Update: This is NOT one of those affiliate scams or get-rich-quick schemes. I’m not selling anything and I don’t want your 5 bucks in order to give you a lame-ass PDF supposedly worth thousands of dollars. If you stumbled upon this page by accident, only keep on reading if you want some common sense advice on how to make 500 dollars on your own, through simple, ordinary adjustments to your lifestyle. Now, back to the original article.
I was talking to one of my friends about how bad things were going for him. I genuinely tried to help, offering the best advice I could. He was having difficulties with his financial situation. After the talk, I felt that I didn’t really offer enough practical tips for him to make a change. That got me thinking about the sort of things he could do in order to have more money. I decided to write this article.
“What are some of the most basic things that somebody can do right away and receive some money?” That was my first question. Then I thought that money comes from adding value to some other person’s life. That person then pays you X amount of dollars. But that sounds pretty hard when you don’t have anything to offer another human being. Your life is a mess, your job sucks and you have zero capital. That would be the worst possible scenario, right?
That is exactly what my friend was explaining to me on the phone. He feels his hands are tied because he doesn’t really have anything to offer. “OK, I won’t argue with him,” I thought to myself.
So the challenge is to find some sort of way to make money without actually doing anything. Is that even possible? It must be. I truly believe anything is possible. If that is true, why not make it even more of a challenge? How about… finding something which takes just one second of “not doing” and can make you more money? Let’s say that for one second you’ll receive $100!
If I find a way to achieve this, both my friend and you could earn $500 dollars for just 5 seconds of not doing anything! OK, it shouldn’t be that hard!
1 Wake Up 15 Minutes Earlier
The first thing would be to just wake up. No, I don’t mean it in a figurative way. Actually wake up. Make a conscious decision to wake up a bit earlier. The best thing about this is that the decision to do so takes only one second. If you’re already waking up at 7:00 AM, and that’s when you’re supposed to wake up, just go for 6:45 AM. Just 15 minutes earlier. This habit alone will make you $100 dollars/week.
I sense that you don’t trust me on this one. You don’t? Think about it! You’ll use 15 minutes per day, in the morning, to think about methods for more productivity. Do you really think you won’t be able to find ways in which to make $100 dollars/week? So what I am basically proposing here is that you wake up earlier and use those extra 15 minutes only for the purpose of asking the next question:
“How could I generate $100 more this week?”
Do you think that, if you were to do this and really, truly ponder that question, for the next 5 days (in the morning, when you are fresh and full of energy), you wouldn’t find the answer eventually?
I’ll bet my bottom dollar you’ll find an answer. Your subconscious mind will tell you where you need to go, just do the work and trust it will come through for you!
2 Quit Drinking Lattes
Let me give you another decision which only takes one second to implement.
This will surely add up to much, much more than $100. This alone should be worth 5 times as much!
Do you know about the so called “latte factor?” It’s a theory which says that if you save the money from the lattes you’re drinking daily, you’ll end up a millionaire. There’s an entire movement dedicated to this. Now, I don’t really promote extreme frugality. I don’t believe in it. I love living in luxury and having the finest things in life. I also think you should live the life of Riley only when you can really afford it! Don’t trick yourself into thinking that you can afford small things like a daily latte or a chocolate bar or Pringles, when you know that you are actually scared to add up what those cost over the course of a month!
I had a friend some while back who was absolutely addicted to small eatable stuff like this:
He came from a very rich family so he could afford buying all of these. Unfortunately, he is now very poor. All that chocolate can go to your head!
3 Don’t Waste Gas
Why not decide not to push on the gas pedal right down to the floor, in that split moment when you want to impress your girl or fancy yourself a NASCAR driver? Why not decide not to do that? Don’t you think that will surely mean $100 more in your pocket? Please understand, this is not frugality, my friend. This is just common sense. This is what making balanced choices is all about. And you should practice it in every activity that you undertake. Not only driving. Practice it until being a level-headed individual who doesn’t waste money on unnecessary things comes natural.
You’ll be able to live a lavish lifestyle, I promise you, once you get the money. I’m all for Birdman’s lifestyle! But until then, please be balanced!
4 Eat Your Own Food, Don’t Eat Out!
Yap, you guessed it. It’s the old brown-bag trick that your mum used to put you through when you were in school. She’d overdo it on the bread and skimp on the cured meats and cheese and pack you a homemade, nasty-smelling sandwich! That way, she made sure you didn’t waste her money on expensive treats. It was basically an excuse for not giving you any pocket money. And in case you’re wondering, yes, I did have a bad childhood! But it did work, didn’t it? You should apply it, but maybe just improve on the actual sandwich a bit. This will save you time and money, as you’ll be eating your lunch at work instead of commuting to the nearest pizza place and this will also save you the extra dollars you’d otherwise be shelling out on that extra-large shawarma!
5 Stop Conceptualizing
Everybody plays a game in their heads. In the morning, just after waking up and before getting some breakfast, we think about what needs doing that day. During breaks, at work or while driving to work, we start to think about all we have to do when we get to the office. So when we finally arrive there at the office, we already feel tired and want to quit. We also conceptualize this way when we arrive back home, instead of relaxing and actually detaching from the work environment, we stress about next day’s workload, worry about what we did wrong today, or dwell on a fight we had with our boss or employees last month!
This game that we play in our heads can be stopped. It takes just one second.
Why bother doing this? You’ll be much more productive when you need to be and you’ll have less overall stress. You’ll also have a much more fulfilling existence! That will lead to an increase in the value you bring to your job and, therefore, in your salary. The universe is bound to give you more if you offer more! Be in the moment, be in the “now.” I know this sounds simple. That’s because it is. You should only think about the future when you are in the planning phase and only think about the past when you want to learn something. Outside of those particular times, be in the present moment. Don’t reminisce and don’t visualize. This skill alone will make you richer.
6 Give up Unnecessary Distractions
Look, I know we all need our laser tag weekends with the boys, or our Super Bowl hangout – but do we also need to watch the idiot box every night, just to kick our feet up? If you catch up with all the underlying psychology behind those marketing schemes advertisers throw at their unassuming viewers, you’ll have a better understanding of just how toxic watching TV can actually be… for your bank account. It wreaks havoc on your brain as well and exhausts you no end instead of helping. I won’t even go into all the other, better things you could be doing with your free time if you weren’t wasting it away in front of that outdated contraption. Your laptop’s a far better choice as chilling activities go – think about it, the whole point to a personalized Internet, to cookies and bookmarks, is that, unlike the TV broadcast, whatever you’ll find online, even those annoying banners, is more or less likely to interest you or even give you your next bright idea.
Not to mention, turning it off will also have an impact on your electric bill in the long run.
Think Earth Hour times 24 times 365!
7 Stick to the ‘Must-Buy List’
Making lists is probably the best way to go when it’s time to cough up cash for groceries and the like. Stick a post-it to your fridge and take a second to jot down “milk” when you’re throwing out the empty carton. And so forth, throughout the week. When the time comes to replenish your pantry, grab the list and be on your way, content in the knowledge that this time you won’t be rushing to and fro around the store like a headless chicken. Most of all, the Must-Buy List saves you the extra bucks you’d be shelling out on some random item that grabs your eye on some random shelf – you know you don’t really have to buy it today, but the little devil spender is whispering into your left ear: “Who knows, maybe some day…”
Stick to your guns and to your list and move swiftly through the store in tunnel-vision mode! There’s no other way of getting around the well-placed “sirens” luring you down aisles stocked with stuff you don’t need now and probably won’t ever.
8 Drink Water like Your Life Depended on It
(Which, uhm, it does) Treating yourself to a glass of wine every once in a while isn’t that big of a deal, wallet-wise and also health-wise – it’s preferable to other spirits, strengthens your heart even (in moderation). But more preferable still is plain old water! For one thing, it’s far cheaper than any drink, cheaper even than the slice of lemon that comes with said drink. For another, take a page from all the diet books out there, swearing by the fact that drinking water before a meal will trick their followers’ stomachs into feeling fuller, faster. And that helps you how exactly? Well, the sooner your hunger pangs go away, the sooner you can go off doing something productive with your time, instead of digging into your wallet to get seconds.
And another fun fact – drinking water or just staying away from alcohol at social functions will save you tons on cab fare, since you’ll be able to drive yourself home!
9 Kill the Lights!
Make hay while the sun shines, as the old saying goes. When you do need artificial lighting, try using desk or floor lamps instead of the big glaring ceiling fixtures – it will make it easier for you to remember to turn them off when you leave the room. Even just an hour of unneeded lights translates into a big chunk of change on your power bill.
An equally neat trick that also will only take you a second – or a split second more, depending on how limber you are – is unplugging your devices that you aren’t actively using. So bend down and yank that washer cord out of the socket unless you want the so-called “phantom load” racking up charges on your bill! And again, that makes sense in the bigger, ecological scheme of things too.
Main Photo via 401(K) 2012