Losing everything isn’t uncommon.
We can all name someone who got caught in a financial storm and lost it all. Some are idiots, some are normies, and others are gentle giants that don’t deserve it.
Most people live today as if they’ll have the same net worth (or more) in the future. This is a dangerous way to live.
Complacency is one hell of a drug.
How do I know? Well, as embarrassing as it is, this isn’t an imaginary situation for me. I have actually lost everything multiple times in my life.
It humbles you. It transforms you. It changes how you think forever.
These insights below can help you avoid losing everything, and even provide a blueprint to those who want to make more money and buy their time back.
Get scary therapy
Losing everything destroys your mind.
Don’t sit there and cop a beating. See a psychologist and talk through what happened as a precaution. Yes, if you tell people you got therapy they might think you’re crazy like Jack The Ripper.
But don’t worry about it. Therapy is more common than you think. Lean on a few strong mentors for advice, too. They’ll help snap you out of your funk.
Get an easy job (that’s almost laughable)
There’s no shame in starting from $0.
If you lose your money in a business then it will likely mean you need to get a job for a while. Jumping from failed business to failed business is a disaster. You need time to reflect while still paying the bills.
A job gives you time.
What worked for me was getting a piss-easy job. A job you can do in your sleep, where no one is gonna bust your chops.
My call center job was so embarrassing that friends, family, and ex-colleagues laughed out loud at me.
Once I got the hang of the job I went on auto-pilot. How? I got help from the laziest employee in the company. He’d been there 10 years and taught me all the ways to take shortcuts and not get in trouble.
Once I implemented his system I could escape to meetings rooms to work on my master comeback plan.
You don’t want to status-flex when you’re making peanuts. You want to maximize your work day so you can rebuild financially.
Inject enough risk next time around
With the money earned from your ‘easy job’ you want to invest some of it into assets.
If you’re starting again (or from a low base) then you need to take a little more risk than normal. So I’d invest money into Bitcoin and Ethereum as well as Nasdaq tech stocks.
Both have good upside in the next 5–10 years but also carry enough risk that the return on your money will be decent. Add in some Indian tech stocks if you want to get more diversification away from the US.
Assets = Freedom
Protect your assets like a billionaire
Many people go broke because they make their assets easy to get to.
This time around put your assets in a legal structure — like a trust — so vultures, extortionists, fake lawsuits, liars, and cheats can’t get to them.
This is what billionaires do whether you like them or not.
Don’t accidentally gamble to try win it all back again
Archie Karas went to Las Vegas in 1992 with $50 in his pocket.
He dreamed of the rich life. One Saturday he had a crazy idea. I’ll borrow $10,000 and make money off it at the casino. He took much larger risks than your average gambler … and struck it big.
HE WON $40m!!!
Archie didn’t put a single dollar aside or invest any of his newfound money. As a result, over the next few days, he gave all the money back to the casino at the same tables where he won it.
When you have $0 or are at the bottom end of society, you feel like you’ve got nothing to lose.
The desperation to get ahead blinds you from the risks. It’s never a good idea to gamble. And if you insist on doing it, at least put some of the winnings aside in case your opponent wins.
Enter the beautiful rebuild phase
Now you’ve got an income and are acquiring assets, it’s time to make a comeback.
I love this phase because you have twice the drive and motivation as you did the first time. There’s this level of assertiveness and “get the f out of my way” that bleeds into your execution.
In the rebuild phase you want to find a way to make money online.
This will act as an additional income stream to further protect you from another collapse, and to bankroll your new life. The short-term schedule to pull this off can be brutal.
I worked 2 extra hours in the morning and at night, plus part of the weekend. I still had time to relax but I didn’t lounge around either.
If you don’t take the rebuild phase seriously, you’ll be stuck at the bottom end of society for life. It’s where you get smashed by inflation, have to watch every dollar, and spend less and less each year on experiences.
That’s no way to live.
The extra time you work isn’t on your job. It’s invested into a side project that can eventually make money. Tie it to an obsession, and you have a sexy formula for success.
Cheat on your boss
I’d not only use my free time to rebuild. I’d borrow time from my boss too.
In meetings I’d go on mute and work on my online side project. I’d take extended lunch breaks, too, and grab more hours. And I’d even take a few fake sick days as much as possible.
Everyone at work cheats on their boss already. You can too.
Build an unlikely community
Everyone says build an audience. I say screw that.
Audiences are made up of followers which is a Kim Kardashian vanity metric. Yuck. Cash not likes, thanks.
You build a community by sharing thoughts on LinkedIn, the Elon birdy app, or Reddit and then encouraging people to join a Telegram/Discord group. Here is where you nurture people with tips, tricks, Zoom calls, and special guests you invite to share thoughts.
All you need is a topic. Choose something you google or watch on TikTok every day, so it’s as easy as taking a piss.
Sell time, then sell products
Once you have a community you can then offer products or services.
I found it best to start by selling my time in the form of coaching, consulting, or advising. Finding 1–3 people to sell a service to isn’t that hard. Heck, you could do it in someone else’s community if you wanted to.
I took Zoom calls with these clients outside of work hours. It helped me understand what problems people had with writing online.
As I became more informed, I took the lessons and testimonials from clients and turned them into digital products.
This is the ultimate goal because you create once but get paid two, three, or four times for the same hours you put in. But your community has to be thriving to earn a living from products.
Quit job … and hope not to repeat the process
The last thing I would do is keep building my online income streams until the money outgrew my easy job’s salary. Once it did, I’d quit my job and do everything in my power not to end up at $0 again.
Starting from scratch isn’t the problem. It’s what you do with the opportunity that counts.
The ultimate drug is progress. And starting from $0 gives you unlimited amounts of it, if you’ll let it.
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.