Please Keep Your Freedumb Away From My Freedom

I am just days away from a two week holiday to my hometown of Vancouver Canada, it is always nice to see the west coast of Canada in the spring, often during this time of year the trees will blossom, adding some incredible colors to the already beautiful scenery, and a sweet scent to the cool fresh air. I am also of course very much looking forward to seeing my family and friends, who are the reason for the trip.

After making some plans to visit friends, a discussion about me started amongst my various acquaintances back home, and eventually, some of this discussion came back to me though hearsay. Apparently not all of my friends think I am doing very well in life, and by their measurement, which is salary, I guess I am not, but I do not measure my life in salary, if I did I would have kept some of the high paying jobs I had in the past, or taken some that were offered to me along the way, but I did not, because instead of salary, I measure my life in how much free time I get to experience, free time I often spend with my son, or traveling, reading, and writing.

Consumer PrisionerInevitably during my trip back to Canada as I visit with the few friends that can find enough time off work to see me, they may give me advice, as they often have before, about how I should change my life to be more like theirs, forgetting that I had lived that way for too many years already, with the waking up to an alarm, rushing to work, wearing a shirt, tie and black socks, eating when I’m told to, and then rushing back home at the end of the day. Many just can’t seem to understand that even though I hardly make any money at all by writing, programming, and selling shirts on the internet for a living, it is exactly the type of life I hope to live forever. To me what I have is something closer to true freedom, than the common illusion of it, which is humorously defined on the web today as freedumb.

As they suggest I dust off my work clothing, which I assume still exists somewhere in my closet, to get a “real job”, and make some real money, I will likely just nod politely, and think to myself, “Please keep your freedumb away from my freedom.”

Below are three videos, with a combined total of only seven minutes, they are all great clips, that I feel relate perfectly to normal corporate life and real freedom.


What Should I Sell On The Internet?

As most of you know, I sell products on the internet to make a living these days, recently a friend of mine also expressed an interest in starting a similar type of business, so he asked me what I though he should sell to make some money. I gave him a few suggestions and explanations for my reasoning which I have put for you below.

I sell t-shirts, but I would not recommend this to others, had I understood the amount of stock I would need on hand and the work I would have to do to sell a few shirts for such low profit, I probably would not have quit my day job.

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91% Failure!
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What I recommend is that if you are going to sell stuff on the internet, and going to build up a new website from scratch as I did, due to a lack of visitors, you will find yourself lucky to make a single sale each day for the first year or so, therefore it is best to sell items that will not become quickly outdated. If you sell products you need to move quickly through, such as electronics, which become outdated, devalue quickly and have a low profit margin even at the best of times, you will soon find yourself stuck with a lot of stock that nobody will buy from you at a profit, also you will need to be updating the website faster than you can probably work alone and will need to hire a team of expensive professionals just to keep up.

Apache Helicopter

Sell Used Helicopters

I believe you should sell the most expensive items you can afford to, the reason for this is you have the opportunity to make the most profit per item purchased, or package sent. For example, I remember one time last year where I needed to get someone a particular color and size of shirt that we had run out of stock on, due to a high number of unexpected complications, it must have taken me about nine hours of my time to fill the order, this is not normal, but it does happen, and for my nine hours of hard work, I only received about seven dollars profit, if you compare this to people who sell helicopters online, yes you can buy helicopters online, who make a few hundred thousand for the same amount of time, you can see that my shirt business is not necessarily the worlds bad idea, but it was all I could afford to start with.

If you are really low on cash, and have even less then what I started out with, which was approximately fifty thousand American Dollars, you can try some drop shipping companies. If you put “drop shipping companies” into a search engine, you will find all sorts of companies that hold all the stock for you to sell, and you can simply buy one item at a time from them, after your customers have already paid you, and then get them to send directly to your customers. This is a great alternative to holding stock, but I gave up on drop shipping in the first year myself, due to my lack of traffic, by the time I actually sold stuff, they were already out of stock on the items.

The biggest problem for any web based business will always be getting enough traffic to stay afloat, too many people subscribe to the “If I build it they will come” philosophy, which is probably a good reason why nearly one hundred percent of all web start ups fail. You really would not believe the competition out there that you have to deal with, you really have to be the best of the best to survive these days.

After four years of sixty hour weeks, and being fortunate enough to have most of the best shirts in the world available for me to sell, I am now almost making the same as what I used to make at one of the crappier day jobs I quit a decade ago, so you have to be seriously committed to do what I am doing. I heard someone say recently that to create a successful commercial website in today’s market you needed to have blind ignorant faith equaling that of many religions.

The Author Made Some Money

There is a constant push on the internet and in the news about how starting a web based business is a good idea, but statistics prove otherwise, it is a bad idea, in fact the only people that seem to really be making any money online are those that create websites for hopeful “entrepreneurs” or offer paid services to market their businesses for them. This reminds me of how a long time ago in the Klondike gold rush, the people who sold the miners supplies made much more money than the miners themselves. These are the people telling you it is a good idea, don’t listen to them too much, I would suggest never listening to anyone that is trying to get money from you.

If you still want to start an online business, you may as well get started, it doesn’t matter if it succeeds or not as long as you don’t invest too much into it. I started three websites before the one I have now, never made a penny off them, but this one does pay the bills. You should not think of the internet as a great place to get rich quick, these days the best you can hope for a chance to get rich eventually.

Trash Man Has Had Enough

Working can be stressful, and who among us hasn’t just wanted to let go and smash something sometimes?

Check out this garbage guy’s reaction to something being stuck in the trash can.


The Secret To Being Wealthy

I had a bit of a strange conversation the other day with a friend of mine,  I had just informed her that the business has finally begun to pay the bills, and I guess she got a little excited thinking great wealth might follow.  Though we are finally turning a profit, it has cost a large amount of money to get it to the point it is now, so for this venture to actually become a positive one, the company still needs to put all the startup money back in the bank, with interest, and that could take several years.

It was not so much the context of the question, but the wording, she asked me “Do you think you are going to be rich?”

I was a bit stunned by the question and looked around at my rented house with the multiple air conditioners, large HD television, stereo system, full fridge, computers, laptops and comfortable furniture. We had just returned from a one week vacation on a tropical beach, and I am about to fly off to another country only two weeks later, we eat out two meals a day and see a movie in the cinema every week. The only reply I could think of was “I thought I was rich already.”

Financial Freedom SignAssuming the company can continue to turn a profit, I will be able to continue this lifestyle indefinitely, and even if the website stopped working for some reason, I still have enough money to continue to live this lifestyle for probably another decade or so.

In reality my comfortable couch only cost me $100, my delicious healthy meals out are almost always less than five dollars, and my one week vacation only cost about $180, even though I make more, I normally live on less than a thousand US dollars a month. I wonder, does being rich really need to have a monetary value?

It is my opinion that rich is a feeling. I have everything that is truly important to me, comfort, security, love, and freedom. I don’t own a car, but living where I do, I currently don’t need one. If I did need one, I would have to have one to feel rich I guess, but since I don’t need car, having one doesn’t matter, what type of car would be irrelevant, because vanity is not really one of my needs.

I have found from experience that most people with millions of dollars in things, often do not feel rich, they are constantly driven to get more and will never be satisfied with what they have. They could lose it all in a few months without work, they know this, and can not relax. I agree with their feeling, in my books, they are poor, but it’s because of their mindset, not their paycheck. If you really want to be rich, you need to live on about halve of what you make each month, then the other halve goes in the bank, and you just bought yourself a month of freedom. After you have a few hundred of those months in the bank, you will also feel wealthy.

I replied to her question, “Look I don’t know what rich is in your head, but I am comfortable, have many vacations and my belly is always full, I do not have any worries about where my next meal is going to come from, or my next thousand meals. In my opinion, The only way to be rich is to be satisfied with what you have.”

I don’t know if I expressed my point properly to her, when she sees a big shiny new car, she probably still wishes she could ride around inside it, and I would like it also, but not at the expense of losing my freedom, and feeling poor once again.

Reverse Millionaire

As I continue to save some of the little money I earn, in the hope of one day becoming a millionaire, I would like to share with you another concept of financial wealth most people have never heard of before, the reverse millionaire.

I had a work mate introduce me to this idea almost a decade ago, he said:

When I die, I hope I owe a million dollars to the bank, because then I will know that I had spent all my money, and had also spent another million dollars along the way.”

What an interesting concept, Here I am approaching middle age, and I don’t know yet if I have even made a million dollars in my life, certainly not after tax.

Having thought about this a bit, I realized the concept of becoming a reverse millionaire is actually easier than you may think.

How To Become A Reverse Millionaire:
(Do Not Try This At Home)

Step #1 – Borrow a Million Dollars

Option 1 – The Sneaky Borrow

You would need to get a job, preferable a good one, all the while using several credit cards wisely by always paying off the debt. Your responsible use will cause the credit card companies to continually up the credit limits on the cards as you prove yourself to be an upstanding customer. You will find it is not actually that difficult to get the credit limit of a credit card up over $20,000, and with hard work and savings, you could quite possible get them as high as $50,000 – $100,000 each. You should also get lines of credit, and multiple bank accounts with overdrafts at as many banks as possible.

Several high limit credit cards from several banks, as well as your lines of credit and bank accounts overdrafts all cashed out on a single day, could quite easily, and quickly get you the million dollars in cash you are looking for.

Legality = Questionable

I wonder if this is legal. If it is, and too many people try it I am sure there would soon be some sort of “Reverse Millionaire Law”, maybe you could get away with it, but you might want to consult a lawyer first.

Option 2 – The Hard Work And Saving Method

This is the way your parents and school teachers probably told you was the way to get rich, and in the end would lead to the biggest pile of cash.

Go to College, get a steady job, work hard, invest wisely, and save enough money that the bank doesn’t mind you borrowing another million dollars.

Legality = Legal

This will probably never happen to me, though I have gone to college, and do save, but the getting a steady job part unfortunately is my fall down. I just can’t stand “Working for the Man” more than a few years in a row.

Option 3 – The High Interest Method
Reverse Millionaire Compound Interest Graph

Rather than doing the hard work yourself, you can simply let the magic of compound interest do the work for you, by my calculations if you can get enough credit at the age of 25 to borrow just $6,500 at your average credit card rate of 20.5%, with no additional work needed, you will become a reverse millionaire by the age of 50.

Legality = Legal

Hmmmm, I don’t think this was exactly what my work friend meant by this. I think what he was talking about was actually spending an additional million dollars before he died, this is more about the man sticking it to you rather than you “sticking it to the man”. Though definitely not the method of choice, it is something to consider.

Step #2  – Going Beyond Broke

Assuming you did not pick Option #3 above, you now have one million dollars of the banks money, as well as a bunch of your own, this does not yet make you a Reverse Millionaire. To become a true Reverse Millionaire, you must liquidate any assets you have, and spend all of it before the bank takes it away from you.

For myself I am pretty sure I would want to get out of whatever country I did this in as fast as possible, so I would probably spend a large chunk of money initially on something like a yacht, to carry myself, my money and possible a couple of supermodels somewhere beyond the banks reach. The yacht would then be liquidated as quickly as possible into cash, before the bank put a lien on it. I could then commence my decade or so of endless partying somewhere in the tropics until finally becoming a Reverse Millionaire.


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