So about money. One thing has been said about money that has always stuck with me is: “Money is only emotional if you don’t have enough of it,” and this is so true. Most of us have had a struggle or two at some point in our lives in this area. For me, making money has never really been the problem, it’s the “keeping it part that has always hoodwinked me.
I have adopted a new saying over the years, and it goes like this. “In business, when you go up against a person with education and experience they will leave with your money and all you will be left with the experience and boy is it true. This happened to me in 2008, I had a good amount of money in real estate, stocks, and annuities. I was making a killing in the mortgage business, and I felt invincible. I went from owning a clothing company to running a brokerage firm pulling down 15-20K a month with my eyes closed by the age of 21 years old. For a 21-year-old, that’s more money than most know what to do with. Off my brothers advice I started investing but didn’t pay attention. What I mean by that is I was unwilling to learn about investing. I trusted a financial advisor to do good things with my money, and I followed the methods of millionaires when it came to real estate investing. End result, when the market turned I lost everything and went in to debt. About $160,000 of debt. At age 23, I closed the brokerage, took my lickings and left that industry.
I had no income coming in, and couldn’t get unemployment because I have always owned my own business or been 1099’d and was staring at a pile of debt that no 23-year-old should ever have to deal with, although I do believe 20 something’s are becoming more accustom to swallowing that reality these days which makes me very sad that we ever got to a place in this country where being 22 and 80K in debt was ever ok. Either way, I was in trouble and needed to do something. I chose joining a network marketing company (aka a pyramid) and everyone thought I was crazy. I was ok with that because I have never chosen a traditional career, job or project in my entire personal and professional life.
After struggling to wrap my head around the new industry, I got successful quickly and was back on my feet paying off that mound of debt which by the way I never claimed a bankruptcy on. I’m not a deadbeat, I ran up the debts by not managing my risk properly, therefore, I am responsible for fixing it.
Speaking of Risks, here is a quick little history of my untraditional professional life.
18-21 : Started a clothing company in LA and sold clothes internationally, traveled, made money and had fun. Most thought it was a bad idea/investment including my partner I bought out in the first year. End result, I had a crash-course in running your own business, saw the world and gained some priceless real life entrepreneurial experience while turning a profit and doing something I loved and believed in.
20-23 : Started working as a Jr Loan officer at a small brokerage in Los Angeles and made my first 6-Figure income at the age of 20. Later went on to opening my shop and tripled my income before 22. At the 21 I bought my first house,bought my first car cash (2003 BMW 330ci), and took a 3 month vacation to Europe where I studied Spanish in Spain. I also decided to go back to school to complete my degree as I had dropped out years earlier to pursue the clothing company
23-28 : When the financial industry went down I joined some Multi-Level Marketing companies. I have been in a total of 3 thus far. Mona-Vie (23-24) where personally recruited 30 people and hit a 6 figure rank in 10 months, that’s the fastest I have ever done this in any business. 24-28 With RevvNRG as a founding distributor where I built an organization of 7,000 people in 5 countries while traveling around the world enjoying the freedom that I had from this line of work. Then when RevvNRG fell apart, I joined ARIIX where I currently am now.
Presently: Although I am still a part of ARIIX, I started my company Roommatefax.com 6 months back. I did this for a couple of reasons. 1. I was sick of not being able to heavily influence the end result of what the company I work with produces. 2. I missed being an entrepreneur and making something appear out of nothing that people love. 3. Have you seen the job market lately?
After having lost my residual income from RevvNRG, I had been looking for some additional work to bring in more income to subsidize the loss of income and boy, I thank God for the fact that I have a background in sales because I attended a couple job fairs and all I saw was a million “fresh-out-of-college” kids desperately looking for jobs competing against people who have 30+ years experience on them with a mile long resume. Bottom line, that shit’s burnt, and all the future young americans have to look forward to is service jobs unless they become willing to work harder, eat some shit, and pay some dues.
I wrote a blog post about paying dues and eating shit sandwiches, if you didn’t read, go check it out, it’s a good one http://stevenewolf.com/eating-a-shit-sandwich/. Either way, at this time in my life I had to take some of my own advice. So I sacked it up, got humble and took a sales job that seemed legit and had a great training system. I would rather be doing something that generates income while looking for better opportunities rather than sitting around in my house watching movies, getting fat and feeling sorry for myself. Jobs, are only temporary and they serve a purpose, therefore I am grateful for this short term sales job I landed. From a salesmen’s perspective there are a couple of things I know to look for in a sales jobs. Here is the quick list.
I have always prided myself on being a smart and wise entrepreneur, but even the best of the best can fall from grace at times. I think most people elect taking jobs where you work for a big company and you have a dedicated salary because it removes the fear of not having something you can count on. This is a prison to guys like me. Keep your 50k a year and give me the opportunity to make what ever I want to based on how hard I am willing to work and how resourceful I can be. That’s the American Dream I was brought up on. My Mom and dad owned their own practices, my grandpa owned his own company and my brother and his wife is a real estate agents (1099 all commission based). I come from a family of entrepreneurs, and trust me when I say that none of us are cut out for a corporate environment, we would fail at it, die of boredom, or just quit and go start our own deal because at the end of the day, when we look in the mirror, we are the masters of our own destiny and the only way to true wealth is from starting your own company or being a part of some line of work that allows you to at least own your time. You know “time, your most valuable asset. There are a couple of exceptions, but I don’t know anyone that has been in a corporate job that has made enough to retire by the age of 40.
The trick I learned is a little something called Mini-Retirements from my main man Tim Ferris author of the book “The One-Hour Work Week.” This is the concept explaining the idea of choosing a business or line of work that affords us the ability to do things like month-long travel adventures, and the ability to take as much time off as possible before your real retirement age of 65 when you are too old to do fun things like you would have done in your 20’s and 30’s. This business of working till you’re 65, getting a gold watch and a pension is for the birds. To me, your best years are pretty much over by 65 and even if we have some incredible medical breakthroughs that allow us to live longer, I’m not going to get caught up in the mouse-on-the-ferris-wheel mentality of working for no more of a reason then to survive. F^&%* all that noise.
To be continued on part 2 of 2 – (Sign up for my blog and get notified when I post) If you like this blog, please re-post and send your friends here!!! Also If you haven’t read or heard about my book “The Young Entrepreneurs Guide to Life” go to the “books” section on my site and pick up a copy or a download the audio book.
And Finally, I’ll leave you with this. Jay-Z and Warren Buffet with Steve Forbes. Watch the interview and see the contrast. It doesn’t matter where you come from or your circumstances. If you want it bad enough the world will provide.