“It doesn’t matter where you start: you can find acres of diamonds no matter where you are at.”
Are you excited for this new year?
Or are you thinking, “This year, I want to REALLY homestead, but I don’t have the money.” Your concern is valid. Growing a farm- or farm business- does require money.
So how do you do it if you don’t have any money?
On this episode of Homesteady, we look at the steps it takes to walk away from a “typical” job and responsibly take charge of your finances- and your life.
John Pugliano, of The Wealthsteading Podcast, and owner of Investable wealth, LLC, currently runs, “independent investment advisory firm that specializes in helping clients build wealth with active portfolio management.”
John’s clients start with an investment portfolio of $250,000 to invest.
Oh wait, you don’t have an extra $250K hanging around?
Here’s a secret: John didn’t start out that way either.
“To me, wealth means freedom.”-John Pugliano, The Wealthsteading Podcast
In our first interview, John shares with us his Seven Lessons to Building Wealth.
Lesson One: It doesn’t matter where you start.
John comes from Western Pennsylvania- mining country. He grew up in a blue-collar community of modest means. His father passed away when he was six months old. But his father left a legacy of ingenuity and thriftiness for his widow and children that had a lasting effect on John.
He learned a very important lesson from his dad: Find value wherever you are.
“In many ways,” John shares,”I was a slow starter, but at the same time I was constantly improving myself and building my wealth.”
It doesn’t matter where your start from, as long as long as you start at that point and move and advance from there.
Lesson Two: Identifying what wealth actually is.
“My perception of wealth is that wealth is just an extension of your life. You are trading your time for money and the reason you build wealth is so you have more control over your time.”
John shares that when you have investments, you are really building “time in reserve.” The goal is not to be rich in money, but to be able to enjoy your passions in life while maintaining your responsibilities- to care for yourself, your family and loved ones.
Lesson Three: Don’t Believe the Myth
“The ‘ah-ha’ moment came for me when I was about 35,” John shares with us, “instinctually I knew wealth was built by having a business.” We are often taught that the way to build wealth is to attain advanced levels of education and procure a while-collar job. This path, and these jobs, are closely associated with financial security. The source of the myth for John started with schooling and his mom. But all around him, he saw individuals in the neighborhood where he grew up with their own businesses and his definition of wealth: having what you need, and the freedom of time.
When John looked around his corporate environment, he didn’t see wealth. He saw consumption, and he saw individuals stuck always reaching for more.
Do you see yourself in this description? Fear not, there is a way out.
The Millionaire Next Door is an inspirational book about individuals who developed true wealth by finding their own path, developing their own business, and are financially independent. This brings us to the next lesson.
Lesson Four: Saving Money is Just as Important as Making It
Instead of investing increases in income in more lavish expenditures, put that money in the bank and use it to pay down existing debt. Squirrel some away to create capitol for your own business.
Lesson Five: Don’t Quit Your Day Job
Use it to fund your side hustle. John continued on his corporate path in his career. He needed to continue to support his family. But he began to work harder at developing a money-making hobby into a money making-business. For John, trading stocks was both fun and lucrative. He built his skills and his knowledge while continuing at his corporate job. He invested his increased earnings at his existing job towards building his own business.
Lesson Six: Monetize what you enjoy doing.
As a homesteading podcast, most of the businesses that immediately come to mind to Aust have to do with selling homesteading products. However, as Aust shares with us, his homesteading led not a giant pork business, but instead to an online marketing business. As opposed to more pigs, Aust is growing his podcasting and video production. Following your interests leads to an exponential growth in opportunities. If you enjoy your “side job,” you will want to keep going when the going gets tough.
Lesson Seven: The Opportunities Will Come.
We all want to get rich quick, and find success overnight. However, this rarely, if ever, happens. However, by studying and continuously improving your product or service, you will open yourself up to opportunities that will bring wealth.
If you like what John has to say, we invite you to listen to the bonus episode in Pioneer Library to learn about apprenticeship, business model, and investment. Not a Pioneer? If you want to access this bonus episode, become a Pioneer Today! For only $5 per month, you receive bonus podcasts and access to a video learning library full of useful homesteading topics.
In the meantime, listening to the Wealthsteading Podcast will give you tips and tools to start building wealth.
Next, meet Matt Brechwald Off-farm income podcast. Matt took a path to farming from a starting point working as a police officer, despite his animal science degree. A job with his father-in-law hearding cattle on a ranch didn’t work out as planned. After years of the Sunday night blues caused by dreading the workweek, Matt and his wife Autumn began to plan an exit strategy. Despite enjoying police work, Matt found his interests and priorities had changed.
“When I decided to leave, all I did was read about or consume audiobooks and podcasts about entrepreneurship.” Matt was energized by a new season in life: one where the correct fit for him and his family was moving out of the city and working for himself.
Much like John, Matt kept his day job while learning and preparing for the next stage- a self-employed Gopher Exterminator. After putting pressure on himself to identify a passion, Matt instead decided to pursue a business he could run by himself. During a “start your farm” class with his wife in which gophers were identified as a major issue, Matt finally decided to take the plunge. See him talk about his transition to Gopher Exterminator here!
While Matt’s passion is not trapping gophers, this business allowed him to be outside, in the country, as an entrepreneur, and leave the police force. It allowed him to provide a needed service to the community, as gophers are pervasive pests on midwestern farms.
See the pattern? Lesson Six: Follow Your Passion (Farming and Entrepreneurship) and Lesson Seven: The Opportunities Will Come naturally occurs.
Matt, like 9 out of 10 farmers, farms for part of his income, but needs an additional revenue stream to support his family. Matt farms because he loves the lifestyle, and he has made the decision that supporting himself “off-farm” allows him to pursue his farming habit without the financial pressures.
So what does this all mean for you? Are you ready to explore your passion, follow your curiosity, and start making steps towards wealth?
“Just Start,” says Matt. “Just. Start. Right. Now.”
Feeling your pennies pinching? Our friends at the Survival Podcast have a list of Ten Businesses You can Start with Minimal Income.
Need more inspiration?
A shout out to Jay Lee, our Homesteady Pioneer of the month! Follow him on instagram here.
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