To become a minimalist
In 2017, I found out that my business surpassed 7-figures of revenue in a 12 month period.
This translates to multiple six figures in profit personally, however, I still live like someone earning only $50,000 a year.
I own one car (a stick shift sedan), live in the same apartment I’ve lived in for the past 3 years, wear inexpensive clothes, fly coach, and generally keep my purchases and possessions minimal.
I focus almost all of my time, money, and resources on creating new experiences and improving relationships… Not things.
And this has TRANSFORMED my financial life forever.
I no longer have to worry about money.
I don’t stress about my income or bills because I don’t spend money on material items that don’t bring me real happiness, freedom and peace of mind.
Image Credit: Andrew Ferebee
And you know what?
I’m the happiest that I’ve ever been in my life.
When you spend your money on things that bring joy into your life like good foods, fun experiences, travel, personal growth and time with people that you love, I can guarantee that you will be happier (and richer) than you were when you were when you spent money on the latest phones, TVs, clothes and cars.
I never spent a dime on education, and I got an offer from Google straight out of college.
Growing up, many of my friends went to expensive private high schools, but I went to a specialized arts public high school called LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts which had less than 10% acceptance rate. How? When I was in middle school I would constantly draw. I drew everything — friends, flowers, landscapes, self portraits. I even had my own portrait business in the school yard where I sketched my friends for a few bucks. Getting accepted to the prestigious LaGuardia Arts High School was my first great financial decision. It taught me that it is possible to get a world class education for free.
LaGuardia was a dream school. They played guitar in the halls and the musicals were of Broadway caliber. There were celebrity students like Madonna’s daughter. All students took 3 arts classes on top of the standard high School subjects. As a high school kid, I was pretty resourceful. I would go to any free classes I could find: Yoga to the People in Manhattan, Summer Art classes in Stuyvesant High School, free SAT prep classes, museum classes…I was a full on nerd. I even enrolled myself in a free after school program that taught us about careers in advertising at the Art Directors Club in NYC. Although high school was amazing, the best education was adventuring in New York City for free.
I decided I wanted a career in marketing; it was the perfect blend of art and business. While my friends partied, I would stay up all night with my SAT books and writing college application essays. Soon, the acceptance letters came in the mail — $50K a year tuition on average for the creative schools. Finally, I got an interesting offer: a full ride scholarship to a public business school in NYC, along with $7.5K to study abroad and a free MacBook Pro. Can you guess which offer I went with? ;-)
I used the $7.5K to study in Barcelona and Paris with zero out of pocket. They even covered food. Some of my friends are drowning in debt because they chose to go to schools with fancy gyms and football fields. I hustled my way through college with 4 internships and freelance design work. I lived at home, had a 4 hour daily commute, and the ‘campus life’ was non-existent. I graduated with zero debt and an honors degree, without any financial help.
I got a job offer from Google straight out of college and I am absolutely loving it.
And yes, I still get free food. ;-)