Remote bookkeeping side hustle? (really?? How much can you make per hour?)

Resources

  1. Free website tool to promote your virtual bookkeeping business http://nigelchua.com/wealthyaffiliate
  2. Online Payment (paypal.com, payoneer.com)
  3. Accept crypto payments, create account here https://nigelchua.com/crypto
  4. Hire freelancers to design your logo and namecards here https://nigelchua.com/fiverr

Bookkeepers are very, very important professionals in any businesses (even personal lives too, if you take your money seriously).

They

  • make sure your revenues and expenses are tracked carefully
  • bank statements are reconciled and tallies
  • any outstanding amounts are chased after
  • can even do payrolls and more

…but that being said, one of my biggest weakness…is that I cant stand to do bookkeeping and accounting.

I know cos I’ve been paying for remote and virtual book keeping ever since I started my first business, waaaaaaaaay back in 2008. I remember the first month of me futilely trying to do the accounts. It was so difficult, stressful and I dont know how many hairs I pulled out of my head in frustration.

More than 48 hours but still doesn’t tally or makes sense, whimpering, sad noises.

And our accountant sorted out in just 1 business hour lol – very obviously my lack of attention to details works against me. And knowing fellow entrepreneurs like myself, I assure you that bookkeeping will never, ever go out of fashion (you were right, dad, too bad I just suck at bookkeeping lol)

We still pay for bookkeepers and accountants till today.

Why virtual bookkeeper?

First, as I mentioned above – it’s a freaking necessity.

All businesses need to make sure their accounts and books are in order, if not they may be in for a nasty surprise if they’re not clear what’s happening with their numbers eg if they need to do more sales, cut back more unnecessary spending etc.

Secondly, it is behind the scenes and very important role.

Not everyone wants to be CEOs, directors or sales – there are much important responsibilities and things to do such as accounts and bookkeeping and finance that is very important too. Like how I do well in face-to-face, marketing, sales and management, there are others who just shine when it comes to numbers (not me lol.

Third: Remote!

This work can be done from anywhere – your hometown, during your travels, visiting friends and loved ones, or even as you care for sick loved ones.

How to start

No license required

I was surprised when I found out about this, and of course, most employers prefer someone who has formal education eg having a diploma or degree in accounting.

But there are many entrepreneurs like myself who would pay a bookkeeper if the bookkeeper is professional, accurate, efficient and well priced. Having good attitude goes a long way too.

If you want to be a virtual book keeper, you can

Formal studies

This is like going for college and universities for that diploma, degree or masters in accounting.

This is the most formal and long-route to becoming a bookkeeper, and it can take you years to graduate and come out to work as a bookkeeper. Usually a professional bookkeeper.

However, there is another path, which is simpler and quicker:

Self learning

Like attending courses and getting certificates in accounting.

You can do these online or in institutions in your town typically.

Your first virtual bookkeeping client

First, get your basic marketing stuff ready

You dont need more than 7 days (I did say basic eh), just

  • name cards with your name, contact and services
  • website with more details
  • bank account

Then, reach out to your direct network

This is calling and speaking personally to people you directly know, such as

  • First tier: close family
  • Second tier: extended family
  • Third tier: friends
  • Fourth tier: colleagues
  • Fifth tier: social media

Practice sharing what you do eg:

Hey NAME, I’m starting a virtual book keeping service business. I help businesses with book keeping, accounting, monthly and quarterly reporting and even payroll. If you know someone who may benefit from my services, please refer them to me. Thank you so much.

Notice I didn’t market, promote or sell directly – it’s an indirect sale, and I find it works better by not turning people off and when others refer others, word of mouth is even more powerful.

Paid networking?

Consider joining paid networking events and memberships as well for you to get steady referrals and leads.

An example of paid networking is BNI (business networking initiative) which costed me something like $500 per year (weekly gatherings also incur food and beverage costs) and the interesting thing is that the members of the group will refer specifically to someone within that group.

eg if they meet someone who needs your virtual bookkeeping service, they will connect you up

Of course there are more admin stuff involved including one-to-one meeting with each other, larger meet ups, admin duties etc (think of it like a business club).

Fees – what to charge?

The easiest is to call 3-5 of your competitors to ask them for their fee structure and services and then you can collate the information and decide.

Generally it falls into 2 categories

Per hour billing

Per hour billing, as its name, is basically billing by the hour.

Sometimes, some businesses wants a once-off so they go by hourly, but most of the time, businesses like mine prefer something more consistent, bringing us to:

Retainer

Retainer model is the same as membership and subscription.

You can tier up your retainer model by number of transactions or by hours (whichever easier for you) and bill your clients based on their needs on a monthly basis.

Lastly, protection

To be safe, I will always recommend bookkeepers to purchase general insurance:

  • general liability insurance
  • professional indemnity insurance

in the event something goes out of whack (mistakes do happen – we’re all human and sometimes we cock up).

Crypto.com Revives CRO Coin Card Crypto Staking (were we trolled?)

2nd of May 2022, Crypto.com announced in an email that they are killing their famous crypto card cro staking program (see this video: https://youtu.be/M1X9SZxTZok)

Of course there was very vocal hoo-ha and complaints.

There were many large amount sell orders too, in the millions of CRO coin being sold. Personally, as a mixed income investor and growth investor, CRO was up my alley because it provided me with income

  • 12% from Earn and
  • 12% from Stake

When the Earn program was knee capped by adding the tiering in (basically anything above USD 30K, the earn is pittance) – I knew their earn program days were over.

So I felt it was still okay that I could still lean on 12% from CRO card staking.

But when they announced overnight (literally the night before, as I got the email on 2nd May but the effects started 1st May), it was brutal and sincerely, fucking unprofessionally annoying.

I considered, and since I couldn’t get income from CRO, I think my CRO bag is too much, so I decided to

  • unstake my Icy White tier CRO amounts
  • sell those CRO amounts for both top ten crypto as well as to fiat (withdraw to my bank account)

I still have a good chunk of CRO staked in the exchange, but I’ll think about what to do with it later when the staking is finished.

Is CDC out of money?

Some of the hearsay (lol, in a nod to Depp vs Heard case) is that Crypto.com is outta money because they spent too much in adspend (advertising spend).

It’s unlikely they are out of money. This year itself, in January, they set aside USD 500 million to invest in early stage crypto start ups (ie crypto venture capitalism), paid out of their balance sheet (ie cash from business operations). They have cash.

So….if they weren’t outta cash, then why?

A few reasons in my speculated theories (hey, I’m no insider, but I can estimate why)

  1. It was in their plan all along to reduce such non-revenue-generating expenses. Paying out in crypto earn and cro staking doesn’t generate revenue for them at all. It was good and sexy to attract clients and users* (the keyword here is USERS. They want users who use their platforms and trade, so that it generates revenue).
  2. Secondly, they burned 80% of CRO so it’s possible that they need to create a buy-back event AS well as shake out passive, non-active non-revenue generating hodlers.
  3. This isnt their first time reducing earn or stake rewards since they started operations.

What should you do?

Dr Crypto Finance said this in this article: https://drcryptofinance.substack.com/p/crypto-dot-com-cdc-cro-crypto-crisis?

  • Don’t Sell Your CRO Right Now —> CDC is changing its fundamentals. This doesn’t mean it has lost its fundamentals. I, personally, believe it will succeed in its rebrand and will give Binance, BSC, and BNB a run for their money. Don’t sell for a loss now when you can sell for a profit 2 years from now (inflation-adjusted…)
  • Don’t Buy Anymore CRO Right Now —> market conditions are currently very volatile and I, honestly, have no idea where the price of CRO will settle. I believe CRO will not fall below 0.20 USD/CRO but I also might be wrong if CDC takes actions to move the price further down. At the end of the day, I think you have 2 years of bear market instability on your side.
  • Prepare To Buy More CRO In The Next 6-12 Months —> if you haven’t lost faith in the company, you may consider buying more CRO but at the 0.20-0.25 USD/CRO price point. Bear in mind that your DeFi wallet will continue to offer you ~12% returns on staking your CRO through various validator nodes if you do choose to buy CRO in the next 6-12 months.

What am I going to do?

For me, as I prefer and need to have income as well as growth (capital gains), I cannot just wait for CRO price to increase. I know their price will increase gradually with their

  • defi
  • cronos chain
  • crypto early-stage investing
  • others

But I need income to live. So for me, I liquidated a chunk to both

  • fiat, which I’ve drawn out to my bank account
  • top 10 non-stable coin positions

I’ll be withdrawing more crypto to fiat purchasing a rental property that has more stability.

Am I still in CRO?

Hell yeah.

I believe they can be a strong contender to Binance as they grow. I am still annoyed at the way they communicate and do things, and moving forward, I am setting my expectation that eventually there will be zero earn and stake rewards, and my returns on CRO will be purely on price action of CRO coin.

How To Save $1000+ This Month (and every month)

My preferred way to saving $1000 a month is the “pre-paid expenses” (including investments FIRST) ie I will set aside $1K and chuck that into investments, and then pay bills/mortgage/utilities/necessities, and then just use the rest without guilt.

Because I’ve “sorted” the core financial work and stuff that I want done.

But if you wanna squeeze out $1K or more for an upcoming large expense, or to invest more, here are 4 simple tactics you can do:

#1 Retire unused or under-used monthly subscriptions

Such as streaming media such as NetFlix, Disney+, Hulu, Spotify – there are just so many streaming services out there. Kill off the ones you use least/lesser. This can save you around $20-$50+ depending on how much you have.

#2 Slice your underused phone and internet bills.

For your phone bills, you can make more whatsapp/messenger calls (calls over internet), change carriers and even downgrade your plan if you find that you’re not using as much data/voice/SMS.

The same goes for your internet bills.

#3 Plan your meals**

This is one of the biggest movers in terms of savings.

An average meal in US is $20+, so if you can eat home or pack meals during workdays (assuming 5 workdays a week), that’s a saving of $20 x 3 meals a day x 5 weekdays per week x 4 weeks a month = $1200 (if you eat 2 meals a day, that’s a savings of $800 a month).

Of course, have your social meals on weekends with family and friends too (which becomes more special when it’s weekends out eheh) =)

#4 Plan and limit your “silly spending”

We all have impulse purchases and silly spendings, so instead of buying impulse stuff on an as-when basis, which has no limits, why not set aside a budget and a day a month to spend on “silly buying”, without guilt or grief?

This makes me look forward to these silly spending days.

These are just 4 tactics as part of your financial education and money saving tactics that you can do this month to save $1K or more, based on reducing expenses that you dont use in the first place. Explore which expenses are unnecessary to you, and adapt accordingly.

What to do with the $1K savings?

Invest it in safe investments, and set aside a portion to upgrade yourself with more skills and maybe open a business too.

Or treat yourself or your loved ones to a holiday – whatever rocks your boat.

How to get money to finance your passive income goals (and dreams)

How To Get Money To Finance Your Passive Income Goals

Sometimes when I share my story where I started from zero to build up a 7-figure portfolio, people dismiss and summarize my wealth journey as fluke, that i’m somehow a lucky bastard.
Some think I was born rich because I look rich lol
But bros…I was born in a middle-class-to-poor family, and I have lots of memories of how we grow up pretty broke, some examples:
  • standing at the glass window of KFC and my embarrassed mother shoo-ing us away
  • returning cash gifts to my parents to “recycle” and give back
  • I ate a LOT of bean sprouts and eggs and carbs
  • oh the carbs – we would bulk buy plain biscuits and noodles from MAKRO, no longer around, and had lots of oatmeal, rice, porridge (oats or rice)

I really, really, really worked, learnt, saved, learnt some more to get to where I want to go, this was the typical life I had last 8+ years:

  1. Grind/worked 16-hour days, 7 days a week for 8 years after graduating (still working tho)
  2. Reinvesting every dollar, living very frugally
  3. …whilst people around me go on holidays, parties and buying whatever they liked

Is it easy to build passive income and retire early? Hell no!

It’s bloody tough and hard….if it’s easy, everyone would have lots of money, six pack abs and look forever 16 right (ehehe).
Of course I do it because it’s worth it – to me it means a lot to get streams of passive income as early as you can in life, ideally before 45 – so you can spend the next 45 years of your life playing and doing shit that’s important to you.

Ben Settle’s Gran Torino Story (from a movie) and what the movie taught me

I got an email from Ben Settle, and it summarizes how I began building my wealth and passive income journey. I figured it’s a good sharing story too.
Let me tell you the story told in Ben’s email:
==== Snippet from Ben’s email ====
So the snippet from the “Gran Torino” screenplay.
In the scene the old grouchy main character Walt — played by Clint Eastwood — is talking to the young loner teen Tao who he befriends about the valuable tool set in his garage, and how he got it.
TAO: I can’t afford to buy all this stuff.
WALT: I didn’t buy all this stuff at once, blockhead. I’ve lived here for fifty years. A man stays in one place long enough he tends to attract a decent set of tools.
TAO: Yeah, but…
WALT: Look, kid, I think I know where you’re going with this. You don’t need everything to maintain a house. I’m going to let you in on a little secret.
[Walt slaps down THREE items in quick succession.]
WALT: This is for you. Roll of duct tape, can of WD-40, and a pair of vise-grips. Any man who’s worth a shit can do half his household jobs with these three things. In the odd chance that doesn’t work out, you can borrow something.
And so the script goes…
==== End snippet from Ben’s email ====

2 points I picked up from Gran Torino story:

#1 – Start wherever you are, and start now.
Maybe it’s saving and investing $100 a month first. Or less or more, I don’t care.
Just start and keep going.
#2 – Keep it simple basic when you’re starting out
  1. Roll of duct tape = earn more / side hustle
  2. Can of WD-40 = stop buying shit that don’t advance your passive income goals
  3. Pair of vise-grips = investing and reinvesting into safe and reliable defensive assets

You just start where you are

You dont need a million dollars to start the ball rolling.

You dont need the best phones or computers or softwares or people.

Just start where you are and keep going.

I chose to freelance, and increased my base salary by at least 100%.

Entrepreneurship to earn more

So, I mentioned that I have / had some skills right? I’m a trained and license occupational therapist, so I can do related work in nursing homes, house calls etc.

I contacted an agency and secured a freelance job, which within first month increased my take home from $2000 before bonus to $4800 net.

Now before people start mentioning that I’m “luckier than some” because I had these skills and parents that funded my studies, I will agree. And I will add that you start where you are. Some of you will have skills and some dont. Some will have debt and some dont.

Whatever it is, start where you are.

It is waaaaaaay more important that you start and keep going, rather than having perfect line-up in your situation

I had no money when I started, so I spent what I had: time. I read blogs, books from libraries, met people and asked questions. As we earned more, we invested everything into growing the company. I went for classes and bought books and attended seminars on sales, money, management, marketing etc to improve my skills.

Made so many mistakes by upsetting clients or vendors, all the mistakes in the book.

We undercharged so much, and made little.

I was shit at negotiating, fearing that clients wont be happy.

I read and re-read all the marketing blogs and seminar materials I paid for.

And continued serving.

70% were happy, and 30% weren’t.

These got me experience dealing with realities of money, business and clients. It also got word of mouth going. The 70% referred me more clients.

Whenever possible, we took out some money to pay down our home so that we lived without debt.

I continued learning from the lessons and the processes on money, business and clients. I’m still learning and growing today, since I started my first business when I was 20 years old. I’m 40 years old today.

I continued to apply as I learned, and we grew the business more and more, and it was eventually acquired for a tidy 7-figure sum. I took that money and put some in real estate, and somehow, much went into crypto.

I’m going for classes to learn how to build an online business as well as use the money generated from crypto to live on where I pay for taxi, meals, grocery, even my power, water and gas bills!

So on and so forth.

Repeat until done

You may start your passive income and early retirement journey in debt or from zero, but as you stick with it long enough, keeping unnecessary costs low, earning more with side hustling and investing/reinvesting, you will find that your portfolio will grow and compound with time and continued investment.

You dont need to start out with a huge amount.

If you’re like me, starting out from zero, then you only need the retire early equivalent of duct tape, WD40 and vise-grips. My answer and conclusion is to start and keep going. Even if it’s $100 a month. Start there, keep at it. Pickup a side hustle, earn a couple hundred or more and chuck that into Vanguard. As you earn more, invest more and more

Work, save, invest, reinvest.

Do this again and again, over time.

Until you reach your portfolio target and ideal take home from investments.

Then you’re done, and onto the next.

6 Side Hustle Ideas For Single Mums (that you can start within the week)

6 Side Hustle Ideas For Single Mums (that you can start within the week)

Being a single mum is not easy, and I got asked earlier on how single mums can get ahead financially.

Firstly, is to aggressively cut out unnecessary expenses (when money is tight; once we earn more and have more than enough passive income, we can indulge more.) In the beginning, cut out all unnecessary expenses and focus on “core / necessary” stuff, such as basic-level roof over head, food, water, transport etc.

But there is only so much one can cut back on, save and be frugal over – there reaches a point where it’s not beneficial to cut back, and can be detrimental. That’s why I always recommend earning more, and the 6 side hustle ideas for single mums are:

#1 and #2: Care.com and SitterCity.com

Where you can sign up as a baby sitter, carer for older people, run a day care and get paid hourly from $12+ per hour

#3 Fiverr.com

Fiverr is a marketplace for those with specific skills such as graphic / logo design, website and wordpress development, writing and editing as well as other skills can be sold to entrepreneurs and other side hustlers.

It’s a marketplace, so you will have competition, but there are many agencies that started out on Fiverr first before growing to become full independent agencies =)

Use my fiverr affiliate link and we both get $100 (http://nigelchua.com/fiverr)

#4 DoorDash

Doordashing is a concept that pays you to pickup and deliver something (usually food) from restaurants and cafes to customers at their homes and offices.

You can control your time and hours, but they’re only found in US, Canada and Melbourne (Australia) at this point in time.

Registration is quick, and I recommend that you schedule doordashing for stuff that’s along your route anyway (monetizing your journey). I’ve heard of people earning $100/day from door dashing too, so it’s viable.

#5 AirBNB

This one can definitely and easily work for people who have unused rooms – rent out your rooms short term with AirBNB or you can get a realtor to help you secure a 1-3 year tenancy, which is nice extra couple of hundreds (or thousands) depending on how many rooms, seasonality and locations.

#6 is negotiating for a pay raise

But it does require some finesse (of course, this applies to those who are currently working).

You need to calculate

  1. how valuable you are to you the company 
  2. how difficult it is to replace you
  3. ask a reasonably increase based on your scope and lastly,
  4. time it well (asking at bad times decreases success rate)

Only this one shouldnt be rushed to be done within the week unless some golden opportunity arise (such as you scoring well for the company eg onboarding good clients, saving clients etc).

Don’t Settle And Don’t Sell Yourself Short

Silver lining of COVID-19 is that it shook everything and turned many things upside down.

I hate that people suffered health-wise, and many died due to this pandemic. There is nothing that can change this fact and pain.

On the small upside, this pandemic forced to change.

We had to stay home, stay safe, and not surprisingly, we had many downtimes.

It’s in the silence of the downtime that we can usually hear ourselves and our thoughts, and I think the common question is that “is this it?”

As in, is this the kind of life we want?

Comfortable, Peaceful Living?

I live in peaceful, safe and stable Singapore.

Women and children can walk outside at 3 AM in the morning and they’d be 99.9% safe.

I run a business called Phoenix Rehab, a physical therapy, hand therapy , TCM and massage business.

I sleep well at night (other than my newborn waking me up) – I’m alive.

I thought this was okay.

I thought it was okay to be living a quiet-ish life where I

  • mind my own business (and dont bother others)
  • have food and water
  • and enough, money’s okay (we’re doing not bad as physical therapists)

And that running my business would be enough.

But i’m starting to ask myself if i’m shortchanging myself.

As in, am I wasting my own time?

My abilities?

Am I settling?

In 2022, I’m 40 years old.

As I mentioned earlier, for a hand therapist with a physio wife, we did (and do) pretty okay with growing a business, selling our first business for 7-figures.

My wife then went on to start a business and I even got an 18 month sabbatical before I decided to help her out.

We’ve a wonderful team and business as well as 3 beautiful kids.

I’m grateful but also uncertain

Like there’s a nagging sensation or sense…

like a spider-sense eh

As I started off earlier, one of the key benefits of the pandemic is that it turned almost everything on its head. In 2020, Singapore goverment got most of us to stay home for a good 1-2ish months.

It was uncertain times, and many of my competitors and people were very vocal about how dissatisfied they were yada yada…but I felt at home because of my 18 months sabbatical, and I could be more with my kids and wife.

I like(d) it.

The downtime gave me a reminder and question if the life we’ve been living is the one we want to keep doing.

Hey it’s not just me, it’s many.

Like many others, I too question.

It seems that it’s a movement where people are taking action en masse, see some examples:

We’re talking millions of people quitting jobs as they pivot.

No longer willing to settle, or maybe they’re just tired of lockdowns.

Then again, there are many bullshit jobs out there –

bullshit jobs are jobs you dont care for that you do to pay the bills…the kind of jobs where you dread Mondays and look forward for end of day on Fridays.

Bullshit jobs…have bad negative effects.

The highest problem is that they make you sad. They make people sad…but ironically, many people will do their level best to NOT lose their bullshit jobs.

Why?

Cos it pays the bills, and it’s pretty easy to “coast”. It’s easier in big companies where there are many layers of people that support other layers of people and more.

Ew, typing that was painful reminder as to why I stay an entrepreneur, cos I’ve met many bullshit individuals in corporates and even competitors.

If you love your job, you’re the top 15% lucky ones.

According to Gallup’s State of The Workplace Report, 85% of Americans are extremely disengaged at work and 81% are actively looking for new jobs.

85% and in my book, that’s majority of people have bullshit jobs they dislike or gasp, hate.

And that’s where the pandemic are shaking things up.

People are quitting bullshit jobs to find one that either

  • makes more money for them
  • provides more flexibility
  • more meaningful

There are more taking up entrepreneurship too:

A whopping 5.4 million new businesses registered in 2021!

Bloody good if you ask me – it’s easier and easier in the history of mankind to launch your own business and make money on your own terms. It takes lots of passion, gusto, and work.

Problem: It’s easy to hide.

I see this everywhere I go.

In fact, I’ve also faced individuals and corporations who daringly do blatantly wrong things…because they likely wont get caught. These guys and gals? Fuck them, I dont care.

But those I care about, the everyday people, who reach out and tell me that they feel stuck.

I reach back and tell them that they usually know it in their sense and intuition.

And then they write back that they’re scared (behind multiple layers of fears and what-ifs).

I empathize.

I’ve been there, and in some levels, I am still there.

I’ve been stuck many times.

Sometimes it takes months for me to overcome, sometimes its longer for it to “click” or for me to just give it a go.

Let me tell you something about intuition – your intuition is one of the most powerful sensors and inner compasses that you can have. The more I use it and hone it and trust it, the better and better it becomes.

…and the more it works for me.

Recently my intuition has been saying that I’ve been playing and thinking too small.

That I’ve been playing it “safe”.

I’m paying attention and putting my senses to writing, on paper.

One thing I realize is that my intuition is pretty spot on, and the more I resist it, the worse I usually get.

Upset I mean.

No, upset is not the word.

It’s really like tingling spider-senses which gets stronger and stronger, and eventually I cannot ignore it.

And when I do it, it’s like

Why did I take so long to do that?

Usually it leads to growth

Why I ignore these “spider-sense tingling” is because there is change and effort…which means it can lead to

  • failure
  • confrontations
  • changes
  • growth
  • insight

I like growing and learning – this is so “sexy” on paper.

Just that real learning and growth sometimes the process is painful and annoying, ugh.

I look back at my 20 year old self and my Lord, I wouldn’t recognize him.

And neither would he recognize me – I was a sucky, lumpy idiot back then.

Less of an idiot today, and I’ve grown so much too.

It’s easy to settle…but it’s costly

Coasting and settling is easy…but it’s very very costly.

Not in terms of just money (which we can count easily), but moreso in terms of opportunity cost.

No one lies in their death bed asking themselves:

I wished I earn $2M more, ah I could die better now.

Of course not.

On our deathbeds, I imagine we regret all the opportunities we do not take.

AKA settling.

We settle cos we’re scared.

We settle when we dont know what else to do.

We settle when it’s just easier to stay status quo or do nothing as compared to thinking hard and doing and failing again and again to figure out and course correct what we actually want to do.

When you’re doing well, everyone will tell you to keep doing what you’re doing.

You see, capitalism runs on that – doing X gets Y, and if we want more Y, do more X. Model that, and do it again and again. Squeeze processes and things and stuff and sometimes people.

Rinse and repeat.

Knowing yourself is the beginning.

I know I dont need $1B.

Heck, I dont even aim for $100M.

I dont even want to run a big company, or take a company public, or become a celebrity or politician.

All I want is…to be free, healthy and happy.

And that remains the same.

Alright back to my intuition: I’m starting to sense that I am on the cusp of something.

That I cannot play small or safe any more.

Like I need to go deeper, double or triple down.

Stop wasting time.

Make a bigger impact as I live and leave the world.

What about you?

Are you shortchanging yourself?

What keeps you going?

What are your burning passions that keeps you going?

  • Is it for the better future of your loved ones?
  • Is it to give back to the world and society?
  • Is it to prove someone else wrong? And prove yourself right?

Is there even a correct answer to this question?

Everyone’s reasons should be different and unique, though there may be some similarities when we compare as a group or from a broad based perspective.

The reasons may change as seasons in life change.

When I was younger in my tens and twenties, it was to survive.

Then in my 30s, it was to thrive and prove to myself and those that seem to look down on me.

Now, as I’m 40, it’s for my family and myself.

Deep down, I know my reasons are my kids, my loved ones, and I want to show my loved ones a better way of life. That it isn’t just about studying hard, getting a good job, working, buying shit we dont care about, then one day, we die.

Ugh, that’s depressing as heck to me.

I dont want that for me, my loved ones or for you – that’s not a good way.

A better way to a good life is to build a business we care about, ideally an online business that provides passive business income, that can work 24/7, providing good value to clients who love paying us, and yet at the same time, frees up our time to do stuff we love, and more.

A life where we have more control over the time and energy we put in.

Or where we work from.

And more.

Do you know what’s your burning reasons that keep you going?

Retire Early To Take care Of People You Love

I got a call the other day from one of my friends, and he shared with me very sad news of how his loved one had a fall during a vacation and now is bedbound and needs full time care.

Oh, the sting in my heart, it hurts.

One of the reasons why I speak again and again on getting our finances sorted out, including insurance and retiring as early as possible, is not just to retire and move to another country and chill out, but…also where need be, we can take care of those we love if they’re ill, sick or hurt.

Can be for

  • parents / in-laws
  • spouses
  • fiance / fiancee
  • girlfriend / boyfriend
  • pets
  • ourselves

***

Deep breath.

This was one of the harder calls of my life, and I choked a few times thinking about it, and it reminded me heavily on “living and traveling light” ie

  • not taking unnecessary loan or mortgage burdens
  • not taking / agreeing to commitments that are long term unnecessarily

The key operative word here is “long term commitments that are unnecessary” as time is a very important finite resource that I will deeply respect and not waste wherever possible.

It doesnt make sense to take on a commitment I dont care about that will lock me in terms of time, energy and effort for longer than I need to.

Small Tests Leads To More Successes

All of us want to be more successful – if i asked 100 people if they

  1. want to wake up earlier
  2. have a better relationship
  3. work out more
  4. and make more money

i can guarantee you that most if not all of us will say yes to the above.

Imagine if you could double your productivity at work; or you could speak to anyone at work or at a party, or achieve whatever you’re interested in – how does that sound to you?

Yeah, even if you’re just starting out and not an expert

Welcome to the world of small tests =)

I find testing fun and i test many things on a small scale first before i put in more resources and here in this video I cover 2 examples;

  1. how I make sure i go to the gym twice a week
  2. how I never miss flossing my teeth

i believe you can use a testing approach to improve your success rates in virtually anything, and the way i did it was to

  1. do a miniature-version of the activity on a scale of say 10:1
  2. trial run at least 3x
  3. once i found that it works, i “keep” the process of what works and drop what doesnt

Remember those 2 examples?

Here’s how i will do small test to increase chances of stickiness and success:

1) How I make sure i go to the gym twice a week

  • It begins BEFORE I even sign up to the gym membership.
  • First, I will check out the gym to make sure that the equipment are what I use
  • Then check the price
  • If equipment and price is within my range, the next important factor is to decide how to make gym part of my travel and calendar flow I looked at my calendar and activities and matched the gym location to my location and activities
  • Then did 3 trial runs I literally did a free gym class so I could travel to and fro once; and did once more travel to gym and back
  • Once i’m convinced that the flow is smooth, it’s easy – now i’m at gym naturally 2x a week

2) How I never miss flossing my teeth

  • I realized i never had a flossing practice when my dentist told me that i needed to start flossing (this was after I got married), and i tried a few different process to see which was best to make me floss daily I first tried by going to floss my teeth after dinner, but that process by itself was weird, cos it ended up sometimes me eating still or snacking which made the earlier flossing redundant
  • Secondly, i tried to time my flossing before bedtime, but often i get too tired so i just sleep and go lalaland – fail again Third time was the charm, so i decided that i would create a combo-move, where I know i need to sleep, i need to eat, i need to floss, and i will shower, so why not floss-shower-sleep at the end of the day?
  • That worked.

Ive flossed everyday since.

I apply this small test approach to virtually anything new that i want to try or implement – it doesnt make sense for me to blow $10K on a new experiment, I will first try with $100 to see if it justifies. Sometimes it’s using a smaller budget.

It’s not always money.

Sometimes it’s using less time eg instead of committing 2 hours to a hike, i try for 20 minutes.

Like moving house – instead of immediately buying a new one and selling, we’re renting first, to test the area and market, to see if we like the new area. The reasons why I like this approach is because it’s “small” – its low cost in terms of effort and maybe costs, but the results can be huge – potentially life changing. Imagine if you found an investment where you put in $100 and you get $200, how much would you then put in?

As much as possible right?

Conversely, if you decided to gamble without testing, and you lose everything, how would that feel?

Sucky.

That’s why small tests are great – they give you data and clarity, which will make decision making easy How would you try small tests? Let me know in the comments below

Struggling With Making Decisions – How To Make Quicker Decisions

Ever had a hard time choosing from a few different options?

Such as choosing what to eat, what projects to do, what jobs to take…the list goes on. It’s called paradox of choice, where we find it hard when there’s too many options, and here’s what I do to get around it.

Sometimes my brain freezes when i’m called to make a choice, could be

  • choosing the main course from 12 options in the menu
  • deciding what movie to watch for the night
  • making the choice on what to do for the weekend

Basically, if i’m presented with 3 or more options, my brain either shuts down temporarily (or longer lol) or i cant seem to decide. I looked it up, and found that it’s called Paradox of Choice, which says that

where there are too many options, we cant make a choice that seems to satisfy us

Enough was enough, and I researched how to overcome this problem, and to me, the simplest was to simplify the selection process to binary eg YES / NO.

Example, if I had to choose between 3 dishes, A, B and C, so I’ll use questions such as

  1. Do I like this?
  2. Do I want this now?
  3. Any other YES / NO questions

Anything that scores the highest number of yeses gets selected. If it’s a tie between 2, then I’ll throw a coin (heads vs tails).

That’s it.

So simple, ah my dang brain.