No Need To Quit Your Day Job, YET!

No Need To Quit Your Day Job, YET!

In fact, you can start an online business in your spare time, ensuring you still have an income while you build momentum with your online ventures. 

This might be the perfect way to start for those of you who are new to this way of making money, or for those of you who might be a little skeptical about whether this actually works or not (like I was in the beginning).

The old (brick and mortar) way of starting a business has now changed. You don’t have to quit your day job and pour huge amounts of money and time into something that may not give you a return on your investment (ROI) for a number of years to come.

It is now possible to start building a business on the side, ensuring you still have a regular paycheque coming in. One of the biggest benefits of starting this way is that you can start learning the ins and outs of entrepreneurship before you quit your day job. 

Once you have matched (or overtaken) your weekly pay cheque on a regular basis, you can then “Leave The Job Grind Behind!” You can then spend as much time as you like on your business building it further. By this stage too, you will have a good understanding of how to scale your business to produce the results you want and need.

If you decided to keep your online business as a side hustle only, it’s still a great way of building a passive income (on the side). Ultimately though having a passive income to replace your job is the only real way of building long term wealth. While you continue to trade your time for money it’s almost impossible to build real wealth.

Check out the image below to see where you fit in. Most people are an “E” or an “S”, trading time for money. But where you need to be, to build real wealth, is a “B” or an “I”, leveraging your time, money, and resources.

I started my online business while working a 50-60 hour week. I’m not saying that was easy, it certainly had it’s challenges (especially on my time) but it’s doable. It would have been impossible for me to do the same with a brick and mortar business, and a full-time job!

The online technologies we have available to us these days are amazing (and only getting better every day), so getting started is now a relatively easy process. The sooner you can get yourself started the better. There is no wrong or right time and the risks are actually far fewer than if you wanted to start a brick and mortar business. 

One benefit is that no matter what your local economy is like (especially if it’s not so good), is that you’re not restricted to that one location or economy, as you can market yourself and your product or service anywhere in the world, and there’s always a booming economy happening somewhere in the world. 

Also, you don’t have to rent or buy a premises, you don’t have to worry about hiring staff and paying wages. You don’t have to worry about maintenance or utility costs or even purchasing stock these days.

Usually, the biggest cost to running an online business (at least to begin with) is marketing and advertising, but even that is a fraction of what your startup costs would be to get a brick and mortar business up and running.

Don’t know anything about marketing or advertising? And what about the cost of setting up a website I hear you ask! Well, there are many options out there to cover those, that don’t cost an arm and a leg. Again, when you compare it to a brick and mortar business there is really no comparison, especially for anyone (like me too in the beginning) who have limited resources to play with. 

So, if you’ve ever thought about starting your own business, quitting your job or starting a new career, then now is the time. There really isn’t any reason or excuse anymore for putting it off! 

So many people all over the word make (legitimate) money online with real online businesses. So why couldn’t that be you as well??

Do yourself a favour, and at least educate yourself on what’s out there and look at what’s possible…you might be pleasantly surprised. 

Follow the exact steps I took to get my business up and running. Check out my website intheboxdigital.com 

From there you will have access to a ton of information as well as access to some FREE Training Videos that will literally show you how to get started with your own online business right away.

There is literally everything you need at your fingertips these days, so don’t put it off any longer!

One small step now could lead to massive changes in your life.

Here’s to your success.

Dominic

My website: intheboxdigital.com 

Want To Start An Online Business?

Want to start an online business but don’t know where to start?

Knowing where (and how) to start an online business can be confusing, but it needn’t be. All you really need are the right tools and guidance and a proven system to follow.

In The Box Digital has all these things and more, and we’d love to help you achieve your online business goals. intheboxdigital.com 

Become a digital entrepreneur now and start building a real online business.

We help you build and grow an online business from scratch, including your website and funnels, with no prior experience needed. Whether you’re new to this or not, it doesn’t matter, we have everything you need to get you started.

We teach you how to market your business as well as help you establish a niche product or service online. You don’t need to have your own products to sell either, as we can show you how to start a business using other peoples products and services (one of the best ways to start).

We give you all the tools, technology and support needed to succeed online, with a 24/7 support team and a huge community of people to keep you on track at all times.

So what are you waiting for? It has never been easier to start a business online. As they say, “tomorrow never comes” – take action now!

Take a look at the website now and see how easy it is to get started right away intheboxdigital.com 

If you want to build long term wealth through a passive income business then this is where you begin, you’ve got nothing to lose except more time!

If you’re really serious about becoming an online business owner and joining the new rich, then you need to at least take a look at all the opportunities available.

Start now by clicking here at intheboxdigital.com where you can find links to our free training series and a heap more information.

There’s nothing more powerful than information, so arm yourself with as much as you can get!

Hope to see you on the other side

Dominic.

Recommended Books

Hi all, I thought I’d share with you a shortlist of books I recommend reading. In fact, I think they should be essential reading for anyone who is new to the idea of starting your own business, whether an online business or not, and serious about changing your life financially.

More importantly, these books explain the importance of a passive income and how to build real wealth over time with the right knowledge. I believe a lot of people don’t really understand this fully and the power a passive income has to change your life forever, and the importance of a passive in the wealth-building process.

Ongoing education is one of the most important things you MUST do if you want long term financial success in your life. 

Invest in yourself and never stop learning!

Many years ago I was stuck in a job that I didn’t like and started to resent, and in an industry that was very demanding. I was working very long hours on my feet every day and really not enjoying what I was doing at all anymore (you can check out my bio here for more on that story). What’s more, I didn’t know what to do next or where to turn to.

These are the books (the first one in particular) that got me started on my new journey and thinking about money in a different way. It helped me understand how most of us think about money and the way we work for it, and why we need to change that pattern of thinking if we want to build real wealth for ourselves over time that gives us true financial freedom!

You’ve probably seen or heard about these books before (they’ve been around for a while now) but if you haven’t read them yet, I can’t recommend them highly enough. They are also written in a way that’s easy to understand and will get you wanting more!

If you only read one book, then make it the first one here, it’s the best book to start with anyway. The first 3 books are all by Robert T. Kiyosaki. (Links provided below)

  1. Rich Dad Poor Dad: What the Rich Teach Their Kids About Money – That the Poor and Middle Class Do Not! 
  2. Rich Dad’s CASHFLOW Quadrant: Rich Dad’s Guide to Financial Freedom
  3. Rich Dad’s Guide to Investing: What the Rich Invest In That the Poor and Middle Class Do Not!
  4. The Richest Man in Babylon

These few books are a good place to start. Where you go from there will depend upon the vehicle you wish to use to achieve your goals. There are many ways of doing so these days. As well as the older more traditional ways of building wealth, the internet now provides us with many more opportunities.

I wish some of these were around when I first began. I think it’s so much easier and cheaper now (with the internet) to set up a business that will give you a long term passive income.

In my opinion, one of the best places to start is with affiliate marketing, but that conversation is for another time. However, if you would like more information on how to get started online, please visit my website intheboxdigital.com

Let me know what you think of these books and what value you got from them! Happy reading!

Here’s to your financial success.

Dominic

Traditional Vs Modern Ways Of “Earning A Living”

A New Era Emerges

6 August 1991. It doesn’t seem that long ago really, and a pretty insignificant day for most of us, but that was the day the world wide web went live to the world with the very first public website. 

Who would have guessed the impact it would have on our lives in such a short amount of time. Even now, less than 30 years on, it’s difficult to imagine what life would be like without the internet. 

The internet has impacted just about every single person on the planet in one way or another, even indirectly, without you even knowing it. It’s really difficult to imagine life now without the internet.

So many things have changed since then. Just look at how we do our banking, our shopping, find a date, do research, communicate, or even watch TV. Nearly every aspect of our life has been touched by the internet and modern technology.

Businesses, in general, have changed dramatically too, even for those that were in business long before the internet began. Many businesses collapsed after the internet started because they didn’t understand it well enough (or it’s potential) or they just didn’t move quickly enough to utilize it properly. For those that did though, the rewards were huge!

The Change Ahead

Along with those obvious changes also came some not so obvious ones. Particularly when it comes to making money online for the individual. Many people think that it’s only big business that can make money online and in reality, nothing could be further from the truth. 

Individuals all around the globe make money online every day, and there are a number of different ways and platforms to do so (which we’ll touch on a little later on).

So let’s look at that for a moment, and what that could mean for you and your life.

One possibility is that you could now (potentially) replace your income (your job) by learning how to make money online, and it’s not as difficult as you might think. There are many tools, platforms, mentors, and programs out there that can get you started almost right away. And the best part is you don’t need to outlay a ton of money or be an expert in marketing or the internet to get started, you just need to be willing to start learning something new!

Many of us (myself included) were bought up to think that the only way to make money was to go to school and study hard for years in the hope of one day getting a well-paid job. Or if you were really good at what you did (and could raise enough capital), you could start your own business, usually working even more hours per week to make it work than you would have to in a job.

This suits some people of course, but for many others, they’re now stuck in a job they’d rather not be doing or have very little passion for anymore. Worse still, they don’t know what to do to change their current situation and move forward with their lives (and that was me for many years too). 

We weren’t taught at school how to follow our dreams or passions, instead, we were taught to be “practical” and learn something that would secure us a job. In the long run though, that’s not very life fulfilling for many people.

This traditional way of earning a living is simply “trading your time for money”, and that can be very limiting too, as you only have a certain number of hours per week to earn that money.

Alternatively, you could earn a “passive income”. There are numerous ways of doing this, both on and offline, but doing it online can give you a massive advantage. HOW? By giving you the power to leverage the internet to massively scale your business online (your new job). This can now be done faster and easier than ever before.

One of the easiest ways of getting started online is to become an affiliate marketer. This is when you align yourself with a particular company’s product or service, which is usually something you like or are passionate about. You then promote their product and earn a commission every time someone purchases a product through you.

There are obviously a few things to know and learn here to make this work properly, which is why some help and training is recommended, but it’s not difficult at all and can be learned and implemented in a relatively short space of time.

There’s one thing to remember here though. These are NOT “get rich quick” schemes. They require a certain amount of work and effort, especially in the beginning, to make them work (like any business does) but are highly rewarding in the end when you do things right.

So, if you’re stuck in a job right now or just want something more from life than just the same old, same old, then take a look at the exact path I took to begin my own online journey. It might be just the thing you need to help you transform your life into something special as well.

What’s Important

If having more time in your life is just as important to you as having more money, then you owe it to yourself (as well as your family) to consider “what else is possible”

I have put together access to a free webinar that will explain how things work as well as access to free training workshops that will give you information on how you too can get started creating an income online.

Please enjoy, and here’s to changing your life one step at a time.

Dominic

How It Works Webinar

Free Video Workshops

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Stop Trading Your Time For Money! Transform Your Life With A Passive Income.

If I told you you could learn how to replace your income from a job, or from whatever work you’re currently doing, would you be curious enough to want to know how??

Many people go to work every day to jobs they don’t really want or like, but do it anyway because they need to pay the bills and look after their families! Is that you too?

Can you relate to any of these reasons for wanting to change your work-life balance?

  • Your life is no longer fulfilled by your job or work
  • You spend too much of your time commuting to and from work
  • You no longer have the passion for your job anymore
  • You’re not paid enough for your skills and knowledge (and resent it!)
  • Your job is stressful and tiring
  • You work too many hours every week
  • You don’t have time anymore for your family or friends
  • You no longer have the time or money for a proper vacation
  • You resent your boss
  • You feel used and under-appreciated
  • You’re bored with your job
  • You resent not having the time anymore to pursue your passions or dreams
  • Maybe you want to study but don’t have the time or energy
  • Or maybe you don’t believe in yourself enough anymore to make a change!

If you can relate to any of the above you’re not alone. In fact, most of the above reasons were me for a long time too! So I changed that, and so can YOU! You don’t necessarily need to know how everything works right now, you just need to take one step at a time and be willing to learn something new. 

It’s a bit like driving a car. You don’t need to know how the mechanics work to drive a car, and all it took to learn was someone to show you how and a little bit of practice. And before you knew it you were driving a car without having to think about what gear you needed next.

And it’s very much the same with learning any new skill really.

The world is changing rapidly and so is the way many people “earn a living”. The traditional “job” is not the only way anymore. The internet has bought us a whole new set of technologies that can help us make money online. The old way of trading your time for money is definitely not the only way anymore, as there are so many more options available to us now.

I think that there are a few misconceptions around this as well. One is that earning money online is not a “job”, when in fact, like any business it doe’s need some work and attention. But the whole point here is, that it doesn’t require the same amount of time and effort to achieve the same (and possibly even better) results for your life.

The second one is, “you need to be a computer expert” or “understand how the internet and online marketing work” to make a living online. Nothing could be further from the truth these days. There are many great training platforms out there (and many dodgy ones as well) that can start you on a journey of transformation.

Another common misconception is that you need to have your own product or service to sell online. If you do that’s great, but it’s not essential. There are ways of selling other people’s products and services online by aligning yourself with specific businesses as an affiliate to promote and sell their products for a commission.

I have a hospitality background and spent most of my working life in the kitchen. I knew nothing about internet marketing or making an income online before I started. I just made a decision to learn something new and chose the right program, mentors, and tools to learn what I needed to learn to get me started. And you don’t need to know everything either before you start, you just need to make a decision to get started!

If you’re curious enough to want to learn more about how this could transform your life and look at the exact same path I took to get me here today, then click on any of the links below.

I have put together access to a free webinar that will explain how this all works as well as access to free training workshops that will give you instant useable information you can use to start creating an income online.

Please enjoy, and here’s to transforming your life one step at a time.

Dominic

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6 Great Ways To Make Money Online

With the technology we have today, it has never been easier to make some extra money online. You might want to use the money for a dream vacation or for some new clothes. You might just need some money to pay the bills. You may also be considering something a bit more long term, that will give you a passive income on a continual basis. 

Whatever your reasons, here are 6 ways you can make money online, with some that can be implemented right away.

1. Sell Used Items 

We’re starting with the most obvious one of course, but chances are you have some books, clothes, electronics, jewelry, furniture or other valuable items around your house that are not being used any more, or perhaps are just not needed any longer. If this is something that you’ve never tried before, somewhere like eBay or Gumtree would be a good place to start. They make the selling process very simple and often yield pretty quick results.

There are even companies online that will sell your stuff for you, so you don’t have to do a thing. You can easily find companies online that will sell your unwanted things.

2. Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is a great way to earn passive income online. This can be done in a number of different ways, but essentially it’s done by aligning yourself with an online business(s) who will pay you for referring clients, who then go on to purchase a product or service from them. Many companies these days offer affiliate programs. Search their websites for affiliate programs.

The best companies to align yourself with are the ones that you may already use or have an interest or passion with. Let’s say your passion is photography, then you might want to align yourself, as an affiliate (an ambassador), with a company that sells photographic equipment or even somewhere like Amazon.

It’s not difficult to get started either, usually, it’s just an online registration process, and you’re ready to go. But, I would recommend doing some online research first or attending an affiliate marketing seminar or workshop before you begin, just to find out what particular niche might suit you best as well as learn things like how to advertise yourself effectively online. Marketing is key here!

3. Write a Blog

It’s easy to set up an online blog page these days using a number of different websites, or even by posting regularly on social media sites. It’s important to remember though, that you need to have value-driven and engaging content that will build user engagement and support. 

If you’re not sure how to write an engaging blog, you could start with some video tutorials on somewhere like YouTube to get you going.

Once you’re up and running you can then link yourself to products and services online and be paid a commission on every sale that’s made from your referral (as an affiliate essentially).

Writing blogs can be a lot of fun too. Usually writing about something that you know about, or are passionate about is a good place to start. Keep it real and relevant.

4. Write Articles Online

There are numerous sites online that will pay you to write articles for them (or their clients). This is a great way for writers (or anyone who likes writing) to show off their abilities and hone their skills at the same time, and get paid for it! Generally, you get paid for each article (or the number of words) you write. 

You will usually need to register with an online (copywriting) site first, and then you can write as many articles as you like. Some companies pay more than others, so make sure you do your homework, but there isn’t a limit to the number of sites you could be registered with.

5. Test Apps 

We live in a fast-moving, technology driven world these days where apps are becoming more and more popular. Many companies around the globe are now designing and developing their own apps, and need testers to make sure they work properly before they’re released to the general public.

You can register to become an app tester and make money testing apps for these companies, getting paid for each app tested. Each company will provide you with specific instructions and criteria to follow for testing their apps depending on what they need to be developed. All you’ll need is access to technology such as a smartphone or iPad (and the internet of course).

6. Create your own Website

One of the best ways to make money with your own website is to have advertises place their own ads on your site. However, you need to be able to drive traffic to your site first, before anyone will consider advertising with you. 

This is where you could link your blog posts to your website. Once you have a good following for your blogs, you can then drive people to your website. Keep in mind though, that your website also needs to provide something of value or interest that will entice people to visit your site as well. 

In reality, though, there are a few ways you can make money with your own website. Firstly, you can earn money from paid advertises on your site, and depending on the kind of website you set up, people could also then purchase something from you (like a product or service). You could also have links from your website to your affiliate partners’ websites so that any purchase from there would earn you a commission. 

Now, as good as all that sounds, it can be a little tricky (and costly) to set up your own website, especially if it’s your first time at doing anything like this. However, there are ways of doing it yourself. 

I use a company called WordPress (wordpress.org) to set up and build my websites. They have all the tools you need to put a website together, plus support and advice to help you along the way.

Another company I use in conjunction with WordPress is AWeber. AWeber helps you with things like list building, automated email responders and subscription banners (plus a whole lot more). Check out Aweber here, and WordPress on the link above (see what I just did!)

I have also linked here for you, a free “What To Write” PDF from AWeber which has some fill-in-the-blank email templates to make getting started even easier.

To get up and running, you will first need to register a domain name. This could be a business name of your choice (if available) or even your own name, depending on what your site or service is about, and then find a server to host your site. Domain name and hosting services are easily found online. 

And lastly, update and maintain your website regularly. Have a look at my website here (no subscription needed) to get an idea about what’s possible online these days using the internet and the many tools that are available to help you succeed online.

So, making money online can be quite simple. And the best part is, you can do this from anywhere in the world, day or night, and all you need is a phone or laptop and an internet connection. 

You get to control your work schedule too, whether you want to work a little or a lot, controlling how much you earn in the process.

A genuine passive income can really change your life and the lives of those around you. It can provide you with more time and money to live and create a lifestyle you will love.

Many people have been able to give up their day jobs and live the “laptop lifestyle” by implementing some simple (and proven) online strategies, that really works

That could be you too soon!

If you would like to learn more about how I got started, and the step-by-step system I followed with my own online business, then please check out my website here, intheboxdigital.com

You will discover how easy it is to build a business online and a life you truly love!

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Photography and me

By Dominic Stefanatos

My first camera

From a very early age, I have loved taking photos. My aunty Margaret (Roadknight) gave me my first camera when I was about nine or ten years old. From that time on I was hooked. I don’t remember what brand of a camera it was, some cheap kid proof one I guess, but it didn’t matter, I was able to capture a moment in time and preserve it forever, and I loved it!

I still have an album full of my first grainy pics. Looking at them now you realize how bad the quality was back then. But again, it didn’t matter too much, although I do remember thinking (even back then) that I wish they were clearer. Remember though, we’re going back a while now when camera and film quality wasn’t very good, not at the bottom end of the scale anyway.

As far back as I can remember I always had a camera, nothing flash though, just little Instamatics and the like. They were cheap and very portable. The most expensive part of owning these cameras (or just about any camera at the time) was buying and developing the film. But having your film developed was the most exciting part of all. Waiting with anticipation to see how they turned out. Back then it was a long wait too, days in most instances and often with pretty poor results.

Film processing

I remember as a kid, taking my films to the local chemist to be developed (yes the chemist), back before the days of the 1hour processing labs -wow, what a revolutionary idea they were at the time. You didn’t have to wait for days anymore, only a few hours if they were really busy.

Proof sheets and prints

It wasn’t until I was in my late twenty’s and living in Hong Kong that I could finally afford an SLR camera. Still a film camera we’re talking about here, but I was so excited. I could actually change the lenses on my camera, and they were proper zoom lenses as well! Hong Kong was a great place to own a good camera too, there were fantastic photos to be taken around every corner. That’s when I started using really good film too and having them processed in proper professional labs, with things like “proof sheets”.

I wasn’t a pro photographer, of course, I was working in Hong Kong as a chef. But most of my spare time was spent with my camera in hand. I did think about becoming a professional photographer a couple of times, but circumstances never seemed to allow for it. I also studied photography for six months at one stage, but couldn’t finish the course due to my work commitments. I guess it wasn’t meant to be.

I did, however, work semi-professionally from time to time, shooting a number of weddings and even a Christening once. Most of that was still in the days of film. Once everything became digital though I got a bit lost with all the technical stuff, and still have trouble getting around “photoshop” and the like.

My first SLR

The Minolta Maxxum 7000 film camera

My first SLR camera was a Minolta 7000, and I used Minolta’s right up till Minolta stopped making SLR’s. This was not that long after the digital revolution had begun, but for some reason, Minolta decided at the time, that they weren’t going to produce digital SLR’s. They did, however, merge with Konica in 2003 to form Konica Minolta and then later, in 2006, merged with Sony, producing a number of digital cameras in that time.

I didn’t like digital cameras when they first came out, so I stuck to my film photography for as long as I could. It wasn’t until it became quite expensive and more difficult to find good processing labs, that I finally decided I should consider going digital. The picture quality and technology by this time had improved considerably, so I finally took the plunge (after much research) and purchased my first D-SLR camera, that was in 2009.

My first D-SLR The D300

I decided to go with Nikon in the end and now have two Nikon cameras. The first was the Nikon D300, and the second was the Nikon D7200, which was basically the replacement to the D300 with a few added features like HD video recording – cool! Both are great cameras, with great picture quality. The D7200 has a 24-megapixel sensor and can shoot a rapid 6 frames per second (fps). They are built well with ergonomic and intuitive control dials. For more detailed information on the D7200 click the link above. I also purchased the optional Nikon battery grips for both cameras for versatility as well as a variety of different camera lenses for various shooting conditions.

My Nikkor, Tamron, Sigma and old Minolta lenses

At last count, I had over 10,000 images stored on my computer (now downloaded to an external hard drive) and probably many hundreds of photos stored in boxes packed away in cupboards somewhere. My biggest dilemma of course is – what do we do with all these photos?? And I really don’t have an answer to that question either. Perhaps I will create a website that will allow others to use them for free, at least that way they’ll get used for something. I’ve also got many boxes of old film negatives that I’m pretty sure will never get used again either, but I can’t bring myself to throw any of them out either.

Luckily a few of my favourite pics from over the years made it into frames and get hung on the walls from time to time, but there again, most of those are prints from film, funny about that. We really don’t print nearly as many photos these days as we used to. As for the rest, I guess I’ll just have to find a way to share them.

South Thailand
Avalon Air Show Victoria

I love taking photos of just about anything. Every different event or scenario always has its own set of challenges, and I love working out how I’m going to get around those challenges to get the shot that I want. Sometimes it works out and sometimes it just doesn’t. Weather and certain circumstance can be very cruel sometimes, especially if you’ve only got one shot at it. I actually printed a wonderful photo book from the shots I got from the Avalon Air Show in Victoria, what a wonderful event, held at the Avalon airport near Geelong every second year.

Sigma 150-500

I also love car racing, particularly the Supercars series held every year throughout Australia. They are particularly difficult to shoot though because of all the fencing and the fact that you tend to be a fair distance away from the track. I find Sandown a little better though because there are a few spots where you are on an incline and have a free line of sight over the fencing. It’s still quite a challenge though as the cars move very quickly …practice your panning techniques before you go!

Wish I was on his side of the fence!
Pit lane tention

There is such a buzz in pit lane during a race. The whole atmosphere around the track is infectious and with the roar of all those engines, you can’t help but have a great day out. If you’ve never been, give it a go one time.

Whatever your next adventure is – don’t forget the camera! Happy snapping.

When would you like to retire?

By Dominic Stefanatos

Life begins

Most of us probably don’t think about retirement until we’re in our late 40’s or early 50’s. Let’s face it, before then it seems like a long way off, somewhere in the distant future. 

Suddenly though, we’re in our early to mid 50’s and it doesn’t seem that far off anymore, maybe only 10 or 12 more years down the track. And it’s often about then, that we start to think about what life will be like after work. Whether you’re retiring from a job or perhaps you’re self-employed or own your own business, we all want (or need) to retire at some point in time. 

But, how ready are we? Do we have enough money to last us for the rest of our lives? And how long is that going to be anyway?? For most of us (including myself), we couldn’t actually answer that question with any certainty. So, unless you’re already a multi-millionaire, chances are you may be worried or even stressed about the prospect of not having enough money to survive in retirement, as I was.

Here are some figures on what the average balance for both men and women should look like within each age bracket according to the ASFA.

Age Average balance – men Average balance – women
20-24 $5,924 $5,022
25-29 $23,712 $19,107
30-34 $43,583 $33,748
35-39 $64,590 $48,874
40-44 $99,959 $61,922
45-49 $145,076 $87,543
50-54 $172,126 $99,520
55-59 $237,022 $123,642
60-64 $270,710 $157,049

Source: Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia, Superannuation account balances by age and gender 2015-16

(Click the link above for access to more facts and  figures from the ASFA website including this retirement standards report)

Will your super be enough to retire on? 

Even if your balance is above most others at your age, will it be enough for a comfortable retirement?

The Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia (ASFA) notes that “many people will still retire with inadequate superannuation savings to fund the lifestyle they want in retirement”, and that “most people retiring in the next few years will rely partially or substantially on the Age Pension for some or all of their retirement”, again due to “inadequate super savings”

So, where are you positioned? For many of us, it’s outside of where we need to be to retire adequately, let alone comfortably, and that’s what scared me the most. It was plainly obvious to me that I wouldn’t have anywhere near enough money to retire on, which in turn meant I would probably have to keep on working past retirement age.

That was not an option for me! And that’s when I was forced to consider some alternatives (which I will share with you in a moment)

So what next?

Well, a lot will depend on your age and current circumstances, but there are definitely a number of options and strategies available to you. You will need to talk to a good financial planner about what’s going to work best for you. They will need to evaluate things like your current financial position, taking into account your age, your current super holdings, and your income potential and assets, etc. They should also be able to help with advice on things like

  • Salary sacrifice and extra contributions
  • Finding lost super you may have forgotten about
  • Superfund consolidation to minimize fees
  • Insurance options
  • The importance of a legal and binding will
  • Taxation strategies
  • Superfund investment options
  • Alternative investment options
  • Savings strategies
  • Budgeting and planning
  • Alternative income streams

Alternative income streams?

Another way of securing your financial future (no matter what your age is now) would be to think about ways of creating a passive income. 

What is a passive income?

A passive income is money you earn multiple times over for setting up something once, with little time or maintenance required to keep it running. In other words, you stop trading your time for money. 

Examples of this would be, a rental income from property, royalties from a book or trademark, dividends through a share portfolio, affiliate marketing or online business.

The latter two are my personal favourites for a number of reasons

  • They cost a fraction of the price to set up and maintain. You don’t have the on-going cost of staff, rent, and utilities that are generally associated with a traditional business.
  • Your business can be managed from anywhere in the world at any time of the day or night.
  • There are no limits on when you can do business.
  • There are no limits on the number of products or services you can provide.
  • It takes a fraction of your time to manage compared to a regular storefront business.
  • They are Highly Scaleable! Which has the potential for massive income.
  • They give you an uncapped Passive Income. 
  • They have the potential for Multiple Income Streams.

Again, I would suggest talking to a financial planner or a good accountant if you think that this is something that could help you now or in the future. However, I would also suggest looking into it a little further before you talk to them so that you have a clear idea of what you want and how it all works.

If you would like any more information about building a passive income, or to find out a little more about me, please click here. From there you will have access to other pages that will explain how this all works in much more detail.

Thank you for reading this far, and I hope to see you on the other side.

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6 Useful Tips for a Successful Dinner Party

Dining table setting

By Dominic Stefanatos

Have you got a dinner party coming up, and wonder, how I’m going to get it done? Or perhaps you’re just putting one off, even though you know it’s your turn?

Well, I’m here to help. I’d like to share with you some thoughts, tips, and tricks that should help you get it done!. My advice and knowledge comes from many years in the hospitality sector as a chef. So I hope the advice I share with you today not only helps you get it done with ease but also helps you relax and enjoy the process as well.

So, for this blog, I’ll share with you some valuable tips and tricks on how to plan and prepare your next dinner party, so that it runs as smoothly as possible and stays on track. This should then allow you to enjoy the process as well as give you more time with your guests.

I’ve been a chef for over 30 years, having worked in many different establishments in Australia and around the world. But I still find cooking at home a challenge sometimes, especially for larger groups. For me, there are different things to consider when cooking at home that can be quite different from cooking in a commercial kitchen.

Firstly, there is usually a severe lack of preparation space. On top of that, a very limited amount of space in the refrigerator (which we’ll address later). We’re used to having a lot more bench space, and for the most part, a cool room (or large fridges) to store our food in. So, here are my top tips for dealing with these limitations while still being able to host a successful dinner party.

1. Know the number you’re catering for.

There are obviously many different occasions and reasons for wanting to celebrate with your family and friends, but knowing the number of people attending the party is essential. Not knowing the number just makes everything else much more difficult. So where-ever possible get your RSVP’s back as early as possible, that way you can plan and prepare your event properly.

2. Plan the menu accordingly.

Now, there are a few things to consider here, none the least is your prowess in the kitchen. And depending on your skill level, I would generally advise keeping things simple and sticking to dishes that you have previously tried and tested (even if it was only on the family for dinner a couple of times). Even if you are a fairly seasoned entertainer, sticking to dishes that you are familiar with and have made before is a really good idea.

Also, a lot depends on the number of people you’re catering for as well. That may also determine whether or not this is a formal sit-down type of affair or something a bit more casual, like a buffet, or even finger food or platters that can be handed around. Bear in mind too, that it can be a lot more difficult to cook for larger groups than you may imagine, especially when it comes to plating and serving the food hot. You can quickly run out of time before you know it. So time and timing are key here!

Another consideration here is the actual cooking and preparation time you have to spend on your dinner party. Do you have only a few hours, a whole day or, if you’re lucky, a couple of days to spend cooking and preparing? Keep in mind too, that you’ll need time for the shopping and, don’t forget, cleaning the house and setting the table before your guests arrive!

And lastly, the storage of your fresh and/or prepared food. Unfortunately, most domestic refrigerators are not designed to hold the sort of quantities needed for a full-scale dinner party, especially with drinks included. This is where you can get creative. I personally find large foam boxes ideal for this situation and you can usually get some with tight-fitting lids as well. You can often pick them up from your local greengrocer or food retailer. Fill them with ice and you have an instant cooler box. Any large watertight receptacle would do though, including sinks or even the bathtub (especially for drinks).

So, with that all considered, it’s time to sit down and write yourself a menu. You may also consider printing a menu for each of your guests, particularly for a more formal sit down dinner party.

3.  Write a detailed shopping list.

Once you have devised and written your menu, write yourself a comprehensive shopping list. This is very important! The last thing you want to be doing is running out to the shops at the last minute. I would also suggest doing the shopping at least one to two days beforehand. Not only doe’s that give you plenty of time for preparation and cooking beforehand, but if you’ve forgotten anything you’ll know well in advance.

Don’t forget to include your drinks and possibly some extra ice and things like dinner napkins and any table decorations. You may also want to consider flowers and possibly even candles for the table for a touch of ambiance. And check you have enough crockery and cutlery on hand to cater for your numbers (borrow some if you have too).

4. Write yourself preparation lists.

You will probably want to have two lists here (depending on what you’re cooking). One list for the things that can be done the day(s) before (and I would suggest as much as possible here, especially for any desserts or baking), and the second list is for the day of the party. This one is essential. Even in professional kitchens we still write ourselves a daily prep list. It’s all too easy, especially under pressure, to forget things! Also, set a timeline for when things should be completed as well. That way you’ll know if you’re on schedule or not.

5. Prepare what you can the day before (or in advance).

Consider cooking times for all your dishes and work out if there’s anything that needs to be cooked the day before. It may be that you have a cake to bake, as well as a joint of meat to roast. And unless you have a very good fan forced oven, cooking them at the same time is not recommended.

Cooking the cake (or any dessert or pastry) the day before would also give you plenty of time to cool it down, which in turn allows you to decorate them properly should they need it. There are many other desserts that may require setting in the refrigerator for several hours beforehand, so consider those as well.

6. Give yourself plenty of time.

Always allow more time for cooking (and plating) than you think you need. It only takes a few distractions (or things not working as planned) for things to go pear-shaped in a hurry. (even with help). And remember, the big pile of dishes and messy kitchen needs to be clean before your guests arrive as well.

Hopefully then, if you’ve managed your time well, with good planning and preparation, by the time your guests arrive you are relaxed enough to enjoy the moment with them and leave them wondering how you managed to pull it all off with such ease!

I hope this helps you host your best dinner parties ever.

For more on me and my story check out my about me page here.

See you in the next post, and happy cooking.

Cheers!