How to Make More Money Meaningfully

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So what do you do when you have no money?

I get these emails once in a while saying, “Brendon, I don’t have any money what do I do?”

First and foremost, I get that. We’ll talk about money, but I’ve been through that challenge and struggle. I grew up in an economically depressed Irish mining town. There was a lot of struggle there. I remember, where I grew up it was a pretty tough town, pretty tough weather and pretty tough economy. I grew up in a small town in Montana.

I remember one time the heater went out, and when the heater goes out in Montana in the winter it is a dire situation. Wind chill can get to 20 and 30 below zero, even 40 below zero. It’s freezing and we didn’t have enough money to fix the heater. My folks were waiting for their paychecks to come in at the end of two weeks to be able to fix this heater.

You have four kids in a house with no heat when its 20 below zero, what are you going to do?

My mom goes out to the garage and grabs our camping tent and sleeping bags, every parka and blanket we have. We bring them in the living room and she sets up the tent, throws all those things in there, throws us kids in there. The electricity goes out at some point, so we’re cooking dinner on Bunsen burners and just waiting for this paycheck.

You know my parents, they were so good. They were making it fun. We’d walk to school and they’d be like, “What did you do last night?” We said we were camping in our living room! We had no idea the situation was so dire. So I grew up with nothing, but I grew up with total abundance.

Sometimes you don’t have to have any money to make life fun or fulfilling or engaging, and sometimes even when you don’t have money you can make things work out.

My parents worked so hard between the two of them and I have no idea how they raised us four kids. Honestly, I have no idea, and it blows my mind. I lucked out on the parent train, but some people say, “You had it so lucky.” Later on, I went bankrupt chasing my dream trying to be a writer, trying to be a trainer and trying to do videos like this. I went completely bankrupt, ass over a tea kettle – is that the saying, I don’t know? Do people even say that anymore?

I was struggling. I went bankrupt and what do I do? How do you overcome that?

You begin with yourself not your bank account. If your self-worth is low, your value in the marketplace will always be as low. If you don’t value yourself no one else is going to value you.

You have to, at first, realize that you have something to contribute, even if you don’t know what that contribution is yet. That if you’re really going to another level of financial success in life, you have to get dialed in and own the reality.

Whatever mess or challenge you’re in right now, it is your job and it’s on your shoulders to fix it. You might need to get some help. You might need to get some training. You might need to get some support, but it’s your job to right the ship. Nothing is going to suddenly emerge. You aren’t going to win the lottery. You’re not going to get lucky at this.

There are only two things that change your life, either something new comes in, so yeah maybe you win the lottery, you get an inheritance and things turn around.

The second thing is that something new comes from within.

You get a greater hunger, a greater passion, a greater commitment to go out there and crush it again.

Go add so much value that you can’t help but get paid for it.

A lot of people say, Brendon, “I just want to make some money.”

I say, “Great, what do you have to sell?”

They say what?

You can’t make money if you don’t have anything to sell.

You have to have something to sell. What is it you’re offering? What are you selling?

First and foremost, you’re selling yourself. You are selling the ability for you to serve. You are selling your character, your ability to offer something valuable to the world. And when I say selling, obviously I don’t mean you’re selling out. You’re offering yourself. You’re persuading the world that you have something to contribute, that you’re a hard worker, that you care and you’re going to get it done. If you can’t do that then you can’t grow. You can’t invest. You can’t build.

You have to find that power from yourself to be able to change things around and once you find it from yourself, then you have something to offer.

Do you have a product, a program or service to offer to the world, if you’re an entrepreneur or business owner? If you do, how well have you dialed in the offering of that product, program or service to the world? Is your messaging tight? Is your marketing world-class? Is your distribution, your capabilities and customer service all world-class? If not, keep dialing those in. As you dial those in you bring in more money.

What if you’re an employee? It’s time to look around again. To check back into that company. What if you’re going to get fired in five days and they’re going to choose who’s going to get fired, based on who is willing to learn the most and who has been willing to contribute the most? You need to start contributing way outside of what’s put on your desk every day or what shows up in your inbox. You actually need to push away from your inbox and your desk and think, how could I add more value here? That has to be something you do everyday.

You have to be obsessed with serving. You have to be obsessed with contributing more than anybody else. You have to bring more ideas to the table.

People say, Brendon, “What if I get shot down with my ideas?”

So what? At least you flew!

At some point you have to make the decision to contribute. If you’re going to fly and get shot down, then you got shot down, but at least you lived!

Go contribute more at work. Look around at who else you could help, who else you could contribute to, who else could you mentor and bring up. How could you become the lynchpin in the organization in some way or another to keep climbing, serving and adding value? You deserve that, because at minimum, that’s what makes employment or work fun. Taking care of people, adding value and giving new ideas.

If you’re one of those people who are like, “You don’t understand, I have this bad boss or whatever.” I’ve had terrible bosses in my life too and got over it.

Maybe you’re in the wrong job.

Some people are busy at work, but their busywork isn’t their life’s work. They’re doing the wrong thing and they knew they should have gotten out of there five years ago, but they didn’t have the guts to face themselves in the mirror and say today is my day, and make the decision to leave.

If you’re in the wrong thing, face it at some point.

You’re never going to make a lot of money in the wrong thing, and if you do make a lot of money in the wrong thing, then you’re more likely to start doing the wrong things. Makes sense right, because there’s no meaning there, there’s no significance and no real contribution? You made some money doing the wrong thing, so now you start turning into that character that starts pursuing money for the ends of money.

Life should be incredibly valuable to you. If you really value your days, like that day becomes valuable, and because your day is valuable you get stuff done.

You know, why a lot of people end up feeling really broke is because they aren’t valuing their day. They’re broke because they added no value to their day. They’re reading celebrity gossip magazines. They were screwing around online. They were doing nothing that actually moved the needle, in terms of their personal and their professional progress.

So value this day.

You want to make more money? Get serious about tomorrow. Value that day. Ask how you can add more value into the day. Really work the day, and as you do that over and over again, you ask… How can I serve? How can I contribute? How can I take it to the next level? You do that long enough and the breakthrough happens. The magic happens.

And the money takes care of itself.