How to (maybe) become a billionaire

Started from…

This past Christmas, my boyfriend received a series of books written by Richard Branson. One in particular had caught my eye. It said: “Like a Virgin: Secrets They Won’t Teach You at Business School.” My boyfriend just graduated earlier in December so everyone around him was handing him books like these at pretty much every family gathering.

After reading the brief description on the back of the book, I recall looking up and simply saying, “Who?” (No, not Mike Jones this time). I meant quite literally — who is Richard Branson?

My boyfriend laughed and explained that Branson, a journalist turned entrepreneur, is someone I should be familiar with. Myself, being an aspiring journalist and possible future entrepreneur, I was eager to know who this person was, especially after being teased for not knowing beforehand.

The son of a barrista and flight attendant, Branson began his legendary career with a mail-order record business almost 50 years ago. After successfully creating, running and eventually selling an airline business (Virgin American Airlines) among many other versatile companies, Branson made a whopping $5 billion fortune, according to Forbes. Apparently, that number is in temporary decline, but regardless, even one billion dollars is just that — one billion dollars.

In January, Branson hosted former President Barack Obama on Branson’s private island, Necker Island, following Obama’s first few weeks out of office (we miss you dearly B.O.)! Branson brought Obama along on a kneeboarding run and basically, Richard Branson is the man — and even the former, cool-guy POTUS knows it.

Branson started from a different world than the one he ended up in. Now, he has a story that feeble young adults, such as myself, look up to with stars in their eyes and hope in their hearts.

Millionaire-shmillionaire

As a kid, I thought $20 was $1,000. As a teenager, $100 felt like $100. Now at 21, $1 is like one cent to me. It’s not only because of the actual dwindling value of the U.S. dollar, but also because being a millionaire has lost its cultural pizzazz since the early 2000s, also known as the memorable era of everything denim, embarrassing puberty stages and rented Ferraris.

By simply showcasing oneself as a millionaire, it became more and more difficult to determine who had what and what it actually meant in terms of wealth. With this blurred line came the development of bigger dreams and goals, all which required more money in the bank.

So how do you make billions of dollars? Wait, no. How do you make billions of dollars doing things you enjoy and are passionate about? What about making millions and billions through doing something good for the world?

I looked into billionaires and their experts for advice and found financial, spiritual, mental and physical tips to keep one’s self at maximum potential for anything they aspire to do while making billions of dollars doing it.

Got a lil’ money in the bank?

By saving money and strictly budgeting finances, people have been able to provide for themselves and their ventures a lot easier while keeping an end-goal in mind. It can be a long or short term goal, but to be successful, there must be something to work towards with conviction.

Rob Berger, a Forbes contributor and writer, listed three main things you need to do in order to (seriously) become a billionaire.

  1. Start investing today. For compounding [money] to work, you must give it time. Even losing a single year can cost you a lot of money.
  2. What are billed as “safe” investments may prove to be the riskiest of them all. That’s not to say that bonds have no place in a portfolio. But successful long-term investing requires significant exposure to equities.
  3. Every percent matters. Do not let anybody suggest that a 1% fee is “reasonable” or insignificant. It is neither.

What Berger really means:

  1. Invest your money in a savings account so that you can build interest on it. Start with a few hundred dollars that will be permanently set into the account and make an agreement with the bank on rates (walk away if you have a bad feeling). That being said, you may not touch it and you might as well not even think about it as to avoid taking money out and messing with those rates. The sooner you can open a savings account, like today if you haven’t already, the better.
  2. Don’t put your money where it doesn’t belong. If you don’t know what the hell something means, then stay away from it. Keep your money safe and away from stingy bonds that don’t pay off. When you get a billion dollars, look into bonds.
  3. Basically, don’t let people screw you or screw with your money.

Having the money simply isn’t enough

Becoming a billionaire like Branson is definitely circumstantial to who you were and where you began. But surprisingly enough, most billionaires, Branson included, do follow a similar routine as listed above that’s infused with mental, spiritual and physical remedies sprinkled within to keep things together.

By creating a routine and absolutely sticking to it, people are able to create restrictions on their time and energy throughout the day. In doing so, it becomes easier to balance a million things at once. This goes without saying that this alone will not make you billions, obviously, or else we’d all be rolling in dough.

Disregarding the financial aspect, the keys to success are in these components of your life:

  • Mediate to balance your energies in life.
  • Drink water to hydrate, nourish and replenish your body.
  • Read books to challenge and expand your thinking.
  • Eat well and with intentions of sustainability.
  • Practice yoga to connect within your roots (Chakras.)
  • Open your mind and heart to others in ways that you never have.
  • Have faith and trust in yourself – and the world.

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