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6 Lessons on Money I Wish I Knew Sooner - That’ve Cost Me 5.5 Years and $2.21M

by | Jul 17, 2023 | Money, Personal Finance

Money is a beast you want to slay early in life.

If you don’t, it wastes your future earning potential, and more importantly, years of your life. I’m a man that wasted roughly 5.5 years of my life working a job I hated to pay bills.

I lost $1.2M overnight through my own incompetence. And I lost roughly another $1.01M in lost opportunities over the last 2 years by sitting on my lazy ass and thinking I knew everything.

We only learn money lessons from our mistakes.

This is my attempt to distill the mistakes I’ve made so you can hopefully avoid some of them. Here are the money lessons I wish I knew sooner.

1. Recessions can rip your face off if you don’t expect them

Everyone’s a genius in a bull market. Wait till the bear market hits.

In 2021 I had a giant smirk on my face. I could buy a Lambo just to piss people off even though I didn’t want one.

The markets were kind. They gave loyal servants who took risks (like me) giant monetary gains. We got a bit cocky. My head certainly exploded in size.

Financial Jesus is what they called me.

Then the recession came hard and fast. It took people by their groin area and through them into a tornado. Layoffs happened at rich tech bro startups. Budget cuts. No more stimmy. A sea of red stock prices.

Many weren’t prepared. The tweets with the Bitcoin symbol on the side of some Dubai luxury car stopped. Social went dark.

No one is ever prepared for a recession. We tell ourselves they don’t happen. The only reason I didn’t get wiped out is because the 2008 financial crisis taught me a lesson or two.

Learn about recessions. Remember they happen every 5–7 years, so keep a war chest of valuable assets close by in case you struggle to stay afloat.

2. All the smart wealthy kids have one thing in common

This guy Taylor had a merch business.

His goal was to sell merch for the most popular Youtube creators. It was a hard goal given he didn’t have much traction.

Taylor obsessively watched their videos. He noticed a detail everyone else missed. All these Youtubers had the same front doors. He figured they must all live in the same apartment building.

So he got to work to find out where the apartment building was. It wasn’t hard to figure out. Then he did something most people wouldn’t do.

He moved into the apartment building.

Once he became a resident he had something in common with these Youtubers. They loved fitness so he assumed they’d probably be in the apartment block’s gym.

Twice a day, every day, he went to that gym.

They showed up. He played it cool. He got to know them. He didn’t sell them his damn merch business idea. They became his friends. These friendships turned into business partnerships.

Once he launched merch for them it sold out in minutes and made him millions. The money lesson here is simple…

If you want to make money you have to be in the right environment. You have to find your tribe and go where the opportunity is rather than wait for luck to strike (cause it won’t).

Last week I got semi-confused.

A bunch of young buck creators have come from nowhere and built huge audiences. I’ve been busting my ass for 9 years and am only just ahead of some of them.

I’m not jealous. No. I’m curious.

Then I find this photo…

6 Lessons on Money I Wish I Knew Sooner - That've Cost Me 5.5 Years and $2.21M

Image credit: @zachpogrob via a tweet

The group’s success is no accident.

They’ve been hanging out with each other. They’ve taken each person’s unique skill and stacked it to fill in the gaps in their collective knowledge.

I didn’t do this.

No, I tried to go it alone and guess my way to success. I refused to join communities or pay for masterminds. And I was stupid. I’d be 10x wealthier if I had of got around more people with the same goal as me.

Smart kids build empires in groups. Copy them.

3. You replicate the investment habits of your closest friends

Everyone talks about networking.

I think it’s overrated in the way it’s presented. Choosing the right friends is important. But looking at your friends based on their investment habits can be just as crucial.

I had a friend who loved to gamble at the casino. I thought slot machines were the devil and refused to play them with him. I’d just watch.

One night I started to play the slot machines because he insisted I did. Three weeks later I was addicted like he was. I gambled like a drunken sailor and thought I was “having fun.”

It’s hard to resist the urge of bad investing habits.

That’s why it’s better to hang around people that aren’t stupid with money, otherwise you’ll inherit their misfortune and become a victim of society.

4. Letting fear hold you back stops you taking the plunge into greatness

I could have quit my job years before I did.

I don’t like to say that too loudly because it’s a big mistake. There were months I’d make $20,000 on the side and still stay at my job for the piss-poor salary and abuse from my boss.

Looking back, fear held me back.

I believed the BS about career gaps. I thought if I chose entrepreneurship the corporate world would never have me back. I now know that to be a lie.

Corporations love entrepreneurial employees. They often have the best ideas and the kind of drive that’s rare.

Failing at a business doesn’t make you a failure.

So you can overcome the fear, quit a job, fail at a business, and still get another job again. Once you realize this you’ll stop letting the fear of quitting your job hold you back.

5. New income streams are worth finding

The gurus make out like new income streams are a piece of piss to find.

Not quite. I’ve found it harder than it seems. The only strategy that’s worked for me is to experiment. Some income streams are cool but they make me feel like a sleaze bag.

Other income streams require too much effort or time to get off the ground. What I wish I had done sooner is just try more new income streams out.

You won’t know what makes money for you unless you do.

This is where many people go wrong. They want someone to tell them which income stream is best from them. But nobody knows you like YOU.

Become an experimenter.

6. Money doesn’t grow if it sits in the bank

My relationship with savings accounts is rocky at the best of times.

The interest a savings account pays is taxed heavily and melted away by inflation. But we’re all secretly addicted to our savings account.


It’s where we keep emergency funds. These savings help us maintain our (financial) mental health. They help us sleep at night.

But if we want our money to grow we have to take some risk. It doesn’t mean we’re stupid and chuck it all into a dog coin. Although it does mean we have to at least put our money to work.

The two best ways are: 1) Own parts of businesses 2) Invest in starting your own business. Both paths will make your money grow 3x faster than investing in real estate, bonds, or a savings account ever will.

Risk = Growth

You just have to work out how much risk you’re willing to take — that’s deeply personal.

This article is for informational purposes only, it should not be considered financial, tax or legal advice. Consult a financial professional before making any major financial decisions.

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