Independence is the highest form of wealth - The Hustle
The Hustle

Independence is the highest form of wealth

A different way to think about money.

I value independence more than anything else in finance.

Doing what you want, when you want, with whom you want, is the most incredible thing money offers that too often goes overlooked.

It takes a shift in perspective

Derek Sivers is a successful entrepreneur who founded CD Baby. When a friend asked him to tell the story of how he got rich, this is how he responded:

I had a day job in midtown Manhattan paying $20k per year — about minimum wage … I never ate out, and never took a taxi. My cost of living was about $1000/month, and I was earning $1800/month. I did this for two years, and saved up $12,000. I was 22 years old.

Once I had $12,000 I could quit my job and become a full-time musician. I knew I could get a few gigs per month to pay my cost of living. So I was free. I quit my job a month later, and never had a job again.

When I finished telling my friend this story, he asked for more. I said no, that was it. He said, “No, what about when you sold your company?”

I said no, that didn’t make a big difference in my life. That was just more money in the bank. The difference happened when I was 22.


Viewing every additional dollar of wealth as “a little bit more independence and a part of my future I now own” is a fun way to think about it.

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