Along with fitness, another goal this year is to ‘diversify my income streams’ or some other such nonsence that financial advisors harp on about. Apparently millionaires and billionaires and other really wealthy -aires have something like seven sources of income. Which explains how the rich get richer. Apparently us plebs are living paycheck-to-paycheck and thats just not right.
Recently an article came out that claimed the two richest people in New Zealand added something like a billion dollars to their immense piles of money last year. It was spun in the typical way to generate clicks, so the actual headline had “more than 70% of the rest” in it. This stirred up everyone, as you could imagine. How come they can be so rich while I am struggling? And just like that, the media had suddenly drawn a line in the sand. It was us verses them. New Zealand common folk verse the ultra or even just adequately wealthy.
This topic has permeated almost every conversation since, with people calling them to be taxed more, and other things to “level the playing field”.
Just stop for a moment and think – these guys have been extremely smart with their money and made more money because of it. They probably have some very good investments, a few financial advisors, maybe more than one tax lawyer, but they have set themselves up for success and this has caused tall poppy syndrome to creep in. People would prefer everyone to be poor than have a few wealthy. Its such an odd concept. A country that limits the potential success of its citizens will very quickly suffer the consequence of being a welfare state.
So along with being smart about money, I am taking a leaf out the ultra-wealthy folk’s book. Rather than say they shouldn’t be allowed to earn that much, I am going to imitate them. My income streams will diversify. They’ll split up. Why? Because I simply do not want to be beholden to a job, a nine to five, for the next fifty years that I may lose to a computer at any time. Its way too stressful. And really, this type of stress is simply not needed. Plus, I want to travel before I need a hip replacement. I want to see the world, learn to surf, spend a month snowboarding, volunteer in a destitute African village – all without having to worry about where the next paycheck comes from.
Achieving this type of life takes planning. A lot of planning. And some very smart investments. And a few income streams so I am not reliant on any one. One guy that has inspired me has done this at the age of 24 – to the point where his normal job – his nine to five – makes up less than 20% of his yearly income. Suddenly the stress of work is gone and you can do what you want. Suddenly you can start that Llama Tours business that haunts your dreams.
Being financially free allows us to be better people. We suddenly get back the time that we lack due to full time work. Instead of working for money, we work for meaning. And I don’t know about you, but finding meaning in work is probably the biggest struggle in this day and age. Working with meaning, doing something that matters more than just adding to a companies bottom line, that’s worth working towards. That is what we should all be aiming for.
The old world is dying around us. These days, if you have a phone and an internet connection, you have all the tools to start a business, to become successful.
So what am I going to do about it?
Well, you have hopefully seen step one – the adverts on my site. (PS: Please whitelist my site and I promise that the adverts will not be annoying. If they are annoying and mining bitcoin on your PC, I will nuke them from orbit – I promise). I enjoy writing. I enjoy sharing my thoughts with the void that makes up the internet. I enjoy telling you about my music and about tech and about some random thoughts that pop into my head. So if I can earn some money from it, why not, right? I am doing it already anyways.
The next step is working on the podcast. Yet another thing I am already doing that may as well generate some income. I hope you think its worth a dollar a month. I think its worth more, but then its my blood, sweat and tears going into it, so of course I am going to think that.
Stocks, shares, bonds – all these things are next on the list. I am doing research and learning as much as I can now. I am just waiting for the Napier Port to list on the market and then I will jump on that quicker than you can say “Jiminy Cricket!” The idea is to invest half into growth shares and half into dividend paying shares. This should set me up nicely if I follow this pattern for the next 12 or 15 years… I hope. Who knows. Its the share market, so anything can happen really.
So far, that’s four income streams. I may try for another one or two in six months once I have figured these out. I hope to keep you up to date with this journey (that is if you want to be kept up to date of course).
I realize that being able to do all these things – blog, podcast, have disposable income to be able to invest – puts me in the richer 5% of this world. I know that I am blessed to have these opportunities. I will not apologize for it – that doesn’t help anyone. And I found those that feel guilt over their blessings never fully use them.
So thats my plan. Diversify my income streams. Earn money from what I am already doing. Use that money to invest in myself and my future, and reap the benefits from that to invest more. The cycle of generating wealth begins. As someone once said “when we’re working for meaning instead of for money, we do our best work and can truly make a difference in the world.” I believe everyone should be aspiring to make a difference. Will you join me in making the world a better place?