You miss 100% of the opportunities you don’t take. You’re rejected by 100% of the girls you don’t ask out. If you are afraid of failure, then you’ve already failed. Those who dare to fail greatly, often achieve the greatest success. Life is too short not to take risks. So take that opportunity. Ask out that girl. The only thing standing in your way is fear. And the only thing we should fear, is fear itself.
Over 2 years ago, I wrote a post describing how if you live modestly, graduate debt free, have dual incomes with a spouse, and invest in stocks and real estate, you could be a millionaire by age 36. That is completely doable. To me, money is something that takes a while to save up, but once you work enough for money, you can get money to work for you.
I was born into a relatively poor family. My dad was a farmer and my mom was a city girl. We luckily had the opportunity to move to Canada when I was young. But even then, my dad had to work very hard to make ends meet. It wasn’t easy for us. My parents had to work hard to get where they are. And when I see today’s international students, sent to America from China/Korea/Japan, loaded with cash and whose parents invest in real estate and buy expensive cars for them, I don’t think they realize how money is made. When you are born into wealth, you don’t know how to make money. When you start from the bottom and work your way up, then you know how to earn money.
1) Study a major and find a job that is in high demand. According to this article, the best jobs right now are Nursing and Software Development. Therefore, you should study Computer Science or Medical Science, because those fields are in high demand and have high salaries. This is the first step. Find a good occupation. Making enough initial capital requires working for several years to save up money.
2) Invest your money. Invest your money in a basket of risky and non risky assets. Ideally, invest 75% into stocks (small cap and mid cap) and 25% into government bonds. Bonds are guaranteed returns, so they are always safe. Stocks will provide high return but require more risk. Each paycheck, after the necessary budgets are accounted for, should go into investing. This is how your money will make more money. As you get older, shift more into bonds / T-bills, so it becomes safer.
3) Buy real estate. Now is a great time to buy real estate. Houses are very cheap right now, because of all the foreclosures and the recession. Investing in real estate means you can repair the house and furnish it, then rent it out, and hire someone to manage it for you. You can buy many properties this way, and ones in favorable locations such as Florida, Hawaii or SoCal will have high demand. Trouble is, real estate requires a lot of initial capital to work with (several hundred thousand), but property has historically been the best way to accrue wealth.
4) Start your own company. Entrepreneurship is risky, but rewarding, especially for software engineers and web developers. It’s very easy to start a web business, develop a web or mobile application, develop a facebook, xbox or iphone game, and start making money off it. Find a niche for your product that caters to people. Market it. Develop it. Expand it. There is great consumer demand right now for mobile applications, mobile games, and for emerging markets like India and China. These can all be exploited (for example taking an idea abroad). The opportunity is out there, but it requires a lot of time, effort, money and risk to do this.
5) Use your talent to become famous. This is the most risky method. But there are those lucky few who have the God given talent and/or good fortune to become discovered. Musicians, Composers, Comedians, Actors, Writers, Directors, Athletes all fall into this category of making money. Lately it has become easier because of Youtube to become discovered, but still very rare. However, if you have a unique talent such as singing or writing songs, acting, or playing football, this method will easily lead into the millions of dollars. Usually only charismatic people can make money this way, and it requires a lot of skill and luck.
And that’s 5 ways to make money! A person could conceivably, have all 5 ways at the same time. You could be a superstar who is working a day job on the side, investing in real estate and stocks, AND having your own company! Read Think and Grow Rich for more details on growing wealth. The most important thing, I think, is that people think money is the solution to all of life’s problems. Money cannot mend a broken friendship. Money cannot bring back a deceased family member. Money cannot get you the girl of your dreams (unless that girl is materialistic). Money cannot make you more charismatic. Money cannot make you taller, younger or more handsome. Money cannot make you undo your past mistakes. Money cannot cure cancer or other such diseases. Money is merely a means of surviving, and it’s not as difficult to earn it as people think. And most of all, Money cannot buy love or happiness.