One of the most alluring concepts in personal finance is the concept of multiple streams of income. The idea is that you have several streams of income flowing into your bank account from a variety of diversified sources. If one of your income sources ends you still have income coming in from other sources, say a job, and you don’t take quite the same financial hit when one stream dries up.
Most people have one source of income, a job with an employer. If your spouse or partner is working, you might have two sources of income. For most Americans, this is where it ends. If you or a spouse loses a job, most people instantly lose 50% of their household income. When you combine this dramatic drop in income with the fact that most Americans live paycheck to paycheck and have less than $400 in savings, a job loss equals a fatal economic hit for most people.
Imagine a scenario where your job is only one income stream and possibly not even your largest source. In this scenario, if you lost your job, you would have other sources of income pouring in, and you wouldn’t have to panic. That is why the concept of multiple streams of income is so alluring to so many people.
I was like most Americans; I had a single job that provided most of my income. I had little to no savings and a pile of bills that came with scary regularity. A job loss was devastating. I should know I had 5 of them in 5 years! What was worse is each job loss was very unexpected and came for different reasons, but each one created a terrible economic hardship and upheaval in my life. If I’d had multiple streams of income coming in, these job losses wouldn’t have been nearly as tough on me. So, when I heard of the concept outlined in the book by the same name from Robert Allen, I bought and devoured the book and found it disappointing. It had some practical ideas in it but came up very short overall.
The problem is that Robert Allen tried to give a one size fits all blueprint of building multiple streams of income. He did this without regard to a person’s background, education, interests, or skill level. He tried to detail specific ways to build these income sources, but many would be a bad fit for many people.
So, I went on a 20-year quest to achieve this alluring state of financial bliss known as multiple streams of income. What I will outline here is what I did to achieve it. I will outline some strategies and things to think about as you pursue your own income streams. Please understand one key concept right from the beginning; this is how I did it. This isn’t necessarily how YOU should do it. It is A way, not THE way.
Individual & Unique Path
As I just stated, I am giving you my way of achieving this, but every person is different. Everyone has different backgrounds, education, interests, and skills. Nobody will be able to provide you with a step-by-step plan to create multiple streams of income. While it is a popular blog topic to create a list of “14 best multiple streams of income,” this is a fallacy. You might read that and find you are unsuited to most or all of them for a variety of reasons. You will have to create and execute your own plan based on your capabilities and aptitude.
For example, in Mr. Allen’s book, he outlines trading in options in the stock market as one of his income sources; if you have never traded stocks before, this is a terrible idea! Even if you have traded stocks, trading options are very different, despite what you read on Reddit, this is difficult and fraught with grave peril if you do it wrong. So, telling everyone to try it is a bad idea. Instead, you need to custom-build your income streams to match your background, education, and skill set.
To illustrate my point more clearly, I will outline my sources of income. I currently earn income from the following sources:
- Consulting Fees
- Affiliate Income
- Online Businesses
- Investment Income from Stock Trading
- Rental Income from Real Estate
- Interest Income from Notes
- Real Estate Business
- Personal Property Trader
- Teaching & Coaching
- Entrepreneurial Business Investments
Not all these sources are equal, and as you can see, some are active, meaning I must expend energy to get them and others are more passive, meaning the income comes in without a lot of effort from me. All these sources are unique to me and my interests, education, skills, and passions.
If you try to implement a stream of income and don’t have a passion for it or lack the necessary skills to execute it, you are headed towards a fast and potentially financially devastating gut punch. So, let’s start from the top on mine:
This comes directly from my business. I have a digital marketing consulting practice and have been self-employed in this business for over 18 years. As noted elsewhere, I believe entrepreneurship and self-employment are key to personal freedom. I don’t do all this work myself; I have built up a team over time. In general, I provide strategic marketing, web design, copy writing, online advertising, and professional speaking services. My income is spread across a variety of clients and a variety of projects. The chances that I lose every single client and project at once is about zero, so this provides a very stable source of income for me, and I would currently label it my full-time income, but there are other rivals on my list closing fast for first place.
Because my primary occupation is digital marketing, I have found various products I can offer to clients during my everyday business activities that fill a need and earn me a sales commission once it is sold. Some of these commissions are one-time fees I earn, but most of them come in steadily every month my client keeps the service. I have income still rolling in each month from products or services I sold years ago and may not even work with that client any longer, but they keep using and paying for the programs I set up, so I keep earning commissions every month. I also earn commissions on products I offer on social media or others that don’t relate to digital marketing but happen to be products I like, use, and recommend. So, if someone asks me for a recommendation, I will send them an affiliate link if I genuinely like, use, and endorse a product. They don’t pay any more for the product, and I earn a commission for a product I would have recommended anyway. Finally, because I am good at digital marketing I often build up lists, income producing websites, sell affiliate products, and create my own products. I have had varying degrees of success and occasional failures doing this over time, but it is fun and it fits in nicely with my skills.
Again, tied to my digital marketing practice, I offer hosting, email marketing, and maintenance services to clients. I also build out my own online projects such as niche websites, eCommerce, online classes, and online content [info marketing]. Each of these offers varying degrees of regular income. Each requires a varying degree of work and resources to keep them going. Some have a lot of work upfront and then are self-sustaining, and others need regular input to keep it producing income.
Investment Income from Stock Trading:
While I am a huge alternative investor, I enjoy investing and trading stocks, bonds and options. I have a background in finance and economics and have studied stock and bond investing since college. I have an eTrade account and buy and sell investments regularly. I make money from capital gains (short term and long term), option fees, and dividends. As I earn income, I split those earnings up in a variety of ways. Some of it goes into real estate, some gets plowed back into other stocks, and some I spend. It just depends on where my portfolio is at any given time which determines what I do with it.
Rental Income from Real Estate:
This income stream is beginning to rival my primary income source of consulting. It started small, but as my portfolio has grown, so have my rents and income. Each property I buy and add to my portfolio becomes a tiny factory kicking out passive income to me every month. I have taken the time to study and learn about real estate investing, finance, and property management. My real estate business takes time and energy to grow, but this aspect, rental properties, is passive and requires very little time each month to keep producing income and growing. I love real estate investing, and I am a passionate investor.
Interest Income from Notes:
Everyone is in the note business right now, but most people are in it as a borrower. If you have a mortgage on your house, or have debt owed on a car, boat, or credit card, someone has a note from you. I am that person in some cases. I am a private lender. I lend them money and take back a note. People will repay that note with interest, and I make income off this. Most of my note investing revolves around real estate, where I will lend money to other investors on their projects, or I will seller finance one of my houses to someone that wants to live there but can’t get a traditional mortgage for some reason. I have never offered notes on things like cars or boats, but some do and make good money doing it. My loans are always to investors. Again, I have a background in finance and economics, and I am a passionate real estate investor, so this was a natural extension for me. I had to spend some time learning the financial calculator, seller financing, lending practices, and various laws, so it wasn’t necessarily a quick income stream, but now that I have it set up, it is quickly becoming a lucrative one. I also do some lending in a self-directed IRA, so the income is tax-free forever. It is hard to beat that.
Real Estate Business:
To someone that has never invested in real estate before, this one may seem like a duplicate of rental property real estate, but it isn’t. The “business” of real estate investing is more active and isn’t necessarily investing. Real estate entrepreneurs do things like flipping houses, rehabbing, selling property, buying and selling options, wholesaling, and other activities. These activities are not passive. It takes time to find deals, negotiate, and create an exit strategy. This activity could lead to investment income but doesn’t generally start that way. For example, I might purchase and rehab a mobile home and then sell it to someone with seller financing and take back a note. At that point, this becomes part of my note portfolio and becomes completely passive. I might lend money to another investor in return for an option to buy into the property at a future date. This would become completely passive once my role in negotiating the deal is finished. I might manage a flip and cash out and take the income, but the process of managing the rehab is not a passive activity.
Personal Property Trader:
I have been into barter for most of my life. I love trading and swapping stuff. This might include trading tools, antiques, computer parts, etc. I find things regularly at estate sales, in houses I am rehabbing, or tenants leave behind, and I trade this with other people or list and sell it on places like Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace. Again, this isn’t exactly a passive activity, but it isn’t super time-consuming either. I find stuff in the ordinary course of my life and business activities, and once it is listed, I don’t have to do much until it sells or I can trade it. This is a fun stream of income for me and is easy.
Teaching & Coaching:
As you can see, I have spent a lot of time learning all this stuff and building multiple streams of income around them. It is not uncommon for people to see something I am doing and take an interest in it. I often get asked by people to lunch or coffee to “pick my brain,” which is short for teaching them to do what I do. I decided to turn it into an income stream. I started offering to coach people that want to learn some of this stuff. If they’re going to learn to be a real estate investor, I will show them the ropes and help them get their business off the ground. If they want to become a website designer or copywriter, I will offer group or one-on-one coaching services. I will even build out online classes and offer them to people. Finally, I teach at the university level as an adjunct professor from time to time. I would call this a semi-passive stream of income. I may have some time involved in teaching at the beginning and then give “homework” for them to do and not work with them again for a week or two.
Entrepreneurial Business Investments:
This last item isn’t necessarily a “stream” of income as much as entrepreneurial opportunities that arise from my other income streams. For example, one of my clients is in the process of launching a new product. He wanted some help, so I offered to do the marketing in return for a piece of the business. I will get some equity in the company and a percentage of the sales for my work. I call this equity sharing. In another scenario, I met another investor that was starting some online businesses, and we are talking about how I can help them grow it. I might negotiate a partnership with the company and ultimately earn an income stream from those activities. I will be involved in consulting, developing a marketing plan, copywriting, and other activities. Once it gets going, my time commitment is likely to reduce significantly, but my income will continue to grow. I have jumped in on real estate or lending deals where I identify an opportunity and I am able to set it up, but not do any of the work outside of supervising a deal. These opportunities come from my daily consulting and investing activities. I don’t necessarily seek them out. They tend to come up because of other activities, and I am just quick enough to see the opportunity and negotiate my way in.
The Active to Passive Continuum
My multiple streams of income range from active income and time commitments to completely passive. A good portfolio of income streams should do the same thing. While I suppose it is possible to create multiple income streams that are 100% passive, I have never figured it out. I tend to think this only lives in the fantasy land of gurus that pitch high dollar courses and boot camps promising to teach you how to do a few hours of work, become rich, and live off your wealth for the rest of your days. This is B.S.
I once knew a guy that was a manager at my gym. He was a nice enough guy, but not terribly interested in working hard. He would often talk about his entrepreneurial pursuits, which were really pie in the sky ideas that never went anywhere. He believed he could find a business, set it up in a few weeks, then sit on a bar stool drinking beer while the money rolled in. Last time I saw him he no longer worked for the gym and was doing some other mind numbing job and no doubt still dreaming of his bar stool. Too many people have his vision when they think of multiple streams of income as well. It isn’t true. Don’t pay someone for a book, boot camp, or home study course that says it is.
You will find that your multiple streams of income will range from active to semi-active and finally passive. Some activities will always be active, such as my consulting; others will be entirely passive once I have them set up, such as my note portfolio. Other streams of income will sit somewhere in the middle. I might get income off stock, but I had to spend time analyzing investments and finding a good one. Rental properties are semi-passive. I need to fill vacancies, manage repairs, do bookkeeping, and collect rent. I will have a little bit of work all the time, but it isn’t too time-consuming, and the income continues to roll in. In addition, the property is typically appreciating, which improves my net worth.
The active work involved in setting these streams up will come in differing amounts as well. You might have a lot of work upfront, such as finding a rental property, rehabbing it, and renting it, but once that is done, the income comes in without a lot of day-to-day commitment. One of my real estate investing mentors has a large portfolio of houses, but he is a very good manager and spends about 4-5 hours per month managing them. Most of his time is spent traveling. Same with my note portfolio. I must find the investments, analyze them, structure the deal, and once all that is done, the income goes on autopilot. For some of my online business activities I might have upfront time in building up a list, product, or content and possibly some time in figuring out my marketing funnel, but then have some passive income coming after.
If all your income streams require a constant time commitment to keep running, you will never keep them all going. In his book, Multiple Streams of Income, Robert Allen discusses the idea of a person that is spinning plates on a pole. He will work to get one plate going and then move to another. Occasionally he needs to go back to one and re-balance it to keep it spinning. I thought this was a good analogy for multiple streams of income. I do this regularly. I might not have to deal with a rental property issue for months, but then a tenant moves out, and I need to do some work, paint, and fill the vacancy, i.e., stop something I was working on to come back and get my plate stabilized and spinning again.
It is essential that you carefully assemble various flexible streams that bend around each other in terms of time involvement. When I have a consulting assignment, for example, 100% of my time is required to complete the project, but I decide when to dedicate that time, so if an emergency comes up with one of my other plates spinning, I can stop what I am doing, fix the problem, and then go back.
Make sure your streams of income are well thought out, and you can manage all of them because some will be active and some passive, and some will be in the middle somewhere. The key is the time you spend to get something going again must be flexible. It must be something you can work around your other streams of income. Don’t overlook this fundamental principle, or you will be setting yourself up for failure.
Synergy is Key
While I outlined 10 different activities above, most of them fall into one of two large buckets. I am an Internet marketer and consultant, and I am a real estate investor. Almost all my streams of income are built off and around these two core competencies. Stock investing being one of the exceptions I can think of.
While multiple streams of income that are diverse are essential, you can create diversity in a lot of different ways. I diversify my consulting business in the number and type of clients I have. My real estate activities are diversified in investment type, exit strategy, neighborhood, and other variables.
However, the skill set I use to run these streams is layered and works together. I don’t have 10 completely different streams; I have 10 interrelated streams that feed off each other. For example, if I buy a mobile home as an investment, I know going in that I am unlikely to rent it. I will most likely rehab it and seller finance it, and create a note for my portfolio. If I build a website for a client, I will probably need to provide hosting, maintenance, related products, and possibly additional marketing services; all of those are streams of income but are created from the initial website project.
Other streams that seem like they float out there on their own, like my property trading, doesn’t really. I find stuff during my real estate investing to do this. For example, I go to estate sales because I am nosy and want to see if they will sell the house as part of the estate. Once I am there, I will bid on some stuff and later sell it. If I am cleaning out a place I just acquired or cleaning up a property after a tenant leaves, I may find things I can sell online or trade. Because I am a techie I often find or have computer parts, software, and other related stuff I can sell or trade. In other words it is still related to my two main buckets mentioned above.
I have a friend that is a serial entrepreneur and real estate investor. He will often go to auctions, typically to buy equipment or vehicles for his own use. However, once he is there, sometimes, (most of the time) he finds extra stuff that are good deals. He will buy this extra stuff he doesn’t need for his own business or investing activities, but then trades that off for options on property or other stuff he wants. Again, you can see it is part of his business and not some extraneous extension of something unrelated. For example, one time he went to an auction to buy a used pickup truck for his business, but ended up bidding on and winning auctions on 3 other pickup trucks. He took the extra trucks to an exchange meeting and traded them off for other stuff he wanted.
I once read a book that called this concept the “economic quilt” a quilt is a whole item that you sleep with at night, but it is made up of a patchwork of materials. Your multiple streams of income should be the same thing. The overall individual streams become your total income, but each is a small part of a larger whole.
It would be best if you built interrelated income streams that will feed off each other. Don’t try to create completely disconnected multiple streams of income. You will be so busy running around and trying to keep them all going that you will collapse from exhaustion. You want things to fit together in a synergistic way where the whole is greater than the sum of the individual parts or streams.
Individual Program Unique to You
I outlined my income streams as a case study to show you how I do it, but you need to create your own to fit into your skills, education, and passions. For example, in Mr. Allen’s book, he talked about one of his income streams: network marketing. I would never add this in as a stream of income to my portfolio because I’m not too fond of that type of selling and hitting up my friends and clients to sell them stuff that seems unrelated. In another example, he talks about getting into numismatics, studying currencies and coins. He spoke about how he would buy coins and sell them at shows and make a lot of money. Again, I know almost nothing about coins, so this would be a terrible income stream for me. Not only do I not know anything about coins, but I probably will never make the time to learn.
I am a real estate investor because I have been fascinated by real estate since I was 17. I had a martial arts instructor when I was 17 that was a real estate agent and bought rental properties. I immediately fell in love with the concept and started learning about real estate before graduating from high school. Studying real estate became a passion for me, so I figured out how to create multiple streams of income around it.
I was a finance major in college, and I learned how the stock market worked, the time value of money, structuring financial deals, securities analysis, portfolio management, cash flow, and all the other concepts finance majors learn. As a result, it was easy for me to apply stock investing to my streams of income. When I decided to get into the note business, I already knew how to run a financial calculator and how to figure out discounts using the time value of money. Again, this was a natural extension of stuff that matched my skill set, which I was interested in.
After college, I started working in the financial services industry, banking to be specific, and I hated it with a passion! I found the environment rigid and boring. The Internet was in its early stages, and I loved technology, so I left banking and moved into technology. I didn’t do this because I thought I could make a lot of money in it, although it turned out to be very lucrative. I did it because I had a genuine interest in technology and learning about it.
I studied information systems in graduate school and took a marketing course, which I found utterly fascinating! It was completely unexpected. I decided to figure out a way to marry technology and marketing together. It didn’t take long before I discovered this would soon be called Internet marketing. A new career path was born for me. I spent years learning it and related fields like web design, media production, copywriting, and the underlying technology.
From these various passions and interests, I learned how to create multiple streams of income. I found ways to match my income streams to my skills and passions. I didn’t chase the money per se; I pursued my interests and tried to figure out where those interests intersected with the ability to make money. In many cases, my income streams started as side hustles so I could do something I was interested in and create an income stream to justify learning about it further. It grew into a stream of income over time. I wouldn’t have done nearly as well by choosing something someone else did because they made a lot of money at it, and I chased it just for the money. Please understand you will need to choose activities that you can make money at, but you want activities where the money and your passion intersect.
While I love web design and digital marketing, you may not know anything about it and hate computers. If so, I would advise you not to try and enter this field because I did. You will likely be miserable and ultimately fail.
Focus & Juggle Simultaneously
Managing multiple streams of income requires three equally important skill sets. You must be capable of intense focus and deep work when needed. When I am building out a website, my mind needs to be fully engaged. I can’t be thinking about the leaky faucet I have to send a plumber to fix in a property. I can’t be thinking about an upcoming trade fair where I think I might sell some personal property I just acquired. At that moment, I need to be good at focus and discipline.
However, I have other streams of income that will eventually require attention from me, so I will need to know how to juggle at times as well. I would love to tell you that the timing for all of this is perfect, and I never have mid air collisions, but that isn’t true. I have been in the middle of cleaning and renting a property and received a notification on my phone that one of my websites just went offline.
When stuff like this happens, I must throw multiple balls up in the air and keep them from hitting the ground. I do this by…
- Priority Management: The most urgent priority in front of me when stuff starts coming apart is what gets my immediate and total focus. If a client is paying me to keep his eCommerce site up and running and I am in the middle of getting a house ready to rent, the house falls down my priority list, and the website rises to the top. You need to be good at figuring out the most urgent and important task at any given time and work on it immediately. As Stephen Covey says in his fantastic book 7 Habits of Highly Successful People, some tasks are urgent but not essential, some jobs are crucial but not urgent, and some are both. You need to be good at separating them and figuring out which is which.
- Time Management: If something will take me 15 minutes to complete but be off my plate so I can focus on a more critical task for extended focus and deep work, I will delay the more critical and involved task for the one that I can complete faster. I am not always successful at determining this initially, but I give it a good try. Between priority and time management, I can generally master most emergencies.
- Delegation: It is important in entrepreneurship and investing to build a team. I have been told many times that success in both activities is a team sport. You are not superhuman, nor are you omniscient. You can’t be good at everything, and you can’t know everything you need to learn single-handedly. You will need other people to shift stuff to and focus on other activities that only you can do. For example, I don’t do a lot of my own rehabs. I will do some stuff, but contract out a lot of it. I am not particularly good at swinging hammers, and I let others who are good at it do this work and manage their work. I don’t do my own coding. I hire a coder and manage their work. It is important to know your strengths and weaknesses, your passions, and the most important activity that only YOU can do well and focus on that.
Dump Losers Quickly
If you have a genuine interest in something and decide to pursue it as a side hustle and figure out after you get into it that you don’t like it as much as you thought, then dump it. Don’t feel the need to hang on to justify the time you have into it or the money you spent to get into it.
When I first started getting into the tech industry, I thought writing code and building applications would be cool. I took some coding classes and started teaching myself to code. I found it difficult and not particularly well suited to my aptitude. I found I didn’t like it and got mad when my programs wouldn’t work as I thought they should. I decided to dump this and started hiring people to code for me. I know enough to code what I need and manage others who are better than me, but I will never be a great coder.
Don’t be afraid to try stuff you think you will like, but if you find you don’t end up liking it, don’t force it. Simply chalk it up as a learning experience and move on to stuff you like better.
Lifelong learning is a competitive advantage.
Lifelong Learning is a Requirement
The skills to start and manage multiple streams of income require constant learning. You will need to build new skills and keep existing skills sharp. Your learning will never end if you hope to be successful. Depending on how many of my articles you have already read you will find I return to this lifelong learning concept over and over again. It is very important to so much of what I do.
Take real estate. You could argue it isn’t that complicated. It is a house on some dirt. Buy it, fix it, rent it. How hard can it be? It turns out very. I constantly read new books, attend seminars, and take courses in real estate investing and related fields such as property management and note investing. Sometimes I find I have made a poor investment in a particular book or seminar, and sometimes, I uncover a goldmine in one I didn’t expect. I learn new strategies and techniques from other investors, and I am constantly sharpening my tools.
Digital marketing requires a never-ending amount of learning. The industry is always changing, and new technology is constantly hitting the market. Stuff that worked 5 years ago disappears tomorrow. I find I must take constant continuing education. I am always taking online classes, reading, and going to technology conferences.
If you don’t like learning, reading, and mastering new skills, you will find it challenging to compete in just about any business. Lifelong learning is a competitive advantage. I discovered my natural curiosity and passion for learning new stuff invaluable to building out my multiple streams of income. I can’t imagine being successful at half the things I do without this attitude.
Eating an Elephant One Bite at a Time
The way every big task is accomplished is by turning it into a lot of smaller and more manageable tasks. While you might find you have many interests and passions, don’t try and start every side hustle and income stream at once. That is a sure way to drive yourself crazy and do nothing effectively; instead focus on building up one stream at a time. As you build, you will find your skill and proficiency at it grows and allows you to find shortcuts and time savings that will enable you to pursue your next side hustle.
When I started my business 18 years ago, it was a web design business and nothing else. As my skill level increased, I decided to pull my interest in marketing and copywriting into it and offer these additional services. I learned technology along the way and became good at my trade.
As this was going on, I would dabble in stock investing and occasionally read books on real estate investing but didn’t pursue them with gusto because my digital marketing business took up a lot of time. Over time my business took on different rhythms, and I found I could get a lot of work done in a shorter and shorter time frame. Eventually, my passion for real estate allowed me to pursue it, and I began building up rental properties. As I mastered this and the skills necessary to manage property, I decided expanding my real estate activities made sense.
As I got into digital marketing and real estate deeper, I found related activities that would bring in additional revenue without necessarily a one-for-one match to my time commitment. I found that I could invest in a property, create a note in a reasonable amount of time, and then move onto something else.
Take things slowly at first and master stuff as you move along and look for opportunities to start new but related income streams. You will grow sustainably and find you build up a few activities well instead of 50 that never get off the ground or quickly fail because you are too scattered.
I have clients in the manufacturing business. I am amazed when I do tours of the plants with them and see how efficient modern manufacturing can be. Scrap materials sold for additional income, shipping materials broke down and sold to recycling firms, defective products stripped, refurbished, and sold again, etc. Nothing goes to waste. This is how you should look at your multiple streams of income.
Multiple Streams of Income Build New Streams & Wealth
Once you create income streams, you start to funnel the extra income from some of them into creating more streams and begin to create a river of income. You don’t do this, so you can simply spend everything you bring in. You can and should funnel some of this income into a capital accumulation plan. For example, I routinely allow the income from my rentals to pile up until I have a significant amount of cash and then pull it out and invest it in stocks or more real estate. This works for me because I don’t need to live off my real estate income. With the income from your various streams coming in, you choose to spend it or invest it. I advise you consider the latter rather than the former, especially in the beginning. The gap between your spending and capital accumulation (saving) is something I call the income & expense wealth gap. It is an important concept in wealth building.
I might take money from a consulting project and attend a seminar or convention where I will meet new people and learn new skills. I could take that money and just spend it, or invest it.
Robert Kiyosaki, the author of Rich Dad Poor Dad, talks about this concept of allowing your income to buy more cash-flowing assets and the income from those assets to purchase more assets. Eventually, you find that the income coming from your investments becomes a substantial stream of income.
This same concept is also discussed in the fabulous book The Richest Man in Babylon:
“Every gold piece you save is a slave to work for you. Every copper it earns is its child that also can earn for you, If you would become wealthy, then what you save must earn, and its children must earn, that all may give to you the abundance you crave.”
– Arkad, The Richest Man in Babylon
I remember in an astronomy class in college the professor talked about nuclear fission, which is the process where nuclear energy becomes self-perpetuating. The energy coming off creates a reaction where more energy is created automatically. This is how your wealth from multiple streams of income should be.
Building multiple streams of income is a sure-fire way to build economic security in your life. It is hard to lose 50 or 100% of your income at once if your income comes from multiple sources. You may choose to work a job for a little while or even for your entire career (although I would advise against it), but having other income streams will cushion you in case of a job loss.
It would be best if you built your side hustles and multiple streams of income around areas you find interesting and are passionate about. Don’t choose them because someone told you that you could make a lot of money doing it. If that is your only criteria for choosing it, you are using the wrong criteria.
Choose income streams that are synergistic, interrelated, and connected. You want your efforts in one area to feed opportunities into other areas. Managing a portfolio of entirely separate and unrelated income streams, even if you love them, will be very difficult and likely lead to burnout.
Learn to juggle and prioritize your income streams and tasks to focus on the stuff that only you can do, that is urgent, and important. Build a strong team and delegate when you can. Time management becomes a crucial skill when you are managing multiple streams of income.
Constant learning and building up new skills is a competitive advantage in life. Those that do it will always earn more than those that don’t. I find it essential to keep my skills sharp when building up a portfolio of income streams. The learning never stops. I am infinitely curious about stuff and will naturally seek out opportunities to learn new stuff. This has made it very easy to identify and add new income streams into my life.
Take your time and build your various streams deliberately and slowly. Don’t try and do everything at once, or you will find you do nothing well. Start with one, then add a related second activity and master it. Go step by step as you add each one and become proficient before adding the next one.
Reinvest your streams of income into new investments, skills, and opportunities. Don’t spend everything you earn or add new streams of income just to raise your lifestyle. If you do that, you will find that you become a slave to your income and stress yourself out. If this happens, burnout and a crash are right around the corner. If you keep reinvesting your earnings, you will find your income begins to grow exponentially and reach that nuclear fission state where it becomes self-perpetuating.
The information contained within this website is provided for informational and educational purposes only and is not intended to substitute for obtaining legal, accounting, tax, or financial advice from a professional tax planner or financial planner. Full disclosure
Subscribe to Blog