Why Retirement is No Longer Feasible and Financial Independence is a Requirement
Do you want financial independence?
Imagine not having to worry about your finances ever again. No bills or possible emergencies to freak out about.
You can book those holidays you’ve always wanted throughout the year, you can stop trading your time for money like a hamster spinning on its wheel.
The digital age has completely transformed how we create and grow businesses as well as make money.
Heck, it’s completely changed how we do everything in our lives.
We all have incredible opportunities to create businesses that can reach millions of people all over the world.
Instead of trading our time for money, we can work to build multiple income streams that produce passive income for us. We have access to a huge amount of passive income ideas on the internet.
Starting a business has never been easier than it is today.
But that doesn’t make it easy.
What’s also changed significantly recently is the way we work and the choices we have when it comes to careers and corporate jobs.
In this post, I’ll cover why the traditional route that we’ve all been sold is no longer feasible for the majority of people.
Let’s get right into it!
Why Retirement is so 2000 and late
Let’s just get one thing straight, this isn’t going to be one of those rants about spending all your money and living for the moment because tomorrow might not come.
I’m not saying you should stop saving money or spend it all on the things you want. But let’s be real here – retirement is old-fashioned.
Retirement operates on the assumption that we go college to get a job and work for 40+ years to eventually retire and finally start doing the things in life we’ve always wanted to do.
And for some people, this is okay.
But for a significant portion of us, spending the majority of our time building someone else’s dream just isn’t going to cut it.
What if you want to:
- Travel to different countries and see the world?
- Enjoy more freedom to spend time with friends and family?
- Start a business so you can create wealth and do something that’s close to your heart?
Should you really be putting all these things off until you’re 65+?
I think not!
We weren’t put here on this planet to sit in a cubicle for forty years.
We’re here to inspire, to create, to have amazing experiences and to evolve into our strongest selves.
What’s Financial Independence?
Retirement shouldn’t be your goal in life. It’s much more exciting to work on achieving financial independence instead.
Why wait forty years for freedom and flexibility when you can legitimately achieve it in three years or less?
I define financial independence as:
“the ability to make choices in life based on what makes you happy instead of what brings in money”
It’s when money stops limiting you from the things you want to do in life. True financial independence also provides time freedom so you aren’t trading your time for money. Instead, you set up systems that make money work for you.
Financial independence can be achieved at varying degrees. You don’t need to switch from corporate job to million dollar business straight away.
Need a roadmap to financial freedom, here’s one:
The Current State of Personal Finance
Financial freedom has no age restrictions. I’ve seen people as young as 18 achieve it through building online businesses that generate five or even six-figure sums in profit every single month.
But this is obviously the exception to the rule. The majority of people spend most of their lives trading time for money, working for someone else and living paycheck to paycheck.
A recent study by the Federal Reserve found that 46% of Americans don’t have enough money to cover a $400 emergency expense!
Instead, they’d have to borrow money from friends or put it on a credit card.
This shocking statistic paints a bleak picture for personal finance management and financial freedom for the masses. It shows us that most people are risking their financial security by living paycheck to paycheck.
The Mountains We Had to Conquer
In our personal situation, my partner Ahmad and I have doubled-down on our financial future by focusing all of our energy on learning and establishing streams of passive income.
Passive income is the way forward for anyone looking for financial freedom.
The truth is, we struggled so much at the start. There really is no such thing as an overnight success. True sustainable, long-term prosperity requires years of dedication and honing your craft.
Two years ago, we knew pretty much nothing about online business and entrepreneurship. More importantly, we treated our side projects like hobbies and didn’t put 120% into them. Even when we did start taking things seriously, we had endure many painful lessons and perceived failures when things just didn’t work out.
One of the biggest problems we had at the start was a simple lack of focus. We were distracted by other opportunities out there and stopped focusing on one business to try something else, assuming it would create an income for us in a shorter space of time.
To be totally honest with you, we were just doing it all for the money at the start. Deep down we lacked a concrete why. And for some reason in business, when it’s all about the money, it never seems to work out.
Since then, we’ve really spent time investing in ourselves. We changed our habits, started reading more books and set aside time each day for some form of learning.
We took on the mantra of the lifelong student. We became sponges that absorbed what was useful and discarded what was not.
Figuring out Why
Figuring out your why can be really tough. Most people assume money will make them happier — and it will, to a certain extent. While money gives you options, it doesn’t give us what we all actually want — fulfilment.
Finding your why involves being open and honest with yourself. Ask yourself what’s the real reason you want to achieve the goals you’ve set for yourself…
Is it truly to serve? To help people achieve their goals? Or is it really because you want to feel validated by the people around you? To feel worthy and powerful.
Negative beliefs will sabotage your goals. This is why it’s so important to take a long hard look in the mirror and ask yourself these difficult questions.
In the last few months, the transformation has been nothing short of amazing.
The change in habits has changed who we are as people. We’ve matured and discovered our purpose when it comes to business. We’ve enriched our relationship tenfold by investing in ourselves.
While we aren’t raking in the cash at the moment, we know we’re on the right path. We know the exact end results we want to achieve and we know how to achieve them.
I truly believe that personal growth is at the root of successes in every aspect of life. Health, wealth and relationships included.
Finding Freedom at the Start of Your Journey
Bringing things back to financial independence. Achieving the freedom and flexibility we all crave isn’t an all or nothing affair. It’s a gradual, linear process – an exciting journey from paycheck dependency to total financial nirvana.
Close to the start of your financial freedom journey, it’s possible to attain partial independence that will provide more lifestyle choice.
An example of this could be a side business you’re running that brings in $1000 a month. Granted, this isn’t totally life-changing, but it certainly gives you more room to breathe in terms of money.
From personal experience the first few hundred dollars I made online was the most impactful. One of the fastest ways to get started online and learn the fundamentals of running a digital business is to start freelancing.
This was my gateway to online business. I managed to secure a couple of freelance contracts at $600 a month each. These contracts involved writing a couple of short articles in the evenings.
It would roughly 15 hours out of my week. But it paid me an extra $1200 a month.
Isn’t that cool?!
Partial independence is usually the first step people take before diving into something full-time. Working on a side project is a perfect example of something that can start small but quickly replace and surpass your full-time income.
Mind Over Matter
Building wealth and accumulating resources is more of a mindset than anything else. Just think, we’ve never had access to information like we do now. We can learn almost anything by searching the internet.
All the resources are at our fingertips, the only thing that’s stopping people is the way they think.
Some people assume that you still need multiple five or six-figures to invest before you can start a business. Or that wealthy people just got lucky somehow. In some cases, it’s just the good ol’ fashioned fear of failure stopping people from taking the plunge.
Regardless of any excuses, we’ve never been so blessed with the opportunities that we have now. The personal computer and the internet revolutionised the way we all live our lives. All the information we could ever want is out there for the taking and financial freedom is truly within reach for those that choose to pursue it.
I thought it would be really useful to give you a quick overview of ways to make passive income and build wealth online.
Some of these ideas certainly aren’t passive at the start but with some hard-work, consistency and perseverance, they can turn into wealth-building assets that produce passive income over the long-term.
Need a wealth building plan? Here’s one you can use using real estate to get you there:
The Niche Affiliate Website
A niche affiliate website is a site that solves a very specific problem or one that specialises in a certain area.
It operates on the business model of affiliate marketing. A form of referral marketing where you get paid for recommending products/services to people.
Anytime someone makes a purchase through your recommendation, you get paid!
A popular niche affiliate website is one that is monetised using Amazon. You can sign up to Amazon as an affiliate and promote ANY product in their humongous catalogue.
This site would typically target a set of low-competition keywords in Google and have great content that answers questions people may have on the topic.
Let’s say I’m a survival nut. I love blogging about the top survival tools that I use on my adventures.
I would monetise my site by writing reviews on the best survival tools, such as swiss army knives and fire starter kits!
Before that though, I would perform some keyword research to find out what survival tools people were searching for. Then create content around those search topics and promote them for them to rank in the search engines for my keywords!
While it sounds deceptively simple, it takes a lot of work to build a successful affiliate site.
But once you put in the work once, your website can receive thousands of hits every month and generate passive income for you for years to come.
The Airport Parking Investor
You’ll never have guessed this one! Investing in airport parking provides higher ROI than traditional stock and bond investments.
You can expect to receive up to 12% ROI (in some cases).
It’s a safe way to put your money away as the aviation industry continues to grow thanks to a surge in international travellers (in the UK).
What makes this passive income idea super attractive is the relatively low investment requirement. It’ll cost you roughly $30,000 to buy a parking space. The more space you buy, the higher ROI you can expect to receive!
The Digital Business Investor
What if you could own a profitable online business without the painfully slow start-up phase?
What if you could generate passive income without doing months of active hard-work?
Buying an existing online business is a way to do just that. You can invest in a business that’s already making thousands a month in profit, without all the hassle of starting from scratch.
You’d be surprised how cheap some of these businesses sell for. I’ve seen affiliate sites producing $1000 a month in profit sell for around $5000.
These do tend to be exceptions to the rule though and usually the prices are much higher.
For just a few thousand dollars, you can purchase a business that’s already making at least one thousand dollars a month in profit. This blows every single traditional investment strategy out of the water.
But I do need to give you some words of caution. Buying an online business is no joke. If you don’t have experience with digital marketing and business in general, it could be a disaster.
That’s why it’s so important to invest in your education first before making any investments.
Just imagine the power of mastering sales and marketing. It’s the lifeblood of any business and if you take the time to master powerful sales principles, you’ll be in a very powerful (and profitable) place.
Thanks Kimberly for sharing ideas on multiple income sources and very interesting wealth building ideas! Who knew you could invest in airport parking spots?!
Author: Kimberly is a young and passionate online business blogger on Bengu.
She’s crazy about helping people transition from employee to financially free entrepreneur. She spends most of her time crafting compelling, actionable content that her readers can easily digest.