Financial Freedom: A Proven Path to All the Money You Will Ever Need
hat do you do for a living?”
Before the Industrial Revolution, most people raised or foraged food, fiber, and fodder from the land. Farmers had to be jacks and jills of all trades, masters of all the technologies needed to survive, and they worked in clans and tribes to thrive together.
Since the Industrial Revolution, we have answered the above question with our jobs—from mining to management. We said, “I am a miner/a secretary/a teacher/a factory worker/a CEO.” Our jobs were our identities and our workplaces, our tribes. The union movement provided a balance of power to the corporation’s focus on the bottom line, and our jobs also became our retirement planning and healthcare. Stultifying, perhaps, but secure.
In the last decade, though, major forces have exerted pressure on the building blocks of this middle-class existence, and the promise of half a century—that every generation will be better off than the last—has landed somewhere in the rubble.
“What do you do for a living?”
You can no longer answer with a profession or a role. To make it, you’ll need every tool in this book’s toolbox for piecing together a work life that is lucrative as well as balanced.
Grant Sabatier was out of money and living back with his parents when he woke up to the fact that “Job Charming” wasn’t coming to save him. He was drifting and knew he would drown if he didn’t change direction.
Enlightenment can come from a cold hard look at reality. In today’s vernacular, Grant got “woke.”
He figured out how to make money through all the legal and ethical opportunities in front of him, and with each step he saw more ways to make money until he went, step by step, from broke to millionaire to financially independent in a little over five years.
Grant’s genius is on full display in the entrepreneurial attitudes and strategies in this practical, fiercely focused book. You may be attracted to the glitter of getting a lot richer a lot faster than you ever thought possible, but I invite you to consider that it’s not so much about the money you will make in the next year or two following Grant’s approach, but rather about the capacity to make money for the rest of your life, no matter what the economic, financial, or investment landscape offers you. We don’t know if robots will clean your house or your version of Alexa (whatever that becomes) not only orders groceries but beats you at poker and sympathizes with you after a tough day. We do know that every human will need to capture the emerging opportunities to get what they need. We will all need this alert relationship with making money.
You can regard the contingent or gig or on-demand nature of jobs as a blessing or a curse, but on a practical level you will need to adapt.
Grant’s bigger point, though, is that making a lot of money isn’t the point. Time is. Time for love, for learning, for caring, for playing, for contributing to others—that’s what you are buying through becoming an effective and efficient earning machine. You can weight your big earning years, as he did, into your twenties and invest as much as possible into moneymaking assets—from the stock market to real estate—so you liberate the rest of your life for your larger dreams. He makes a convincing case that money invested early in your life, through the magic of compounding, grows on its own, making you wealthier by the year.
You don’t have to use these tools to go Grant’s route, though. You can use them to make efficient use of every earning hour and opportunity to simply give yourself more non-earning hours throughout your life for your passionate causes or raising a family or your solo hike on the Pacific Crest Trail.
In Your Money or Your Life, the book I wrote with Joe Dominguez that’s now a venerable personal finance classic, we suggest that you maximize your income without sacrificing your integrity or your health in service of the promise of financial independence. We put no attention on how to maximize your income. We ourselves had not been working for money for two decades! In chapter 6 of Your Money or Your Life, “The American Dream—on a Shoestring,” we offered hundreds of ideas for saving money—some common sense, some radical—but chapter 7 on work and income had one job: to bust the assumption that work = earning money. Work is what we do for love, curiosity, contribution, learning, service, self-development, conviviality, homemaking and home maintenance, shouldering responsibilities for the common good. Most of the world’s work has nothing to do with money. We were making the case that readers could exit wage slavery (being compelled to work by the need for money) and join the owners of wealth whose money works for them. In this sense, Grant’s book fills a major gap in Your Money or Your Life that I didn’t even realize was there. Thank you!
Grant and I stand on solid common ground. We believe there is more to life than money, that mastering our relationship with earning, spending, saving, and investing liberates our time for the real work of becoming better human beings and making the world a better place. We also share a passion for the possibility that establishing a solid financial foundation from which to do this more important work should be available to everyone. Our books are one way we are trying to give this gift of freedom to others, but our partnership is about challenging the collective assumptions that blind us to how financial security for everyone could be possible. Just because a just and equitable society where everyone has a chance to develop and give their gifts has been an elusive dream for generations doesn’t mean that we should not dream it.
It’s like the flight attendant’s instruction to put your oxygen mask (which flows money rather than air) on first and then assist others around you to put on theirs. This book is your oxygen mask. Put it on. Make money efficiently and effectively and buy your freedom. Then join us in making sure everyone can breathe free.
Author of Your Money or Your Life,
New York Times bestseller and personal finance classic
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