3 Feasible Ways to Escape a Soul-Crushing Job, Reclaim Free Time or Retire Early

by | BiggerPockets.com

“How much money do you make per year?”

This is the typical question that determines your status and esteem in the working world. The most successful doctors, lawyers, CEOs, quarterbacks, actors, hedge fund managers, and real estate investors are apparently the ones that bring in the highest incomes each year, right?

I’m here on BiggerPockets.com because, like you, I enjoy filling my pockets and bank accounts with as much money as possible. Earning a lot of money is not a bad thing to me. But I also think financial success needs to be defined a little bit differently than just dollars earned.

Instead of asking how much do you earn, what about asking how efficiently do you earn?  

The first formula is simply this:

Income = Dollars Per Year

The second, more important formula, is this:

Income Efficiency = Dollars Per Year / Time Invested

Time is the key variable here. We are more efficient when we make more dollars and use less of our time.  

Without measuring for time, someone who earns $500,000 per year while working 70 soul-crushing hours per week at an unfulfilling job is more successful than someone who earns $50,000 per year working 20 hours per week and having a fun and completely flexible schedule.

Related: If You Ever Hope to Reach Financial Freedom, Master This Concept

Is it possible that the $50,000 per year person has more freedom, autonomy, and happiness—the very things most people are earning money for in the first place?  

If you’re curious (or skeptical), keep reading.

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What Do You Need In Order to Live?

“Dost thou love life? Then do not squander time, for that is the stuff life is made of.”

Benjamin Franklin

The reason I am writing about this topic is because I see a lot of information about increasing our income, but I see very little about how to use that income to live a better life.

Income is needed for survival, for growth, and for some minimal security, but time is needed to actually live.  

What is living for you? For me it includes things like:

  • Long, slow trips
  • Slow time to think, read, and write
  • Slow time playing with and teaching my kids
  • Time and flexibility to do work I love (even if it makes less money)
  • Time and flexibility to do work how I want, at the pace I want
  • The ability to start a nonprofit for an important local cause
  • Time to exercise regularly
  • Time to dust off old hobbies
  • Time to have unhurried, interesting, deep conversations

All of these activities require time. Some of them also require money. Both time and money are important, but the trick is to keep them in proper perspective to one another.

In the rest of this article, I hope to challenge your thinking about defining success (or lack thereof) purely by the amount of income your bring in this year. I also intend to provide some practical tips about how to increase the efficiency of your income so that you can live more fully, whatever that means for you.


A Time For Inefficiency, A Time For Efficiency

Becoming the most efficient income earner is not always realistic. Especially early on, it’s perfectly natural to be inefficient.

When you are learning a new career, like real estate investing for example, you will take much longer to do everything. Thirteen years ago when I first started evaluating properties that I wanted to purchase, I would spend hours figuring out whether each property was a good deal or not.

Today I can take 15 minutes to make the same evaluation, and I do a better job.  

So greater efficiency is accomplished in part by increasing your knowledge and skills.

Inefficiency might also be perfectly reasonable if you need to stash away a lot of cash. Our bills and our needs for cash don’t always present themselves at the ideal time. So, if you need to save for investing, pay off debt, or get yourself more stable financially, you may need to choose a job that pays more money, even if it requires more personal time and hassle.

But here’s the big point:

The inefficiency period should last a finite period of time.

  • At some point you should be earning more money with the same or less time invested.
  • At some point those personal debts should be paid off.
  • At some point those down payments should be saved up.
  • At some point those investments should be made.
  • At some point you shouldn’t have to keep selling out by working a schedule you hate in order to earn more and more money.

To me selling out is giving up my personal freedom and autonomy for something that is not a good fit. I can argue for selling out for a few years, maybe even a decade, but there must be an end game!

If you find that your “at some point” keeps getting pushed back for years and decades, the problem is not with earning more money. The problem is the choices you make with the money you do earn.

Related: Big, Fast-Growing Businesses Are NOT the Ticket to True Financial Freedom: Here’s Why

One of the biggest culprits is the insidious and silent money problem called lifestyle creep. It’s usually the reason high income earners get stuck at a job they initially loved and later hate (or at least love a lot less). Despite popular mythology to the contrary, it IS possible to earn a lot of money, work for a limited period of time, save the bulk of it, invest it wisely, and then do whatever you want for the rest of your life.

But you have to choose to value income efficiency more than absolute income in order to break the addiction to a high-paying job or career. This personal choice is the key first step.

3 Paths to More Income Efficiency

Once you decide to work for a finite time and stop selling out for more dollars, there are multiple income-efficient paths to choose from. Ideally, you would work on all of these paths at once, but if you’re just getting started, focus your time and energy on the low-hanging fruit where you can get the most improvement quickly.

The paths I’ll share with you in more detail are:

  1. Maximize your professional value (i.e. turn pro)
  2. Start a business
  3. Maximize savings and investments

Path #1: Maximize Your Professional Value

“No industry is immune and no occupation is safe. All of us need to begin to think in terms of our own inner strengths, our resilience and resourcefulness, our capacity to adapt and to rely upon ourselves and our families.”

Steven Pressfield, Turning Pro

Whatever your career, your income efficiency will rise when you turn pro. You finally turn pro when you commit to becoming the best you can, day in and day out. The opposite of turning pro is dabbling, hacking, or just playing around at your chosen career.

As Steven Pressfield says in the quote from his awesome little book Turning Pro, no industry is immune and no occupation is safe. If you are not growing today and getting better, you are moving backwards professionally.

The people who make the most money in the least amount of time provide extremely valuable services. Reaching this state of extreme value typically requires years of education, training, and practice. A good example is a specialty surgeon who can charge thousands of dollars for a procedure that may take less than an hour or two.  


If it takes a brain surgeon 12 years or more of training before he or she can become valuable enough to earn a large amount of money, what makes us think we can shortcut the process in any other field?

We can’t. Whether we are a real estate flipper, a real estate agent, a janitor, or a plumber, the rules of value are the same:

  1. Learn and grow your skills in a specific, in-demand profession.
  2. Build a following of customers who will pay you for that service (or join an existing business that already has the customers).
  3. Deliver better and better value, day after day, year after year.

It’s true that some professions have a different income ceiling than others, but I wouldn’t necessarily get too hung up on the most popular choices, like doctors and lawyers. The key is to find something you enjoy and are good at so that you can spend an inordinate amount of time getting better.

I have personally met extremely high-earning plumbers and janitors who just became excellent in their trade. Their excellence led them to become so much in demand that they hired others to help, and they built a business around their core service. In this way, earning a lot of money per hour of input is no secret. It’s just not easy, and there are no shortcuts. You must actually put in the work to become better.

So, the first step is to figure out the fundamentals of your chosen job or business and to commit to mastering them. Give yourself the equivalent of a doctorate degree in the expertise and skills of your field. Find customers who need what you can deliver. Then deliver consistently.

I am confident that if you do this, you will find that your income efficiency will begin to skyrocket.

Path #2: Start a Business

Not everyone needs to take the path of starting a business. It is possible to maximize path #1, skip to path #3, and then get out of the rat race altogether. A great example of someone who took that route is the blogger over at MrMoneyMustache.com.

But if you want to maximize your earnings, leverage systems and other people, while also maintaining some control over your time and flexibility along the way, starting a business is a great choice.  

You can make your business full time or part time. You can also grow it to eventually run without you, or more commonly you can simply use it as a tool to extract a lot of income very efficiently until you ultimately sell it or just shut it down.

Working for someone else can become intolerable for a number of reasons. Sometimes you don’t align with the mission or the values of the organization. Sometimes there are strong personality conflicts. Other times an organization may impose artificial ceilings on your ability to produce income or to do it efficiently.  

Owning a small business as a full-time real estate entrepreneur has been my choice ever since I graduated from college thirteen years ago.  I wouldn’t have it any other way. Small business was also the path of the high-earning plumber and janitor I told you about in the last section.

In actuality, most of us know something about business. Except for those of us who work for a government agency, we all work for a business of some kind.  

The only question is: Who owns the business? Is it you? Or is it someone else? I like the first choice.

The easiest time to start a business is after you’ve already built a strong ability to add value using in-demand skill sets (see path #1 above). To build these skill sets, it makes a lot of sense to grow and learn while working under someone else who is a lot better than you. But once you possess the valuable skills, you can then choose to go on your own by creating systems and a team of people around you (i.e. a business).

The real estate skills my partner and I have built our business around are the ability to market, to negotiate, to use creative financing structures, to evaluate real estate values, and to focus under pressure. If you’re looking for an example of a business blueprint, read my article,“The Ultimate Guide to Adding Systems & Outsourcing to Work Less in Real Estate.” In it I share a detailed outline for a real estate management business.  

When you get started, it also helps to do a lot of brainstorming, and in my case, make a mind map. If you are serious about starting a full or part time business, I also recommend you read the following excellent books about entrepreneurship:


Path #3: Maximize Saving and Investing

Paths #1 and #2 explained how to maximize the amount of income you produce per time invested. This is a good start.  

But remember my challenge at the beginning of this article?

The ultimate goal is to hustle and work hard for a finite period of time. At some point maximum income efficiency means you don’t have to work at all. This happens when your income is produced primarily by investment assets and not by your time or efforts at all. This does not mean you don’t work at managing your investments. You always will.  

Related: Of These 4 Financial Paths, You Can Only Choose One. Does Yours Lead to Financial Freedom?

But managing a portfolio of stocks, bonds, income properties, or notes is MUCH different in terms of time investment compared with a traditional job or business. This stage is truly the pinnacle of income efficiency because you can do whatever you want with your time.

The path to this stage of maximum income efficiency is once again fairly simple but not easy. It comes down to a few basic steps, which I personally focus on and measure as yearly goals:

  1. Maximize earnings (see path #1 and #2)
  2. Minimize expenses
  3. Invest for maximum safety and yield
  4. Compound earnings for exponential growth

Articles and books are written about each of these simple steps. You certainly need to acquire knowledge and skills in each of these areas.

But I would offer that the crux of your success in quickly moving down this path to maximum income efficiency comes down to self-discipline.  

The key measurement of success is your savings gap, or the difference between the income that comes in and expenses that go out. The bigger your savings gap, the faster you accumulate enough equity to get out of the rat race. It’s as simple as that.

For the math nerds in the room like me, check out “The Shockingly Simple Math Behind Early Retirement.”

Real estate investment is an excellent vehicle to quickly and safely carry you down this path #3. It is the vehicle where I spent 99% of my time, money, and effort. But other vehicles, such as investing in the stock market, are also legitimate paths.

Whichever vehicle you choose, focus on the personal discipline of saving your money, and then invest it conservatively so that you don’t lose it. Those are the most important steps.

Making a Dying? Don’t Sell Out For Life

The topic of this article has been about avoiding selling out long-term with a job or a work schedule we hate. I know those are strong, challenging words, but the frustration and anxiety I see in the faces of my working friends and colleagues tell me it’s a real problem.

In reality, we all sell out to some extent just by becoming adults. We have responsibilities. Life happens. We juggle different priorities. Time gets away from us.

But the trajectory of our working career is too important to leave to chance. Work takes up most of the time in our adult lives. The question we must ask is, are we working to make a living or to “make a dying”?

Let’s all choose to live. Let’s rekindle our energy and our motivation so that we stay focused, create a plan, and move forward financially in a productive way.

I wish you the best on your journey!

[Editor’s Note: We are republishing this article to help out our newer members.]

I’d love to hear your thoughts about income efficiency, the 3 paths, or other ideas I’ve presented here.

Please leave your comments or questions below.

About Author

Chad Carson

Chad Carson invests in Clemson, South Carolina. He also writes at coachcarson.com about using real estate investing to retire early & do what matters. For practical advice each week — join his free newsletter at coachcarson.com/newsletter.


  1. Kevin Renaud

    Wonderful article Chad!! It really resonated with me. I’m certainly a sell out. Been hating my profession for over 10 years now & totally burned out. I’ve always lived well within my means & saving just comes naturally. I recently went Pro on BP & am soaking up everything I can from this tremendous resource. I’ll be checking your website out really soon for more bits of wisdom. You mention that you can usually evaluate a rental property in 15 minutes. I’d love to see you make a webinar or write an article on how you do it. I watched Brandon’s video for the BP rental property calculator which was quite good however I felt he glossed over too many pieces of the puzzle. I know real estate isn’t an exact science but in my line of work (IT) accuracy & thoroughness are crucial. Maybe I just need to be less focused on the science & more on the art.

    • Chad Carson

      Thanks Kevin! Glad it struck a nerve for you. You’re in the right place on BP to soak up knowledge and support. The support is the most underrated part of the site, because you can get expertise and encouragement from a wide network of fellow investors.

      Part of my quick analysis results from intuitive street by street knowledge of my neighborhoods. But I also start with “back of the napkin” analysis instead of complex spreadsheets, at least for simpler 1-4 unit projects.

      I did a couple of YouTube videos that share some of the basic financials I do for a rental:

  2. Lenzy Ruffin

    Great article, Chad. The conclusions you reached are exactly the things I’ve come to conclude over the last few years. It’s like you plucked your “what is living” list right out of my head. Slow time is critical for personal well-being, as far as I’m concerned. The world would be a better place if we’d all slow down a bit. Having the financial freedom to just sit on the dock of the bay and watch the tide roll away, as the Otis Redding song goes, is something we’d all do well to achieve.

    It’s great that you wrote about the virtue of the deep conversation. Far too many people these days just don’t understand that you can’t build or maintain quality relationships via text message. Everybody is always too busy being busy. And what does all that busyness ever actually yield? It’s largely just a furious sprint in the hamster wheel, as far as I can tell.

    Achieving the financial freedom to afford me time for hobbies and community service and just focusing on whatever I feel is important is one of the major “whys” that drives my real estate ambitions. Once I get this business figured out, I’m going to bring some friends I’ve made in the community service arena along for the ride on the financial freedom bus. These things are actually in my “statement of desire” that I wrote after reading Think and Grow Rich (it had been on my bookshelf for a long time…thanks BP community for getting me to finally read it).

    Since the community service bug bit me a couple of years ago and I started serving, I’ve met some people who are tireless advocates for those who have less. I look at all the time they commit and all the things they do for others during the time they have outside of their 9 to 5 and I can’t help but ponder what kind of wonders could these people work in the community if they were financially free and could focus all of their time and energy into the advocacy work that is clearly where their passion lies. I am definitely going to find out.

    It’s cool that you mentioned mind mapping, too. Mind mapping helps me to organize my thoughts in ways that I never could before I learned it. All of my brainstorming, outlines, etc. start with mind maps. For those with iPads, the iThoughtsHD app works great for me.

    Again, great article, Chad.

    • Chad Carson

      Thanks for the kind comments. I love your thoughts.

      It’s an energizing concept to start imagining all of the wonderful things we could do with our time once our finances get out of an emergency stage. I think sometimes we forget how to dream like we did when we were kids and teenagers.

      Your ideas about community service particularly resonate with me. There are so many people who have incredible gifts to give to people in real need, and they’re stuck working a job for money. And their job doesn’t really use their gifts or fulfill them. It’s a travesty.

      THAT is a motivation for us to free ourselves financially and to help others.

      Let’s do this!:)

  3. Ryan Arth

    That was a well thought out and well written article. You had three solid paragraphs in it that basically define business and self employment. And further, how you can leverage your way out. It is a math equation.

    A few thoughts in there, left to resonate, could make people hundreds of thousands of dollars over an average working lifetime. Excellent piece for reading slowly or rereading again later.

    Work the plan, keep positive.

    • Chad Carson

      Thanks Ryan. Self-employment can be a fantastic tool to leverage your skills. It also takes some new entrepreneurial skills which many employees don’t have yet. But that’s where books like the Emyth and the BP forums help a lot

  4. Jerry W.

    Excellent article. I do not know what mind mapping or some of those other concepts are but would love to have the chance to explore concepts like that. I have always been one of those save for a rainy day folks. We were so broke in college that going out to a promotion that had 35 cent hot dog and coke lunches was considered dining out. Most clothes were used or from the final clearance rack. I have never owned a new car and I am 55 years old. I did make it a point to attend nearly every sporting or school event for my children. I also put my children through 4 years of college and both have good jobs. I have also been a volunteer fireman doe 26 years. However my profession has a huge amount of stress. I also invest in real estate which uses up a lot of time. Between the two I have not taken a week off in about 10 years. I am beginning to think I am making a dying, not a living. I also do a lot of work on my rentals myself. I have put 2 new roofs on this summer and have a third about done. While it takes a lot of time, I actually enjoy the labor and satisfaction of completion on many jobs. I just wish I had more time to do fun things. I find I have given up nearly all of my hobbies. Maybe it is time for a change. I just have to figure out how.

    • Chad Carson

      Thanks for comment, Jerry. I plan to write an article or two on mindmapping soon. It’s a really helpful way to brainstorm, take notes, create ideas, plan a business, etc. The idea is to put ideas on paper more like our brain works — with connections between nodes/ideas using lines. Very useful (people like Leonardo DaVinci used them all the time).

      I really respect the sacrifices it sounds like you made in order to have time for your kids, to be at their sporting/school events, and to help them with college. That’s great to hear.

      You’ve paid your dues and put in your time. I look forward to hearing about you start carving out some time for yourself to dust back off those hobbies and other fun things.

      I agree with you that I enjoy my work too. I think for me it’s just been about forcing myself to get away from it from time to time. Once I step away, then I say “wow, it was fun but I needed a break.” The first time this happened for me was when I went on a 4-month trip in 2009. I HAD to get my systems and income efficiency in order, otherwise it wouldn’t work. But the time away on that trip and others since then were priceless.

      Maybe it’ll just take some sort of forced deadline like that. It’s what finally got me taking some positive steps to free up time. Best of luck!

    • david chaney


      We are similar in circumstances with one exception- we have developed a crew to help with our rentals. Where as my wife and I work full time jobs, she is 50 and I 56 in age, we were able to acquire rentals over time and at the point we were needing help with our repairs. We also provide services to private clients and local real estate rental managements. My wife and I are now in the process of evaluating real estate for flipping, with our newly established credit line against our rentals. Of course, now that we have acquired market share of the renovation business, we will need to expand our crews to manage both business renovations and flip acquisition renovations. This has followed our vision and we are excited about our expansion to the flip market.

  5. Rick Grubbs

    At times I like to figure out how much I am making per hour in real estate. I’ve been in it for about 25 years now, never full time. Today, aside from special projects I choose to do, I only have to spend a few hours each month. I divide that by how much I make from RE in a month and it is a real eye opener to the value of RE investing in the long term.

    Whenever I buy a new property I think of it as giving myself a raise. My previous job as a teacher had a very limited potential for getting raises. RE has the potential to work on my next pay raise every day I choose to do so..

    • Chad Carson

      Rick, I love your set-up and your way of thinking about earnings per hour. Thanks for sharing. Congrats on your success. That’s inspiring to hear about someone who is 25 years at this, I’m sure you’ve been through a lot of ups and downs, and you’re super efficient now! Good model for the rest of us.

      And “Give myself a raise with a new deal.” I also love that one. I’m going to have to borrow it:)

  6. Good insightful article Chad. I agree most of what you said. Basically it all boils down to “choices we make everyday/week..” and why? It is want vs. need or living in a totally materialistic world or impress other people or follow the herd. You talked about savings and being conservative. Getting a $5 Starbucks latte everyday really adds up. Basically you just need “good enough” products and not worry about getting “name brand” just bec everyone else is getting/using it..
    We just have to be honest to ourselves and not try to “keep up with the Joneses”..

    • Chad Carson

      Well said, Austin. Those every day choices are crucial. It doesn’t mean we can’t spend money on stuff, but it sure helps to be full aware of why we’re buying it and more importantly what we’ll lose by overspending, as in lost free time because we have to work to pay for it. It’s an insidious treadmill or rat race, as Kiyosaki says.

  7. Mark Peteritas

    From a fellow RE investor and math nerd, excellent and insightful article. My heart is in the same place, which is why my focus has been investing in real estate for the last 10 years. It’s a work in progress for most on this site (myself included), but cheers to the independence that lies ahead!

    • Chad Carson

      I’m in the work in progress category as well, Mark. I think we all are. I love being part of a community online who values this kind of progress and can support each other as they climb their own mountain .

      Thanks for commenting.

  8. Ayodeji Kuponiyi

    Probably my favorite article from BP. Great great article. Thanks for sharing. I really like your Earned-Income Efficiency Formula and I agree with you that time is definitely important. I’m very interested and concerned on my ROT (Return on Time). I like the 3 Paths you shared to help someone work on their ROT.

    • Chad Carson

      Those are kind words. Thanks Ayodeji. We all only have those 24 hours in a day, and it’s a precious commodity. So that Return on Time … at least in the medium and long run is crucial. As I said in the article, we all have to go through hustle/ineffeciency times to EARN the right to be more efficient. But income effeciency is a nice place to aspire to as soon as possible.

  9. Dan Clark

    Loved the article Chad. Although most everyone here (including me) has some interest in real estate, I like how you “zoomed out” for a view of the big picture: what is the end goal of all this and what ways can it be achieved? Your article presents many of my own personal views on work, income, and lifestyle.

    Although I consider real estate to be my passion, in my own case my greatest success has come from method #2. My wife & I own and operate a small chain of franchised tax preparation offices that we have grown to be fairly successful. The best part is we make a well above-average income in a truly seasonal business, working like dogs for about 4 months but taking off the rest of the year. This allows us to travel extensively for long periods of time and spend plenty of quality time with our young children. These things would absolutely not be possible working traditional jobs.

    I think achieving that work/income vs. time off balance is really the critical factor that drives so many to turn to real estate for hope.

    • Chad Carson

      Thanks Dan. I appreciate your comment and sharing your personal experience with your franchise. That was very well said and illustrated my point better than anything could. What a great way to use a business to maximize your income and your lifestyle. Real estate is wonderful, and that’s why we’re all here, but there are some many paths to get where we’re trying to go.

  10. Nice read. I might not have the same definition of living as you do (considerably different, actually), but that doesn’t make this article any less useful. Solid read for sure, and I too could stand to read quite a bit more if you ever came out with that book.

  11. Jack Knochel

    Another great article Chad. Trying to get that live/work balance on right. I want the balance of a lot more live and a lot less work! I see the light at the end of the tunnel, just need to get some more buy and holds and we are there. See you at the REIA on Thursday!

    • Chad Carson

      Hey Jack,
      Thanks for the comment. Great to hear from you. I hear ‘ya on the push to get more balance and life. I’ve found it surges – both forward and backwards instead of in even increments. So hang in there! You’re doing the right stuff.
      I’ll do my best to be at the REIA Thursday. I may have a conflict.
      Hope to see you around soon.

  12. Christy Greene

    Aloha Chad,

    I have been regularly reading Mr. Money Mustache for about 6 mos. I love it!! It has changed my entire way of thinking. In Jan of this year, I went serious with Dave Ramsey and paid off a timeshare. I have saved six figures in 6 mos by living the Mustachian way (yes, it can be done). I am just getting started in educating myself in real estate. I live in Southern California so the house prices are ridiculous and the 1% rule is very difficult to come by. If I were to purchase a house, put down 25% and pay it off early, then turn that into a rental, would that be feasible in this market? I don’t have the desire to go out of state when I am still so new to the game. Thanks for your post and looking forward to more of your posts!

    • Chad Carson

      Aloha Christy! Thank you for sharing your thoughts.
      You’re doing all the right fundamentals, so stick with the personal debt payoff and Mustachian ultra-savings lifestyle. That’s awesome!
      In terms of buying in Southern California, I’m not an expert. My market in South Carolina is a little more in line with rent-to-value ratios.
      But I’m a big believer in investing in your backyard. You may not have the cash flow of my area, but your expertise on the ground can help you pick the right locations and the right properties with value-add potential to create your own income (like adding on extra units to a lot or remodeling to increase rents). I think if you’re diligent and creative, you can find your deals.
      Best of luck and keep coming to BP for questions and help.

  13. Hisham Elsherbiny

    Read your post, I am reading alot preparing myself to be a beginner investor
    Thinking of Rehab and hold for rent
    Need guidance and networking to gind my first property
    I saved some money to start, my brother is an architect oversease and he is willing to go in business with me with finance and wealth of knowledge. I am looking in the Bronx NY or northern NJ
    Thank you for any leads

    • Chad Carson

      Thanks Monica! I’m glad the article was helpful. Great start! Those live-in rentals (house hacking) deals like that are a great way to start. Take one step at a time, learn, and keep moving forward at a pace that works. Congrats!

  14. Elizabeth Grahsl

    Love this article and totally agree. I wrote a post about how wealth is actually defined by time, not money, which can be found here if you want to check it out (it’s currently the homepage). http://www.worldofwealthblog.com/

    I started buying property 10 years ago this year when I graduated from college, and now have 10 rental units. It’s amazing to look back and see how naive I was when selecting and managing those first properties. Yes, I learned a lot of lessons the hard way, and in hindsight I know I could have made SO much more money. But had I not started investing I wouldn’t have learned them at all!

    Now I’ve been working for a decade in my professional career but find my motivation and engagement waning. I’ve been planning to hang in there a few more years and super save until I can early retire, but this article has me thinking I could just make the switch to self-employment in something I like better instead of continuing in a career track until I can quit working entirely. It’s hard to pull the plug once you’ve worked to build a career and a network and are finally making good money though.

    I shared this post on my FB page and will check out your site. Thanks for the morning inspiration!

  15. Chris Makrinos

    I really enjoyed this article, thank you!
    1. Your Income Efficiency formula is insightful. I spend two hours per day on the trolley travelling to work and it kills my flexibility and efficiency. While I maximize this time by reading, I still lose the ability to manage more important priorities, if needed.
    2. The ultimate concept of retirement is being able to do what you want, when you want. So I agree, choosing something you love to do for work gets you 90% of the way there. We are not guaranteed a future, so doing something you hate for 10 years in order to retire is an interesting problem.
    3. I think in general, people underestimate the importance of their health. I want to make sure that when retirement comes, I can do what I want to do. I will not compromise sleep, poor food choices, or extreme amounts of stress in order to make a few extra dollars. In my mind, it doesn’t seem like a good long-term trade-off.

  16. John Murray

    My journey into wealth started when I was about 6 years old. I did not like school although I graduated high school with a 4.0 and National Honor Society. Got a full ride to a Big East school, turned it down and went in the military to learn more about the world. I always had the doctrine of constant learning of the big picture, never did I ever concentrate on the small trivial human drama. My military training served me well, and upon ETS entered an apprenticeship. I never limited my learning to one trade. Most people have a narrow band of skill sets. I used my mind and hands to develop skills to generate capital. Raised a family and continued on becoming a multimillionaire. If I have to offer any advise to an aspiring entrepreneur, graduate high school, serve your country, never narrow your skills, continue to learn, stay married and most of all become the person that people will say “I never thought you could do that”. I’m going to take a load of scrap steel for recycle, bet you don’t think a multimillionaires do stuff like that. Yup we do!

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