I recently posted a Tweet on a WallStreetSilver post – a guy lost $2 million while day trading and was working at a deli. I found the post somewhat heartbreaking. Somewhat. Mostly. I sympathize with someone losing a fortune, to an extent. Lots of risk taken to get that fortune, but lack of discipline to keep it. Furthermore, he sounded somewhat humiliated to be working at a deli. Many people would want that job in a heartbeat. But it was sympathetic to me in the extent that I’d like to see him overcome this and rebound. Like there was a profound sadness in his tone. You could hear pain in his voice he may not have known he was communicating to the audience. Many people may not have the strength to go on, and personally, I think everyone likes a comeback story. I think this guy is someone to keep an eye on, because he tasted success, and wants to get back to it. The question is, how can he do it? First – have a video go viral doesn’t hurt, as it expands your network and perhaps gets you access to those who can help. But, I digress.
In the movie Cinderella Man, there was a scene where during the Great Depression, Russell Crowe’s character (Braddock) has to take welfare and pass a hat around to keep a roof over his family’s head. My grandmother still lives alone and will be 96 this year. She was farmed out at 9 when her mother died and my great grandfather was laid off from the coal mines and he had to take a job building the PA turnpike. Her 1 year old little sister was adopted out. She is a child of the Great Depression, and there is a hardness to these people to overcome anything that most reading this can never fathom. The suffering this generation endured is something that inspires awe to see how successful they became.
One thing many know about that time is when the stock market collapsed, people were throwing themselves off of buildings. The tragedy was horrendous. Let’s not repeat that.
One thing you realize is that most younger people in this country have had no adversity, and are mostly programmed to think that getting rich is the most important thing ever – and if you cannot be successful with money, that you are a failure. I have had my share of adversity, and every time you are punched in the face hard, get knocked down, and dust yourself off – you come back up stronger.
So I wanted to write something that hopefully the young man in the video would see and be inspired by.
Get the grill out, because I got roasted by the trolls – who have no idea of my background. I’m not going to single them out here, but there was essentially two flavors of trolls on this. One, the literal sense. I guess thinking about warlords and getting murdered in days. The other crew threw up hands like, “you can’t do that, it’s impossible”.
Well, for those of you who don’t know, a guy who lived a mile from me growing up, went to high school with me, and shared a best friend, happened to be the guy who invented YouTube. Yeah, that guy, who was bought out by Google for $360m. He was working first at PayPal with Elon and designed the PayPal logo as his start. One of my closest friends from HS went to school for meteorology, eventually worked at a hedge fund, and is now one of the most successful horse racing owners in the country. Yeah – two guys that had no more, or no less than me in my orbit – worth a lot now. Hopefully if gold and silver pan out, I’ll be joining them. But, I’m not breathing their air just yet. I took the long route to get there, someday. I’m proud of these guys – but seeing how people can be self-made right in front of your eyes changes how you think about those odds.
I can tell you that when you go through an MBA, you learn hundreds of different case stories about how people got starts. How persistent they were. How many times they failed. It is true that those who had daddy’s money or daddy’s network got a leg up, but there are literally millions of sole proprietorships out there right now being successful working 18 hour days to put a roof over their head for their families. Maybe it’s a local tire shop. A pizza shop. A hot dog cart. Maybe…even a deli.
What you learn about CEOs is yes – they are wildly rich, but they all have traits that a vast majority of you don’t. They obsess about work. About goals. About sales. About everything. The chief role of a CEO is to sell the company’s brand and products. With this, you need strong sales and marketing background – and thousands of rejections and failures to find what works. I don’t want that job, because it’s 80-90 hours a week and never seeing your kids. Imagine buying a giant house you never get to see because you are always at the office. No thanks. I’ll take “comfortable and being with my family” any day of the week. I’ve put in those hours when I was younger – and as long as you were willing to offer your soul up, someone was willing to take your labor. Other friends of mine created a consulting firm and are doing tremendously well. I didn’t want to work 14 hours a day for peanuts for 2 years, they did, and they made a fortune.
To run a successful company, you probably failed at your first attempts, sometimes miserably. But you learned lessons, and got better.
I don’t think many people can appreciate the skills that some of these people who have stupendous amount of money have – but likewise, don’t also want to do the work they did to get there. Many of the trolls out there are taught to both worship those with money but despise them at the same time because they aren’t in the club. News to you, there are means of you getting there, you just don’t to do it.
I’m 47. I have 2 kids, a wife, and work a 9 to 5 like you guys. I do well for myself, and more or less failed my way into two rental properties. I feel at this stage of my life, if I put 80-90 hours a week of time in, I could make millions. But that’s not my goal in life. At all. Would it be nice to have FU money? Kind of. But I have a 2 year old. And I missed a lot of my 13 year old’s life. I don’t NEED to chase millions. I am working smarter to try and augment my existing career and plan for what may come down the road. Yes, I took 4 years of an MBA and 2 more years for an MS in cybersecurity to get where I am.
But it you were 22 and thought this wasn’t possible? Shame on you. Why? Because you listen to people that want to shape your destiny for you. It makes them feel better to tell you that you can’t do it. Why? Because they don’t have it inside to do what it is they do.
How would a CEO do it?
Your mistake is thinking linear with a salary instead of commissions and sales. You think he’s just going to ask for a job being a dishwasher and save up for millions. No. This guy is an alpha dog and will find the place in the region that does sales, and look for the thing that has the highest commission, per sale. He will sell ice to eskimos. Boats, mansions, luxury cars. He calls his friends up to come and buy stuff or get it shipped to them. He is then taking portions of that and saving it, but he is also smart with leverage, and starts his own firm up, ASAP. He hires people, expands, franchises, and finds ways of using all available means to him.
You see, if you understand sales, money, finance, leverage, and marketing, you can do a lot of damage in a short time. Those who inspire others can also get staffs to bleed for them. Just look at Jobs and Musk. Imagine you are a CEO of a fortune 500 firm how many contacts he or she may have, and how many different ways to manipulate money to flip profits.
YOUR problem is you THINK you can get rich working for someone else. And, if you can’t, then it’s the greedy business owner’s fault. Why not BE that greedy business owner? You have the opportunity fail just like he or she did. Right. You can’t. You have no money. Remember, these people are also serial entrepreneurs and understand how to create share structures, LLCs, partnerships, corporations, and then solicit people for their money – to use THEIR money to get THEM rich as well as himself in the process. You cannot grasp the levels these guys are playing on, and with this, you just are taught that they are greedy people. No. They know how to take some apple seeds and build an orchard, metaphorically speaking.
To the man in the video. Be strong. Punch the clock. Put food on the table. Get your head right. Then figure out how to own the deli like my friend from college. Or, go to business school and learn a lot of skills from the ground up and rebuild what you had using other skills. A LOT of people made a LOT of money from 2009-2021, and a lot of crypto millionaires were made. Many have lost everything. Hell, one of my college fraternity brothers I pledged under had his own TV show that ran for a lot of years on SyFy with makeup called Face Off. I remember seeing his room with a lot of action figures still in the box. But this dude worked hard at his craft, and is doing the FX for a lot of big productions these days. He looks scary. He’s not lol.
To the trolls. I didn’t mean it literally about the $5, but you have to understand that in the USA, IF you know what you are doing, yes, you can be financially successful. But – at what cost? It’s a means of showing people you can do just about anything you put your mind to. Think about all of the immigrants that come to this country, set up shop, and work 40 years at 18 hours a day to be able to get their kids to go to college. This country has become spoiled rotten, and many more people need to sit with my grandmother for an afternoon to be reminded what hard fucking times were. Pick yourself up, be stronger, be better, learn lessons, and make them fear what you can do. The trolls are people who simply will never make it doing anything but being critical of others – and it’s sad. Because they cannot see the opportunity in life, but only obstacles and excuses.
I’m blessed to have a LOT of financially successful people in my life – but what I didn’t mention were the twins I was close with who got PhD in biochem. One of them teaches at MIT, the other also has a law degree. Another got her PhD in music therapy. I’m the black sheep with only two masters – and yes, this was self-funded (I used tuition reimbursement from employers) and I graduated with a 4 year degree after a lot of scholarships owing $14,000.
So – trolls, I hope you all can someday realize that life is more than the obstacles you put in front of you. It’s about the promise of what can be, IF you dedicate yourself to something. Also, if you punch the clock for someone else, you will never get rich. Understand that, before you bitch about rich people. They took the risks, you can too.