Most of my grandparents were born in the 30s or 40s. When I try to explain to them how I make my income, they can’t even come to fathom it. I’ve accepted the fact that they seem to think there are secret, dark holes of the internet where someone with technical skills can conjure money out of thin air.
While the internet has a wealth of new ways and tools to make money as an entrepreneur, there is one term that is always thrown around—passive income.
And I’m here to say it loud and clear—I absolutely fucking hate the term. Nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, there is even no such thing. It simply does not exist, both from a startup and maintenance standpoint.
That’s not to confuse passive with “satisfying”. The longer I go on outside of my former office career, the more I think that the life of cubicles is just never going to give many men any sort of fulfillment. After all, we’ve been laboring outside and building things for our tribes as “work” for thousands of years.
You don’t undo thousands of years of biological programming in the last few years since florescent lights and plastic walls and windows became stylish.
So yes, internet business and passive income are superior to this (but not totally feasible, especially if you are a family men). But the term “passive income” needs to be debunked, once and for all. This is why.
The Upfront Work Is Enormous
Part of the reason the term has become popular is because it’s sexy. Who doesn’t want to make money while they sleep, or while taking a dump? Who wouldn’t want to see the dollars roll in while you’re sitting on a picturesque beach in Bali versus one of the aforementioned cubicles.
Now, those things are possible. But the upfront work to get to that point is enormous. Let’s face it, most people start internet businesses because they want (or at least want the possibility) of being able to move abroad or travel with their newfound freedom.
And the “starting off” points of passive income aren’t pretty. You don’t see any digital nomads going to live in Switzerland or London. Instead, they’re flocking to Chiang Mai, Thailand to find the best one bedroom apartment they can rent for somewhere between $200 and $225 a month.
Trying to make an internet business (for most people) and have enough to sustain living in the United States just isn’t feasible right off the bat. There’s a reason they have to escape to foreign lands. It’s not just the thinner and hotter women. It’s because it’s impossible to live (in most places) in the US without having a “real job” income. That’s a discussion for another day.
The point is, passive income only becomes passive after you’ve put in a tremendous amount of work up front. Think writing a book or creating an online course isn’t time-intensive? Think again.
It’s Hard To “Turn Off” Work
When your income (and therefore well-being) is directly tied to your own business and its results, it’s a lot harder to ever step away from it. It’s easy to go home and forget the drudgery of office work with a 6-pack of crap beer. You don’t give a damn about that job. It’s someone else’s dream, even if it’s tied to your own well-being.
Generally speaking, the attitude is not to succeed and prosper in work, but to do just enough to get by without being fired. The masses need those 6-packs of Bud, after all.
Even when passive income is working for you, after the up front work, it’s really hard to ignore it. If you’re in affiliate marketing or paid traffic, you’re constantly watching for the next dry spell so you can react. It’s hard to resist checking stats every waking minute. The point is, you can and will drive yourself mad. Every internet entrepreneur does at some point.
It’s easy to say that you will retire after you have passive income, but nothing could be further than the truth. I like to joke with my family that sometimes I am—there are days I wake up with tons of new money in the bank and am a bit unmotivated to create anything new that day.
But there are rarely hours that go by where I am not thinking about work at some level or another.
Nothing Good Ever Comes To Men Who Are Passive
Simply put, we live in a society full of pussies. Plenty of men do nothing to keep up their self-appearance, marry over-the-hill-whores, and generally have no backbone to them.
All of these men are passive by nature. They are unable to muster the confidence to go after what they truly want in life. Instead, they allow society to impose beliefs on them. These beliefs manifest themselves in results that are mediocre, at best.
By being passive, they let the good things in life pass them by. Instead of dating hot and young girls, they date broken sluts. Instead of building a business, they build someone else’s. Instead of doing everything they want to in the world, they go on cookie-cutter vacations where they’ve shoved on to a boat with a bunch of other fat people.
The term passive income needs to go away forever—because no person who is passive will ever truly be able to make money while they sleep. Internet marketing gurus sell the dream of making a million bucks while you sleep within a month of taking their $5,000 course.
Nothing could be further from the truth. Start with making $100 and go from there. Allow yourself to make the mistakes, to learn and grow from them. Needless to say there is always going to be a lot of pain in achieving something that’s worthwhile.
So while making money while you sleep sounds great, don’t kid yourself. Eventually it will come, and you can achieve that. But there are a lot of sleepless nights that come before it.
The feeling when you do hit that point is worth the loss of sleep.
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