Apr 222013
 

The theory goes that having only a job, providing a single income, is a risky strategy. It’s fine if you are a run-of-the-mill wage-slave with no desire the break free of the cubicle, but if you’re serious about breaking free, then there are many people who would have you know – multiple, passive income streams are the way to do it.

The theory is simple really and amounts to not keeping all your eggs in a single basket. It seems to make a lot of sense. But here’s the problem that I have been struggling with over the last couple of years.

I earn a decent salary in my corporate project management gig. Maybe not good enough to have it all, but certainly good enough to live a very good life by focusing on the universal 1st commandment of wealth creation: “Thou shalt spend less than you earn“.  The problem is, the corporate gig takes a fair amount of time and energy. No! I don’t generally work more than a 40-hr week and haven’t for many years now. But the day’s are still very full and at the end, how much energy and free time is left to focus on building other viable income streams?

I’ve ventured online. I’ve tried sourcing and re-selling product. [And, yes, I’ve managed to make a few Rands]. I’ve listened to friends who’ve spent many draining hours outside normal work hours trying MLM and side-line retail businesses. It’s not that it’s impossible, it’s just very, very hard it seems. At least that’s what I’ve been telling myself.

Sort of feeling a little like a failure but determined not to give up on what seems to have become my ‘holy grail’, I’ve taken a bit of a break in pursuit of this goal over the last couple of months; but never letting the concept slip far from my thoughts. Today, the first time in a while, I hammered “multiple income streams” into the searchbox again ……

Third site in – www.financialmentor.com – and I’m liking what I’m reading. Why? Because this guy seems to think very much like me. The article which caught my attention is titled “MULTIPLE STREAMS OF INCOME – TRUTH REVEALED” which has some startling and thought provoking ideas that I had never before considered.

the clear benefit of multiple streams of income is classic risk diversification. Build a portfolio of non-correlated streams of income and your risk is reduced making your wealth more stable and secure.

The key problem is implementation – not theory. Few people ever succeed in building just one stream of income sufficient to achieve financial freedom … let alone several.

Reality One: We live in a competitive and fast changing world. Business has become highly specialized and niched because knowledge is growing exponentially requiring specialized skills to employ it properly. Successfully competing in many widely varying fields is contradictory to the specialization and complexity required by our current business climate.

Reality Two: You have a limited amount of time on this planet to implement your business plans and strategies while also trying to balance the needs of family, health, spirituality, recreation, relationships, and much more. Do you really want to spend your limited time nursing more than one stream of income? Happiness has more to do with balancing life than making tons of money.

The bottom line is you could easily skip the whole multiple streams of income thing if your goal is time freedom and personal freedom. After all, what do you gain from all the complication created?

 There’s a lot more food for thought in this article and there’s not enough space or time to list it all here. It’s worth the read though, so follow the links over to “MULTIPLE STREAMS OF INCOME – TRUTH REVEALED” and see for yourself.

Bottom line is, this guy seems to have a holistic view of wealth creation and life, happiness and freedom that I identify with. There’s a lot here that seems to align with my own personal world view and approach, so I’ll be spending a bit time with my new Financial Mentor, all the while keeping an open mind and remembering, always remembering;

NO WOOLLY MASSES !

Oct 062008
 

If you’re anything like me you will have been thinking about how to buy yourself more time. More time for sailing, more time to experience life. The cliché goes “Time is Money” but I disagree. Time is worth way more than money. The traditional company job only pays you when you’re there, chained to the cubicle and working; one unit of money for one unit of time. The only real answer is passive income, having your assets generating an income for you, irrespective of where you find yourself in the world.
From an income generating perspective, there are several asset classes that could potentially buy one more [sailing 🙂 ] time:

Rental properties.
– Investments.
– Online business selling services or products
–  Royalties/license fees [eg Selling one’s photographs and collecting royalties each time they are used]
– Own a business and pay others to do the work.

There are more than likely a myriad of others that I haven’t yet thought of, each with their own pros and cons, but for now, I’ve been delving into the concept of an online business. This has all the promise of a classic passive income generation mechanism with plenty of hype and promise of becoming rich with minimal effort being thrown back from even the most half-hearted of Google searches. The more I’ve researched this, though, the more unethical money-making schemes I’ve stumbled across. Mostly, the scams I’ve encountered fall under the “Buy my ‘system’ and training material and I’ll set you up and teach you how to make $’s.”

Now please don’t take me the wrong way. I do believe that there are many ethical, honest individuals and companies out there using the web to market legitimate products and services. They add value, either through a physical product or a value-add service, and people are prepared to part with their hard-earned cash because of that value. But, and here’s the thing; when someone wants to sell me on the concept of “the internet is a business nirvana, you can make mega-bucks with minimal effort if you follow my system, it’ll cost you $49.95, subscribe here now before this one-time offer expires” and all they actually sell me is an internet marketing course with a couple of preconfigured websites the promise of riches, then I have to admit to being overcome by a healthy dose of skepticism. It’s like buying a book of the genre “101 business you can run from home”. I’m sorry, but BULLDUST!! If those 101 business or internet opportunities were so lucrative, then the dude would have been running the business himself and not sharing the concept with millions of other wanna-be entrepreneurs.

The bottom line is, it’s more lucrative to sell the concept of a successful online business “system” with some common internet marketing tips and techniques than it is to actually provide a useful value-add product or service.

So that, in turn has lead me to investigate some other concepts. Two of my current favorite personal development sites are Zenhabits and StevePavlina. Both of these authors take the approach of providing good quality content for free. They’re addressing the value-add service I mentioned earlier. While they obviously have financial needs in life and use their blogs to earn or supplement their income, the tone of these sites is refreshingly non-commercial. Both authors have, in posts on their blogs, named earnings figures that astound me – at the time of this article Zenhabits:$5000pm and StevePavlina:$1000pd – yes you read correct 1K US PER DAY. Now whether that is accurate or whether these authors have succumbed to the general human trait of overstating their income for the sake of appearing more successful than they really are is immaterial. The fact is that they are putting in the effort and they are definitely earning a livable wage from pursuing their passion.

So, I think:
– Nothing worthwhile in life is just easy and falls into one’s lap
– People who take the effort to live life consciously will only shell out their cash for actual [perceived] value.
– The only way that a business [any business whether conventional or online] provides that value is by selling superior quality services or products.
– These products or services are something tangible and useful.

My drive to continually expand my income streams and reduce my risk from a single corporate salary based income will continue. People out there in the ether of the world wide web are definitely making money, but many, in my opinion, are highly unethical. There is obviously a widespread need for knowledge, but when someone preys on the individual and that need, then that’s just not right. For me, the $49.95 get-rich-quick scam is not the way to go. It’s contrary to two of my core values – honesty and integrity. I’ll continue to focus on providing valuable content on topics that interest me [and obviously you too since you’ve read this post all the way through] and do it for the satisfaction it brings. The additional sailing time will follow one day in the future.