In 2000, everything changed for me.
I read a book that changed my life.
That book made me quit my 6-figure job as a director at IBM and move 5,680 miles from Munich in Germany to Austin, TX – leaving EVERYTHING behind.
Here’s what happened:
After college, I started work for IBM, and life is good. I am working for IBM Global Services as a consultant in the late 90s, and I quickly work my way up the corporate ladder.
Within 3 years I have a responsibility for what IBM calls EMEA – that’s Europe, Middle East and Africa, and I’m traveling the world.
I stay in 5-star hotels, travel first class, and my rental car is always a nice BMW. (PICTURES?)
But all this has its price: I am working 60-80 hours per week, and I’m on the road 6 out of 7 days, and I am getting burned out…
On one of the rare days when I had a few hours for myself, I went to a bookstore (YES, “back in the days” we went to bookstores instead of Amazon. Remember those times?)
I’ll never forget that day because it changed my life!
I walk into the bookstore, and there’s this book prominently displayed. It’s called “Rich Dad, Poor Dad,” and there’s a lot of buzz around that book.
So I pick it up and start flipping through the pages when I see something that stops me dead in my tracks.
I see THIS illustration (see below)
And it hit me:
I’m in the upper left corner, the “L” corner!
I’m exchanging time for money. Admitted, I’m making good money, but I’m in the wrong quadrant!
In the book, Robert Kiyosaki suggests that you follow a structured approach to get to “The Promised Land”:
You go from “Employed” to “Self Employed”…
… then from “Self Employed” to “Business Owner”…
… and then from “Business Owner” to “Investor” where your money works for you
Now, you need to know THIS about me:
I’m an overachiever.
And I am impatient.
So I decided right there and then that I want to take the short-cut:
I decided to go from “E” to “I”, where money works hard for me.
And for me, that meant trading!
I was always fascinated by trading. In fact, I did my first trade when I was in High School! That’s quite a story, and I will tell you that story another time.
Anyhow… I decided right then and there that I will become a trader!
I want my money to work hard for me, and not the other way around!
And so I did:
In 2002, I quit my 6-figure job as a director at IBM and move 5,480 miles from Munich in Germany to Austin, TX to become a professional trader.
I chose Austin, TX because I love the friendly people here, I liked the RELAXED lifestyle here in Austin… in short: it felt home.
And I thought: if I can focus on trading without any interruptions, I should be able to make it. I gave myself a year to figure it out, and I started with a $20,000 account.
I was excited. Now I was FINALLY free and could do the what I REALLY wanted: Trading.
Little did I know that my dream was about to get crushed…
… but I’ll tell you more about this in another post.