Have you ever asked yourself if you are doing what you really want with your life during your working hours? After all, we spend a good chunk of our lives earning a living, but apparently, many of us do not do a very good job. Many Americans are working longer in their lives but, according to a report by the Stanford Center on Longevity, they still don’t have the money needed for retirement. Sadly, the report states that “to address retirement savings shortfalls, American workers will need to adopt some combination of working longer, saving more, spending less, and making every dollar count by adopting efficient investment and retirement income strategies.”
As reported by CNBC, “70 is the new 65,” because many people don’t save enough to fully retire by 65 to maintain their current standard of living, and one of the best strategies to withdraw money in retirement is to delay social security benefits until age 70. How depressing is that? Realizing there are other systems, such as military retirement, or a few other retirement programs that do not rely on social security, your situation may be slightly different. The caveat here is you need to understand how your retirement works. Do not wait until you are ready to retire to look at your benefits. Understanding benefits early will allow you to set up for success in your post-work years, rather than scrambling for the next means of income.
Whether you own a business, are at the bottom rung of the corporate ladder, or somewhere in between--hopefully, you’re enjoying how you’re spending your working hours and putting yourself in a position to control your financial future without dealing with unnecessary distractions. If you are not--you need to be thinking about exploring your “career 2.0.” That is, working on your income, lifestyle, wealth, and equity (ILWE) goals.
Whenever I coach clients, I ask them to think about their ILWE goals. Getting a handle on these goals can help you get from where you are now to somewhere better.
In my experience, you are not likely to achieve the type of career success you want without examining your income goals. What type of income do you want, or need?
If you feel like your lack of sufficient income is getting in the way of being able to do what you want to do, you should probably change something about your career. You might start small, like seeking out a raise or promotion. You may, of course, want to go a little bigger and consider switching jobs or looking for side work to supplement your income.
Additionally, you might want to explore being self-sufficient through business ownership. Not only can this help you achieve your income goals, but it can also allow you the flexibility to achieve your lifestyle, wealth, and equity goals. Self-sufficiency through business ownership can come in many shapes and sizes. This does not necessarily mean buy a building and develop a retail outlet or restaurant, but it can be possible if that is where your interests lie. Some examples of opportunities range from working in a home office virtually to owning a business that works from different locations such as kiosks, warehouses, or vans.
Working for an unpleasant boss can be drudgery. According to a Harvard Business Review article that examines why people quit their jobs, “people don’t quit a boss — they quit a job. And who is responsible for what that job is like? Managers.”
It is your manager who defines your job duties and daily responsibilities. I have noticed that there are many poor managers out there who seem to be incapable of helping great employees maximize their strengths, grow in their careers, or appreciate the impact they have in their workplace.
Having a boss who forces you to burn the candle at both ends without showing you the appreciation you deserve, it is usually impossible to have the ideal lifestyle. We call this “battered career syndrome,” at my company, and we have made it our mission to help people break free of that brutal condition.
There are many ways you might envision your life when you explore other career options-- such as business ownership--instead of taking on a new job with yet another manager who’s out of your depth. There’s no right or wrong way to view your future. But it is important to think about what you want out of your life. The amount of time you spend in a business you purchase can be variable. You can plan to work full time (40 hours or more a week), part-time through a semi-absentee model (something between 10 and 40 hours a week), or be completely absent from the business, except as the owner. Absentee models allow you to hire a manager and employees that take care of the daily operations of the business.
This sounds similar to income--and it is related-- but it is different. Wealth is more of a long-term goal that follows an increase in income. It is about maximizing your income by pursuing diverse investments and wealth-building activities. Those focusing on wealth are usually thinking about building their assets and savings for the more distant future and ensuring that their income continues to grow. Do you see yourself someday having enough money that you can easily invest in whatever you want,--whether it is the stock market or real estate investing.
You can also learn more about real estate investing by check out ADPI's podcast: Successful Military Real Estate Investing.
If your current situation allows you to invest, you may be fine with the way things are. But if you are always enviously reading about investors -- especially those who are making money from passive income--that may be yet another reason to explore all career possibilities.
Like any stockbroker will tell you, it is a good idea to have diversity in your means of passive income. What does that look like? Having more business investments that complement each other is a good way of looking at it. For instance, if you own and rent houses, you know there are times when you need a repair completed. You must go repair it yourself if you have that skill set, or you must hire someone to do it. If you also own a home repair business, you can essentially hire yourself (your company) to make the repairs, and you profit from that transaction as well as from the house you have rented.
These are goals that are related to debt. You may not think to yourself, “How much debt do I want?” I can almost guarantee that nobody thinks this way, but we might all be better off if we did.
When you are stuck in a dead-end job with little room for growth and it doesn’t allow you to hit your income goals, taking on debt is often the only way to pay for basic living expenses — but it is also easy to remain stuck if you take out loans that you may not be able to afford and don’t try to further your career and increase your income. Equity represents the value of your assets after all outstanding debts associated with those assets have been paid off. Using your wealth and income to grow your equity through debt reduction is a long-term goal that you may want to focus on now.
Now that “70 is the new 65,” and there’s no guarantee that social security will provide the financial support you may need, your retirement system may have faults. This can cause obvious issues in retirement. Wouldn’t it be nice to be working on achieving short- and long-term goals that will support you and your family for years to come?
When you look at topics such as self-sufficiency and business ownership, the vast amount of information can be daunting. So where can you get information? Groups such as Active Duty Passive Income are a great place to go. In addition to that, if you are looking for a franchise opportunity, using a coach is a great way to start.
If you have ever played sports, you have interacted with a coach. Many successful people have used coaches in various roles. People such as Eric Schmidt of Google, Bill Gates of Microsoft, Steve Jobs of Apple, and many others have all worked with coaches. As Bill Gates put it, “Everyone needs a coach…We all need people who will give us feedback. That’s how we improve.” The same is true for you.
As with anything in life, you get out of it what you put into it. A coach is not a replacement for effort – a coach can not make decisions for you and can not change your life for you. A coach can, however, give you tools and show you the path, but ultimately the success is up to you.
Success is not a one-person show. Even the most successful people in history--past or present--relied on the wisdom, support, and experience of a trusted advisor to establish their legacy. Anyone can be successful, but no one can do it alone.
By Gary Sizemore, Career Ownership Coach with The Entrepreneur’s Source.
I am available to coach anyone interested in getting more information on both themselves and business opportunities.
At TES, our approach is focused on you. Our 35 years of experience in alternative career coaching, our business savvy, our vast network, and our exclusive resources are entirely at your disposal. We create awareness. We will never push you into something you are not ready for. Instead, we help you open yourself to, and help you feel comfortable with possibilities. We want you to achieve discovery. Like the best coaches, we act as a source of guidance and support, holding you accountable to your dreams and helping you attain financial freedom. All of what we do is designed to help you reach clarity.