Warren Buffett has long talked about how he focuses on creating value through two "buckets:" The earnings bucket and the investing bucket. If you are wondering how to get rich in your own life, you are likely to find that it is considerably easier to raise your net worth quickly when focusing on both of these, taking the same “double barrel” approach Buffett and his long-time business partner, Munger, have made a cornerstone of their empire.
However, it isn't just about the digital nomad lifestyle that gets people so excited. More so than getting rich by any measure, the masses are merely attempting to wrap their minds around generating a respectable amount of cash, enough to satisfy their expenses and leave a little bit of disposable income at the end of the day. While many look to fulfill that desire, very few, in fact, are able to follow through.
Selling clothes you no longer wear is a quick way to make some money. Start with local consignment shops for faster cash, or use sites like ThredUp and Poshmark to find buyers. If you go the online route, be sure to take clear, well-lit photos of your pieces and research similar items to set competitive prices. Get tips on how to sell your clothing.
Answer surveys to earn money from home. Survey companies I recommend include Swagbucks, Survey Junkie, American Consumer Opinion, Pinecone Research, Opinion Outpost, Prize Rebel, and Harris Poll Online. They’re free to join and free to use! You get paid to answer surveys and to test products. It’s best to sign up for as many as you can as that way you can receive the most surveys and make the most money.
If you don’t already have a job, you can try your luck with a day labor agency in your area such as Labor Works or People Ready. Generally, these jobs are of the low-skill, low-pay variety — construction helper, mover, retail or warehouse work. Arrive early in the morning, and if you’re chosen for a job, you’ll work that same day and receive payment at the end of your shift.
Here’s a good example of how lead sales can work in real life: My second website, Life Insurance by Jeff, brings in a ton of traffic from people who are searching the web to find answers to life insurance questions. While I used to have the website set up so I could sell these people life insurance myself, it was a lot of work to process all the different requests and clients. As a result, I started selling the leads I gathered instead.
This isn’t to scare you off. I simply want you to know that this guide is going to focus solely on ways to make real, sustainable extra income online. Not just a few bucks. I want to share all the mistakes I've made that got me to where I am now so that you don’t have to go through them, and can build a successful online source of income for yourself.
Nevertheless there are some human groups where productivity is indeed a significant consideration. And that certainly includes businesses, industrial belts, and to a considerable degree, countries. In order to understand how to organize these businesses, we could perform natural experiments. We could set up, if we were rich enough, a hundred businesses, organized a hundred different ways, see which businesses went bankrupt, and after 20 years figure that we now have the correct industrial organization. But that's an inefficient way to do it. We can instead learn from the comparative approach, by looking to natural experiments of history. I hope that some of you will be able to apply these lessons to acquiring the wealth that has so far eluded me.
I propose to get some empirical information about this question by comparing the histories of China and Europe. Why is it that China in the Renaissance fell behind Europe in technology? Often people assume that it has something to do with the Confucian tradition in China supposedly making the Chinese ultra-conservative, whereas the Judeo-Christian tradition in Europe supposedly stimulated science and innovation. Well, first of all, just ask Galileo about the simulating effects of the Judeo-Christian tradition on science. Then, secondly, just consider the state of technology in medieval Confucian China. China led the world in innovation and technology in the early Renaissance. Chinese inventions include canal lock gates, cast iron, compasses, deep drilling, gun powder, kites, paper, porcelain, printing, stern-post rudders, and wheelbarrows — all of those innovations are Chinese innovations. So the real question is, why did Renaissance China lose its enormous technological lead to late-starter Europe?
Spending intentionally doesn’t require pinching every penny, but you should know where those pennies are going and that the destination is something you value, whether that’s travel or good food. It’s easy to fall into a habit of doing the opposite, basically a financial version of mindless eating — buying a new pair of shoes because you walked by the shoe store, for example.
The last step resides in the concept of contribution. Even if you have no money, find a way to contribute to others. Look for opportunities where you can help those around you. Whether they're in need or not, this mindset will drive home the point that you have more than you need, even if you physically don't. Search for ways, every single day, where you can contribute either your time or your money to those who might be less fortunate, because that's the true essence of success in every form.
Before you get started, it’s important to acknowledge that becoming rich takes time and effort. There are very few ways to instantly have large amounts of wealth, and all of them are luck-based. Not all of us can win the lottery or inherit a fortune from a mysterious rich relative. Becoming rich in most cases involves a lot of hard work, patience, and time. There are some tried-and-true things you can do that can help you get rich, but the key is to constantly and consistently work hard, keep track of your personal finances, and keep your eyes on the prize.
My belief is that you should focus on buying value on the things you enjoy, and you should focus on making big wins to reduce your expenses on non-essentials and things which don’t bring you joy. For example, in our family eating out is a treat. We save a lot of money by not dining very often. But, when we do dine out we focus our efforts on nights where kids eat free. Not only do we save money this way, but if my son decides that tonight’s dinner choice is not high on his list of priorities, we didn’t waste money on a meal. This takes the financial tension out of any wasted food and allows my wife and I to enjoy the meal more.
Open an Etsy store. If you have a creative talent or skill – whether it’s creating art, sewing clothes, or making keepsakes – you can open an online store on Etsy.com and sell your wares for some quick cash. With your own Etsy store, you’re left in charge of pricing and, ultimately, how much you make. See our detailed primer, “How to Make Money on Etsy.”
But, let me conclude by emphasizing some obvious restrictions. I'm sure all of you are already thinking to yourselves, "But, but, but, he's forgot — but but but...."— Yes, let's go back to those but-but-buts. One restriction is, I mentioned at the beginning, "all other things being equal". Obviously the best organization is not going to help with an idiot as a CEO, and the success of Microsoft certainly depends, at least in part, on the unusual qualities of Bill Gates, as well as on the unusual organization of Microsoft.
There you have an example from the German beer industry about the disadvantages of having lots of small groups that are secretive and don't compete with each other. The other example that I want to tell you about is the Japanese food-processing industry. I mentioned that we Americans are virtually paranoid about the efficiency of the Japanese, and it's true for some Japanese industries, but not for their food-processing industry. Japanese processed food is produced with an efficiency 32% of American processed foods. There are 67,000 food processing companies in Japan; there are only 21,000 in the United States, although the U.S. has double Japan's population, so the average food-processing company in the United States is six times bigger than its Japanese counterpart. What is the reason why the Japanese food-processing industry, like German beer industries, consists of small companies with local monopolies?
Even if your family, friends, or neighbors may not need work done, you can sell your labor in advance of completing it. Make it official by printing out a certificate that promises that you’ll mow their lawn, shovel their driveway, water their garden, or complete another chore they’d need! Once they’re in need of the work, you can set up a time to get the job done.