You have two options:
The slow or fast way.
The slow way – work your way up the corporate ladder, max out your 401k, maintain a low cost of living, avoid debt, save every penny you can and invest in a S&P 500 ETF.
Depending on your lifestyle, this method could allow you to be financially free in your 40–50’s.
There’s no problem with this method and it’s a great option for most. The reason it’s slow is because there’s no leverage.
You are limited to your own time, earning power and savings and most people can’t save more than $25-$50k per year, so it takes time.
The fast way – use leverage to build and acquire assets.
This option allows you to earn significantly more and accelerate the path to financial freedom by leveraging other people’s money (“OPM”) and other people’s time (“OPT”).
Types of OPM includes bank financing and investor capital. The wealthy use it to acquire and/or build businesses.
A common example is using a combination of bank financing and investor capital to acquire real estate. This allows them to buy and control much more real estate than they could ever afford on their own.
You might be able to save and invest $100k for a down payment on a duplex, but a group of investors could raise $1M+ for a down payment on a larger apartment complex.
Another example is using investor capital and OPT, such as employees and consultants, to form a high growth company that can be sold or passively operated in the future. This allows the owner to build a business larger than they could have ever done on their own.
You might be able to work 12–14 hour days, 7 days a week, but if you can hire some high quality employees, you can get many times more done each day and hopefully reduce your hours so you can focus on building the business.
One person can only work and save so much, so in order to accelerate the process you must leverage OPM and OPT.
You also have the option of combining the two ways for a hybrid approach.
You could start a side hustle outside your full time job and invest the money in stocks, real estate, etc. This will speed up the process, but you still have no leverage and are limited to your ability to work more hours.
– Brian Condron