Steps for Achieving Financial Freedom
Welcome to Day 6 of the Titanium Challenge. Hey guys, it’s only a 16-day challenge and we’re already on Day 6. That means there are only 10 days remaining. Now, if you’re doing this on the same schedule that we started at (and you don’t have to have done it this way), but if you started on a Wednesday, that means today it’s Monday.
You’ve just had a weekend. So, how was your weekend and have you stuck to everything we talked about making sure we do?
Let me remind you real quick what we’ve already committed to doing. Number one, you went around the wheel and you graded yourself or scored yourself on a scale of 1 to 10 in every single one of these 10 different areas of your life, and you sort of took inventory of where you were at – awesome.
By the way, I have a little surprise for you here. At some point towards the end of this thing, we’re going to go back and we’re going to revisit that wheel. I guarantee you in certain areas of your life, you are going to see massive improvements in just 16 days.
In fact, if you took this stuff we talked about on Day 2 and you really started to invest in growing and then you started to invest in your intimate relationship (if you have one or if you don’t), I guarantee you today if you go back to those two areas of the wheel – intimate relationship and consistent growth – I guarantee you your score will be higher today than it was before we started.
And since you wrote down where you started, go do that right now. Let’s see how you’re doing in those first two areas because if you’re right where you were when you started, it’s probably because you’re not doing the daily stuff that we talked about.
But I know all of you out there did the daily stuff. I’m sure you’re spending the time to turn your car into a mobile university, which by the way, takes no extra time because you’re already there anyway.
You’re just giving up some of the stuff that’s garbage in your life that you don’t need and replacing it with the things that help you grow. And, if you’re investing in that intimate relationship, whether it’s the one you’re in now or it’s the one you want to get into (or it’s the one you need to get out of), whatever it is, I bet you’re moving in the right direction.
Then on Day 1, remember we talked about five things that you committed to doing every single day as part of this challenge. Number one, you committed to waking up at a specific time every day, and we said it could be different on weekdays and weekends. Are you sticking to that? Did you get up on time today? If you didn’t, it’s okay; we all make mistakes. But what it’s all about is reaction time. I talk about this concept of reaction time is that we all slip, but the question is how quickly do we get back on track?
Get Re-Committed to Any Challenges You’ve Been Slacking On
If I was going to take my life and every time I slip, if I was to actually get derailed, listen. I wouldn’t have gotten anything done in my life. But the key is I am consistently known in my family and in my circle for being the guy who falls flat on his face more than anybody else. But you know what? I’m also known as the guy who falls flat on his face but then gets right back up every single time. That’s the trick; it’s getting right back up, right?
So if you haven’t been getting up on time, that’s okay. Hey, let’s forget it. Starting tomorrow, stick to your commitment. Or maybe you need to change your commitment. Believe it or not, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with changing your goal.
If you don’t think it’s realistic, you don’t think it’s serving, you change it. But if you said you’re going to get up at 6:00, make sure you’re getting up at 6:00. I decided I was waking up at 4:00 a.m. and, you know, I stuck to my goal up until this point. But if tomorrow I realized that 4:00 a.m. is no longer serving me and it needs to be 3:00 a.m. or it needs to be 5:00 a.m., so what? I’ll change it. There’s nothing wrong with that.
So here we go, now let’s talk about a couple of things here. By the way, I’ve been doing this Facebook Live stuff. Some of you may have even commented at me at 4:00 or 5:00 in the morning.
So if you are up early in the morning, I’m going to be doing these live editions on Facebook, so make sure you’re watching for that. When I go live, please come on and comment. I love to see that people are watching me live, especially that early in the morning.
So here we go – now, so number one, it was what time you were going to wake up. Are you sticking to that? If you are, awesome. Number two, you were supposed to come up with a specific time that you would enter the career zone.
Are you sticking to that? Awesome. Number three, you committed to going to the gym every single day. Have you been going every single day? Today is Day 6, right? Day 1, I caught you in the middle of the day, so maybe you didn’t go to the gym Day 1. (Hopefully you did.) But that means you should’ve gone to the gym at least four times by now – maybe five times if you went Day 1. And if you’ve already gone to the gym today, that’s six times. Did you do that? Because if you have, you’re already well on your way to almost a week of doing this.
Remember what I said; I don’t want you to go to the gym for more than 25 minutes. Spending more than 25 minutes at the gym is just going to make it where you’re not going to be able to go back consistently. Now, there are some of you out there who are freaks of nature. You know, you’re these bodybuilders, fitness people, or just people who are crazy in love with the gym.
I’m not one of you, but some of you are.
But if you go to the gym all the time and you never miss days, you never take a month or two months off, and you haven’t been through periods of your life where you don’t go to the gym and you put on 25 pounds – if you’re one of those people who’s that committed to gym, you can go for more than 25 minutes.
But for the rest of us, mere normal human beings out there, it is not a good idea to go for more than 25 minutes. Because what it’ll do is it’ll turn you off from the gym in the long term.
All right, so we talked about that. Hopefully, you are sticking to that. In fact, I know that you are. We also talked about you making sure that every day you are spending 30 minutes focused on the intimate relationship part of your wheel. So if you are in a relationship, then that’s who you need to be giving that time to and giving them 100% of you for those 30 minutes.
If they’re out of town, maybe you could do it over the phone. If they’re out of town and out of reach, maybe it’s 30 minutes you spend writing a love letter or maybe it’s 30 you spend – I don’t know – doing a chore they wanted you to do for a long time or going shopping for them. I don’t know what it is, but every day, 30 minutes towards your intimate relationship.
And if you’re not in one, you’re going to focus on putting that time into yourself, because instead of doing what so many of these dating coaches teach (which just drives me crazy), which is, “Make a list of everything you want in a man.
Make a list of everything you want in a woman,” BS! Don’t make a list of everything you want in a man! Make a list of everything you want in YOU. Who do you want showing up to that next relationship? That’s what I want you to write down. We talked about that.
And then we also talked about you documenting what is the reward you’re going to get at the end of this thing, so make sure you have that. And finally, then we added on to it the piece about consistent growth and your car turning into a mobile university. So, today being Monday morning, I want to make sure, are you doing all of that? If you are, awesome.
Getting out of the Rat Race Requires You to Change Your Spending Habits
So today what I want to add to all of this is finances, and this is going to be a quick one. A lot of this Monday morning was just review of the last stuff, because what we’re going to talk about here is pretty simple.
Look, when it comes to your finances, the fact is this: you are never going to get out of the rat race unless you change your spending habits.
What that means is in terms of the financial area of the wheel, if you did not score very high in this area, I guarantee you whether you believe it or not, your problem is not how much money you’re making.
So, let me do a little mind reading here.
If you’re one of the folks who scored yourself lower than a 7 on the finances, I guarantee you if I were to ask you a question of, “Why are you only a 7?” you would have told me, “It’s because I don’t make enough money,” right? Am I reading your mind?
Because I know 90% of you out there scored yourself below a 7, and if I were to ask that 90%, “Why are you only at a 6, a 5, a 4, a 3, a 2, a 1?” What you would tell me is, “Arman, I don’t make enough money.”
What is Financial Freedom?
Well, here’s what I’m here to tell you: it’s not about how much money you’re making; it’s about how much money you’re spending.
Because the way the rat race works is this: we are programmed unfortunately to spend everything that we make and then some, because saving is boring.
We try to save money as kids and then it gets boring for most of us. Now, there’s 10% out there and the few people out there who’ve done a really good job of it and you’re rocking at it.
Great! Hey, maybe you could pick up a couple of things from here and do even better.
But as every part of this wheel goes, remember, it’s about having that well-rounded wheel, right? For those of you who are struggling in the area of finances, it’s all about focusing on cutting your expenses, which all starts with learning how to use money.
How to get Financial Freedom Fast
Now, in this little episode here, I don’t have time to go into all the details. I spend hours on this at my events and I know you guys are going to join me at Titanium Live and we’re going to go through this stuff, I’m sure.
But if you are just listening to this here, it’s a very simple concept. There is an order of operations to everything in life, including finances and financial success. And the key to having ultimate financial freedom is understanding how to use money, learning to use money.
The example I give is of a kid who’s learning to drive. A 15-year-old gets in the car, and let’s say he or she starts to drive, and then they veer out of their lane. What do you tell them to do and what do they do naturally? Immediately, they slow down or even stop, right? You slow down.
But what if we were to tell that kid, “No, no, no. The problem is you’re just not going fast enough.” He’s going 10 miles an hour. He’s veering out of his lane. We’re like, “Nah, go faster!” Now he’s going even faster and he’s veering out of the lane even more!
And now you say, “No, no, no! Your problem is you’re not going fast enough! Go faster!” And now he’s like veering into two or three different lanes. He’s getting close to hitting things and you’re like, “No! You know what your problem is? Faster, faster, faster!” and BOOM, he crashes into something, right?
But guess what? That’s exactly what we do with money! What happened? You were – I don’t know, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 25 – whatever. You got your first job, you made money. But guess what? You were broke, so what did you do? You said, “I know what I need. I need more money!” (By the way, that’s just more speed for a kid who doesn’t know how to drive a car, right?)
And by the way, who did you go to for advice? You went to your parents, who in most of your cases are just as broke as you are. Now, some of you are blessed to have parents who’ve figured out how to use money, but it’s very rare. So if you’re blessed and you have one of those parents, make sure you listen to them.
But if you’re here and you are not at least a 6 or 7 or higher on this scale, listen to me very carefully, because what you’ve done your entire life is you’ve been caught in this thing of getting the order of operations wrong.
Step 1 – Cut Needless Expenses
You thought it was about making more money first, and it’s not. Step one in the order of operations of ultimate financial freedom is this: cut expenses. I don’t care if you make $8 an hour, $80 an hour, $800 an hour, a billion dollars a day. The first step to ultimate financial freedom is you must cut your expenses.
Now, if you’re making $80 an hour and your finances are at a level 9, I guarantee you that you have already cut your expenses. That’s why you’re ranking yourself so high. So what you find is the people who rate themselves really high are not the people making the most money.
They’re actually the people who are spending below their means, meaning they’re saving some of the money that’s coming in, and ideally investing it.
Step 2 – Invest Whatever Money You Free Up
So step one, you must cut your expenses. Step two, you’ve got to take the money that you gain from cutting your expenses and you’ve got to invest that money.
Why? Because saving money is boring, but investing is addictive. So if you’re investing in real estate, if you’re investing in the stock market, if you’re investing in business – something where your money can grow and something that also ties up your money – so the next time your buddies want to take a trip somewhere or you want to go get something fancy for your girlfriend or boyfriend, husband or wife, or your kids, you can’t get access to that money so quickly. So you go invest your money, and that becomes addictive.
Through the power of the way that interest works, it’s incredible how quickly your money can grow (or, by the way if you’re in debt, how quickly your money can shrink.)
Step 3 – Do Whatever You Can to Make More Money
And so step one, you cut the expenses. Step two, you go in and invest that money. Step three, you go out there and you work as hard as you possibly can to make as much money as possible, so yes, you do want to make more money – but it’s just not the first step in the process.
What most of you are doing, especially if you’re below a 6 or 7, or if you’re below a 5 or 4, I guarantee you, your whole life you’ve been obsessed with making more money. What you’ve got to do is stop focusing on making more money and start focusing on how you cut expenses so that you can have financial freedom today with the income that you have.
And yes, that may mean downgrading the place you live. It may mean downgrading your car. It may mean giving up Starbucks. It may mean that you don’t get to valet your car.
It may mean that instead of being in a paid parking lot, you park for free down the street and walk a quarter of a mile. It may mean that you have to cancel your cable TV or downgrade it. It may mean you have to give up some monthly services that you have that you don’t really need.
It may mean that you’re going to have to get on a daily food budget so you’re not wasting money on food all the time. It may mean you may have to give up alcohol (or at least stop paying for your own alcohol). All right? Make other people pay for it. There’s a lot of things like that, and that’s today’s goal here.
Today’s Daily Challenge for Achieving Financial Freedom
So today’s challenge that we are adding to the list of things that we’ve already got is this. For the remaining 10 days of this challenge, I challenge every one of you – I don’t care how good your finances are, they can get better. I challenge you to give up as many of the things in your expenses as you possibly can.
Now, if you can give up 10 things, that’s awesome. But what I want you to do is this. For the remainder of this challenge, in order to be 100% on-board with this challenge, I want you to give up one thing. So make a commitment right now today. As soon as you turn this off (or even pause and do it right now), write down one thing you’re willing to give up for the next 10 days that you’ve consistently spent money on.
It could literally be as simple as giving up the morning coffee at Starbucks and just making your own coffee at home – or giving it up altogether. You could say if you valet when you go to certain places, you could say, “For the next 10 days, I’m not going to valet my car.” If you, for example, have cable TV and if you’re anything like my wife and I, we don’t even watch TV.
The other day we were looking at it and we were paying like $200-something for all these channels. We were like, “Why? We don’t watch any of these!” so we downgraded our cable. I’m so glad we did it.
Or maybe what you do is you go through your credit card statements and you look for these monthly services that you’re paying for, stuff that you don’t even use, right? Or maybe you set yourself a specific budge for food every day. So this is something I do consistently when I’m trying to cut down.
So you could set yourself a budget – I don’t know what it is for you. Is it $25? $35? But come up with a daily budget you can put for food. Maybe that’s what you do.’
Or, for the next 10 days, if you’re one of the people who loves wine and alcohol and you like going out, maybe you say, “For the next 10 days, I’m not going to buy any alcohol.” Now, by the way, you could either say, “No alcohol,” or you could say, “Because this is finances, it’s not health and fitness here,” you could say, “I’m still going to have alcohol, but I’m going to spend a little bit of extra time looking real good, so other people can buy me my drinks.”
I don’t care! Today is the day for finances, so do whatever you’ve got to do to cut your expenses as much as possible.
But as today’s challenge, again, I don’t care if you’re at a 1 or you’re at a 10 in finances. I want you to give up one thing. Now, what’s interesting is this.
If you’re listening out there and your finances are at an 8, 9, or 10, I bet you’ve already come up with two or three things that you’re willing to cut – not because you have more money. In fact, a lot of the people who rate themselves at an 8, 9, or 10 don’t actually make as much money as the rest of us think.
But what it is is they have financial freedom, because they don’t have these bills piling up every month. They’re not paying all these interest rates and all this crazy stuff.
So give up one thing for the next 10 days, that’s all it is. And by the way, what I want you to do is every single day, we’re piling things on top of one another, so we’re becoming better and better and more powerful and stronger, and we’re getting ourselves to the point where after these 16 days, many of these things are going to become lifelong habits.
I can tell you that many of the things I have in my life today are as a result of some crazy thing I came up with when I was on a challenge, including, by the way, the fact that I don’t drink caffeine.
I don’t drink caffeine or coffee at all – zero. And what happened is it was years ago I was doing a challenge and I decided to give up caffeine. For me, it had to actually had to do with health and the fact that – it’s a long story, but when you drink caffeine, it gives you an excuse to eat like crap and I didn’t want that, so I gave that up and I gave up the expense.
It was the most amazing thing and it’s become a lifelong thing – and it was only supposed to last for actually 21 days, and years later, I’ve never gone back to it. Some of these things are going to do incredible things for you in your life.
Let’s see what we’ve got coming up. Look, we still have to talk about physical health. We still have to talk about spiritual health. We still have to talk about emotional health and ultimate fulfillment. We’re still going to talk about career and your mission. We’re going to talk about contribution. We’re going to talk about family. And of course, my favorite, we are going to talk about fun.
I’ll give you a little hint: we might start talking about fun towards the end of this week so we can get prepared for this weekend, or we might talk about fun next week to get you prepared for what you’re going to do when this thing is done and you’re going to celebrate.