Who can be a millionaire? Who should be a millionaire?
Do you have to cut corners? Do you have to kidnap? Do you have to swindle? Do you have to be involved in fraudulent acts to be financially stable? Especially at a young age in this generation? No, scrap that, in this country?
If you’re a Nigerian currently living in the country, you can attest to the skyrocketing and alarming rate at which youths are engrossed in fraudulent acts.
Hardly does a day go by without the news of ritualism, kidnapping, or swindling. All in the name of making money!
Youths no longer believe in following due process as the only legitimate way to actualize their dreams, especially when it comes to financing.
But is it really true that it’s impossible to be financially stable without cutting corners?
Before you respond, why not read about my interviews with these two young millionaires who shared their stories, and how they were able to become financially successful at such a tender age?
And guess what? They did not even have to cut corners.
Wait, a millionaire at 21? What did they do? Is that even possible in Nigeria? Well, you might be shocked by what you will discover in this new blog post!
Keep reading to find out exactly what they did to achieve great financial success!
Note: Both names have been changed.
- How old are you?
OLIVER – 23
SAM – 25
- Are you a graduate? Undergraduate? Or never attended school?
OLIVER – Graduate
- What course did you study?
SAM – Pharmacy.
- What is your net worth?
Neither of them was comfortable enough to disclose this.
- Is your dad or mum a millionaire?
OLIVER- My dad is a millionaire.
SAM – Not really, but they are both very comfortable.
You don’t have to be from a rich family to be rich.
- When did you become a millionaire?
OLIVER- At 21 years old.
SAM – When I was 23 years –old. It feels good, although it’s never enough.
- What do you do (your career field)?
OLIVER- I’m a Software Engineer.
SAM –I’m a freelancer.
Your course of study doesn’t have to be your career.
- Did you learn any skills?
OLIVER- Yes, software engineering when I was in secondary school.
SAM – Yes, Forex and coding. I’m a writer too, but writing is a skill I did not need to learn.
- What role does/did academics play in becoming a millionaire? Would you have made it this far without school? Or was it insignificant?
OLIVER- Definitely significant. School is more than academics. You meet people, create connections, and build relationships. For example, I got introduced to programming while I was in secondary school.
SAM – School was significant. I was able to meet and connect with the right people who motivated me. In short, school might not have taught me how to be financially stable but it helped me in meeting great minds.
School is not a scam.
- What has been your greatest motivation for achieving your financial success?
OLIVER- My greatest motivation is making a difference, and not because I wanted to build houses or cars. It was so I could have the resources to do things I want to do in life. Things that I actually love more than work.
SAM – My dream of retiring at age 40. When I remember that, I jump out of bed. I was never really broke so I wouldn’t say it was Sapa (poverty) that’s been pushing me.
- How have you been able to stay consistent? It’s easier to be a millionaire than it is to remain one. That takes consistency and discipline. What’s the secret?
OLIVER- For me, having a focus is the key to staying consistent. Most people get carried away with trying to do a lot of things at the same time. So sticking to something, in particular, going hard at it until you eventually see the result, that’s focus and it keeps you going.
SAM – The people around me. The truth is, when there is no one to match up with, you will be comfortable all your life. My guys are always doing amazing things. So the urge to keep up is there.
Surrond yourself with people who encourage you to do better.
- Did you ever see yourself becoming a millionaire at such a young age five years ago?
OLIVER– Definitely, yes.
SAM – No. My goal was not to be a millionaire, at first, but to live a comfortable life. When I was in school, I received 5k per week as my allowance, yet I was the richest among my friends.
I didn’t suffer really, but my friends did. And that was where the journey to make more money started. So I never really planned to be a millionaire.
In fact, when we eventually hit our first millions, we weren’t even aware of it.
However, it’s important to always decide what you want to be in advance before you do. See yourself somewhere, and create a roadmap that moves you towards it.
- So would you say becoming a millionaire for you was a result of hard work or luck? Or both?
OLIVER- It’s both hard work and favor.
SAM – For me, I’d say luck is a combination of time and chance.
For instance, the fact that two people can have the same work ethic and work hard on the same project, and it works out for one and not for the other is a matter of time and chance.
I mean, people do what I do every day and do not get the same results I get. So I believe it’s my time to get successful results.
Nobody has success all the time. There was a time I was making almost 6 million per week! So what I do is invest the money to sustain what I have acquired.
There is no such thing as luck without extra effort from you.
In short, it’s a mixture of the right people or connection, luck, chance, time, and hard work.
- Did you and do you still have a mentor?
OLIVER- I have many mentors.
SAM – No, I only had someone who put me through Upwork for my freelancing work. He was a colleague in school and had just hit a deal. So I and my friends learned how he did it.
- What was the biggest challenge you encountered in your financial journey? And how did you overcome it? Was there a time you ever felt like giving up?
OLIVER- Yes, I did feel like giving up in some battles but never the war. What I mean is, there were times I felt like giving up while working on a particular project that could lead to my dream but not the dream itself.
SAM – I am currently facing great challenges establishing my food business right now. I ‘misprioritized’ my finances, and of course, it did not turn out well for me.
I can’t talk much about the ‘overcome’ question, because like I said, I’m still in the midst of it, just taking it one step at a time till I can find my way around it all which is definitely soon.
- What was the greatest mistake you made?
OLIVER– Working without guidance. There were failures I could have avoided if had a mentor earlier to put me through.
SAM – I have made a lot of mistakes but the greatest mistake was with the people I hired in the past when I did not follow my intuition when it told me to fire them. And this later cost me greatly, because they eventually betrayed my trust.
I once read a book by Donald Trump where he said, once you have the slightest doubt about an employee that he/she has lost the zeal for your company, that day begins the countdown to destruction.
- There is a saying that behind every successful man there is a woman. Does that apply to your case too?
OLIVER- Nope, it doesn’t.
SAM – Yes. But it wasn’t just one woman for me. My mum, my sisters, and my girlfriend.
My mom played a role in that she wasn’t giving me enough money when I was in school. I wasn’t suffering but I was hustling – she didn’t spoil me. She created in me the need to hustle and fend for myself as an adult.
As for my sisters, they are very supportive of my work.
My girlfriend, on the other hand, doesn’t actively play a role in my career, it’s more of emotional support. When I’m down, probably after losing a great deal, and need someone to talk to, she is always there for me. She knows how to make me feel better, gives me strength, and encourages me. And, honestly, I value her contribution more than those of the other women in my life.
And yes, of course, one of my employees plays a role too. I call her my superwoman.
- What do you know now that you wish you had known before? Something that might have accelerated your financial success?
OLIVER- I would have invested in Bitcoin earlier. If I had known about crypto since 2013, I’d have made more money by now. As I have mentioned, it’s not all about money but yeah, it counts too.
SAM – Having a roadmap. Not just knowing where you are going, but knowing how to get there. I wish I had known that earlier, I’d have avoided a lot of mistakes I made in the past and gone further.
Road maps give you clarity of what’s ahead and how to get there.
A road map is a very detailed outline of anything you get into. It tells you what you’re required to do, not do, what you should expect, even in the next five years.
Right now, in my food business plan, I can tell you every bit of information for the next six months, the 52nd week, and so on. We have it all written down.
I also wish I knew about investment plans earlier. Saving doesn’t build your wealth, investment does.
- They often say money is a reward for solving problems, what problems did you solve, and still currently solving?
OLIVER- I built software. And I have been using it to solve problems for businesses.
SAM – I guess I could say I am solving problems in the writing industry. As I earlier mentioned, I am a freelancer. I help people write and they pay me.
However, I think the first real problem I’ll be solving with any of my work is the food business which is still in progress.
- How are you helping others? Are you into charity? Do you have mentees? Do you plan to help others grow and become millionaires like you as well?
OLIVER- Uhm, yeah, I have once volunteered for some NGOs and I have a couple of folks I am currently training and working with.
SAM – I used to donate to a foundation. But we fell out and I stopped. I should continue again soon.
As for helping others grow, I delegate writing tasks to a lot of writers and I pay them. Even the writing jobs I can do by myself. I give them out. That way, I not only help these writers financially, but I also help them brush up on their writing skills.
- What has been the most contributing factor to you becoming a millionaire at such a young age?
OLIVER- The most contributing factor is relationship. Relationships are so important. They strengthen your convictions and help you forge deeper ahead. That is when you surround yourself with the right kinds of people.
SAM – My network, friends, and my dreams too.
Who you surround yourself with determines how far you go and grow.
- How did you find a balance between school and work?
SAM – My friends are practically the most intelligent set of people I have ever met. You can’t be with people like that and not keep up. So they helped me a lot to keep up.
Learn how to build relationships.
Plus, my work is online I could do it anywhere. There were lots of multitasking, though, I must confess. I’d have to do school presentations, be at the hospital, write tests, exams, and assignments. It was a lot, really.
However, my greatest advantage was the fact that my work was online. Though, I had to stay awake most of the nights and work. But then, you get used to it. if you’re truly motivated, that motivation will set you apart.
- Finally, what advice would you give this generation regarding financial mindset? Many youths think they have to cut corners or get involved in dubious acts before they make it financially. What do you have to say about this? How can you correct this mindset?
OLIVER- Don’t cut corners. Be patient. Learn a skill or two. Find something you want to do, a skill, academic – and stick to it. Don’t’ rush.
One thing that is killing this generation is the ‘rush’ mentality. Everyone wants to go into bitcoin or things that will generate quick money.
Life is more than money, by the way. Money doesn’t give you happiness. So, if you’re pursuing money for funny purposes like for the sake of ladies, cars, houses, and so on, I’d say you have the wrong motivation for money.
Money only provides you enough freedom to live life at a better or higher level. So, have a healthy mindset towards money and do not let it rule over you.
Also, my Bible says, In the multitude of counsels there is wisdom. Learn from people who have gone ahead of you. Get advice from them before you make critical decisions. And respect their advice.
SAM – You can surely get what you want without cutting corners. Unfortunately, it is a very tough mindset to correct in this generation.
My advice is, have a dream. It doesn’t even have to be a financial dream. Just have a dream, and keep building yourself in that line, that way, you will always be ready to seize the opportunity as soon as it presents itself.
Subject yourself to an environment that helps your dream. None of my friends are into fraud. But I want to believe that if I ever mingled with fraudulent guys I would also be into the same practice today. So, the people around you matter.
Don’t wait for opportunity and do nothing. Prepare for it every day in advance and seize it when it eventually presents itself.
Also, I’d say to correct the mindset, you have to correct their homes, their friends, and every other thing that contributes to developing this mindset. Because even when you tell the youths there are better and cleaner ways to make money online other than fraud, they still won’t believe you.
Lastly, youths need to understand that you can’t override the years of struggle it takes an individual to achieve something and think you can achieve the same in a day.
It doesn’t work that way. I started freelancing 7 years ago. To think you can get the same result I have gotten from there in half a year would be a joke.
I wish I could go on to ask these young brilliant-minded guys more questions- some of you probably wish to as well.
But getting their attention took a little while, to start with. They had to squeeze a few minutes out of their precious time to attend to my questions. I am super glad they did, and I couldn’t thank them enough for it. It was such an eye-opening session with each of them.
So, guys, don’t be misled by the toxic information society circulates, you can make your money in a legit way.
Have dreams, find something you desire, focus on it, work hard for it, believe in yourself, and be patient while you do all this, believing that as long as you’re still trying you’re getting there real soon.
- School is not a scam
- You don’t have to be from a rich family to be rich.
- There is no such thing as luck without extra effort from you.
- Your course of study doesn’t have to be your career.
- It’s important to have mentors.
- Who you surround yourself with determines how far you go and grow.
- Learn how to build relationships.
- Don’t wait for an opportunity and do nothing. Prepare for it every day in advance and seize it when it eventually presents itself.
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