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Dan Lok got his start in business as a teenage immigrant to Canada from China, with not a word of English on his tongue and debilitating confidence issues as a result.
Since then he has become a serial entrepreneur, having founded Closers.com and Dan Lok Marketing Inc. amongst others.
He has authored many books such as Secrets of Canadian Top Performers, Sold and Million Dollar Agent to name a few.
As of May, 2019, his net worth was estimated to be $74,5 million which is definitely not a figure to laugh about.
He now lives in Canada with his wife Jennie Lok (née Li) in their luxury Vancouver home.
F.U. Money is presented in the book as a metaphor for freedom.
Freedom from financial and social constraints.
Dan describes it as a point that you reach when you no longer have to answer to anyone. It is when you can say “F.U.” to anyone, including your boss.
It is the “enough is enough” number. The number that allows you to live your desired lifestyle without worry of paying any bills or debts.
Dan ensures that you know that it is the ultimate goal that you should be striving to achieve in your life.
It would be easy to put one value in front of you and say that that is the F.U. Money goal that you should be reaching for.
But Dan makes it very clear that it is not a “one size fits all” measurement.
He emphasises that the actual dollar amount differs for each individual.
Because the real desired lifestyle is different for each person.
He presents the idea of the F.U.M.T. list. A list that you should make of your F.U. Money Targets.
His personal list includes weekly luxury spa days and a home chef.
He makes it clear that his preferences won’t suit everyone and includes an exercise where you need to make a list of exactly what you want your desired lifestyle to include.
He then urges that you do the research and write down how much each of those things would really cost.
To my surprise, his original F.U.M.T list amounts to just under $650,000 a year. Which is less than I expected.
He makes it clear that you can “live like a Hollywood star” without being famous, or even being a millionaire.
This section of the book focuses on the eight myths that Dan says is stopping most people from making their F.U. Money.
He uses these chapters to attack the myths that most don’t even know they have about money.
“If you think money can’t buy happiness, you don’t know where to shop”
Dan tells the story of his father getting a stroke while Dan was in his twenties, struggling to make ends meet.
He had already tried and failed at many business ventures.
And his father was all the way in Hong Kong.
He talks about that one phone call of the news of his father changing his life.
Because he had no money to go see his sick father.
And he decided that he would never allow that to happen again. He realised then that money could buy the most precious things in the world, like time with your loved ones.
He urges that money is “the root of all GOOD” because it can buy you choices, freedom, control, and not to mention can make the most difficult situations in life, slightly more bearable.
Dan addresses the idea that most have about the supposed bad nature of all who are rich.
He uses the generosity of those like Bill Gates and Warren Buffet to illustrate that this idea has no basis in reality.
Though admitting that there can be rich people who are “assholes” he also states that there are many poor people who are as well.
Dan states that the correlation between wealth and personality is that money is just an amplifier to the personality that one already has.
“If you’re a jerk, more money will just make you a bigger jerk. If you’re a nice person, more money will make you a nicer person.”
Dan crunches down the numbers for you.
If, for instance, you live 70 years, minus the 20 when you are still a child. Subtract the eating, sleeping, sex and wasted time.
You are only left with about 10-15 years in which to make your F.U. Money.
And that is not excluding the amount of time where you will fail and need to start again.
One third of lottery winners declare bankruptcy within 5 years of winning.
Some even commit suicide.
“Luck wasn’t enough to carry them into the future and assure that they would stay rich.”
Dan presents an extensive argument about why playing the lottery is the dumbest thing you can do.
He compares your chances of winning against being struck by lightning or being hit by a meteor.
He also explains that relying on luck to gain your F.U. Money will just leave you broke, because you haven’t put the systems in place to keep that money long term.
As a lottery winner you would have never developed the skills and habits to make lasting and recurring wealth.
The idea of budgeting was always strange to Dan. Living below your means and suffering to one day see a glimpse of your F.U. Money just seemed downright insane to him.
He argues that you should enjoy your money and your life while saving to start or grow your F.U. Money business.
He tells the story of two friends of his, Mark and Andrea who were making $60,000 per year between the two of them and struggling to make ends meet.
They went to what Dan refers to as “so called gurus” who told them to live on a tight budget and save all they could and trust the “magic” of compound interest.
Mark searched for a better way and found that learning a high-income skill, such as copywriting, would be the answer to all his prayers.
He and his wife partook in a $1,500 course and started their copywriting business which brought them about $250,000 at the writing of the book.
It is largely believed that if you get rich quickly, there is some sort of illegal aspect to the manner in which you made your money.
Dan states that this idea that wealth generated slowly is the only legitimate form of wealth is harmful to the progress of a lot of people.
There are many legitimate ways in which you can start earning lots of money in a relatively short amount of time.
Dan actually encourages you to use these methods so as not to waste time while building your wealth, and start living your desired lifestyle as soon as possible.
There is definitely a large undertaking when you start a business.
There are long hours and a steep learning curve.
But your job is to learn skills and habits that can be used time and again to bring your F.U. money in.
Once the initial stage is over, it is in your best interest to outsource anything that you aren’t good at or simply don’t want to do.
Build systems to automate your business so that you make money on autopilot.
Dan includes ways to make “easy money” such as creating products that sell automatically from your website and promoting said products using an affiliate program.
“You don’t have to know how to do something before you do it.”
You don’t have to be entirely prepared before you do something, because there is no such thing.
Trying to be perfect before starting something only leads to a well-known condition called paralysis of analysis.
You will end up working so hard to be perfect that you never actually get started.
Dan provides a fable of a man who is told that he has to run a marathon in a year without any training or assistance of any kind.
How does the man prepare?
By putting on his running shoes and running. He will figure out the rest as he goes.
Dan states that you should aim to just be comfortable, not perfectly ready.
Dan believes that if you are on the more emotional side of the personality spectrum, you will never make F.U. money.
With the pressures, doubts and discouragement from your family and friends, you won’t be able to dedicate yourself fully to your cause because you will be too concerned about what they are thinking of you.
Being “a little weird” and thinking differently are better ways to get to your goals.
You must have a certain level of arrogance to be able to achieve the F.U. Money lifestyle.
It includes ignoring the advice of your loved ones and doing what you know is right.
With no time to stop and lick your wounds or have a good cry.
The drawbacks of conventional wisdom is that it is almost never questioned, and is often mindlessly followed.
Dan tells a story of a newly-wed couple where the wife cuts the butt of the ham off before cooking it. When asked why, she answers that she doesn’t know but her mother always did it that way so she assumed that it was just the right way.
When asking her grandmother after finding out that her mother didn’t know why either, she found that her grandmother did it because her saucepan was too small to fit the whole ham.
One of the common traits noticed amongst the super rich is that they always went against conventional wisdom when making their F.U. Money.
They didn’t stay in college or open up a 401K and yet made bigger fortunes than most people can fathom.
Conventional wisdom deserves to be carefully scrutinised and the decision be made by the individual whether to follow them.
In most cases you’ll find that you don’t even need to follow these outdated rules.
DIGs or Daily Income Goals is what Dan focuses most on in terms of financial goals.
He believes that if you don’t have a DIG and do everything you can to meet it everyday, you will very easily go off track with your goals and only realise once the month or year is over.
When it is too late.
Focusing on a DIG makes you consistently focus on activities that are actually putting money in your pocket. And not waste time with “busy work”.
“Busyness is a form of laziness”
In order to stay focused on your DIGs you should ask yourself questions like:
Focusing on a DIG and the above questions keeps you on track to making your F.U. money in the shortest amount of time.
Most people allow themselves to be easily swayed by the latest money-making schemes.
They lack the vision that the rich have when it comes to their financial goals and dreams. Having a vision, and sticking to it while adjusting your approach if necessary, is one of Dan’s sure-fire ways of attaining your F.U. money.
Changing direction every 5 minutes only leads to time wasted and money lost, as well as getting no closer to your F.U. money.
Dan helps those unsure of how to get started in choosing their business model.
He lists the nine characteristics of an ideal business and explains why each is profoundly important when building your business.
He also explains how having an internet business fits many of the requirements of the ideal business.
As a man who has made his fortune on the internet, it is only natural that he should give you a few nuggets of wisdom on how to replicate his success online.
He provides seven fundamentals of online business that should be followed religiously in order to maximize profits on the internet.
They include creating a simple, easy-to-navigate website that sells and creating multiple income streams in one business.
He reinforces that you should leverage the time and resources of others while still using your unique personality to sell.
“Don’t just read this book, use this book.”
In my opinion the F.U. Money assignments are the real gems of this book.
When taken out of the book they act as a guide and reminder to readers of the goals they have set and the steps on how to get there.
There are even assignments to uncover the unconscious negative attitudes you may have towards money.
The awareness of these subconscious thoughts allows the reader to address and overcome them on their journey to financial freedom.
My personal favorite assignment is the listing of all your past achievements. I find that having this list nearby is a real motivator to drive you forward in your goals.
Dan does not give a step-by-step guide to attaining your F.U. money.
Because it would not apply to every person reading.
Instead he sets you on the right path to success by practically demanding that you do something, anything, towards the achievement of your F.U. money in the next 24 hours.
This powerful call-to-action acts as a one-size-fits-all driving tool to getting readers actively finding a way to get to their F.U. money goals, no matter how small the action.
Dan states that even the tiniest of steps places the reader in the special minority and on a good direction towards success.
It is impressive that although this book was published in 2009, it has still remained relevant even during the time of a pandemic, as this review is being written.
In showing you how to calculate the real dollar value of your dream lifestyle and showing you methods to get there, this book really can make you very rich.
Dan’s lessons are still applicable to starting a business today and his notes on self-esteem may even prove to be timeless.
But Dan’s delivery can still be very abrasive and harsh to many.
To be fair, he does include the following statement right at the beginning of the book:
WARNING: PLEASE DO NOT READ THIS BOOK IF YOU’RE EASILY OFFENDED BY STRONG IDEAS OR LANGUAGE
Dan’s use of strong language and his no-nonsense approach may put some off to reading the book.
I think this is a shame because if you look past that, there is a lot to be learned from his ideas and approach to business.
I will give this book a rating of 4 out of 5.
Because my concern is always that a book be accessible to the masses. Especially when it is on the topic of creating and living your desired lifestyle.
Which I believe to be a right to all.
And this is where Dan and I may disagree.
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