The Secrets of Warren Buffett and Grant Cardone

If there is one thing I could go back and tell myself it would be this. In order to be successful, you need to always be moving forward towards wealth. In short, you need to always be saving money. You need to always be gaining and not losing, no matter how small. Everybody dreams and schemes on ways to become rich, instead of using the easiest way of all. Start saving money!

Listen. If you are living in a tiny one bedroom apartment and putting money away every month, you are much better off than the guy living in a huge house who can barely make his payments. In fact, if you are putting money away, this instantly makes you more successful than a lot of Americans. 35% of Americans have zero savings. That means if you just start saving, you are richer than 35 percent of people living in the U.S.

Taking Action…

Is taking massive action the way to success? Maybe, maybe not.

The self help industry has been built on two things. Goal setting and taking action. Taking “massive action” is what Tony Robbins has been selling to folks for 4 decades. He has made millions and millions of dollars selling this advice. But does it work?

For most people I would say no. You can take all the action in the world and still not see success. The reason for this is simple. Most people are working jobs. Now, you can work harder at your job. You can get a raise. You can start to make more money. But if you aren’t saving any of that money, it does no good. Your lifestyle will magically rise as your pay does. This is why you need to train yourself to sock money away.

Now, you could start your own business. You could take massive action. It might work. You could pick a really lucrative industry and have everything absolutely blow up and make you wealthy. But, statistics show this isn’t usually the case. A large percentage of small businesses fail. That is a fact. But nobody wants to hear this. Most people, after buying into the self help industry, think they can outwork this fact. Some will. Most will not.

I am not saying what Tony Robbins and other motivators are saying is wrong. I just think they are putting the cart before the horse. The much better and SMARTER option is to learn how to control your finances. Learn how to live below your means. Get out of debt and start accumulating money. Then, once you do this, start looking for opportunities. Starting a business on a shoestring and planning to take “massive action” is a recipe for disaster.

The much better option is learning how to accumulate money doing what you are currently doing. Then start a business that doesn’t cost much to start and can make a small profit easily. Then run that company like you run your life and start putting even more money away. Rinse and repeat. This is a recipe for success.

Much Lower Stress…

If you learn to live like this I will guarantee one thing. You will have much less stress in your life. Nothing lowers stress like being financially secure.

Don’t be this guy. Become stress free instead.

Look at Warren Buffett. He lives in a small house he bought 50 years ago in Omaha. He doesn’t have billions of dollars worth of homes like most hedge fund managers. Because of this, when the market goes down, he buys up bargains while other managers and banks look to him to borrow money. He has made one of the largest fortunes in history, in part, because of his frugality. He also happens to be a financial genius, but you get the point.

If you listen to Warren Buffett talk, he exudes calmness and rationality. If you look at other fund managers they are the complete opposite. This has been a big key to his success.

The Real Key To Success…

So what is the real secret to success?

  1. Be as frugal as possible. Learn not to waste hard earned money on things that lose their value almost instantly (i.e. cars, boats, clothes, furniture). You can have these things, but buy quality and use them as long as you can. I realize for young people this can be quite a task, but it is a VERY important lesson to learn.
  2. Earn as much as possible. Always be trying to earn more money. This is why saving is so important. People who are struggling to pay bills are typically not on the lookout for more money. They don’t care because it will all go to bills anyways. Earn as much as you can with the skills you have.
  3. Save as much as possible. Start saving every week. If you are in debt, get out as quickly as you can. Then start saving. Start BUILDING your wealth!

So there it is. Be as frugal as possible. Earn and save as much as possible.

I can’t stress how important this frugality thing can be. If you look into the lives of very wealthy people, you will almost always find that they are extremely frugal individuals.

Warren Buffett– His frugality is legendary. He is one of the richest people in the world and lives in the same house he bought when he got married.

This is Warren Buffett’s house. The richest man in the world at one time.

Donald Trump– Most people think of Trump as a spender because of his planes and houses. He is frugal. I once read a book called Trump Nation. This Wall Street Journal reporter said Donald would use the reporters phone whenever he saw him to save minutes. Don’t know if this is true but it wouldn’t surprise me. Rich people like saving money.

Grant Cardone- Grant is a huge internet marketer and influencer who drives Rolls Royce’s and has a private jet. Grant said he drove a Toyota Camry until he was a millionaire. If you get deeper into his stuff he always preaches saving and investing money instead of buying toys you can’t afford.

This is Grant Cardone with his jet. He drove a camry until his investments could afford to pay for a more luxurious car.

These are just a few of the very wealthy people on planet earth. I have read many, many biographies in my life. Frugal spending habits are a thing you find very common amongst the wealthy people who run our planet. Extremely common.

This is not the shiniest or fanciest advice on the planet. But you know what? This is something that everyone can start right now. Everybody, no matter how young or old, can start doing this today. TODAY! Get after it. Start today. It becomes fun once you start. It is inspiring and you start to love it once you start gaining momentum.

Goodbye 2018 And Good Riddance, Make Green in 2019

2018 was probably one of the worst years of my life as far as finances go. In 2017 I decided to go all in on a different strategy for my construction business. It was a disaster plagued by rain, projects bid too low and the ever presence of Murphy’s stupid fucking law. 2018 was a continuation of that and more. The fucking wheels came right the fuck off. Man, what a shit show.

Anyways. This is a success blog. Nobody wants to hear about my troubles. I should be showing you pictures of my cars or something. Or my rented house that I pretend to own. Well, here you go.

z71

Redneck ballin’ right there. That truck makes me sick. Every time I drive it I think of how shitty my year was and how I should be driving something which costs half as much. I did the same thing when I lived in Central America and was driving a BMW convertible. I always wanted a BMW and I had it. When things went bad I hated driving that car. It made me ill. I finally sold it.

Anyways. This year sucked. I cancelled our family vacation because of work. I cancelled my spring and fall walleye fishing trips because of work. I cancelled my life. I ate too much. I drank too much. I stressed too much.

Normally I look forward to Christmas. We are usually winding down our year and all my money starts rolling in. I go to some Christmas plays, Mannheim Steamroller and enjoy Christmas Eve at my church listening to Christmas carols. Not this year. As I watched the band at church on Christmas eve, I was thinking of how I was going to come up with a payment to one of my suppliers. I just didn’t know how it was possible and where this money was going to come from. It ruined my Christmas. Worst Christmas of my life. Hands down.

But you know what happened?

A bunch of checks came in. Some that I had no intention of seeing for at least a month. I was able to make my payment. I let it ruin my Christmas for nothing. All that worry for nothing. What a little bitch. I should have just tried to enjoy what I do have during this holiday season. I have a great family. Great wife. Great kids. We are all healthy. I should have focused on that. But I didn’t. I never do. Not when things are going shitty like this.

Worst year of my life. Good riddance.

I would love to tell you how everything is fine now. It ain’t.

I would love to tell you that if you have faith everything works out. Not yet. I will be sluggin this out for a while. I have a river of shit to swim through. I am too old and wise to know better. I wish I didn’t know, but I do. I know how much work I have ahead of me and the thought alone exhausts me.

But. This year is over. A new one is going to start. And I, for one, am ready and excited for the new year.

I am excited about turning things around. I am excited about losing weight and getting my fat ass back in shape. I am excited about this blog and some products I am going to be developing for it.

I am excited and ready for 2019. I am ready for what the future may bring. Who knows. It just might be the BEST year of my life. I am still here. I am still breathing. I know that I can handle pressure better than I thought. I didn’t melt down under the pressure. I fought and am still fighting. The end may be near, but it ain’t fucking here yet.

So to all of you out there. Make 2019 grand. It’s gonna be a hell of a year. My motto for the year is to Make green in 2019. Turn this ship around and make it better, stronger and more resilient.

Whatever You Do, Don’t Burn The Boats

 

burntheboat

A couple of years ago I decidedĀ  to change my construction business. At the time I was doing 90 percent residential construction. I wanted to break into the commercial market. Because of the cash flow problems I knew that would follow if I just jumped right in, I was doing this gradually. Commercial projects usually pay in 60- 90 days. I would have to pay for labor and materials during this 60-90 days. Without a large line of credit and a backlog of work, it is really difficult.

As the beginning of my work season neared, I was trying to figure out how to make this work. The gradual process of switching from residential to commercial was not fast enough for me. I needed things to move faster. I am getting older and have things I want to do in life. At the time, I was listening to motivational stuff, which I tend to do at the start of yet another year. I was listening to our friend Tony Robbins actually. In the recording, he was talking about going all in and burning the boats. The exact quote was, you can’t take the island if you don’t burn the boats. In other words, go all in and give yourself nowhere to go but forward.

It sounds good. It sounds noble and heroic. I have read many biographies where great men have done exactly this and turned out to be hugely successful. In hindsight, I think this may have been the worst advice I have ever taken in my entire life.

The Idea…

The idea was to take out a loan once I landed some commercial jobs. This money would get me through to the first payment period. Then I would be off to the races.

Now, let me explain something. Going into this, I was completely debt free. Zero business or personal debt. I had money saved, investments, real estate etc.

I figured I had some room to take a little risk. My business had been stagnant for a few years and I needed to do something. So I jumped in. I took out a loan for 50k and increased my line of credit.

I bid some jobs a little cheaper than I should have to load up with spring work. I figured I would fire through these jobs, collect money in 60 days and be rolling. In the meantime, I could bid work for the summer at a higher rate.

The Reality…

Here is what happened. Everything started off fine and I finished a portion of the first job I had bid. I started using borrowed money to pay payroll, material costs, etc. I soon figured out I had bid this work much too low. Oh well, I thought. I will work harder, finish this work and move on to more profitable jobs.

Then the rain came. It rained most of the spring. Every week we were rained out.

The cheaper work I was planning on finishing in the spring got pushed into summer. Then we had a wet summer. So instead of finishing higher priced work in the summer, I was slogging through all this cheap work I had bid for the spring.

By the time fall rolled around, the whole year was collapsing and I was learning a really hard lesson.

The Aftermath…

By the end of the year I was in debt. I had burned through the borrowed money and a lot of other personal money. The year was the worst I have ever had. I actually lost money overall. A good deal of money.

My business was in worse shape than ever and having problems paying suppliers, etc.

Fast forward to now (two years later) and I am still working my way out of this mess. Eventually, I will get out of it and move forward. I am going to lose two years or more that I will never get back. Instead of growing or maintaining, I am rebuilding. Such is life I guess.

The Lesson….

The lesson is this. Don’t take advice from anybody when you know better. I knew better.

To be honest, I didn’t do all of this because of some recording of Tony Robbins telling people to burn the boats. I was already basically planning on doing this. But his ra ra style definitely got me fired up enough to do so. I let my emotions get the better of me. This is what people like him do. This is why I started this blog. To give people real business and life help. Not motivational bullshit.

Business should never be emotional. It should always be methodical. Stick to the basics. The goal should be to make money. Or better yet, never lose money. If you are taking money out of your business and it is profiting, stay the course. Gradually move into new areas.

Don’t burn the fucking boats. Your weapons might fail.

You might need them damn boats to keep the natives from slaughtering you!