and New York Times-reviewed author
  • Award-winning entrepreneur
  • Founder of phroogal.com & The Smile Lifestyle
  • Traveled 40+ countries
  • TEDx speaker
  • Certified breathwork & yoga teacher
  • Storyteller and aspiring filmmaker

Stop working hard just to buy things to comfort you; instead, work harder to create a life that needs less comforting.

How I can help you

Knowing who I am, what I stand for, and what I do ensures success when we work together.

I’m a financial wellness storyteller helping people transform their lives towards financial knowledge to reach financial freedom.

I’ve given 150+ talks, written two bestselling financial wellness books, driven 28,000+ miles, and broke the social taboo about money. I create. I read a lot, listen to podcasts, learn on YouTube, and binge-watch sci-fi shows, specifically Star Trek. I meditate, practice yoga, and hike.

I make a living through my writing, speaking, and businesses. I often work with corporate groups, non-profits, credit unions, fintechs, and colleges/universities. I partner on special projects. I create in-the-box, outside-the-box, forget the box-even- exists financial wellness programs.

I’m grateful that I get to pick the work I do, the people I do it with, and when I do it. This hasn’t been an easy journey, but I’ve learned a thing or two, and it’s my mission to share them with you.

What you’ll learn from my talks and conversations

  • How to better yourself and go beyond your perceived limits
  • How to love yourself and let go of financial shame and guilt
  • How to find your calling and purpose in life
  • How to travel the world and gain experiences
  • How to reach financial independence and live financially free
  • How to stop stressing about money
  • How to forge your own path


Who I am

After years in the rat race, I made the unthinkable decision and got off the traditional path. I didn’t want to wake up one day realizing I chose the convenience of “comfort” of the known over the challenges of the unknown. It’s in this space I’ve discovered my capabilities, pushed my boundaries, and grown my mindset. It has transformed me and empowered me to create my life… on my terms.

Creative endeavors

  • Author of You Only Live Once, a bestselling New York Times-reviewed book
  • Author of Happy Money Happy Life, an instant bestseller
  • Bylines for US News, Business Insider, Medium, and more
  • Associate Producer for documentaries (my IMDB profile)
  • Produced award-winning shorts

Life achievements

  • Took a gap year in the middle of my career
  • Backpacked through 20 countries in 12 months
  • Visit 40+ countries as of 2023
  • 4x cross-country US road trip (one with my parents)
  • 3 years of non-stop daily meditation practice
  • A happy caregiver to my parents and a loving dog-dad

Entrepreneurial highlights

  • Founder of phroogal.com with over 1 million visits
  • Founder of The Smile Lifestyle (thesmilemoney.com and thesmileuniversity.com)
  • Creator of the Road to Financial Wellness project
  • Entrepreneur of the Year awarded by the Urban League of Union County Young Professionals
  • 2x Winner of Best Collaborative Project, Plutus Foundation
  • Successfully crowdfunded $78,501 in 30-days through Indiegogo

Professional education and certifications

  • Bachelor’s in Finance, Rutgers University
  • Master of Business Administration, Norwich University
  • Project Management Certificate, Villanova University
  • Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Certificate, University of South Florida
  • Psychology of Financial Planning Certification
  • Certified Breathwork Specialist
  • Certified Yoga Teacher

Want my professional history? Connect with me on LinkedIn.

My other interests and projects

The Smile University, the academy covering the 8 wellness dimensions, helps you with lessons and community.

Smile Money focuses on your financial well-being with thoughtful articles and how-tos.

Phroogal is the financial marketplace to find the best products and services.