Want To Start A Business? Learn From Phil Robertson and Duck Commander!

I ran across this video on YouTube the other day, and I believe it can really help any person who is interested in starting a business. Take 4:15 to watch the video and then read the rest of this post:

Here are some key takeaways:

  1. They were willing to do whatever it takes to ensure the dream became reality  They were willing to “live off the land” while Phil was working on perfecting and selling the duck call.
  2. They (Phil and Miss Kay) were in agreement on the decision to start the business  If you are married, starting a business affects BOTH OF YOU greatly. They were united in the decision.
  3. He knows where his blessing has come from  He gives credit to God for the blessings
  4. Fame was never his focus  He was focused on making a great duck call and getting it in the hands of hunters. Fame was a by-product.

I’ve purchased Phil’s new book, Happy Happy Happy, so I can learn more of the story.

What are your takeaways? Share in the comments!

I Just Can’t Do This Anymore

I just can’t do this anymore.

This statement summarizes the feelings many people have about money.

When someone says something like this,

They are NOT saying …

  • I’m unwilling to put in the effort necessary to win with money
  • I give up
  • I’m not responsible for for my financial situation

They are really …

  • Crying out for help
  • Frustrated or downright depressed about their current financial situation
  • Overwhelmed
  • Losing hope that it will ever get better
  • Begging for teaching and help that actually makes sense to them

This is why the I Was Broke. Now I’m Not. organization has always focused on providing PRACTICAL and RELEVANT financial teaching and resources. Here are just some of the resources you can take advantage of right now:

  1. Attend one of our live teaching events (see schedule HERE)
  2. Use one or more of our nearly 100 free financial tools (HERE like budgets, financial calculators, etc)
  3. Register for our FREE exclusive on-line teaching event coming on Sunday, August 25th – the “I Was Broke. Now I’m Not. LADDER” 9 Rungs to a Fully Funded Life event (REGISTRATION LINK)

Fired up to serve you!


Process Trumps Determination


I’m a formally trained engineer. My Purdue University degree stating “Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering” provides confirmation of it.

I’m a formally trained business. The Clemson University degree stating “Masters in Business Administration” provides confirmation of it.

These two pieces of paper are the result of a process.

No amount of determination would have provided the results that the Purdue University and Clemson University processes afforded me.

In my work, both as a working engineer and now as business owner, I have come to clearly understand that “process trumps determination.”

I have run two 26.2 mile marathons – one in San Diego, CA and the other in Houston, TX. Both of these accomplishments happened because of a process. I used the marathon training plans offered by Hal Higdon. Absent of the process, no amount of determination would have prepared me for running 26.2 miles at one time.

The same is true for your money. You may be determined to win with money, but without a process to help you take each step, your financial progress will languish.

“Process trumps Determination”

Do you have a process that is helping you win with your money?

I’m so excited to offer a special one-night only LIVE ON-LINE EVENT on Sunday, August 25th, at 7:00 PM Eastern. I’m going to be teaching a rung-by-rung process I call the “I Was Broke. Now I’m Not. LADDER.” I will be sharing the process I used to win with my money, and I’m confident it will be a great help to you as well. Join us LIVE as I teach the 9 Rungs to a Fully Funded Life. To learn more and register CLICK HERE.

This Can Change Your Financial Life!


The I Was Broke. Now I’m Not. LADDER

9 Rungs to a Fully Funded Life

Dear Friend,

Several months ago, I asked 32,185 people to share their financial concerns with me. The response was incredible! So many of you took time out of your busy schedule to participate in a survey, and the responses were amazing.

As I read each of them (hundreds and hundreds of them), I knew the I Was Broke. Now I’m Not. team must do something about it. We immediately went to work to develop a resource addressing the concern shared by many:

“How do I get from where I currently am with my finances to the place that I desire?”

As we developed this resource, I realized I have never publicly shared the step-by-step process my family used to move from having an average bank balance of $4.13 to living a fully funded life. So for the FIRST TIME EVER in a public arena, I am going to be teaching that process, and YOU are invited to participate. In this LIVE ON-LINE EVENT I will be teaching what I call the “I Was Broke. Now I’m Not. Ladder” – 9 Rungs To A Fully Funded Life.

This information completely changed my life, and I believe it can do the same for you and your family!

Using this proven process, my bride and I paid off all of our non-house debt in just 14 months. We paid off our HOUSE by the age of 38. It is pretty easy to live a fully funded life when your house payment is gone!

Does this process work for others? Just ask Mark and his family.

Mark and his family were earning income, but the money seemed to disappear as fast as it came in. Despite working a full-time job and several part-time jobs, the dreaded “knock on the door” happened one evening. At the door was a person delivering a home foreclosure notification. With over $85,000 in non-house debt and a foreclosure hanging over their heads, Mark and his wife attended one of my live events. I offered free one-on-one financial coaching, and they took me up on it. I walked them through the “rungs” of the “I Was Broke. Now I’m Not. Ladder” and suddenly everything clicked into place. For the first time in their life, they had a clear financial path to follow, a path they understood. It changed their life. It changed their marriage. They were able to save their home from foreclosure and eliminated all of the $85,000 debt. They are now living a fully funded life.

Here’s what you will learn during this event:

  • Nine rungs anyone can climb to financial success
  • How my family went from $4.13 in our bank account to living a fully funded life
  • A MAJOR ANNOUNCEMENT (trust me, it’s HUGE!)

I can’t wait for this great night of learning (and the major announcement)!

“I Was Broke. Now I’m Not. LADDER” Live On-Line Event DETAILS:

I’m so passionate about providing this valuable knowledge that I am having our team take steps to accommodate tens of thousands of people. You read that right – tens of thousands of people! I want you to be free to invite the special people in your life to participate because I truly believe you know people who are dissatisfied with their current financial situation and need help!

Be sure to reserve your spot by filling out the registration link below:

Can’t see the sign-up form? Copy and past this website to your favorite browser to register on-line: http://iwasbrokenowimnot.com/ladderevent/

Consider inviting:

  • Parents
  • Grown children
  • Siblings
  • Work colleagues
  • Friends
  • Extended family members
  • Church members

Ways to invite:

  • Copy and share the following link on your Facebook page: http://iwasbrokenowimnot.com/ladderevent/
  • Share the following link on your Twitter feed: http://iwasbrokenowimnot.com/ladderevent/
  • Call or text your friends

Let’s transform the way this continent manages money!


Most People’s Retirement Plan

I saw this recently:

A person shared with their banker, “I do have a diversified retirement plan: 30% hopes, 30% wishes, 40% prayers.”

The sad part is this is FACT for many people. It is my passion to help people in this situation CHANGE their financial future and to help them accomplish far more than they ever thought possible.

“Like” us on Facebook: I Was Broke. Now I’m Not.

WDGLL – What Does Good Look Like?

What does good look like?

This is one of the most valuable questions anyone could ever ask when embarking upon any major initiative.

It is the answer that reveals:

  1. The overall vision
  2. Key deliverables
  3. A measuring post to understand if true progress is being made

It is the process of answering that reveals:

  1. Your commitment to the initiative
  2. The level of buy-in and commitment of others who will be involved
  3. The true opportunity for success

It’s a great question to ask about your overall financial future too: “What does good look like?”

I challenge you to spend some time this weekend thinking about this. If you are married, share your thoughts with your spouse.

How Credit Scores Are Calculated

Many people know their exact credit score. If it is great, they wear it as a badge of honor of their financial prowess. “My credit score is 814,” they will say quite proudly.

Others who have a more colorful experience with credit, will wear it as a badge of dishonor. “My credit score is in the toilet,” they say with a glum look.

The fact is that credit scores are only a measure of how well a person can manage debt and contractual financial agreements.

Credit scores are calculated using these data points:

  1. Type of credit issued [Revolving debt (credit card) or Installment debt (anything with payments and a pay-off – car loan, boat loan, student loan, etc.]
  2. Age of the credit relationship
  3. Amount of credit one can obtain (total of all credit limits)
  4. Amount of credit one has consumed (percentage of total credit limit)
  5. Payment timeliness
  6. Requests for credit (“hard pulls” of credit)
  7. Outstanding judgments

Look at the list again. Does it include any relationship to how much money one might have in a savings account? Or any connection to a person’s net worth?

Here’s the fact: You could be a millionaire and have a terrible credit score.

How? By having zero credit relationships.

While a great credit score is more desirable than a terrible credit score, it is not the best indicator of financial success. Choose instead to make financial decisions about what best increases financial margin and net worth!

“Like” The I Was Broke. Now I’m Not. Facebook Page

Did you know that “I Was Broke. Now I’m Not.” has a Facebook page? To receive updated tools and helpful timely posts on all things related to personal finances, just click HERE to visit the page – then just click “LIKE.”

Do I Have Enough Money To Retire?

“Do I have enough money to retire?”

This is one of the top questions I receive. It is usually asked by someone who is deciding when to retire, and they want to be financially prepared.

Let’s define retirement from the perspective of most people.

retirement date n. that moment when a person ceases to earn money and begins living on money from other sources – sources which include social security, pensions, retirement savings plans, and other investments.

Let’s back to the question – “Do I have enough money to retire?” The hidden message behind the question is, “I don’t want to run out of money and end up eating dog food to survive.”

Here’s the rough step-by-step calculation I use that can help you answer this question:

  1. Determine your monthly guaranteed income (social security, pensions, annuities, rental income, business income, etc.)
  2. Determine your monthly expenses (include savings for known upcoming non-monthly expenses like Christmas, vacation, car repairs, house repairs, annual insurance premiums, etc. Be sure to include even longer term expenses such as vehicle replacement and major appliance replacement.
  3. Subtract #2 from #1. This will determine your “monthly financial gap” (if one exists). If you have no gap, congratulations! You are in great financial shape. If there is a monthly financial gap, continue to step #4.
  4. Multiply the “monthly financial gap” by 300 – This is your “projected investments required” to provide enough income for the gap.
  5. Add up the total value of all of your investments – retirement savings plans, stocks, mutual funds, etc. and compare to the number calculated in step #4. If the total value of your investments meets or exceeds your “projected investments required,” you are in the financial position to retire!

Here’s an example:

Suppose Tom and Mary are preparing to retire. They are eligible for Social Security monthly payments of $2,875. They also have a small pension that will pay $300 per month. Their monthly expenses, including savings for short and long term known upcoming non-monthly expenses, are expected to be $4,500 per month. They have saved up $450,000 in their retirement savings plans – 401(k), 403(b), and Roth IRA.

Let’s use the steps to see how much they need to have saved to retire well.

  • Step 1  Monthly guaranteed income is $3,175
  • Step 2  Monthly expenses are $4,500
  • Step 3  Monthly Financial Gap is $1,325
  • Step 4  The “Monthly Financial Gap” is multiplied by 300 which provides a “Projected Investments Required” of $397,500
  • Step 5  Because they have have $450,000 in their RSPs, they appear to be in great shape!

A few notes:

  1. This is a rough calculation. I encourage any person who is preparing to retire to meet with a retirement specialist to walk through individual needs.
  2. It is appropriate to understand taxes to ensure that money is utilized in the most tax-efficient manner. Using the services of a retirement specialist and CPA can help with this.
  3. Ensure that appropriate insurance is in place. This includes consideration of long-term care insurance and life insurance policy analysis.
  4. This calculation essentially assumes a 4% nest-egg growth rate that provides necessary income and preserves capital.

LIVE ON-LINE EVENT: Managing Finances With A College Student

I recently had the opportunity to teach parents of incoming college students about how to “manage finances with their college student.” I am honored to say that the talk was extremely well received, and the parents gave incredible feedback.

This made me think of you, the readers of this blog. Chances are pretty high that you either have a college student, will have one some day, or you know someone who has one in their household right now.

Because of this, I’ve made the decision to teach this powerful content “FREE OF CHARGE” in a LIVE ON-LINE EVENT on Thursday, August 8th, at 8:00 PM Eastern (7:00 PM Central).

If you have a college student in your life, you don’t want to miss this great opportunity. Here are just some of the subjects that will be covered:

  • Importance of budgeting
  • Credit scores
  • How to handle credit and debt
  • How to manage student loans
  • Establishing clear financial arrangements with your student
  • Plus much more!

Here are the details:

  • DATE  Thursday, August 8th
  • TIME  8:00 PM Eastern Time
  • WHERE  On-line live event
  • COST  It’s free!

Space is extremely limited, so be sure to reserve your place now by clicking the link below. Once you register, you’re spot will be reserved and the link for the live on-line event will be sent to you. You will also receive a reminder just before the event goes live.


A Financial Tip That Could Change Your Life

Let’s face it. Many people are stuck financially. They have no idea where their money is going. All of their money just disappears with little to nothing left each month. They see big expenses coming their way (car repair or replacement, paying for college, house repairs, braces for their children’s teeth, etc.) and have no idea how they will pay for them.

I know the feeling.

The good news is that one financial tip could change your life! It certainly changed mine.

Here’s the tip:

Think like an owner.

When I changed the way I thought about money, it completely changed how I managed money. I’m confident it will do the same for you!

Here are some key ways my mindset changed:

  1. In the past, I viewed my paycheck as an opportunity to spend money. As an owner, I view it as an opportunity to invest money.
  2. In the past, I viewed my paycheck as an exchange for my labor. As an owner, I realize that income only happens when I add value to others in such a way that they will pay money for my efforts.
  3. In the past, I thought the only way to produce income was to work for it. As an owner, I see that income can be produced in many ways – even as I sleep!
  4. In the past, I felt that my income was limited to my paycheck. As an owner, I see that income from my paycheck can be used to produce income elsewhere.
  5. In the past, I felt that my 401(k) was a diversified investment. As an owner, I realize it was diversified within the stock market, but it was all in the stock market. I diversified my investments to include real estate and small businesses.

When you think like an owner, you will become an extremely valuable employee because you will work differently. No longer will you be able to “just do my 8 hours and get out of here at my J-O-B.” Instead, you will be driven to create value for your customers and grow your company’s business! People who think like owners get pay raises, promotions, and may even have the opportunity to launch a business or division of their own!

Are you thinking like an owner?

My Favorite Thing To Invest In

As a teacher of personal finances, I am asked lots of money questions. Here are just a few of the more common ones:

  1. “How do I know if I have enough money to retire?”
  2. “How do I budget for expenses that change every single month?”
  3. “Where do you get 12% interest on your investments?”
  4. “How do I compare health or auto insurance policies to ensure I am getting the best deal?”
  5. “How do I save money when my expenses are so high?”

These are all great questions! In an upcoming series, I will be focusing on answering each of them. However, today’s post is about my favorite money question of all:

“What is your favorite thing to invest in?”

It’s such a great question, and there are many layers to my answer.

Big picture answer: My favorite thing to invest in is my education.

The detailed answer: A great Bible verse (Proverbs 29:18) shares “where there is no vision, the people perish.” My education has helped give me vision! By ensuring my education continues every single day, my vision expands regularly. Even more specifically, I love to invest in money education. I discovered back when I was living the “I Was Broke” part of my life that the biggest reason I was not prospering like I could was because of my lack of financial knowledge. I knew the most basic financial principles such as “save money for a rainy day” (I didn’t), “invest long-term for retirement” (I actually did that), and “it’s important to prepare a monthly budget and live by it” (I didn’t do either). At age 28, I began investing in my money education. It changed my life forever. It changed my family’s life forever.

Let me explain some of my financial education investments.

  • Books  When I was broke, I bought a book about personal finances. Then I bought another one. Overall, I have purchased and read at least 50 books about personal finances. Let’s say they cost an average of $20 each. This is a total investment of $1,000. The rate of return has been WAY MORE than 10,00o%.
  • Seminars & Membership Programs  I’ve went to events where they have taught about money. Some of them have been quite alarming in their approach to money and were definitely high pressure events attempting to get me to “buy their special item today only,” but every one of them has provided an opportunity to expand my money knowledge. I’ve spent somewhere around $1,000 to attend these events. The rate of return has been WAY MORE than 10,000%.
  • Blogs and websites  I read 54 blogs and websites every single day. They have helped me expand my money knowledge tremendously because it allows me to consume financial knowledge “in bite-size pieces.” The best part is this is FREE – just like I provide with this website. Because I’m dividing my investment return by zero, I guess we could say my rate of return is “infinity.”
  • Actual investments  I’ve bought 4 houses, dozens of land properties, and hundreds of stocks and mutual funds. I’ve successfully started a business from scratch and purchased another one. We have a total of 21 team members working with us to help people accomplish far more than they ever thought possible. There is NOTHING like actually putting the knowledge into practice to expand vision. The rate of return on these investments has been extremely blessed, and it would have been impossible without the investments I’ve made in obtaining financial knowledge.

SHARE YOUR STORY:  When was the last time you invested in YOUR money education? What did you invest in?

I’ve written each of my financial books to help expand money education. You can purchase copies HERE.

The Definition of Investing

I recently conducted a survey and received hundreds and hundreds of responses. One of the questions I asked was:

Which (if any) of the following financial areas do you feel CLUELESS about?

The top response was Investing.

With phrases like mutual funds, ETFs, stocks, bonds, brokers, margin accounts, rate of return, yield rate, P/E, market capitalization, and current ratio, it can literally feel as if investing is another language!

I know the feeling as I’ve been there! Because of the results of this survey, I am tasking the I Was Broke. Now I’m Not. team to aggressively address this issue. We are hard at work developing resources that are going to help take people from “clueless about investing” to “financially confident and competent investor!” You will be seeing these resources being released over the next several month, and we can’t wait to share them with you!

In the meantime, let’s start by presenting a working definition of “investing.”

Investing  Using your money and possessions to create more money and possessions.

The goal for any investment is to gain more in return. There are countless ways to do this, and we are creating resources to help people maximize their investing efforts.

I look forward to sharing more in the very near future!

Read recent posts

SERIES: Investing Fundamentals Part 5 – Practical Opportunities for Investing

Welcome to the latest series at JosephSangl.com – “Investing Fundamentals”  Investing is consistently rated by our audience as one of the most confusing topics they face. In this series, we are going to share some foundational principles that can really help you understand investing better!

Five  Practical opportunities for Investing

Stocks  When you own stock in a company you technically become a part owner of that company. You have some claim to the assets and earnings of the company. Stocks are foundational to most investment portfolios. They are known to be very volatile in the short term but have historically outperformed other investments in the long run.

Mark Twain has famously said this about investing in stocks:

“October: This is one of the particularly dangerous months to invest in stocks. Other dangerous months are July, January, September, April, November, May, March, June, December, August and February.”

There are two major different types of stocks

  • Common Stock  Common stock allows the holder to vote in shareholder meetings, depending on the amount of stock owned, and provides access to dividends (profit sharing) produced by the company.
  • Preferred Stock  Preferred stock holders are a step above common stock holders because they have priority over common stock holders. This applies in many areas including when dividends are being paid to shareholders.

Bonds  A bond is generally less risky. A bond is a large debt owed by a company, government, or even a school, where the borrowing institution has agreed to repay an established amount of interest payments for a set period of time. When this time expires, the borrower then returns all of the principal back to the lender(s). Bonds can vary in maturity times anywhere from 1 year to 30 years (or more)! The longer the time, the more interest you could accumulate.

I like to think of my personal residence as a bond investment.

Mutual Funds & Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs)  Mutual funds and ETFs let you accumulate a wide variety of investments you couldn’t normally obtain without consuming large amounts of time and money. Mutual funds and ETFs are funded “mutually” by you, me and millions of our closest friends. Our money is pooled together and then used by the “mutual fund managers” to invest in hundreds of other company stocks, bonds, and other sorts of investments. Usually mutual funds and ETFs have specific charters that direct their investments. One mutual fund might only focus on established companies in the United States while another could focus on investing in up-and-coming companies in third world countries.

Other Investing Opportunities  People so often hold themselves to these common types of investing and never branch out. Investing opportunities are all around you! You can invest in a small home and rent it out. You could invest in small businesses in your community. When you are investing you can think outside the box. Some of the greatest returns can be found when investing in unorthodox ventures.


  • Review your investments and know what you are invested in.
  • Start to think OUTSIDE of the stock market when you are investing!
  • Start investing!


NOTE: This post contributed by IWBNIN intern – Craig Fatt

SERIES: Investing Fundamentals Part 4 – Unleash the Power of Compound Interest

Welcome to the latest series at JosephSangl.com – “Investing Fundamentals”  Investing is consistently rated by our audience as one of the most confusing topics they face. In this series, we are going to share some foundational principles that can really help you understand investing better!

Four  Unleash the power of compound interest

Compound interest is the payment of money to you from companies you have allowed to use your money.

For example let’s say we have $100 in an investment account that grew to $105 in one year. This is the equivalent of 5% interest.

Now suppose the $105 is left alone for another year and continues to grow at a rate of 5%. Will it be paid another $5 interest when the second year is up? No! It will be paid $5.25 because interest was received on $105 – not just $100. In other words, the interest money also earns interest! This is why you hear people say, “My money is working for me.”

Take a look at the below example of a $100/month investment growing at an annual compounded rate of 12%.


Remember you are only investing $100 each month! Even though after 40 years you will have only invested $48,000 of your own money, your account balance will be $1,176,477! This means that $1,128,477 is the interest you have gained!

Now do you see the POWER of compound interest?

Where do you find investments that offer 12% return? I have found no investments that return 12% every single year, but I have found several mutual funds that average over 12% return over the past 50 years. Some years could lose 15% while others could gain 30%. You can see a list of my current investments HERE.

How to maximize your investment growth:

  1. Invest enough to receive the entire company match.  By investing in an employer-sponsored retirement plan that matches some of your contributions, you could even receive a 50% or 100% return!
  2. Monitor your investments at least every six months.  I track my investments at the end of every single month. This helps me understand how each one is performing and allows me to make necessary adjustments.
  3. Consider investments beyond the stock market.  The stock market is just one place to invest. Consider small businesses, real estate, and intellectual property – like patents and licensing rights. Remember a higher interest rate almost always means a higher risk.


  • Establish a consistent investing habit. Invest every single paycheck into your retirement account for the rest of your working life. Even if you can only invest a small amount, it will add up to more than you can imagine!


NOTE: This post contributed by IWBNIN intern – Craig Fatt