Review: 5 Steps to Financial Freedom

5 Easy Steps to Financial Freedom: Do What You Love and Get Rich Doing It, Duane Harden, 2012, ISBN 9780984822706

Many books have been written on how to make money doing what you love. This book reduces the process to just five steps.

First of all, you must commit to changing your life. Don’t just say it; you have to mean it too. Write a Creed or other inspirational saying and post it somewhere you can read it every day. Some people, knowingly or unknowingly, will try to discourage you, convinced that you are going to fail. Limit your exposure to those people.

What are you passionate about? What do you like to do? That is where you should look for income generating ideas. For example, don’t get into real estate investing because all those infomercials have convinced you that you will get rich instantly. Do it because you want to. Get a copy of your credit report and credit score. If your score is average or poor, work now to fix it. The book talks about using OPM (other people’s money) to finance your business. A bank or other lender will have a hard time approving your loan application if your credit score is fair.

It is normal to want to plan and plan and plan, removing all possible obstacles before starting your income generating plan. You may be over-analyzing yourself directly from a great business opportunity. At some point, you have to just do it (to quote Nike). If things don’t work out, get up, regroup, and start over.

You must register your business as a separate business entity (such as an S Corporation or LLC) with the state and federal governments. If for no other reason, do so to reduce your personal liability in the event someone is injured on the premises. You can’t do this alone, so you need a team to back you up. Start with a CPA and an attorney who specializes in real estate investing, or whatever your business entails. The book also explores what to do when it’s time to sell your business (your CPA says you’ve gotten all the tax benefits you’re going to get, or you decide it’s time to retire).

This is an excellent book, written by someone who has been through the process. It is easy to read and full of information. The hardest part is convincing yourself that now is the time. This book shows the reader how to do everything else.

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