How can I become rich?

I’ll never forget that scene. The first time when I saw my mum cried…

My dad worked hard, very hard. And I hardly see him around most of the time. He will only come home once every 2 months due to his job – to put food on the table for his family.

I had no idea about our family financial situation that time… until one day, I saw my mum cried… for the first time, because she can’t take the struggles inside herself anymore.

And since then, I swear that I’m going to be rich! Filthy rich! To solve all the problem once and for all. To cherish my parents. To make sure my children won’t need to experience what we went through at that time.

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I was 15 at that time…

The first solution I came up in order to get rich is to work, as much as I could, to trade time with money. So I started looking for a job during my school break… Grabbing on any opportunity to earn every single penny as I able to.

After 3 years of working as a waiter part-time during my school break, and finally, I graduated from my secondary education. Most of my friends are thinking to continue their studies at famous university, while I have only one aim – to make more money, fast…

I got a full-time job as a waiter again in a Japanese restaurant. That’s obviously not the only plan I have, I got to know some new friends, and joined them in the Multi-level marketing business because they promised that I can make a fast passive income within 2 to 5 years.

It didn’t work out as planned.

But.

One of the best habits I picked up from these group of friends (MLM) is to read. So, I started to read all sort of books about financial management, sales & marketing, self-help and much more.

PS: I bought them from a pirated bookstore because they are cheaper, at around 80% off the original print book.

And one of the most important books I ever read on the topic of becoming rich is Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki.

He became one of my idols when I was 18. Although I don’t like every single thing he published now. But there is ONE single piece of information you must know if you want to get rich.

The real definition of asset and liability.

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Traditional definition

Assets: Everything that you own – house, car, even your sofa

Liabilities: Your debts to banks and others

Real definition

Assets: Everything that put money into your pocket

Liabilities: Everything that takes money out of your pocket

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With this, you’ll have a very clear vision on how you should spend money without falling into the financial traps. Most of the thing we own, our house, our car, our sofa are actually liabilities.

By mistaken them as the assets, we’re going to fall into a financial black hole without us even realising it. And I am seeing many people around me making these mistakes now.

I’m glad that I learned about this at the age of 18 and firmly stand behind it regardless how others around me have an objection about this.

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But the truth is, I was still poor… I had a low pay job, and I was far from rich yet.

At the age of 19, my focus was “how to make more money, fast?”, while working for a boss is clearly not the answer for me.

So, I tried everything that came to me.

  • I become an insurance agent but no one trusts me on that… Failed. And messed up with my reputation.
  • I involved in FOREX trading without learning the nut and bolt of how the system works… Failed. And lost five thousands bucks of savings and borrowing.
  • I started a catering business with a few partner… Failed. And get into ten of thousands of debts, slept at McDonald for months.

While I was doing all that, I still have a job. But without paying any effort on my job in the restaurant (another restaurant), I ruined the relationship with my employer and colleagues.

It came to a point when I was asking myself… Really? What really makes one rich? It seems like working smart and hard don’t really pay off.

Everything became a mess.

I decided to stay low and only focus on what I can do to survive – get a full-time job as a waiter again, focus on my side freelance work (I learned design online while I’m doing all those ventures just because I like it).

Slowly, I came to realise that there is only one thing is out of the equation.

I always aim to get rich fast. What about instead of that, I aim to get rich – without the fast behind it?

With the craving of instant gratification (get rich fast), I never persisted in working things out, I dabbled all the time. That’s the main reason I failed, and the same reason failed so many others.

And this makes so much sense when I came across this video by Anthony Robbins.

Getting rich is just like every achievement in life. It’s not about how smart you do it or how hard you do it. Yes, they count, only when there is consistency.

With that said, it’s about mastery.

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So, here is the bulleted format for you to digest everything I just said easier:

  1. Learn about personal financial management. Understand the real definition of asset and liability. Read Rich Dad Poor Dad. Start budgeting – I highly recommend YNAB (what I’m using now since 2 years ago).
  2. To make more money, pick one or two skills or things you love the most and master them. Practice it deliberately. Create a system and start by taking tiny actions. Always focus on the progress but not just the goal.
  3. Remember that being rich is just the mean goal. Often time, our end goal is not to have more money or becoming rich. What is life means to you if you have all the money but no time and health to spend them. Get clear on what really money can do for you, understand exactly how much you need to live your desired life.

. . .

To help you get rich a little bit faster and extra action steps you can take:

  1. Focus on providing value to others. This applies to both work and business. When you’re providing more value to your employer or customers, you will get more in return.
  2. Don’t spend all the money you make (again, read Rich Dad Poor Dad and YNAB’s blog). Invest in yourself and invest in assets that pay you additional income.
  3. If it’s possible, start a business. It’s not for everyone, it’s not easy, but it’s worthwhile. Simply because you can have more leverage from a business by getting out from the system of trading time with money.
  4. Leverage the internet, use it the right way. I can’t imagine how hard is it for my parents to work their way out from financial struggles without the internet. Now is the best time to start because of the internet. Ease of information and communication is a huge leverage that people don’t have 20 years ago.
  5. Work hard.

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I’m yet to achieve all my financial goals, but I strongly believe I’m on the right path.

– Dean Yeong

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