January 23, 2024

Your Time, Your Money: The Path to Financial Freedom

By: Travis Watts, Director of Investor Development

The Path to Financial Freedom

Building Wealth and Financial Freedom 

Financial freedom typically refers to building wealth that allows for sufficient savings, investments, and liquid assets to support the lifestyle we choose. It involves accumulating savings that allow for retirement or the pursuit of a desired career without the constraint of a fixed annual income. Essentially, financial freedom is achieved when our finances are actively working in our favor, instead of us working for our finances.  

The two most common routes to building wealth:  

  1. Trade your time for money 
  2. Invest your money to make more money 

Which holds the best return? Well, for me, it began with trading my time for money.  

 

Working Hard for the Money 

At 15, my first job was a paper route, earning $40 weekly for 4 hours of work—a decent $10 per hour at the time. Then, the entrepreneurial bug bit, and I hustled cleaning cars for $100 a day, making about $25 an hour.   

In my early 20s, the oil and gas industries were my next highest and best opportunity, hustling 100-hour workweeks for $20 an hour. To my surprise, the bonuses and overtime pushed me into a six-figure income, and this is where I began to question my time value.   

 

Investing in Financial Freedom 

A pivotal moment arrived when I began to study investing. It was time for my money to do some heavy lifting on its own.   

Initially, my real estate investments yielded roughly $30,000 a year, then $50,000, gradually scaling to $100,000+ annually. Eventually, my passive income surpassed my active income, granting me new choices…  

The fact was, I wasn’t rich, I was just twenty-something with a six-figure income—but the passive income made the situation unique.  

  1. It was tax-friendly 
  2. It didn’t enslave me to an exhausting schedule 
  3. Diversification kept it more secure and predictable  

 

Why Passive Income 

This simple realization steered me towards teaching others about passive income. Why? Because it unlocked the opportunity to switch to a more fulfilling career in the world of finance, which was my true interest and passion.   

Shifting from a grueling 100-hour workweek to a balanced 40-hour week reunited me with family, friends, and led me to my wife, and our shared love for travel. I finally had a personal life again as the golden handcuffs of high-paying and unfulfilling work had held me captive in my own life for years.   

Then came the urge to give back. Earned income was the only means I had to give before becoming an investor, but teaching others was how I wanted to give back, and this required time. Passive income unlocked this opportunity, and it became a reality.   

 

What Financial Freedom Could Mean for You 

Did you know 60% of Americans live paycheck to paycheck?  

I was part of that statistic for many years. It’s been a pain point of mine that passive income investing is not widely taught and, consequently, millions of people are opted-out from the opportunity. Not because they can’t participate, but because they simply do not have the tools and knowledge.   

A large part of my mission is to help spread this knowledge for others aspiring to take the path less traveled.  

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference.” – Robert Frost 

Money becomes a game once you can cover your basic living needs. Any additional income becomes an opportunity to:   

  • Try new careers 
  • Retire early or retire a spouse 
  • Launch a business that betters lives 
  • Attain financial peace and lessen stress around finances  
  • Elevate your lifestyle  

Financial freedom can unlock a new world of opportunities. I encourage you to ponder on this for the week ahead; it might unveil new avenues. 

If you would like to learn more about building wealth or investing in our current offerings, you can schedule a call with our Investor Relations Team or check out the “Passive Income Lifestyle” YouTube series. 

Author - Travis Watts

travis@ashcroftcapital.com