“Riches come, if they come at all, in response to definite demands, based upon the application of definite principles, and not by chance or luck.” - Napoleon Hill

Making millions of dollars would be great – but right now, you’re more concerned about paying your cable bill so that you don’t have to steal Wi-Fi from Starbucks in order to write your new blog post.

Landing on the New York Times Bestsellers list would be stupendous—but right now you’re just trying to find an hour to write amidst working to support yourself and doing the damn dishes and all of those other responsibilities that get in your way.

Yes, having it all – “the babe, the boat, the bucks” as Danielle LaPorte (http://www.daniellelaporte.com) so bluntly puts it—is ideal. But right now, you’re just trying to make ends meet. If only you could make enough money to live off of, you could quit your job and focus. But right now, that seems totally unrealistic. A pipedream.

One: Exactly How Much Money Do You Need?

“Fix in your mind the exact amount of money you desire. It is not sufficient merely to say ‘I want plenty of money.’ Be definite as to the amount.” - Napoleon Hill

Want to make enough money to support yourself? Tell me, how much do you need?

You don’t need to think about how much money you need for the rest of your days on planet Earth. That’s ridiculous. How could you possibly predict what you’ll want in 15 years?

Instead, reel in your ambitions and make a plan for one year from now. To get crystal clear, ask yourself the following questions:

  1. In one year, what does your life look like? (Write as much detail as possible the place you live, how often you go out to eat, what you do on the weekends).
  2. How much money will it cost for you to live reasonably?

That’s it.

In order to figure out your monthly expenses, try Tim Ferriss’ Monthly Expense Calculator.

Then, once you have an exact figure…

Two: Decide what you’ll exchange for the cash.

If you want the money, you’ll have to exchange something for it.

To figure out what to exchange for money, ask yourself the following questions:

  1. What are my strengths + skills?
  2. What types of products + services can I provide?
  3. What will people actually pay for?

Not sure what you’re good at? Here is a Skills + Strengths worksheet that I created.

Don’t get bogged down trying to find your one-true-love. Once you’ve come up with 10 ideas, start testing them immediately. You’ll find your passion eventually, but doing so requires action.

Do your research. Ask people what they’d pay you to do. Test your new service on them for free first.

Don’t think you have what it takes? Hmm… I think this article titled “How to Really Start a Business” will make you think twice.

Three: Plan and take Action!

Once you’ve stumbled on a workable idea? Set some concrete goals, kid. I’ve personally just created my own concrete plan called “Project Moolah”.

Break it up into chunks. If your plan is to start earning $1,000 a month by this time next year, you’ll want to figure out how much money you’ll need to rake-in every few months until then.

When you have a plan, you’ll have motivation on the not-so-inspired days. When you have a plan, you’ll know what steps to take every day. When you have a plan, you reach your goals.

Making money is hard work, and I guarantee that you’ll have to make some uncomfortable phone calls. But if you want a great life, you have to do great things.

You can see my Project Moolah breakdown here.

Does the thought of starting your own business have you feeling totally overwhelmed? You don’t have to use the word business just yet! Think of it this way: you are on a journey to create financial freedom. You’re breaking through the barriers of mediocrity. You’re starting the life that you’re supposed to be living.

Bombs away!

(Photo credit: Fresh Leaf Growing on Gold Hill via Shutterstock)

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