Money, money, money, money…

2-10 iPhone 362

Sunday, 4:24pm
Reno, NV
“… keep your hands offa my stash…” (Pink Floyd)

Howdy…

Let’s talk about money.

Do you have enough?

Do you know how much “enough” is, for you?

Most folks are pretty clueless about moolah.  They desire it, they fear it, they respect and hate and love it… and they assign all kinds of magical powers to it.

So here are a couple of observations… from a dude who’s been broke, been rich, and seen the awesome potential as well as the destructive nightmares that money can wield:

Big Damn Observation #1: Money really can’t buy you happiness.

But you know what?  It’s still more fun to find this out for yourself, rather than take someone’s word for it.

For me, it was well worth keeping this nugget of wisdom on a note tacked to my office wall.  Because happiness was definitely on my wish list of life-long goals… but so was success.

So I kept track as I moved up the socio-economic ladder from slacker, to decently-paid freelance writer, to obscenely-paid “A List” professional.

And guess what?

It’s true.  Making a ton of money didn‘t turn on the Happy Faucet.

However, it didn’t turn on the misery faucet, either… which, for me, was a moment of enlightenment.

Happiness is in your head.  It’s a state of mind, which doesn’t require cash… unless the lack of cash moves you off your game.

Which lead to the one big realization that helped me clarify what “success” really meant, for me:

Big Damn Observation #2: Money will only solve those problems that not having money creates.

People usually blink back at me the first time I share this with them.  It seems too obvious to qualify for “wisdom”.

For me, though, it’s freaking profound.  The problems that ate me up during the first half of my life… when I was lost, directionless and kept ending up sleeping on people’s couches (because the business world kept spitting me out) (and my girlfriends kept leaving cuz I was such a loser)…

… were all specifically related to not having enough money to get a toehold in life.

Rent was a problem.  Getting a speeding ticket was a major financial blow that could crush my entire budget.  Any adventure that required new clothes or new equipment or a long trip was completely out of the question.

And that was okay for a while… I fancied myself a carefree bodhisattva living off the land (so to speak) while cruising through the culture unblemished by having to bow to the The Man.

Then it got real old, real fast.  And I realized it was time for me to find my place in the world, and go for the gusto.

At that point, I finally understood that not having enough dough to cover the basics (and the fundamental luxuries that made life worth living, like concert tickets) was a major sticking point.

The answer, for me, was to figure out the age-old wisdom behind the professional’s concept of a “nut” — that specific amount of cash necessary each cycle to allow you to operate without worrying about missed payments or sudden expenses.

Everyone’s nut is different.  But it’s basically your rent, food, transportation and other bills, along with a certain allowance for clothes and whatever else you need to live your life.  Including dating costs, bowling league fees, piano lessons, a night at the opera, whatever tweaks your notion of a good month.

Most folks never figure this out.  They lurch from paycheck to paycheck, regarding each incoming expense as an alien invasion (“What? Another phone bill?”).

Saving any money for a rainy day is out of the question.  (Americans are among the most clueless savers in the world.)

I’ve been there.  Floating just above the baseline of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs (that infamous low-end list of necessities, like food, shelter and safety)… so I technically qualified as a civilized person.

However, the constant desperation of being one lost paycheck away from living out of my car again kept me from daring to dream beyond whatever fun I could squeeze out of a weekend binge on cheap booze and easy virtue.

It sucked.

So money was constantly on my mind.

Figuring out what I needed to cover my monthly nut relieved me of aimless worry.  I had a number to use as a goal.  I could finally get a handle on what extra money might do for me.

As a budding freelancer, I now knew how many jobs at a certain fee I needed each month.  And I knew when I was finally getting ahead of my nut… so instead of month-to-month, I actually had the next three months’ nut covered.  And then the next six months.  And then the next year.

This knowledge of my financial situation allowed me to move up a few rungs on the success ladder, too.

But I did it following…

Big Damn Observation #3: Pay in full as you go.

Now, I have a mortgage.  It was a calculated decision, and I’m happy with it.

But it’s the only debt I have, or have had for the last 25 years.

I pay cash for all my cars, guitars, trips, computers and everything else.  The credit card gets paid down to zero each cycle.  (The banks hate me for that.)

I’ll tell you something — it was PAINFUL learning to wait until I could afford what I wanted, early on.  Especially with that credit card burning a hole in my wallet.

I drove a rattletrap ’80 Celica liftback (ugliest car on the road, ever) that required a gallon of water every morning in the radiator (slow leak), and which was often mistaken for a vehicle bound for the Demolition Derby across town.

I’m not proud of this, necessarily.  Nevertheless, that car met my needs as a struggling early-career freelancer.  (I just made sure clients didn’t see it.)

And when it finally went on life-support, I bade it a tearful goodbye (I loved that old wreck) and wrote a check, in full, for a luxury-edition Camry.

Debt sucks, folks.

It’s willingly allowing shackles to be welded onto your ankles.  It pushes your nut far out into the future, limits your ability to move fast when opportunity knocks, and (worst of all) gives you a false sense of accomplishment.

Now, sometimes you may go into debt for something (like a house) that you can justify.  Sometimes.  (I may yet pay this nasty thing off all at once… but for now, I’m at peace with having a mortgage for this love-nest.)

Just make sure you do it consciously.  And not because it’s your habit to never pay as you go.

Side story: I have a standard reply for anyone who considers going into debt to afford a high-ticket product or seminar or something else they feel they “need right now”… but can’t afford.

My advice: Don’t do it.

Instead of hocking grandma’s jewelry, or maxing out six credit cards, or rolling the dice in any way…

… why not try a truly radical approach.  And save up the money to pay for it on the barrel-head.

Instead of looking for an easy, immediate, debt-stupid way to get around not having the cash… just earn the cash beforehand.  Stop partying on the weekends for a year — just a single year (trust me, it won’t kill you) — and take a part-time job dedicated to filling up your “continuing adult education” fund.

Save every penny from that second job.  (Which you can, because your day job covers your nut each month, right?  Especially now that you’ve ceased dropping a bill every Saturday night at the slosh pit.)

Put it in a savings account.  Don’t touch it.  Don’t dream about it, don’t consider it for any other situation…

… except your quest for getting the knowledge and coaching you want so you can move ahead in life.

Even a minimum wage gig, two days a week, can net you several hundred bucks a month.  Any higher wage is gravy.  At the end of a year, you’ll have a pot with a few thousand smackeroos in it…

… which you can then lay out for that seminar, or course, or coaching, or whatever you’re drooling over.

No debt.  You earned your entry fee.  You paid your way.  You didn’t have to beg, borrow or steal.

And you know the value of every buck you laid out.  Which means you’re gonna consume whatever you buy, and put it to work in your life asap.

Scoff if you want.  Most folks do.

But the pride of knowing you paid your own way instantly pumps more honest value into that purchase than you could ever imagine.  You’ll appreciate the adventure, and (key point) suck every drop of value from it.

The adventure of a life well-lived is funny that way.

Let others haggle and plot and concoct elaborate schemes to get around the simplest path to earning your own success.

There’s a lot of risk inherent in creating a successful life.  Most entrepreneurs operate with no safety net.  Going for the gusto means exposing yourself to the dangers of adventure and accomplishment.

But that doesn’t mean that burying yourself in debt needs to be one of those risks.

Of lot of people well-established in the business world will argue with me.  That’s fine.  I understand the advantages of using OPM (other people’s money), and investing cash and resources to maximize potential.

But that’s all a little further down the line for anyone just starting the adventure.

Smart leveraging is one thing.  Blindly piling up obligations beyond your nut is something else entirely.

Before you can be a Player, you gotta be a foot soldier in business.

Travel light, and avoid all “tails” (obligations, like debt, that restrict your freedom) for now.

Big Damn Observation #4: And… I think that’s enough for this post.

I do have one last piece of financial advice for anyone after a better life.

It’s a cool little tactic that seriously changed my life almost immediately…

… allowing me to become one of the top freelancers in the game…

… and opening up amazing new opportunities (like mentoring with Gary Halbert) that would have never happened otherwise.

Let me know if you’d like to hear this last lesson… and I’ll put it in the next post.

I gotta get ready to travel some more here.

Love to hear your comments, stories, opinions and whatever below on this topic of moolah (and the love/hate thereof).

It’s the main sticking point holding folks back from getting what they want out of life, you know.  Money.  It’s a gas.

Stay frosty,

John

P.S. By the way…

… in case you weren’t in the loop…

… there is still a slot or two left in the killer mastermind group we’ve put together for entrepreneurs, small biz owners, and freelancers.

If you’re finally ready to get the support, shared resources, contacts and profit-boosting mojo that comes with being embraced in a mastermind group…

… then this is gonna blow your mind.

Personally hosted by me and my biz partner Stan Dahl.  It’s already generating scorching-hot buzz in the marketing community and…

… well, you can read all about it here: www.carltoncoaching.com/platinum-group

Very rare opportunity.

You might wanna check it out immediately.

128 Responses to Money, money, money, money…

  1. Ian says:

    Great subject John.

    Money is a psychologically charged issue…one worthy of several rants.

    Getting a hold of your money issues and beliefs makes you a better copywriter too because your own unresolved objections about money have a funny way of creeping into your writing.

    Great advice as always John. Much gratitude.

  2. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Michael Hartmann, Eric Graham. Eric Graham said: By @johncarlton007: Money, money, money, money…: Sunday, 4:24pm Reno, NV “… keep your hands offa my stash…” (Pink … http://bit.ly/dsb6Ez [...]

  3. Dan says:

    Hey John,

    Great article. Do you have any recommended resources for entrepreneurs (particularly copywriters) on budgeting, planning cashflow, setting money aside, etc?

    You’re contributed so much to the community of new copywriters, and believe me, it’s well appreciated by all of us.

    –Dan

    • John Carlton says:

      Hi Dan. No, I really never read much on finances. The advice I’m giving away here really is all I had to go on — a basic philosophy. It WILL be a pain to finally understand your nut, and you’ll probably need to double-check it and work through initial mistakes to get it right…

      … but it’s worth it. Just look at your past year’s worth of expenses, and start making lists of what you NEED, what you’ve been wasting money on (see some of the other comments here, esp Ken Calhoun’s), what you’ve been neglecting, etc. Then make lists of what you WANT, what you’re honestly jonesing for (versus what you sorta kinda want, but not really).

      Your basic nut should be the amount you need to get through the next month within dipping into savings, ever. There should be extra money in that amount for emergencies and basic fun. And some for savings. I recommend saving 20% to 50% of every dime you earn. (Might do a blog on that later.)

      The next post will explain another facet of this process.

      Also, don’t forget taxes. Just pay ‘em, and move on with your life. I know there are people who resist taxes, hate them, and are consumed with disgust over them. Best advice I ever got was from the first truly wealthy man I ever met: Just pay your taxes, on time, and move on. Give Uncle Sam every penny he says he gets. Never try to game it. Pay it, and immediately forget it.

      That advice has kept me sleeping well every night of my life. And MANY of my colleagues are aging prematurely, because they either neglect taxes, or try to game the system and get nailed.

      Consider it the price of the ticket to live in the US. Or consider it like paying off the local thugs for “protection”. Just pay it, and forget it.

      Stay tuned for the next post. It will really transform your ability to function as an entrepreneur.

  4. linda says:

    Wow. My problem is that I ALWAYS am tempted to give away my time and training. Now, I will await your opinion and try to figure out the “bowling” reference. I have always said, “Make me laugh, and I will pay way more attention.” Thanks for the yuks.

  5. [...] money, money, money… http://www.john-carlton.com/2010/07/money-money-money-money/ For me, though, it’s freaking profound.  The problems that ate me up during the first half [...]

  6. I like the idea of no debt. I went through the Dave Ramsey thing a couple of year back and paid off enormous balances on my credit cards, the car – everything but the mortgage – and now I do the “pay as you go” thing.

    My biggest challenge is getting that emergency fund – the six months to a year of cash – accumulated so I can truly sit back and relax.

    I don’t know if it’s my childhood traumas from being potty trained too late in life or what but I tend to always think about money and what it could buy in order to make my life more comfortable. The kicker, of course, is that my life is fairly comfortable by most standards and, yet, I want more. Maybe it’s all the advertising and marketing for private jets and private masseuses.

    I’m a soft touch for the next new and shiny thing that promises Nirvana and a wheelbarrow full of cash. Yet, at some level, I know it is either a) BS or b) really won’t lead me to Nirvana anyway (your Big Damn Observation #1)

    Oh, by the way, I’d love to hear about your Big Damn Observation #4

  7. Kathy says:

    What a great story, great encouragement as well to all of us out there paddling around in the IM world

  8. John says:

    John,

    Great content. I have no credit cards, but I’m paycheck to paycheck, not really pay as I go. Great ideas though. And I am going to begin implementing them immediately. I’m starting the Challenge and making this my “part-time” employment for the next 7 weeks.

    John Archer

  9. cefindlater says:

    I agree, payg helps me sleep at night. So it’s really annoying to be bombarded with all those seductively written IM training/offers sold on a time-sensitive basis: “Last chance, this offer closes in 24 hours etc etc!”

    I know scarcity sells, but it really does suck when you’re trying to be financially responsible.

    • John Carlton says:

      Thanks for the note. But I’m gonna disagree with you here:

      It is NOT hard to look past “great offers” when you’ve got your mindset in the right place. People are just self-spoiled about immediate gratification… and that DOES ruin your ability to get the most out of life.

      Practice, starting right now, putting off pleasures and instant satisfaction. Do it in every part of your life — meals, buying crap, exercise, etc. BE that guy who is in total charge of his life, and is completely disciplined to do the right thing at all times.

      It’ll be hard to pull off at first… but you’ll never get it done if you don’t start now. Once you taste a truly disciplined life, you’ll never go back to being a slacker.

      • cefindlater says:

        I think my mindset is pretty healthy. I do what I can afford and save up for stuff. I’m Scottish, so perhaps prudence is in the blood! I’m just dog tired of the seeing the same old tired sales letters with that scarcity message. I’d love to see a more enlightened, open and authentic approach in IM. Idealistic, yes. Improbable, yes. Till then there’s always the delete button.

  10. Unfortunately, have been there done that and you are right on the mark. Save for what you want. Don’t go into debt. Unless you have your own successful business, you will be on an inadequate pension before you know it with nowhere to turn. Keep your comments coming.

  11. John, great advice. I try to stay as debt-free as possible.

    If you can’t afford it, don’t get it. America seems to have forgotten this timely and honest piece of advice.

    P.S-While we’re on the subject of money, are your Letters Volume 1&2 still in print?

    Lawton

  12. Barb says:

    Great post, John. I reformed my financial ways several years ago (learned my lesson the hard way), and now only pay as I go. It was an acquired habit, but worth it. The reminder to decide on what my “nut” is = a good kick in the pants, too…so thanks for that. Would love to hear about Big Damn Observation #4!
    Barb

    • Barb, is is refreshing to see someone so disciplined with their finances. It is amazing here in the U.S how greedy we all are. I think this financial meltdown is a good kick in the pants for all of us.

  13. Richard says:

    Hey John,

    Very cool post and not heard it put that way before as “The Nut” it reminds me of Cuba Gooding Jr in Jerry McGuire and “The Kwan”

    Looking forward to Big Damn Observation Number 4

    By the way….love your GOLF copy

    Richard

  14. GREAT post, John!! The current Real Estate market has forced us to hunker down and we only buy what we can pay for in cash. No credit cards. I had to give a car back to the bank because I couldn’t pay the notes. And we ended up buying a used car, cash, but I know it’s paid for and no one can take it from me! We’ve also learned to live a bit more frugal, and I think it’s been a very good lesson in the long run.
    You’ve reminded me that I haven’t figured out what my “nut” is each month – and how if I know that figure and think of things in terms of how many deals I need to be sure my nut is covered, it will make my focus be more targeted.
    Thanks for sharing your story!

    • John Carlton says:

      See my above comment to Dan about figuring out your nut. It’s not easy, but it is relatively simple once you dig in. Just be like a detective, and make lists of what you’ve spent on stuff over the past year (or longer, if you have records). You’ll see a pattern, above the basic bills.
      Even if you have to redo this list several times, it’s worth it. Get started NOW. Figure out what you need each month to not dig into savings… that’s your baseline.

  15. Jim Shankle says:

    I’ve met far too many would-be entrepreneurs through the years who couldn’t make the move because of their debt. Your advice is excellent for anyone in these treacherous times. Would enjoy seeing more.

  16. Jim says:

    You started off right tell you bought house with others money.
    I do not agree with house on mortgage,you pay 400% of price of house I do not agree with second job Jobs take all your energy from you and gives to some one else, use that time for you own ways to make money.

    The System is set up for you to give 90% of your money to Taxes , Banks with interest and fees and Insurance.
    Do not fall for it. Do not play the game
    Same as car Live in S–t Box House a trailer, cheep boat tell you have cash to buy house.
    Only my thoughts I do not work for the man.
    They take people for fools.

    Jim

  17. Mike says:

    Great article, especially liked the hook at the end that has me waiting and wanting more.

    One of my Big Damn Observations is that poor people or better stated “economically challenged people” seem to have this belief that money is a limited commodity and that it is sometimes in short supply. Nothing could be further from the truth. There is as much if not more opportunity for entrepreneurs in bad economic times than there is in the boom times.

    Entrepreneurs find ways to profit by solving other peoples problems. When money is tight people have a lot more in the way of problems to solve.

    The money as a limited commodity only relates to people who are willing to put a price on an hour of their life. In poor economic times their hourly value declines because there are more sellers than buyers.

    Mike

  18. Money is something that people believe they need. That is where the problem begins. The thinking that you need money in order to live will drive people to their early grave.

    I know that your going to say that you do need money. Well you do and you don’t. You DO need a certain amount of resources available to cover everyday living (like your nut in the post). You DON’T need enough money where you can vacation in Jamaica once a month.

    And half the fun of the writing business is getting to the point where you can vacation in Jamaica once a month. I am still working toward that point in my life.

  19. Mathiason says:

    Any suggestions for dealing with monthly payments that can’t be pruned down like meds for a chronic ailment such as diabetes? Having a good credit score helps too. I’ve got a Sears card that I probably don’t use enough, but always pay back credit amount ASAP so I have something showing my credit’s good. For some reason banks and others don’t like absence of a credit score about as much as a having a bad score.

    • John Carlton says:

      Hi Mathiason. I’ve got family with health problems, debt problems, all of it.
      Each situation is different. Step one is to get a HANDLE on what you’re facing. What kind of money is needed to meet monthly expenses. Until you know this, you’re going to be scrambling and muddling through. As scary as that number is, you still need to face it before you can get anywhere.
      Everything is negotiable. Banks have their psycho side, and their human side. You have to know what you want, what you’re willing to do to get it, and you have to understand what THEY want, and what they’re willing to do to lend for it.
      There is always a way around ANY problem. It may not be the way you’d LIKE to have available (cuz it’s hard or unpleasant)… but there IS a way around it. Often several.
      Just don’t waste any time wishing the world was different. It is what it is. Figure out the reality of your situation, and then operate from there.

  20. Susie says:

    I think you wrote this one for me…thanks John. And dang…I think I own almost every book about money ever written…probably still paying for them on credit cards….
    I’ve been learning what you’ve shared the hard way…perhaps the best way…but still hard. Had to make some tough decisions about what I could or could not invest in during the past year because of a commitment to pay for things in full; had to do a full study about my “relationship with money” (even considered blaming my parents – but that wasn’t going to get me very far) during the past couple years.
    I got “spit out” (as you so eloquently describe it) by the business world a couple years ago when the company I helped build to $140 Million at its peak ceased operations after a slow and painful death (took them 7 years of ignorance to finally shut the doors). My six figure residual “money faucet” went dry when they shut down their website one Monday morning – there was no priming that pump again – and the worst feeling was not being able to do anything about it…for seven years. Sure, I wrote my letters and made my calls to the President; participated on their “manager panel” which seemed to be a front to say we care what the people in the field think. My three biggest mistakes during the process:
    1) Thinking I had my “own business.” Total BS when you can’t make any decisions. I sat through a couple MLM pitches in the past three years where they proudly put up Robert Kiyosaki’s 4-quadrant chart and say “becoming a distributor with our company will shift you to the business owner quadrant” – the audience buys it – but it is complete and total crap.
    2) Going down with the ship, instead of jumping ship. I was watching the numbers (probably much more closely than the owners and leadership!). The company’s growth started slowing down, then sales started decreasing, year-over-year. Yet, aggressive changes weren’t being made to get back on track. I can’t help but wonder where I’d be now if I had planned to jump overboard, and built my own biz then…while I still had the income.
    3) Slow recovery. I’ll appreciate all of your feedback, but especially with this one. What can you do in your head to get back in the game faster?? I hadn’t been planning well or managing my finances well…so the experience of having my 6-figure income shut off…instantly…certainly does a number with your head, and then all of your energy goes into survival instead of business building. Any ideas for me, John??
    As always, thanks!
    Susie

    • John Carlton says:

      Hi Susie. Yes, I have advice: Your life, when you get older and look back on it, will have been lived in chapters or periods of time. Some will be great, some will suck, others will be boring. In the end, it’s ALL living… and you ALWAYS have more choices than you believe you have at the time.
      The worst part about being hold enough to look back on a big part of your life… is finally knowing what the right move would have been long ago.
      I NEVER regret anything I’ve done. (I am big on remorse and changing when I’ve been bad, and cleaning up my messes… but I don’t regret anything. I do the best I can, every moment of every day. If I fail, I work on myself so the next time I do better. Regret is like guilt — worthless. If you did something wrong, fix it, make amends, clean up the mess… and actively change so you do better.)
      You’re in a weird chapter right now. Try to see the Big Picture, and react accordingly. All things pass. Another chapter is coming up fast…

  21. Marvin says:

    What can I say? Greeeeeeeat post as usual. :-)

    I have just recently been initiated into this financial management thingie and I have been all the better for it. After reading “The Richest Man in Babylon” (particularly the initial part about the cure for a lean purse) and applying this simple concept, I have been more at peace and have been feeling more stable.

    My purse hasn’t been fattened up to the way I like it, but the thought of having something tucked away, untouched and ever-growing has since made me feel more “accomplished” – if you know what I mean.

    I have always been told by my mother, “It’s better to resist the urge of enjoying something which you can otherwise afford, than to not enjoy it because you can’t afford it.” I have always ‘known’ what she meant but have just recently ‘understood’ it for the very essence it exemplifies.

    “No debt” living has always been a goal for me (and I’m getting closer to it, having erased almost 70% of my debts now eversince I read that book), and more so now after reading this post.

    Please do tell us your 4th observation. Might inspire us even more to become, not just better entrepreneurs, but happier ones. :-)

    Thanks a mighty bunch John.

  22. R.Stevens says:

    Thanks John for an insightful post as always. Good advice but it sure is hard to go debt free when you need a lot of tools/advertising/outsourcing to get rolling. If you can’t go debt free right away the idea of paying more each month and using a cash injection to pay off a credit card rather than a course or big new toy is a good strategy. Hard sometimes but worth it. And yeah…let’s hear that Big Damn Observation #4

    • John Carlton says:

      Hey, R. Thanks for the note. One small thought for you: You say you “need” a lot of expensive to “get rolling”. In my experience, that’s almost never true. All biz models that rely on expensive starting costs… can be scaled back, or changed entirely so they are simple, NOT expensive, and able to scale completely upon the back of incoming profits. So maybe you don’t “explode” out of the box… but, instead, move slowly forward. That’s often the BETTER way to do it, anyway. I know about a LOT of online companies who, just a couple of years ago, were rolling in cash… who are bankrupt now. They exploded out of the box… and continued exploding, until they ate themselves up.
      Most biz owners are not prepared for rapid growth, anyway. Move slower, scale it back, invest your OWN profits back into the project, rather than borrowing.
      That’s world-class advice, btw.

  23. Kevin M. Roy says:

    John,
    I can’t wait to hear Big Damn Observation #4, especially the part where you mentored with the late, great Gary Halbert.
    As always, thanks for sharing…

  24. carlen says:

    Good stuff, Carlton. Don’t wait to August to give us Big Damn Observation #4. Money’s gotta be nailed down and put in a place that’s untouchable except for the stated purposes. Otherwise, it’s quicksilver. Wish I’d learned that long ago. But then, it’s never too late…

    I just got out of your SWS class; far exceeded my expectations. Then you punched in the bonus coaching and the video seminar series… you’ve got my attention for a long, long time. Just developing an online product for the first time, and your stuff along with Kern’s and Walker’s is all beginning to fold together very nicely. Can’t wait to see what happens.

  25. Lisa Nowak says:

    Hi John – looking forward to Observation #4. Thanks for sharing this. You’re a captivating writer. I’ve started a little fund for your next coaching opportunity that comes along in the future.

  26. Paul says:

    Happiness is a way of life and just like being an entrepreneur or being in debt; it’s a choice.

    The only thing that matters in life (this one and the next) is finding out the truth about who you really are, what makes you special and how you can use it to help others.

    Money always follows that kind of success and it always will.

    Case in point; Frank Sinatra -
    He gave away about a Billion dollars to charities over his life, and when asked on ‘Johnny Carson’s Tonight Show’ how he did it he simply replied: “The money keeps showing up, so I keep giving it away”

    One of my life’s big damn observations: “You only take with you, that which you freely give away. ”

    We buy things for the experience they give us – that’s the lure of money, but giving yourself away and not expecting anything in return brings true freedom and ironically – More Money.

    And; Yes I’d like to hear your last lesson…

  27. Tom Miles says:

    Anxiously awaiting BDO#4.
    Thanks!

  28. Great advice, John! My wife and I worked for years to pay off our debts and achieve debt freedom. Now we’re on a mission to cover our nut and acheive financial freedom. Then we’ll be on to acheive total freedom. The advice here is sound and relevant to anyone looking to escape the rat race and get away from paycheck to paycheck living.

  29. ken ca|houn says:

    “”I’ve been rich and I’ve been poor. Rich is better.” -Sophie Tucker

    As someone who trades the stock market daily, I live in the world of money constantly, so I’m always thinking about it… dollar amounts flashing in front of me all day long, it’s a great reminder about the truth of money… it’s a lot like water: critical for survival, and it flows all around us; endlessly if you’ve got the chops to write persuasive sales copy.

    I like your points about the mindset, and responsibility of paying cash for things, that’s a lesson that took me a long time to learn as well; though I went credit-card debt free 16 years ago and boy I’m glad that monkey’s off my back; learned that lesson by the age of 30. Pay them off monthly is right, and only debt is the mortgage, which is easy to handle.

    Having a wife from Japan this last 12 years, helped a lot, as they’re great about saving… she always reminds me not to spend so much on amazon (I used to spend 11-12k/year there)…

    I wonder about all the folks reaching retirement age… I think we’re going to have a lot of sad broke homeless or dependent seniors for decades here, based on traditional ‘spend and hope for the best’ values of most people in this country. The recession was at least a big wakeup call that no you can’t just keep spending, sparky. Men fear being broke and/or alone. Women fear being overweight and/or crazy.

    Money doesn’t buy happiness, it’s having enough to cover the burn rate (nut for 1-2-x years) that provides peace of mind; lack of money causes us to ‘scramble’ (I’ve been producing a lot more product this last year or two for example, to compensate for lower sales in core products/business lines).

    Being obsessed with, and thinking about how to get more money doesn’t work as well as being obsessed with, thinking about “what can Most help my customers, and how can I “man up” and deliver exactly what they want, so they’ll find value in it”.

    whenever I made over 1k/day in winning trades I always play Floyd’s “Money”. When I make over $500 I play Rush’s “Big Money”. Thinking a lot about money, as a result of being of service/contribution to hungry markets, is where it’s at. I like Ogilvy’s comment about the customer’s no dummy she’s your wife… my competitors starve while I eat steak because they were in it to pillage and grab money; I undercharged but made up on volume, and earned trust for years, that’s how it works.
    ok gotta go, webinar to prep for.

    to profits,

    ken

    • Payson says:

      Ken,
      Gotta say, love the question you ask yourself, “what can Most help my customers, and how can I “man up” and deliver exactly what they want, so they’ll find value in it?” That one’s going up on the wall – thanks for your insight.

      • ken ca|houn says:

        hi – thanks.. or actually I guess the right phrase is “person up” … (I just heard ‘man up’ on the tv series Vegas which I like a lot…sorry).. like John teaches about getting inside the mind of the prospect, I do that by thinking customer avatar-like, eg “my average customer is Ted, a 51 year old working guy who wants to do better for his family” and I have a mental picture of him in front of me when I write copy/scripts for videos… it helps…

        • Payson says:

          Haven’t named my avatar yet – but am really diving into it more and more – learning to do research has been a bit challenging for me, but I’m getting there. :-)
          Thanks for the additional input – really appreciate it.

    • John Carlton says:

      Good input, as always, Ken. Thanks.

  30. Pat Walsh says:

    Hey John,

    Would love to hear that advanced lesson. Thanks for the FANTASTIC post. I am one of the lucky people who stumbled across IM, and knew right away that it was for me. I’ve never been good with money, but I am getting better. I whole heartedly believe that the internet is my ticket to fame. That is if I can manage my finances better, and this post is just what I needed to read. BTW, I bought your SWS home course and I LOVED it. My copywriting went from borderline horrific, to SUBSTANTIALLY BETTER then most of the copy I see on professional products being toted on the web today… SO THANK YOU!

    Will you be attending affiliate summit east this year?

    If so, I would love to meet you. Anyway, there is a pretty good comment for you. The search engines will like that :)

  31. Carroll says:

    Thanks for a very wise post, John. Your authenticity is heart warming.
    Cheers!

  32. Hey John,

    Yes it’s true a whole lotta things you can and can’t do without money in your pocket. I too havce been in those depths of worrying about tomorrow and not knowing if the cash would be there. I have had so many nights wondering about what if this and what if that happens I’ll be crushed.

    If we all put our fears aside, focus on the end game and push it to the limit we can succeed beyond our wildest dreams.

    Thank you for the words of wisdom. Please keep all of those struggling entrepreneurs in your prayers to help lift them up to a place where they can see for them selves. That “Money doesn’t buy you happiness.” “I sure would love to see you try and go without it!”

  33. I DEFINITELY want to learn that last lesson! ;-)
    John, I love your writing, and I love everything I’ve had the distinct pleasure of learning from you – including this. It’s ‘wisdom’ I’ve lived by at times in my life, but have let get away. Time to catch up to that wagon and get on back in. Thanks for the reminder!

  34. Hi John,

    Thanks for the post, keep them coming!

  35. Melinda says:

    Hi John

    Thanks for the great post – very clever how you’ve woven in lines from songs into your message – certainly makes for more interesting reading and a greater level of engagement (as the song starts to roll around in my head!). I love the concept of a “nut” – and squirreling them away for winter :-) Will work on identifying the size of my nut and then storing a few in an old tree somewhere…

  36. Hey John,
    yet another great post. ( as if a post from you would ever be anything else?)
    I’ve lived at both ends of the spectrum you describe. Spent time “On the road” as a a young dude, living off of what KFC was going to throw in the trash at closing time and sleeping under trees.
    ( A truly exciting and completely unfulfilling experience …)
    Spent years traveling until the epiphany moment came…
    “This aint working” !!

    Now We’re living inside of our means. no credit cards that aren’t paid off, every month. ( The banks loathe me too… but am I worried ? )

    I’m really looking forward to # 4 as it sounds like it will be interesting.

    Mike

    PS As someone says further up this page it’s all about the value you deliver to the world. ( and making sure that you’re getting paid for it )

  37. Clint says:

    I would love to hear the story John…

    Thanks for sharing this, just what I needed to hear.

    Clint

  38. Rodderz says:

    Great advice, thanks for sharing. As a young guy in my 20′s im still baffled by my friends who purchase stuff like expensive cars on payment plans. My car sucks, but it gets me around as well as theirs, and I have money left over to do all sorts of other things live travel. I guess its what you want from life but I definitely live by the rule of not buying anything I cant afford to pay for up front.

  39. Dear John,
    Anything you’re willing to share about your time with the late great Gary Halbert would be a sensation! Thanks for your generosity.

  40. mith says:

    everyone need money to live a wonderful life ,i want money but i dont know how much i want.

  41. Kathy says:

    Hi John,

    You asked if I wanted to hear your Big Damn Observation #4. Frankly, no. Save your digital ink for something related to copywriting.

    Thanks for not prolonging our waiting for real content.

    Best wishes,
    Kathy

    • John Carlton says:

      Hi Kathy.
      This blog isn’t just about copywriting. Not sure where you got that idea, even. It’s about marketing, writing, business, and life strategies. And whatever other wisdom I decide to share.
      I appreciate your honest comment — I asked for your thoughts, and you gave them. Rock on. However, the idea that talking about money is somehow not “content” is baffling. It also smacks of entitlement, like I only exist to fulfill your need for free content. Are you just having a bad day, or is this your actual attitude?

      • RStevens says:

        What an attitude towards someone who is handing out a lot of good advice/content for free! Kinda like going to someone’s house for dinner and when they ask if you would like dessert you say “no, you only make good chicken.” Not nice Kathy…sometimes it’s best to keep your comments to yourself. Good on ya John!

  42. Mike Haydon says:

    This was such a timely article for me! After reading it I’m feeling a lot better about where I am financially and what I have to do to get where I want to go. Thanks so much John.

  43. Likely today, I’ll be filming a beachy testimonial for SWS, and “Money solves all of the problems that not having money creates” really is f-ing profound. You got any pithy quips financially sane people can tell children, spouses, and partners who are wanting to make stupid financial decisions?

  44. Eric says:

    John,
    What I’ve learned from this post is to plan your work and work your plan in a way. Like what Thomas Jefferson said, “In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle,stand like a rock.” Thanks, one day I will earn enough to come knock on your door.

  45. Marcel says:

    Wow! Sometimes it takes a little bit of someone else’s reality to wake you up. I have been a struggling internet marketer going on for a year. I am blessed to have a girlfriend that really believes in me and supports me. I am in debt, I owe on a few credit cards and they want their pound of flesh from me. Strange thing is this new iphone 4. I’m thinking to myself, hell I haven’t got myself anything nice for a while, let me buy this new phone for myself… WRONG MARCEL WRONG!!! Forget about the phone, pay of your debt and live debt free!!! Thanks John, this was a wake up call!

    • John Carlton says:

      You’re welcome, Marcel.
      Tools are only as good as the worth they provide to your goals. Sometimes the shiny new stuff isn’t as good as the grimy old proven stuff…

  46. Peter Maxwell says:

    Great post.

    Don’t wait till next month for number 4, please :-)

    Peter

  47. Richard Page says:

    Great post John, would love to hear about the #4 observation. Had a messy break up recently and wound up in a pile of debt. Trying to get out of it now but it’s a good lesson in itself never to get in debt again and only buy what you have the moolah for!
    Rich (by name but not quite by nature)

    • John Carlton says:

      Sorry to hear about the break-up. It’s good to keep in mind, though, that most breakthroughs (in thought and action) happen after some kind of semi-to-profound trauma. There’s no guarantee that going through hurtful shit will lead to enlightenment, of course… but the opportunities for seismic shifts in the direction of your life increase.
      Good luck. You’re in a new chapter of your life, and you’re right to be looking for lessons instead of dwelling on the pain.

      • Richard Page says:

        Thanks for the warm reply John. It was an honour to get a reply from such a successful guy. It really helps. Your spot on with what you said. What can’t kill you makes you stronger and able to go up a level. Keep going forwards, never go backwards. Thanks John, you just really went up in my book. Good luck man and stay frosty yourself! Looking forward to your next great piece. All the best,

        Rich.

  48. Shane says:

    Jolly good post John…Jolly good indeed. Some good advice I heard from Frank Kern a while ago was “if you want to make more money online, then stop buying everybody’s stuff.”

    Debt does suck. My wife and I have 6 debts paid off and we have 4 more to go. Yes indeed, debt sucks the life right out of you.

    Thanks for your post.

    Peace

  49. Fantastic write-up. Before the end of today I will certainly find out my nut. I have read practically every comment on this topic today, but taking action on my situation certainly will do justice to all I have learnt. Cannot wait for PT 4! Thanks to all who have contributed.

  50. Phil says:

    John, thanks for this. It reminds me of the following scene in the movie Airplane (still one of my favorites):
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TnECNmUsqzc

    While it’s a painful wakeup call (everyone wants to buy the dream of immediate gratification and riches), sometimes that’s what it takes to get to the next level.

    Cheers!

  51. Mathias says:

    It’s totally rational to have the desire to become a millionaire in the next 3 years rather than becoming a millionaire by the age of 80.

    It’s just the mindset that’s behind the thought that “I have to find a fast, fast, super duper easy way to get super rich and impress anyone i meet and my surroundings…(without doing almosy any work) and it must only take a month, maybe 2

    The people carrying that idea are suckers..and they go from scam to scam…
    Not realizing they are running in a maze and they cannot get out…

    Money-consciousness,(that means a no bs. and a clear way of thinking about the dollars) combined with specific action and planning…

    Go for it, and so will I.

  52. Steve says:

    Let me know if you’d like to hear this last lesson… and I’ll put it in the next post. THE ANSWER IS YES!

  53. Adam says:

    great topic. i’m also a pay check to pay check loser guy but my “portable desk job” and passive residual income allowed me to travel the world for the last 7 years and seldom work. i’m a minimalist who purchases plane tickets instead of flat screen televisions. it was kind of funny to be kicking it on the beaches of rio, phillipine islands, and phuket thailand for 7 years and be rich in free time and mobility but have $3.00 in my checking account. every time i walked across the beach into an internet cafe to check my account balance it was low. but since my income was based on residuals…i just needed to sun bath for a couple more days until the check got deposited. i really need to beef up my residual income with this training, i’m tired of the overdraft fees from the bank. however, i’m super tan and in great shape. i’ll always be broke, but since i’m chasing residual income mobility and free time is abundant.

  54. Great Post John, thanks. Really looking forward to Big Damn Observation #4 and more. 6 years ago, over £30k in debt, but now, none, just saving for a deposit for a house when the market finally tanks in 18 months or so.
    Mind you, only just got out of debt before spending my absolutely last piece of saved cash on the Simple Writing System. But I’d saved the money, and I didn’t need to go into debt for it. As you said in your post, I guess that’s why I paid attention to what was going on. I’d used hard-earned, not ‘easy’-money. And I’ve replaced the money since and got something worth much, much more. I can’t tell you how much that course has helped me sell even without writing a single sales letter. It’ll still be helping me push the nut out further long after your Camry’s gone the way of the Celica. Have a great summer.

    • John Carlton says:

      Hi Denis. Thanks for the note.
      I know you were focused on the SWS, because I read so many of your posts. It’s great to have folks like you so active in the program — keeps the energy level high.
      And that Camry is now six cars back in my history. Lost it in a head-on collision (which I wrote about in a newsletter a few years back). Now happily driving Fords and Mazdas…

  55. Adil says:

    Hey John,

    I wish I read this 9 months ago.
    But I guess everything has a time to learn something eh?

    Also please put the advice in the next post.

    Thank you,

    Adil
    “the almost 21-year-old writer”

  56. Dan Belick says:

    Hey John,

    Lots of good advise there. So, the choices come down to:
    1) Buy stuff
    2)Do stuff
    3)Save

    Sure like to have more opportunity to do all three!
    Always,
    Dan Belick

  57. marc says:

    Boy that’s some interesting advice from an online marketer. Business wouldn’t run without credit cards, and the lure of buying now and paying later. It’s a nice thought but I would be interested in finding out how well business would do, especially online business if too many people followed your example. The U.S. is a consumer driven economy that seems to also be driving the world’s economies. The credit crunch is why the world is having so much financial problems today.
    So I can see what you’re saying is a better way of handling finances but I hope most of us don’t follow that advice. The market has shrunk enough.

    • John Carlton says:

      Nobody said anything about doing away with credit cards. I have several. I just pay ‘em off each month.
      Consuming doesn’t exactly equate with debt. Most people confuse this issue, to their detriment. My point: Get clear on your financial situation. And make good choices. If you go into debt, know why you are, and how you’re gonna get out of it. Stop dreaming, and stop pretending some magical solution will appear later.
      The market would thrive with lower debt, as Japan has.

      • marc says:

        Well I still say that we are a consumer oriented economy. And the world depends on us Americans to buy, buy, buy. If we cut our ability to purchase then sales numbers will decline and less product will be shipped, etc. Just the facts. It’s a nice thought and I think correct thinking to not buy past your ability to pay back, but it still has been the driving force behind out recent economic expansions. So if everyone took your advice I think it would be problematic for the world economies.
        We just have to train the Chinese to take over the role of us super consumer Americans.

        • John Carlton says:

          Almost no one is gonna take my advice, Marc. The lemming-like consumer economy is safe.
          My advice is for the rare dude or dudette who’s ready to get their own life in order, regardless or in spite of what everyone else is doing.

  58. KJ says:

    I liked…no, loved your post! And yes, I want to hear the big-ass observation numero quatro! Bring it on!
    I am strictly a cash buyer… make it and pay it… the recession was a wake-up call. I recommend the cash-basis life-style to anyone. I have more confidence in my ability to produce now than I ever had before…debt is crippling while camouflaging your shackles with baubles and toys.
    Amen John!

  59. Ron says:

    Great advice about living without debt. I wish I had followed this when I was in my 20′s. The great thing that I discovered is that once you eliminate all your monthly debt payments, you will find that it is almost easy to save money and increase your net worth. Now people pay me to use my money instead of the other way around.

  60. # “I pay cash for all my cars, guitars, trips, computers and everything else. The credit card gets paid down to zero each cycle. (The banks hate me for that.)”

    That’s actually an excellent strategy as long as you plan it in the long run. Paying with credit cards leads to a never-ending cycle of debts. And this happens because people can’t generally keep a balance between their needs and wishes (especially wishes) and their budgets.

    Lloyd Burrell
    Publisher
    http://www.officedeskreviews.com

  61. # “I pay cash for all my cars, guitars, trips, computers and everything else. The credit card gets paid down to zero each cycle. (The banks hate me for that.)”

    That’s actually an excellent strategy as long as you plan it in the long run. Paying with credit cards leads to a never-ending cycle of debts. And this happens because people can’t generally keep a balance between their needs and wishes (especially wishes) and their budgets.

    Lloyd Burrell
    Publisher
    officedeskreviews.com

    • John Carlton says:

      And it got worse, just before the economy blew a tire. Many folks out there are like junkies, cut off from the flow of easy money.
      The forced revelations will have profound effects on the global market. It’s gonna be an interesting ride…

  62. walter daniels says:

    I know what you mean about poverty s—s. In the last 32 years, I’ve had 4 businesses go under due to outside (medical usually) problems. I’m working on #5, while I “make” it, on under $1K/month, SSDI income. I have to pay cash for everything, because I have no choice. :-) I plan to continue “Pay as I go,” even when/if I make it.
    A good blog, (no compensation, just a fan) is the “Simple Dollar.”

  63. Todd says:

    Thank you so much for the straight-on advice – I like your style. We have a single-income family (for the most part) and it’s tough to provide for my wife and 5 kids. What hit me most was the “nut” idea. How profound yet so stinkin’ simple! For years I have went from month-to-month thinking “what am I NOT going to pay this month to get by?”. Thank you for your encouragement – it’s contagious. :)

  64. Warren C says:

    I’m gonna drive fast, live hard, and charge charge charge. I’m keepin those plastic babies loaded up. I don’t care what the interest rate is. I have more debt than Lindsey Lohan. When I die and stop paying my credit cards, Chase and BOA will need another bailout. Piss on um.

    Larry Holmes says, “There ain’t no prize for dying debt free.”

    So save your cash for showing off. Pull out a big wad when paying for a beer and watch the eyes light up. Instant credibility. Instant respect. That’s what I like.

    Wake up and smell the road tar. It’s time to charge it, then forget it.

    Get a cash advance to make the monthly payment. Keep that money working!

  65. Ray Paquette III says:

    John,
    “Freaking profound,” indeed. It seemed that you wrote this article just for me: After nearly single-handedly launching a community newspaper to compete against the local stalwart publication with a 100+-year headstart (and kicking its butt for two years, I might add), my publisher pulled the carpet from under my feet by killing the news division and turning the publication into a weekly shopper/mailer — at the inception of the recent economic collapse! Another homeless vet scrapping to survive — lived in my car for a year also — I have embraced the “pay as you go” philosophy out of necessity, but will hold on to it for all of my days! A talented writer/reporter and editor living in rural America, I am still searching for the way back into the saddle; any advice as to getting into the freelance biz and growing my nut? Am currently in The Challenge hoping to develop my Internet Marketing knowledge while seeking opportunities to write to inform and entertain! Will be following you closely in the future!!!

  66. Romeo Blais says:

    SCREW THIS- Im investing my grandmas silver coins into the lotto. Its quick. Easy. No sweaty balls to clean in a shower every night.

    • John Carlton says:

      Funny. Lemme know how that works out for ya…

      • Romeo Blais says:

        oh my,oh my… where could John Carlton be…

        err… whatever…

        JOHN, if your reading this, i need some info. on those multi full page ads from the 1990′s.

        They’re the self defense ads from TRS.

        I’ve been trying to find back issues of these on e-bay to add to my collection (swipe file)

        Question is – were these in the early 90′s(1990-1995) or late 90′s?

        I know some were in blackbelt, but I remember some being in bodybuilding mags.

        Havin a bitch of a time finding them. Thanks Romeo

        P.S. anyone?

        • John Carlton says:

          Mostly early nineties, as I recall, but I was writing them into the new century. I think you can still access some of the early ads through my client’s website, http://www.otsdirect.com. I know they posted many of the original ads, but as their product line changes the older ones get shelved. (BTW, we’re in the process of putting together a new “swipe file” of my old ads and letters. Stay tuned. This will make it simple to know which ads worked, which were experiments, and why I did what I did each time.)
          Great product line, by the way, if you’re into building muscle.

  67. [...] great John Carlton has some wise words on “Money, money, money, money…” with an all too rare post on his [...]

  68. Ozer says:

    Hi,

    God, I just cannot wait to read your next post and insight #4. Reading between the lines, it must be a good copywriting trick: Useful, but incomplete, motivating people to take action (comment on your blog), and wanting for more (read your next post)…

    Thank you for a great post… There is a lot to learn, even in your free posts…

  69. Colin says:

    Fantastic post John.
    I started my adventure a couple of years ago and having made a few mistakes along the way, I’ve learnt from them and have now decided to go back to basics. Your advice is just what I needed.

    Cheers

  70. [...] money, money, money… http://www.john-carlton.com/2010/07/money-money-money-money/ One thing I always remind myself is that money won’t buy me hap­pi­ness. The prob­lem it can [...]

  71. Ray says:

    The article is very perceptive I think: I bet there are a few of us who’ve read it that think.”Gulp… how did I let this happen?”

    After 2 years of quietly burning holes in my reserves for all the wrong decisions I made. Any advice on how to climb out of the debt hole before it completely swallows me? I’m UK based.

    • Corkie says:

      Hi Ray, as I see it you have 4 choices…

      1. stop digging
      2. make more money
      3. follow Warren’s advice above or
      4. a bucket, short rope and a stout limb.

      As for #2…
      Just jump in and start pounding out the cash.
      You could find a product, become an affiliate,
      then follow John’s SWS course.
      Then another product and another etc….

      Best of luck to you, I know you can make it.

  72. Andrea says:

    You’re right! It’s simple: ‘If you can’t already pay for it – you can’t afford it.’ The Number One Rule for putting anything on the cards.

  73. Mark Whyborn says:

    Hi John

    Plugin Cash Flow.

    Cheers
    Mark

  74. Now a days money is become so important that no cares for their own relation where a mother is ready to kill a son/daughter, father is ready to kill a mother and so many things. Everybody needs money but earn in such a way that others feel proud of you

  75. Steve Sux says:

    There a two tragedies in life.
    Not getting what you want.
    and
    Getting what you want.

    steve

  76. Carlon says:

    Excellent advice, especially about not maxing out a credit card to buy an info product or go to a seminar. I just wrote about the same thing last week. It’s never worth it, despite what some people say.

    http://dontstepinthepoop.com/go-broke-by-maxing-out-your-credit-cards-on-info-products

  77. [...] In actuality, I feel a certain sense of relief in writing this. Now, I can stop worrying about people finding out I’m broke, and start making myself “un-broke.” Now, I feel like I can concentrate on fixing what’s broken, rather than simply trying to hide it. Amplify’d from http://www.john-carlton.com [...]

  78. Those are some essential and lifelong tips about money that are most needful today. Thank you

    Cartoon Coach‘s No Risk Coaching Program :)

  79. Good info… Now..let’s make some moneyyyy!

  80. I would say, you would rather NOT have entered into the world of sales copywriting and freelance writing.

    Personal finance seems to be just right for you.

  81. Hannah says:

    I love this. :) After years of living just above the baseline I figured out my nut (which is a much more fun name than ‘monthly budget’ so I think I’ll use that in future!) And the key was to not just cover my basics but to allow some luxury in there too – keeping my hair glossy is one of them. And since I’ve started sticking to my budget .. . I’ve noticed MORE money coming in. I like how life works. Thanks for sharing! This was my 1st ever comment on your blog. Nice to meet you. :)

  82. mark says:

    Unfortunately we live in a society where we have to make money to live,whether you’re a
    working man,run a biz or on the dole.

    I have enough for now,but I need to like most folks to step it up and take my music biz up many notches to make the money that will keep me cash flush for good. Money is Not about happiness,it’s just a way to pay for shit and make sure you have enough to keep a roof overhead,food and essentials.

    Anything beyond that that you can spend on entertainment without ruining your finances
    is all gravy son.”It’s all Gravy”.

    Mark G

  83. Money and contentment is like water and oil, I think both of them don’t mix. People must realize that contentment is good whenever you already got the highest possible goal that you want to achieved. We are all not created equal, some will always exceed our achievement, we must stay happy and contented and enjoy the money if we are blessed to have it.

  84. Retired Vet says:

    John,

    Glad i found your mutterings and sage advice.
    Retired in s/e Asia with an outgo of $475 a month on an income of $2100 per – talk about more money than month.
    Happiness is positive cash flow + health / peace of mind.
    Best of success and Get Busy Living.

  85. leon says:

    I love to pay attention to people who do not have money, or have no intentions of getting it, explain to me money will not make me happy. I’m already happy! I’m seeking the opportunities and access that money provide. My daily occupation is quite therapeutic. I work around individuals who receive government assistance. But, at night, I go and work for the Uber rich. Conversing with those rich guys let me know we are all basically the same, the difference is hiding in our thought process and actions.

  86. John Fisher says:

    Great Stuff, John. How true it is that money can’t buy happiness. It’s so sad that so many people believe that if they have money all of the problems will be over. People is what you need to have happiness, whether it be family, friends, spouses (spice?), significant others, or whatever. Find a person who devotes his life to helping other people be happy, and there you will find a person with the greatest wealth.

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All testimonials and case studies within this website are, to the best of our ability to determine, true and accurate. They were provided willingly, without any compensation offered in return.

These testimonials and case studies do not represent typical or average results. Most customers do not contact me or offer share to their results, nor are they required or expected to. Therefore, I have no way to determine what typical or average results might have been.

Many people do not implement anything I teach them. I can't make anyone follow my advice, and I obviously can't promise that our advice, as interpreted and implemented by everyone, is going to achieve for everyone the kinds of results it's helped some of the folks you read about and hear from here achieve.

The income statements and examples on this website are not intended to represent or guarantee that everyone will achieve the same results. Each individual's success will be determined by his or her desire, dedication, marketing background, product, effort, and motivation to work and follow recommendations. There is no guarantee you will duplicate results stated here. You recognize any business endeavor has inherent risk for loss of capital.

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