Latest posts by FIRECracker (see all)
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- Mission Impossible: Retiring Early and Travelling the World…with Kids? - October 17, 2016
Steve Jobs is the only person, in my opinion, with the BEST and WORST quote.
“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of other’s opinions drown out your own inner voice.”
This is absolutely true. I tried living someone else’s life and was trapped by dogma when I tried to buy an overpriced house and worked a stressful, unstable job. None of it worked out. Once I stopped listening to the Boomers, I was able to live the life I wanted.
“The only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it.”
As much as I love Steve jobs, this has got to be his worst advice ever. And this is coming from me— someone who accomplished her dreams of becoming a published author. Even now after YEARS of writing, re-writing, rejection, and finally getting published, our writing income is still not enough to live on. If I hadn’t put in the years of effort to develop coding skills to get the high paying job, and saving and investing to build a 7-figure portfolio, I’d be SCREWED!
And this was true for Steve Jobs too. He was sleeping on dorm room floors and relying on free meals before he gained the skills to become a billionaire.
And this is why I believe you won’t make money until you become USEFUL. And most of the time, that doesn’t include doing what you love. If you just HAPPENED to love computers, like Wanderer does, than you’re all set. But if you’re like me, and love writing, you’re out of luck. There are A LOT more coding jobs than writing jobs, and fewer coders than writers. That’s just how it is. You can whine about it but it won’t change anything, and whining is a waste of time.
This is why, in order to make more money, you need a solid plan, and the girl-balls (or regular balls) to follow through.
In order to make more money, you need to do one of 2 things:
- Develop a useful skill that other people don’t have
- Do something that other people aren’t willing to do
DO NOT just blindly follow your passion and expect to make money. Hard work comes first; fun stuff comes later. If you want a fun job, you will NOT get paid well for it (or at all). Why? Because there are thousands of other people clamouring to get that job.
So, instead of holding your hand and telling you how special you are, how you can beat the odds, and how you are going to succeed by doing something you’re passionate about, I’m going to give it to you straight.
To make more money, you are just going to have to bust your ass and tough it out. And no, it’s not going to be fun, it’s not going to be easy. But it IS going to make you a better person. Why? Because just doing easy things and having things handed to you, does NOT make you a badass.
So how will you turn into a badass and make more money as a result?
Develop a useful skill.
Without having to go to school for 10 years to become a highly paid doctor, lawyer, or dentist, you can develop a skill, right now, and get paid for it.
What that skill is, depends on each person’s existing skill set and personality but here are some real life examples to inspire you:
1) Become an “Sidetrepreneur”:
We met Luca, a bike mechanic, in Amsterdam. Luca had spent years bouncing around Europe, working shitty jobs as a hostel receptionist, making minimum wage. He didn’t have a college degree (after going to business school for 1 week, he decided it wasn’t for him, and dropped out), which limited his options but he didn’t let that stop him.
While he worked in his shitty job, he also fixed bikes for his friends on the side. At first he did it for free (Luca comes from a family of mechanics and loves tinkering with cars), but then word started to spread, eventually it grew into a business making $70,000 Euros (or 100K CAD) per year. But Luca didn’t quit his job right away. He waited two years, making sure the business made enough to pay his rent, before he quit his hostel job. Now, Luca works 12 hour days, but because he chooses to. He loves being an entrepreneur, and by providing value to his clients, he’s getting paid well and energized to keep going.
2) Get a Professional Certification:
My friend, Amanda, after getting let go from job making $60K/year, studied for 4 months and took the PMP (Project Management Professional) exam, which is a designation recognized all over the world. Now she earns 100K/year, working as a contractor for one of the major banks.
3) Learn to Code:
My friend, Ken, who never got a university degree, but learned how to code in Java, became an authority in the community, and now works remotely for a Silicon Valley startup, making $150K/year.
4) Get Multiple Jobs:
Sean Cooper, the biggest hustler in Toronto, worked 3 jobs to make $92K per year (financial analyst @50K/year, freelance writer@ 36K/year, grocery story clerk @ $6,276/year) to pay off his $400K mortgage by 31.
Now THAT is some serious hustle. I’m not saying everyone has to be as INSANELY hard working as Sean Cooper (I definitely am not), but damn what an inspiration!
5) Develop Your Marketing Skills:
Lauren Holliday, went from a waitress making minimum wage to a marketing director making 75K/year in just 6 months! How did she do it? By learning how to create a WordPress site for her Dad’s dry cleaning business, acquiring clients, and pitching herself as a “FullStack Marketer” to a firm in Boston. AWESOME!
With so many tech startups coming online everyday, freelancing opportunities has exploded! From virtual assistants, to graphic designers, to project managers, you have tons of options to help out entrepreneurs and get paid. Here are 2 freelancing sites to get you started:
The competition may seem a bit intimidating at first, but don’t panic. More than half are non-native English speakers and use “canned” proposals. You’ll have a leg up on them by reading this freelancer’s advice on how he made 24K, developing WordPress sites.
So whether you are good at fixing things, writing, or coding, if you find a niche where people need that skill (ie contractors/renovators in Toronto, bike mechanics in Amsterdam, software developers, online content creators in…anywhere in the world), you can make money. And that’s one of the advantages of the world we live in. Job security may have disappeared, but there are now more ways than ever to make money online.
Do something others aren’t willing to do
If you can’t invest the time to develop new skills, use your existing skills and assets to make money.
Here are 2 bloggers who’ve done it successfully:
And if AirBNB and Uber isn’t your thing, if you have a nurturing personality, you still have lots of options . Now that the aging population is growing and their kids are working longer hours, there’s a huge demand for child/elderly care:
9) Child Care:
If you’re a stay at home mom and are working hard to raise your children, why not use those talents to help other kids as well by starting your own home daycare?
10) Elderly Care:
Busy family members will pay for visitors to keep their parents company–especially those who have dementia, or Alzheimer’s. (My friend’s parents paid someone $15/hour to visit their Dad for 3 hours/day) Not only are you making money on the side, you are helping to improve an elderly person’s day. Win-freaking-Win.
Working a side hustle also has the effect of lowering your costs. Why? Because instead of going out and spending all your hard earned money on “quick dopamine” fixes like clothing, cars, and spas, you’ll be focusing on being developing new skills and providing value. And that’s MUCH better.
For other readers, if you’re already stuck in a low paying job you hate, struggling to pay the bills, and have no time to think about anything else, trying to make more money will be like climbing Mr.Everest in a blizzard with rollerblades on. I’m not going to lie. It’s NOT going to be easy, and it will take time. But it is absolutely possible. Especially since the Internet has opened up a world of possibilities to make money (ie, sell stuff on amazon, drive for Uber, rent out your place on AirBnB, do freelance writing or coding)
And if you’re young and trying to decide what to major in, lucky you! Time is on your side. So please, for the love of God, do your research and get a degree that gives you a good return on investment! Don’t get a fun degree just because your friends are doing it. Find something that pays you well instead, build an arsenal of FU money for 5-10 years, then retire and do whatever your little heart desires. Trust me. It’s WORTH it.
I got to where I am today, NOT by following my passion, but by strategically “settling” for job that I was not remotely passionate about. I needed to first become useful and get paid before I could follow my passion. And I did that by toughing it out in tech for 9 years, learning how to save and invest, and then retiring at 31. And now I can travel the world and do what I love for the rest of my life.
Do I regret it? Not for a second.
That’s why I urge you NOT to follow Steve Job’s worst piece of advice.
Don’t follow your passion. Don’t do what you love. Instead, develop a rare and useful skill or do something others are not willing to do. Get paid, learn how to save and invest, build an arsenal of FU money, and then follow your passion. It’s mathematically proven to work. And you don’t need any natural-born talent, luck, or rich relatives either. All you need is your badass self, a well thought-out plan, and lots and lots of girl-balls.
So tell me, what’s your plan to make more money?
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