00:50 – A satisfying yet frightening move
02:31 – You’re no longer in quicksand
03:49 – No more need to budget
04:37 – You do your part for the economy
05:14 – Your kids can explore their passions
05:34 – You can pay for someone else’s time
06:53 – Time to enjoy your own passions
07:26 – Projects that don’t pay
07:59 – Better physical health
08:20 – You no longer hate Mondays
09:02 – You love what you do
09:25 – No more “one day” mindset
10:23 – You can’t be fired
Making four or five figures online? Hit the six-figure a month mark with James’s personal coaching
James Schramko here and welcome to Episode 628 of SuperFastBusiness. This is a podcast which has been published for many, many years. Today I’m going to talk about 12 reasons why $10 million per year may in fact be more than enough. Perhaps $1.2 million is plenty.
A satisfying yet frightening move
You see, 10 years ago I walked into the car dealership I was being paid $300,000 a year to run, and handed in my resignation. To this day, it remains one of the most satisfying things I’ve ever done, and also one of the most frightening, for all that $300,000 a year is a lot of money.
The job was highly stressful. It involved me working six days a week and didn’t afford me a good lifestyle. Adding insult to injury was the fact that there was little leftover from that yearly amount once taxes and the expenses of raising and schooling four children in Sydney, one of the world’s most expensive cities, were paid.
What allowed me to pull the trigger on quitting my job? Well, for three years, I’d been working a second shift each night, 9 p.m. to one, two, or 3 a.m. sometimes, building up a secondary income from my online businesses. I’d always said the day the income from my online ventures matched the income from my job, I’d quit my job.
But while it was very satisfying to hand in my notice at the dealership, anyone who has their own business knows hanging out a shingle for yourself often involves swapping a bad boss for a worse boss, you. I once heard someone say that you need to be earning three times as much working for yourself as you would for someone else in order for all the stress and hassle of owning a business to be worth it. So upon quitting my job at the dealership, I set about getting my yearly income above the $900,000 mark. Within three months, I was making six figures a month, and I’ve gone on to do so every month since. Now, this was over 10 years ago.
“Making six figures a month is freedom.”
Six figures a month is a funny number. The first thing people often say when I bring it up is, isn’t it a bit greedy to want to make that much money? To those people, I say, hardly. Making six figures a month is freedom. And here’s why.
1 – You’re no longer in quicksand
One, you eliminate the quicksand effect. When I was making $300,000 a year, it was like being in quicksand. There was enough money to pay my family’s living costs. But when we were constantly breaking even, we weren’t sinking deeper into the quicksand but we weren’t getting out of it either. As soon as unexpected bills or costs arose, however, the pressure those created was unbearable. We’d start to struggle. And you know what happens when you struggle in quicksand, right? You tend to sink.
When you’re in quicksand, you’re always scared, and you’re always stressed. Making six figures a month is like having someone throw you a rope, drag you out of the quicksand and deposit you on firmer ground. You’re not just covering the cost of living anymore, you have a surplus. The thing is, no one is going to do that for you. You have to do it for yourself. It’s amazing how that consistent surplus each month reduces your fear and stress. You can pay bills straightaway. You’re never standing at a supermarket checkout, wondering if your credit card is going to decline or not. Your confidence increases.
In terms of asset growth, you’re able to get ahead, pay down your mortgage faster, build up your superannuation. You can have less debt, or even no debt. That surplus allows you to take calculated risks. And if they fail, that’s okay. You’re not going to set your family back five years. Ironically, this tends to remove the worry and overthinking that typically leads to bad decisions.
2 – No more need to budget
Two, the word “budget” disappears. When you’re breaking even every week, you’re constantly running sums in your head. If Johnny wants to do guitar lessons, then he won’t be able to go to that school holiday program. For that trip to Bali in July, we need to tighten our belts in the first half of the year. Oh, man, Julie’s ordering another bottle of wine. I guess I’ll have to wait till next month to get those new running shoes I need.
All that internal dialogue is exhausting, and it taints your relationship with money, too. I have friends who have nice houses and stable jobs. But every conversation we have is centered around money and the things they can’t do yet, like paint their new house or get new curtains. But when you’re making six figures a month, you don’t have this problem. If you want something, you buy it. If you want to do something, you do it. But here’s another irony. The more you can buy, the less you want to. More on that later.
3 – You do your part for the economy
Three, you help out the economy. I pay quite a lot of tax here in Australia. And I’m quite happy to do so because I feel I’m contributing to better hospitals, roadways, emergency services, the unemployed, the list goes on. I know my money’s going back into a system that gives us the high standard of living we enjoy in this country, especially having visited other countries where this doesn’t happen.
“When you’re making six figures a month, you’re also a responsible citizen.”
When you’re making six figures a month, you’re also a responsible citizen, buoying up the economy in general. If I buy a surfboard, I’m supporting a local surfboard shaper. When I get a coffee from my local cafe owner, I’m giving him money that he’s then going to spend on our local area. It all goes around.
4 – Your kids can explore their passions
Four, you can encourage your children’s passions. I love being able to encourage my kids in their interests. My eldest is super passionate about music. My daughter loves horses. My third child is into motorbikes, and the fourth is all about gaming. It’s a huge privilege to be able to support all of them in engaging with something they love.
5 – You can pay for someone else’s time
Five, you can buy time. It made me remember to way back 15 years ago, when I was working a job and had a house in Chatswood, Sydney. I needed to redo the backyard. It was just grass when I started. I had to dig a trench around all three sides, lay down blue metal and ag pipe, and then topsoil. Then I had to buy plants and put them all in. And despite needing privacy, too bad – we could only afford the smallest plants at the time. I remember spending all this time out in the backyard in the heat doing this garden and re-cementing the slab for the shed and putting the shed up. It’s great if you love doing that stuff. But I didn’t. I’d rather have been inside relaxing on my one day off for the week.
Contrast that to today. I have two houses – one in Sydney, one in the Philippines. While I record this, I’m in my Sydney house. Recently, when I was in my Philippines house, there were three people working in our garden at the start of the week. And it was just grass and a fence, and now it’s a full garden with plants, decorative stones and pebbles. I’m going to head out there and water those plants every time I visit, and that’ll be the full extent of my involvement with it. I love that I’m able to spend my time working on things I love doing or are income generating while someone else does the stuff I don’t want to do. And as per point three above, I’m also supporting the local economy and giving work to people who do love this kind of work.
6 – Time to enjoy your own passions
Six, you have more time for your passions. I fell in love with surfing about six years ago. Today, I go to the beach every day. I walk down to the beach barefoot with a surfboard under my arm, and I paddle out and catch waves. I could not do that when I was making six figures a year in my corporate prison.
I mentioned above the paradox that once you can buy anything you want, you find you want to buy very little. That’s true for me. But when I want to buy a new surfboard, I love that they are the best available. They’re shaped by four times world champions. They’re beautiful, they’re custom-ordered. And they’re lovely.
7 – Projects that don’t pay
Seven, you can do passion projects that make no money. I love surfing so much, I built a business around it. That business is a passion project, something my team and I can work on if we’re at a loose end. I call it an infinity project. I ran a training on this inside SuperFastBusiness membership. It cost me some money at the beginning. But ironically, that business is also becoming an asset. It now generates revenue. And one day, I’ll probably be able to sell it. When you’re making six figures a month, you have a better business brain, so even your passion projects can be highly profitable.
8 – Better physical health
Eight, your health is better. I’m able to exercise every day, eat good food and do things like DNA and blood tests. So I can personalize the things I do for my health and my specific need, because I’m not stressed about things like cash flow and my ability to pay for my staff and bills on time. My whole system is also less stressed, and I sleep better.
9 – You no longer hate Mondays
Nine, no more Mondayitis or burnt out Fridays. When I was making $300,000 a year, I remember Sunday nights. That’s when I’d polish my shoes, iron my shirts for the week, get my suit ready and then go to bed early. I hated Mondays. It was so depressing to know six days lay between me and the next time I could rest. I did the countdown-to-Hump-Day thing, The Thank-God-It’s-Friday thing. Today, I’ll quite often go to the cinema on a Monday. There’ll be generally almost nobody there. I don’t even know how cinemas can stay in business.
I have most of my work stack for Tuesday and Wednesday with a little bit on Thursday. And then nothing – Friday, Saturday, Sunday, Monday. When you’re making six figures a month, you can choose to landscape your week the way you want.
10 – You love what you do
Ten, you’re probably doing something you enjoy. If you’re making six figures a month, it’s likely you’re pursuing something you’re quite interested in and probably have spent a fair bit of time building and setting up. So there’s that creative, joyful, passionate element to it. When I’m coaching a business and I’m getting paid well for that, I’m doing something I enjoy. I have some of the most incredible customers on the planet.
11 – No more “one day” mindset
Eleven, you move from the “one day” mindset to today. I remember the days of driving off to work in my nose-bleedingly expensive suit, wearing my $15,000 Rolex watch, polished shoes, the Montblanc pen. I had all the good gear, but I was constantly thinking about one day. One day, I’ll be able to retire. One day, I can stop building this guy’s business and start living my own life. One day, maybe I’ll win the lottery and be able to walk away from all of this.
When you start making six figures a month, you stop waiting for the lottery win. You don’t need to win the lottery anymore. If you want to go to dinner, out to a movie, or see a show and it’s in town, and it’s on tonight, and there are only a few tickets left, and they’re really expensive, you can do it. If you want to travel to Hawaii and have a break and there’s a flight available tomorrow, you can just book it. I’ve had more once in a lifetime experiences in the past 10 years than I can count. Anything I want to do, I can do it today if I want. That simple fact has removed a lot of desperation and dependence from my life. I live a life of no compromise.
12 – You can’t be fired
Twelve, you can’t get sacked. The whole time I was a sales professional, I lived in fear of losing my job, of having to go home and tell my family I couldn’t support them anymore. The more money I made, the more fearful I got. By the time I was making $300,000 a year, I was terrified. No one in the industry in a comparable position was making as much as me. If I lost my job, there was no way I could replace that income.
About a year after I quit my job, I was in a hotel room on the Gold Coast after speaking to 500 people at an event. Suddenly a wave of emotion washed over me, and I just completely broke down in tears. It was like it finally hit me. I didn’t have to be afraid anymore. I couldn’t get sacked. I was the captain of my own ship, master of my own destiny.
“Having more money just magnifies your personality.”
If you’re a nice person, making six figures a month won’t turn you into a nasty person. I believe it was Yanik Silver who said to me, having more money just magnifies your personality. He said if someone’s mean and you give them more money they become meaner. If they’re generous and nice, they become more generous and nice. It’s interesting – when I was working at the dealership, I was a machine. Hard worker, firm, bossy, bit of a hard ass. But I had to, to survive where I was. I had to put my mask on when I went to war. People who knew me then wouldn’t recognize me today. I’m much more easy-going now, caring, a good listener, more creative, more interested, more generous. Six figures a month is a bit over a million dollars a year. It’s a lot of money, but not an excessive amount of money. If you’re a nice person, six figures a month will probably make you nicer.
For a lot of people in my industry, the logical next step is to make $10 million a year. Whenever one of my clients states that as a goal, I asked them why. If you’re pushing for 10 million a year, you’re likely working a lot of hours. Your health is probably suffering. And you probably don’t have time for your family, hobbies or passion projects. You’re probably not having fun. And keep in mind that many $10-million-a-year businesses have a much lower profit margin than some smaller businesses. If you like extra stress, and that’s a sacrifice you willing to make, and it makes you happy, then all the power to you. After all, a recent guest on my podcast said success is personal.
If, like me, six figures a month sounds like it might be enough to provide you with the freedom to live a better life and serve the world better, then here’s a couple of things you could do to get started.
The first one is, get a business or a venture that’s currently making six figures a year. If you don’t have such a venture yet, my first book or audio, it’s called Work Less Make More, it will help you get there. If you’re making four or five figures per month online, then SuperFastBusiness membership can definitely help you with my personal coaching.
You also need to believe that six figures a month is possible for you. Most people look at it and think, I could never do that. And the thing is, they’re probably right. If you think you could never do it, then you’re never going to. If you think you can, however, and you have something in place, if you’ve started the process, then let’s chat about tuning your business.
By the way, if you’re already making six figures a month, then let’s talk about SilverCircle, because I can probably help you tune your business and your life and still help you work less and make more. Look, even if you want to work more, I can definitely help you make more, if that’s really your goal. Jump on my email list, make sure you’re getting my updates, because I’ve got another book coming that’s going to specifically deal with making six figures per month.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this episode. This is Episode 628, 12 Reasons Why $10 Million Per Year May In Fact Be More Than ‘Enough’. And also, I recommend, if you haven’t already listened to it, check out Episode 627 because that’s going to form a part of this particular series and it will give you some ideas as to if you really can make $100,000 per month or not.
Look out for more discussion on this topic. I’m James Schramko. I hope you’ve enjoyed this podcast. If you did, please share it. I do take comments and of course there’s a PDF available and a checklist of these points.
Enjoying a six-figure monthly income? James can show you how to work less and make more
Like the show? Subscribe to us on iTunes