(Photo: Niall Kennedy)

Financial success often seems like an enigma.

In reality, most financially successful people suffer from the same fears as the masses. They simply follow a proven formula that the masses invert.

We have a unique perspective working with hundreds of successful clients and we’re students of countless others. What we realized is so simple, yet so insightful, that it surprised us we hadn’t come up with it sooner.

So what’s the formula for financial success?

#1: Make Lots of Money

It sounds obvious, but people focus on the wrong things and debate minutiae while the real opportunity of earning more slips past them.

Your earnings can be unlimited, but you can only cut costs so much.

There is a disproportionate reward for growing your income compared to what you can save. Yes, you should relentlessly cut costs on things you don’t care about but at some point, especially early in one’s accumulation phase of life, you may have an income problem, not a cost problem.

#2: Save It

There is a double-edged sword to making lots of money: spending it. If you raise your lifestyle, you’re saving less AND you have to fund a larger retirement. In this case, making more money actually takes you a step backwards.

We see this with people who areIncome Rich and Savings Poor (IRSPs)”.

IRSPs have done a great job building their careers or businesses, yet they make the classic mistake of spending most of it. They wonder, “Why do we make so much money and have so little in savings?”

#3: Don’t Mess Things Up

The more you have, the more you have to lose.

Making bad decisions is costly and will literally set you back years towards reaching your goals. Imagine how many people fell into the tech and real estate bubbles, or cashed out of the markets because of fear, only to find their savings being wiped out.

#4: Grow What You’ve Saved

Invest your savings to beat inflation and earn a reasonable return. Long-term inflation is the single largest risk to anyone’s savings, just ask people living off fixed income what they think about oil at $100.

However, public market investment portfolios are not supposed to outpace earnings till retirement.

There is no greater return than yourself and expecting your investment portfolio to deliver this for you is misguided. On the other hand, believing that you’re “safer” by keeping your money in CDs, bonds, or under the mattress means you’re losing purchasing power, so that too is irrational and costly behavior.

Flipping Financial Services On Its Head

We have always been focused on #4 on the list – helping people grow their savings.

Unfortunately, we see people spend a disproportionate amount of time focusing on the wrong area. LGA Clients are ahead of the game because they’ve outsourced this to us and focus on other things, like earning more.

We also focus on #3 – helping people get closer to what they should be doing.

The industry has always been focused on developing financial plans, but the reality is that most people need helping doing what’s on the plan, not just knowing what to do.

Another service we provide is helping people with #2 – saving money.

We get our hands dirty, dive into actual spend analysis, and go so far as to optimize how much money should be going and where – and then automating it.

However, we uncovered a gap when it came to the #1 financial success factor: earning more money.

In fact, not only did we not do anything about it, the entire industry does nothing, and even worse, there are very few places for someone to go if they would like to earn more money or start a business.

We’ve decided to change this.

Why Haven’t You Started A Business?

Over the past couple months, we interviewed over twenty clients who have had an interest in starting a business but never have. We wanted to know what held them back, what they feared (what they really feared), what would help them, etc. This enlightened us on why most businesses die in peoples’ minds.

These “silent soundtracks” are the music that plays and the words that sting, whenever an idea of starting a business comes to mind:

“I don’t have an idea that I’d like to focus on.”

“I’m worried if it doesn’t work, I could lose everything.”

“I don’t have enough time.”

“It’s easy to be complacent when everything is just fine.”

“Do I have the confidence or skills to be successful?”

“Too much information and not enough specific advice.”

“I’m worried about making less to try something else.”

Skepticism may prevent mistakes, but it prevents success as well.

Skepticism’s Anti-Venom: Hustling

The only way to convince you not to worry about what might go wrong is to show you what can go right.

How? Simple: by teaching you how to hustle.

Skeptics already think hustling is something dishonest. That’s not what we’re talking about. We’re talking about the good old fashioned kind of hustle that your coach used to shout to get that extra effort out of you – a verbal kick in the butt.

Hustling is putting in the extra bit of effort to earn extraordinary results.

Here’s how we’re going to help you hustle in 2011:

– If you’re serious about earning more, you’ve got to work hard. We’ll guide you through the business startup process – from dealing with fears, developing and testing ideas, to finding customers and closing your first sale.

– Give you case studies and examples of successful hustlers – people who have found ways to earn income on the side, negotiate higher salaries, and provide their families with the lifestyle they always dreamed. Learn from their success and avoid their mistakes.

– Interviews with authorities – giving you access to our network on topics you care about –from market research, finding customers, selling, building operations, and tons more.

– Create the first-ever business accelerator within a financial advising firm, to help Clients launch side-businesses, earning revenues within 3 months. We’ll provide more details about this in the upcoming months.

We’re hustling to help you generate extraordinary results. In exchange, we’d like to ask for the following:

(1) Stop consuming and start producing. If you’re not getting benefits from watching TV, reading the paper, or surfing blogs – just stop. Not having enough time is often a symptom of consuming things you do nothing with. It’s an Atlas Shrugged moment: produce or consume.

(2) Let us know what silent soundtrack is holding you back from starting a business. Fear of something? Don’t know what to do? Not sure how to come up with an idea? Send us an email or leave a comment below.

We look forward to making 2011 the most prosperous yet – the year of the hustle.

Giddy up!