Do you know who Robert F. Smith is?

You should.

He’s the riches African American male in American. The other African American who is wealthier? Oprah. Yes, he’s wealthier than Micheal Jordan, Dr. Dre and whom ever else you see. Many people don’t talk about him because he’s not really sexy news. He’s a former engineer turned investor and Jesus, I wish I could talk about him all day. This man is beyond amazing and he’s been under the radar of the general public for a hella long time. (Yeah, I said it).

I wanted to talk about how the incoming recession is the perfect time to Review how I changed my mindset about money, investment and career goals in general. Robert is an inspiration for me since he did many things, got to do what he loved and then moved on to the next challenge. Not bad for a Colorado Middle Class Dude with 5 kids.

In an effort to change the way I ‘adult things’ , Here’s what I changed about my daily routine and am currently doing to not build for retirement, but for an empire.

Wrestled My Debt Under Control:

In 2010, I turned the ripe age of 30 and paid off all 10,000 of my accrued debt. Specifically, credit card debt that accompanied my move from Texas to Los Angeles. My strategy was that of David Ramsey, though I didn’t learn who he was until I turned 34. My process was simple; combine all of my debt, get one massive loan with a lower, static rate, pay off all cards and then just pay the loan. At the time, I was 28 and even then, I still hated pay interest to Bank of America.

Let’s face it, BofA’s  interest rate was insane (like 18 – 22%). Looking for another option, I took a chance and sought out Lending Tree to REPLACE that loan and give the interest to someone who was just like me: human. Before you ask, no…I am not paid by Lending Tree. I used them personally and it felt better than using a bank. I felt like I was  ‘crowd funded’. It took my 1.5 years of eating beans, rice and garnering entertainment via free resources and bus trips to Venice Beach, but it happened.

Having little to no debt means I have more time, and my time is more precious than someone else’s assignment of my worth.

At 36, my husband and I are working towards paying off our home, the only debt we have.

Evolved To See Money As A Tool, Not A Trophy

I read an interview by Jack Ma (Alibaba | BABA) who stated that why the poor stay poor is because they don’t see money as a tool but, ‘to paraphrase’ , as an end goal. End goal meaning:

  • Buy stuff to impress other people
  • Buy wants, not needs
  • Mixture of the first two

Being broke is not an illness, but a symptom of an emotional disconnect between money and a person’s ‘clenched fist’ psyche. I am privileged to meet many Satellites who are pulling 6 figures, or who are secret millionaires (multiple restaurant owners,  gaming folks, lawyers and architects). They all have common similarities:

  • Their wants are few.
  • They keep debt that will benefit them, but typically they don’t have any.
  • They drive old beat up cars or the bus.
  • They have are savers, but not penny pinchers.
  • They buy quality upfront so they don’t have to buy it again.
  • They are extremely self sufficient; nearly everyone I met still has some sort of day job and does their own home repairs if they own a home.
  • Bonus: If they own a home, they over pay their mortgage every month.

One gentleman owns a popular restaurant in Greenwood but still lives in an efficiency apartment. How do I know? Because I lived next to him for 3 years…when he was a waiter in Ballard. His reason? He wants to wait until the business can run itself and then he’ll buy a house…in cash. It changed my view about the 1%; these people aren’t grim faces we see in Forbes; they are just average ‘Joes’ who know how not to swim in consumerism soup.

The concept of the Millionaire Next Door is real.

LearnED How To Read Candlestick Charts:

Do you know what a doji is? Trevor Noah is my new spirit animal. He speaks truth that the average American can give you stats in just about anything (celebrities, cars, phones, video games ) but the stock market. I admit, I was one of those women; terrified of the stock market. The thought of losing my hard earned money to some nebulous money machine ran by fat white dudes in ill fitted suits. Then, after listening to Noah talk to Stephen Dubner about the stock market, it got me, a newb thinking: is the Wolf  of Wall Street persona real? Or is it fabricated to make an artificially high bar of entry and scare off everyone?

To my delight, I found the second option to be true. The stock market is the best saving account there is, especially if you can read a candle chart, understand the psychology of a pattern, be observant and have patience. I do not dress myself as some massive day trader; I’m still new but I have covered my previous losses and understand the power of ETFs & DRIPS and watching the market freak out in 72 hours (how long it takes for stock and money to clear). The stock market is not about what a company is worth, it’s about what the market thinks said company is worth.


If you can read the above, you basically know how the market is going to react in the next three days. Weird, huh? Having human psychology and habits distilled down to squares, lines and three colors. To have a big picture view, Mr. Trump is our current president, which history has factually stated that recessions happen more often under Republicans than Democrats. Think of a recession as a stock market sale, in a sense. If you have cash, you can buy stable EFTs (Vanguard, SPY, etc) for low prices, hold and then reposition when the economy is better. If you are enrolled in a company that has a DRIP (AAPL is one of them), then your stock will automatically reinvest itself without worrying about it. Warren Buffet was right about one thing:

“Long ago, Ben Graham taught me that ‘Price is what you pay; value is what you get.’ Whether we’re talking about socks or stocks, I like buying quality merchandise when it is marked down.”

Sadly, it’s also proven that women are statistically better traders than men. Multiple studies prove this, as women are naturally more calculating and patient, yet a majority are so terrified about it that they avoid it all together and put their cash in low earning saving accounts.

Here are my resources for learning about how to play the market and some advice:

  • Buy what you know and know how much stress you want to deal with.
  • Look for trends in everyday life (is your kid using FB more or Instagram? Does Weight Watchers have a new spokesperson?)
  • Don’t be greedy. If everyone around you is greedy (called a rally), get as much cash as you can and walk away from the table.
  • Any ‘Investment Guru’ on main stream television should not be taken seriously. Any suggestions they give is to get their viewers to buy their own choices, artificially raise the stock and then they sell it before it tanks (sweetly called a Pump & Dump or chop stocks)
  • Only invest as much as you’re willing to lose.
  • Learn how to read a candle chart and you will be more informed about the news than even the news is.
  • Numbers never lie. They can be hidden, but only for so long.

Stock Market Resources:


Hot Candle Stick

Stock Twits

Pragmatic Profits

Stock Cats

Tasty Trade [Start Here First!!!]

Created Multiple Streams of Residual Income:

As you can tell, I am an avid gamer and currently working as an indie game designer.

OMG, please don’t shake your head.

With this being said, I am also schooled on the way wealthy game studios work. Nearly every successful game studio around are not only devs, they are publishers. Be it EA, Ubisoft or Valve, game development is not their sole bag; they let other people do that. They let other people make money for them.

As you can tell from this hub site, I do a lot of things, but I do a lot of said things, finish them and put them in a digital storefront where they can make dollars for me with checking in on them. If I want to focus on marketing, I can certainly do that. If I don’t want to, I don’t have to. The point is that there are multiple webs of income working for me while I sleep.

While I perfect my coding, polish my game design ability and create my passion, I have audio things, books things, theater things and other things working for me. It’s easier on everyone and I get a check at the end of the month. Robert established multiple patents before becoming an investor. That’s just how it goes. Using all of one’s skill set to help them create worth is not wrong; in fact, not doing so technically is wrong.


Understand the Difference Between A JOb and An Empire:

My husband loves me dearly, but he also knows that I am a bit nutty. He enjoys my risk taking as he states: ‘You always have this sense of what’s coming next’. Well, he’s not really joking. I was the only person I knew who invested in Bitcoin, took it seriously and made gains from it. I do have an eye for trends, but I also have an ear for listening.

Money has personality and when deciphering said personality, I’ve learned three major lessons:

  • You will NEVER be rich by just working a single job
  • Diverse income flow is how every single billionaire is where they are
  • Formula, Repetition and Patience outweighs quick returns

Amazon, Apple, Microsoft, every company one can think of  diversifies their portfolio and then allow their underlings, clients and customers do the rest for them. Google gives their employees status and free donut burgers. Other companies offer sushi lunches and company vacations. Yet, at the end of the day, these resources may have bragging rights, a Tesla and a cushy house, but that’s all a job will give them.

Jobs are created to make these monoliths cash. Said jobs, no matter how high the salary, will never pay their employees their full worth. The only one getting the full worth is the people who invested in the establishment and/or the person who created the monolith.

Now, don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with a job, but a job will not give you what is every humans goal in life: Freedom to do ‘them’ their way. A job will not make you the best you can be; it takes away time from that. Careers do that. The only difference is passion. Passion in what you do will automatically make you good at it.

Most Importantly, Give Back When You Can

courtesy of FrobesGive. Do. Help others. That’s the job of every person on the planet. The more selfish one is, the less they will receive. It’s basic human knowledge. It’s in every religion, it’s morally praised. It’s just sound gospel. What I learned from studying so many wealthy people, near and far, is that money has a price. Be it positive (humanitary aid, donations, volunteering, etc) or negative (Mr. Trump is a prime example: his friend pool is extremely small), the price for wealth must be paid.

So I learned to give, do and help when I can. I rather the good be returned to myself and others than not.

Read more about Robert here. He’s a super cool dude and I want to be like him one day; one of those silent heroes who does good shit that know one knows about.





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