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- Sharon Tsung didn’t want to be restricted to a 9 to 5 job for the rest of her life.
- She saved and invested her money, learned new skills, and created multiple streams of passive income.
- I also traveled the world for two years and learned to make money without a day job.
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Sharon Tsung graduated from the University of California, Berkeley with a BA in 2012. Her first 9-5 year work experience was outside of college at the age of 21, as a marketing coordinator making $30,000 a year.
“When I first started working after graduation, I was shocked that adults do it every day until they are 60,” Tseung said.
Two years later, I was able to take a month’s vacation in Europe. During that trip, Tseung decided to figure out how to achieve a level of financial freedom that would give her flexibility to choose how she would spend her time. The idea of driving to the same place every day, looking at the same four walls, and doing a job she wasn’t very passionate about was a situation she didn’t want to be stuck in for the rest of her life. She started thinking of alternative ways to make more money outside of her day job.
Soon after returning from Europe, Tseung began investing and using her skills to build multiple sources of passive income. This year, at age 30, her net worth has reached $1 million, according to records seen by Insider.
Although she can live off her passive income, she chooses to keep her job because she enjoys it and thus can continue to use her income to grow her fortune. She is now teaching others how to manage their finances, invest and earn passive income through her blog and accounts on YouTube, TikTok and Instagram.
Below, she shares the four main steps she took to reach her goals.
1. She kept her expenses to a minimum
When she was making $30,000 a year, or roughly $15 an hour, she refrained from spending on anything nonessential, like clothes, bags, or eating out. Every time she wanted to make a purchase, she would think about how many hours she would have to work to be able to afford it. This helped her decide if spending money on a product or experience was worth it.
She also decided to live with her parents until her mid-twenties instead of moving to the city like many of her friends. This allowed her to save money on rent. Bought a used car at an affordable price so you don’t have to finance one.
“What a lot of people don’t realize is that a new car loses its value as soon as it is taken out of the dealer’s yard. I decided to buy a reasonably priced but safe used car for $6,700 in all the cash, so I didn’t have to take out a loan on a declining asset. Love this car because it allowed me to save more money to invest, and not worry about getting scratches on my car,” Tseung told Insider.
Eventually, Tseung moved at the age of 27. But she still wanted to keep her living expenses low, so she rented a room in a two-bedroom apartment with two of her roommates. The living room has been converted into a third bedroom to cut down on everyone’s rent. She told Insider that this kept Tseung’s rent below 15% of her income.
2. Invest in opportunities that can generate more money
Because of her saving habits, Tseung has always been able to invest the majority of her money in things that generate more income, such as a brokerage account, pension funds, and rental properties.
It has many side activities online, including affiliate marketing and an Etsy store, and spends money on things like courses that improve its skills, upgrade tech equipment, and add online management tools to power its platforms.
3. Focused on learning high paying skills
Tseung read many books, blogs, and watched YouTube videos that helped her change her way of thinking and learn the technical skills she needed to take on jobs that would pay more.
When it came to books that changed the way she thought about money, one of the books that had the biggest impact was The 4-Hour Workweek by Timothy Ferris. The book focused on escaping from a 9 to 5 work week. The second book that influenced her way of thinking about making money was “Rich Dad Poor Dad” by Robert Kiyosaki. This book taught her to make money work for her instead of making her work for money.
As for the new technical skills she was learning, she experimented by implementing them in her job and even building her own platforms to put what she learned into practice.
“I definitely recommend trying to build your own website and blog because you learn a lot about marketing while doing so, like SEO, paid ads using social media, copywriting, and things like that. But also when it’s all about your time job, make sure you That you are taking the lead with new projects and wanting to learn more at work and then finding new jobs will push you not to just do the same thing every day. I think it’s a great way to develop your skills,” said Tseung.
4. She traveled the world for 2 years while learning to generate passive income
In 2016, Tseung finally managed to spend two years traveling the world. During this time, she worked remotely, accepting three part-time jobs which allowed her to work from her laptop managing and designing advertisements. After five months, I was able to gradually transition into working on passive income streams full time.
This experience taught her that she doesn’t need to rely on a nine-to-five job. Tseung had time to learn how to build passive income streams through blogging and built an Etsy store where she sold digital products like Photoshop templates and Microsoft Word templates. As her income gradually increased, she experimented with adding new products, such as T-shirts.
When Tseung returned from her two-year experience of traveling the world, the new skills she developed allowed her to land a job as a marketing manager with a six-figure annual salary.
Today, Tseung still maintains her day job but also collects income from her real estate holdings, sales from online courses, advertising revenue, affiliate marketing, Merch by Amazon, Fulfillment by Amazon, Etsy, and profits from her investment portfolio.
Tseung’s advice to everyone is to follow your heart.
“With everything I was doing, it was all about following my callings. When it came to building passive income streams, quitting my job and traveling the world for two years, all these decisions I didn’t regret and always helped me achieve financial freedom,” said Tseung. Tie it back to your mission and ‘why’ in life. For me, continuing to influence and build my brand, teaching people how to build passive income and gain financial freedom. Establishing that financial freedom also means more time with family. When I have a child, I want to be able to spend more time with them and more time to work on the things I enjoy.”