In five years, Grant Sabatier went from having just a few bucks in his bank account to more than $1 million — and he did it through side hustles, sacrifice and investing. But if he had to do it all over again, he said he probably wouldn’t have done it quite the same way.
He made many trade-offs, and a few mistakes, like “making money my God and chasing the next thing, no matter what,” he admitted.
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The young millionaire, who blogs at MillennialMoney.com and is the author of “Financial Freedom,” accomplished financial independence by making small goals for himself — first, shooting to save $1,000, then $2,000, then $4,000. As he reached his goals, he’d double them. “We usually focus on the million-dollar goal or retiring early, and while it is important to set goals, don’t let those goals distract you from taking the next step,” he said. Starting small and consistently doubling his figures made the goal accessible, mentally and physically. “If you are completely in debt and you don’t have anything saved, just save your first $1,000, and see how it makes you feel,” he said. “You’ll feel better than you thought you would.”
But there needs to be balance, something he did not account for on his path to $1 million. That means enjoying life, and that looks differently for everyone. Stripping yourself of experiences and items that are meaningful can backfire. Sabatier said he had to detox after five years of working 100-hour weeks and traveling, for example.
Hitting a financial goal should be less about quantitative reasons, like having $1 million in an investment portfolio, and more about qualitative reasons, like leaving a job you hate or paying for an annual family trip. “It’s about looking at your life. Do you feel like you’re growing? Do you feel like you’re in a place you like and you have friends you like? Do you like your life?” Sabatier said. “If the answer to that question is no, then the first place you need to look is your money.”