In the first episode we learned about the reduction of buying power and how this is desired by the the central banks and their interest & inflation policy. In Episode 2 & 3 I will briefly touch on some investment strategies that you can use in order to increase your ACTIVE and your PASSIVE income and eventually maintain the value of your money and eventually achieve financial independence. I roughly put them into two categories; Invest in yourself (Episode 2) and Invest in financial vehicles (Episode 3).

In the following Episode we will look at how you can invest money, time & effort into yourself and improve your income situation. Some of the following strategies may surprise you and not all strategies will fit to everyones life.

Life is about serving each other. We all have different kind of skills and knowledge and we all serve someone with these. This approach of social life is one of the principle reasons why humans are so much more efficient in surviving than any other life-form we know. You serve your supervisor, who serves his manager who serves a corporate structure who serves their customers. Ultimately we all serve each other, either directly or indirectly. The more and the better we serve the more we should expect in return.

Why is that important to realize?

It shows you that you add value to the lives of others whether you believe that your job is important or not. You serve others, others serve you. You depend on the service of others and others depend on YOUR skills & knowledge.

Skills and knowledge are assets just like money, even if less liquid. And the value of these assets also changes with location and time. Some services cost a lot more in one country vs another. Your skills and your knowledge have a price and you can get an estimate of the worth of your skills by looking at the labour market. Some companies provide a salary evaluation service considering similar occupations, responsibilities, knowledge, degrees, location, age, etc… for you to know if you sell your service above or below fair value.

Bottom line, if you want to receive more compensation for the time you sell to an employer you can either serve more or you can acquire more valuable skills and knowledge.

#1 More money for the same job

Most people only pay more than average if they receive more than average. And that’s fair right? The same applies to your job! Your employer should pay you more than average if you serve him more than the average employee. I know that this is not how some companies think about wages and yes, age, historic salary, networking and how good you negotiated your salary in the first place definitely plays a role too. But you are more likely to increase your salary if you increase your performance.

And there are many ways to achieve this: acquire a new skill, inform yourself about the latest practices of the industry or take more responsibility. Just ask your employer how he defines increased performance. A good manager will tell you. I even recommend getting your manager into that boat and mutually negotiate the terms to avoid any surprise in the end. If they are smart they will help you achieve goals that serve both of you. And if they are not, maybe another employer is willing to pay you more for your assets.

#2 New job that´s higher compensated

Networking and research. Understand what skills are most valuable in your area, or the area you wish to live, and how you can acquire these skills. Perhaps you have to invest money in order to receive the right trainings but being equipped with more valuable skills you have a realistic chance of receiving a higher income. Good employers have a budget for educating employees and pay for the charges of such trainings.

These strategies don’t create additional income streams per se but by increasing your sole income, at least you can allocate more money to your investing and savings account which will then lead to an additional PASSIVE income stream.

#3 Additional job

In 2017 it is definitely possible to have a second or 3rd „paid occupation“ in addition to your current labor job. Many opportunities are provided through the web;

Online marketer or blogger. Service or product tester. Get paid to participate in surveys. Write articles for online magazines or blogs. Some call centers pay you on an hourly basis and you get to choose which days and what time of the day you can or want to work.

If you know how to google eventually you will end up with a list that is much longer than mine. If you don´t want to work on a computer you can still use it to get hired to do physical service job for someone else like gardening, children- hous- or animal-keeping, cleaning, driving, fixing stuff, coaching, teaching, helping at events or in construction. Again, google will help you make the list even longer.

#4 Create a product

You can write ebooks. Does not have to be 500 pages long. It can just be a novel or about a real life experience you made. If it serves others, either by entertaining or providing them with precious information it can potentially be sold at a very high number. You offer your ebook for less than 5 euro on the respective websites so that thousands are willing to download it. Best thing, books are created once, then your done with the work but they continue to pay of as long as new people want to read them.

If you are an artist you can sell your work online. Maybe you have some engineering skills and you create a product that does not exist yet. No need to be an engineer however, you can partner with others. You find them on the net through crowdsourcing platforms.

You don´t even need money, get funded through crowdfunding platforms.

#5 Create a service

You can learn how to get access to good deals and then offer those deals on your website or online store. Shopping has definitely changed and will change further in the next years and you can be part of it! The market is far from being over saturated.

You are really good and passionate about a subject, then coach or train others. There are many ways to teach people and get paid directly in exchange or though other means.

You are highly knowledgable and experienced about a certain industry, you can offer your guidance and serve as an independent director or consultant director.

Become an online designer. Design websites or create motion graphics for example. Create an app. Ok, this is a tough one because there is an overwhelming amount of apps available already. But it is also as easy and as cheap as ever before to create one. There are templates or building blocks kinds of app building platforms that allow you to create your very own one fast and cost efficient. But if you really want to be paid off from an app you must come up with something new and something that many people have a great interest in.

I recently heard the need for the following service that may be provided in form of an app and I haven`t seen that one was create yet; Many have a lot of stuff they don´t need and neither the time nor the interest on selling their stuff. So I can imagine a service through which someone comes to your place, picks it all up, sells it for you and keeps a commission. Such services exist in all kind of forms but there is no one stop solution yet.

#6 Create a business

Essentially this is the second step after creating a service or a product. If your new income stream is sustainable you may transform it into a business and pay others do the work so that you can focus on the next income stream and receive truly passive income.

I do understand that not everybody feels comfortable with those strategies but aren´t the real success stories made by people who went beyond their comfort zone? How did you get together with your partner? How did we land on the moon or found medicine agains bacteria? By leaving our comfort zones, right?

The purpose of investing should be adding value to your life. Using the above strategies seems contradictory to the ultimate goal since these strategies create ACTIVE additional income. But this will allow you to build savings without lowering your means of life to much. These savings can then be invested into financial vehicles in order to create PASSIVE additional income.

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