This is going to be a really short chapter. Why, because there is no such thing as passive income.

BY TJ Walker

This is a really important concept so it bears repeating:


Here is my advice: when you hear someone talk about passive income, run in the opposite direction. When you pick up a book that promises passive income, either burn it or re-shelve it in the library under the fiction section. If you feel the urge to take out your credit card while watching a late night infomercial promising you passive income, run to your garbage disposal and shred your credit cards.

If someone really knew how to make income passively, why would they go to all of the trouble of shooting hours and hours of an expensive TV commercial video, editing it down to 30 minutes, then spending millions of dollars buying expensive airtime, then setting up credit card processing offices, call centers and product fulfillment centers? That actually sounds like extremely active (not-passive) work doesn’t it? Why don’t you take a hint?

“Passive income” is one of those things like “how to get six pack abs doing 4 minutes of exercise a day” that will always drive some books to the best-seller lists and some infomercial gurus toward their vacation homes in Hawaii, but they won’t do anything help you.

If you doubt me, just ask some of your friends who bought condos and rental properties in 2007 and 2008 so they could make tons of passive income? How’d that turn out for them?

Even an industry that is as heavily subsidized by crazy government incentives and tax breaks as real estate is not easy. It turns out, the people who really make money in real estate have to work, research, hustle, take risk and actually hustle.

Besides, why do you want passive income? You are a guru and expert because you have energy and passion for reaching as many people around the world with your insights and counsel. There had better not be anything passive about you.

Sure there can be different payment fees with what you do. Monthly consulting fees are different form speaking fees and book royalties. Book royalties are perhaps the biggest fool’s gold there is when it comes to so-called passive income. I guarantee that by the time you add up all of the time you spent researching a book, writing a book, marketing it, promoting it, and talking about it and then dividing all that time by your total royalties received, you will see the folly of calling book royalties “passive.” Sure, J.D. Salinger wrote “Catcher in the Rye” and it sold 250,000 copies a year for the next 50 years. Yes, J.D. lived quite well on his passive income from royalties from that book. But you are no J.D. Salinger, so get over yourself and remove “Passive Income” from your vocabulary.

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