(Investigator 117, 2007 November)


Some extra cash won't go awry and you have a right to your share of the pie. Although money makes the world go round it doesn't grow on trees. So let us start from scratch and discover how to rake in the dough.

There's a saying: "Early to bed early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise." Early sleeping and rising, however, aren't enough. True, the early bird gets the worm but it's also a fact that one man's meat may be another man's poison.

Wealth is not just the luck of the draw unless you were born with a silver spoon in your mouth! Most people need to plan ahead, chart a course, and put forth effort. You can't just sleep and rise and expect everything to be handed to you on a silver platter. After all, the world doesn't owe you a living! Therefore, you need to "shine" — at least at something!

This involves taking your first step — because the longest journey starts with the first step.


Your first step is to realize that time is money and convert your time into money! Yes, stop beating around the bush and get a job!

It may not be a posh job. You may have to earn your bread in the sweat of your brow. You may have to put your back into it, or keep your nose to the grindstone, or even shed blood, sweat and tears. But be careful that you don't burn your candle at both ends.

A job is the first step on the ladder of success!


Step 2 is to spend some money and save some too. But don't spend like there's no tomorrow. Spend wisely because wise spending and saving are two sides of the same coin. If you look after the pennies the pounds will look after themselves. Watch for bargains, be able to say "I bought it for a song."

Don't keep your savings in your pocket because money burns a hole in your pocket. Keep it "Safe as a bank."

And while working and saving use every opportunity to increase your pennies and hence your pounds. For example, when someone offers "A penny for your thoughts" accept his offer.

Also remember that one man's trash is another man's treasure and check other people's throwaways. And if people give you presents appreciate them — don't look a gift horse in the mouth.

Not sleeping on the job coupled with wise spending seems a drag — but time flies. Don't try to make a fast buck on the wrong side of the track. That would amount to jumping from the frying pan into the fire and the long arm of the law will get you!

After you have saved your little pile what then? You need to make it grow — but how? Talking won't by itself achieve much. You need to put your money where your mouth is, because nothing ventured, nothing gained.  


Step three is to invest.

However, don't invest foolishly. You can bet your bottom dollar that a fool and his money are soon parted. Don't risk everything on "one turn of pitch and toss". Don't put all your eggs in one basket. You don't want to end up crying over spilt milk; rather you want to laugh all the way to the bank. Therefore, set something aside for a rainy day. Think and plan ahead, because an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

Any risk you take has to be acceptable risk. You need lady luck on your side. One thing not to rely on is the casino. Its promise is as phoney as a $3 bill. The flashing lights may sparkle and excite. But all that glitters is not gold. Casinos are for people with money to burn, or with more money than sense, or with more money than they know what to do with. Therefore tell yourself "All bets are off" and "The buck stops here."

What else might you invest in? It's entirely up to you because you're as free as a bird. Perhaps in minerals or mining — remember there's a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. But don't push your luck since ultimately there are no free lunches. You want to end up rolling in money and not pay an arm and a leg.


The next rung of the ladder, step four, is to prepare for occasional failure.

Even though you're as cautious as serpents, storm clouds will still gather. However, every cloud has a silver lining and he who seeks will find.

Therefore Step 4 involves finding a good counsellor and a good financial adviser because a problem shared is a problem halved. Advice from such people can be as good as gold. They don't come cheap, however, because every man has his price.


Assume steps 1 to 4 have borne fruit. You're worth your weight in gold, you have the whole world in your hands, and you're able to pay a king's ransom. What's next? Yes, you're right — it's step five.

Step 5 is to follow the rule, "Don't be a slave to your money; don't be chained to your money."

The reasons for this rule are:
•    You brought nothing into the world and neither can you carry anything out.
•    Money can't buy happiness.
•    There is more happiness in giving than in receiving.
•    Everybody has to meet his Waterloo — your curtain will close too.


You can lead a horse to water but you cannot make it drink. You've seen the light and now it's up to you to follow your star.

Finally, always think for yourself — don't trust in cliches and proverbs because they're a dime a dozen.