How to Make Money by Staring at the Ocean

UPDATED: June 11, 2016
PUBLISHED: March 27, 2015

As a society we are slowly transitioning from a mechanistic view of life toward one that is more holistic in nature. Simply said, instead of thinking in parts we’re thinking in wholes (whole being a derivative of the same root words holy andhealthy). And this is a good thing, because having just part of something sucks. I want the whooole chimichanga. Or enchilada. Really, any Mexican meat wrap will suffice.

The medical community has proven the mind-body connection and is starting to incorporate holistic therapies. Nutritionists are now almost uniformly recommending a whole foods diet. Quantum physicists have discovered the material interconnectedness—the wholeness—of literally everything. “We are one,” is no longer some woo-woo spiritual platitude; it’s a scientific fact.

And as for me, I have personally discovered the intrinsically holistic nature of wealth-building. Money isn’t everything. It’s 25 percent of everything.

I recently surveyed my list of 250,000+ email subscribers, and asked, What are you most concerned about in life right now?

A. Physical Health
B. Money
C. Spirituality
D. Mental/Emotional Health
E. All of the Above Equally

And 93 percent picked “B”… money. What would you have picked? Honestly.

If you picked “E,” you have roughly a 75 percent better chance of becoming wealthy than if you failed the test like most of my subscribers did by picking “B” (or any other letter besides “E” for that matter). And the reason for this is that wealth is intrinsically holistic—or interdependent—by nature. Wealth is naturally attracted to people who are physically, spiritually and mentally healthy—in other words whole.

There is rarely such a thing as lasting success in one of these areas without success in all of them. And what we do in each has a direct effect on all the other three, for better or for worse.

If we’re having trouble making progress in one area, we can go tinker in other areas that magically unlock the door in the troubled area. For example, 75 push-ups unlocked my writer’s block for this article. Most people would just pout and drink coffee.

Too many of us are focused strictly on one aspect of life—normally the financial—at the expense of all the others, when what we need to be doing is focusing on all four simultaneously. Think about it.

What if our ability to control our weight had a direct correlation with our ability to control our finances? That by mastering our body it would magically become easier to master our money?

What if the more spiritually in tune we were, the more money we’d have?

What if the more we focused on helping people, the more our life would just magically turn into something from a movie?

What if the more money we had, the less stressed we’d be and the more freedom we’d have to optimize our health?

The following is a list of ways to grow wealthy in a holistic way—ways to focus on everything, to be a person who’s wealthy in all aspects of life (and by no means is this even slightly exhaustive):

1. Mental Mastery

• Read biographies of the wealthiest people that have ever lived. You will become more like them automatically.
• Increase your intelligence by reading books outside your comfort zone, playing brain games (I like Dual-n-Back), listening to classical music while you work and solving complex problems.
• Become a master of your thought world. Don’t make it harder than it needs to be. Simply program your mind with truth and guard yourself against lies. If you catch yourself feeling bad, let that be a signal you’re simply believing something that’s not true.
• Seek out super smart successful people and spend as much time with them as possible.
• Resolve your past. Forgive everyone who has hurt you (especially your parents) and let it go. This one thing alone will solve a majority of your emotional problems.
• Believe you’re the best. Be quasi-delusional about it. If you believe it, so will everyone else. You will get nowhere without insanely high levels of self-confidence.
• Cultivate drive and intensity. Be alpha. People should feel your energy when you’re around—it should literally shift when you walk in a room. Your presence should be felt.
• Have a go-to affirmation that you run through your mind on a routine basis to shut up your inner critic.
• Put yourself through a ritualistic self-initiation process. List all the things you’re the most terrified to do on a piece of paper (like speak in public, jump out of a plane, etc). Go do them all.

2. Health & Swellness

• Stop eating Twinkies (and all other processed foods).
• Don’t eat anything genetically modified.
• Get a food allergy test done and stop eating stuff you’re allergic to (and yes, you’re allergic to something).
• Cut out all wheat, dairy and grains.All wheat is genetically altered, you’re probably allergic to dairy (just like 67 percent of the human population according to one study), and grains cause inflammation.
• Start eating organic meats, organic vegetables (10-12 servings a day) and healthy fats. You’ll never get sick again.
• Start exercising six days a week for the rest of your life. HARD. Exercise HARD. If you’re not nervous to go to the gym, you’re not doing it hard enough.
• Get your blood tested for deficiencies as often as possible and make the necessary adjustments.

3. Financial Intelligence

• Read Secrets of the Millionaire Mind three times.
• Read Rich Dad Poor Dad.
• Read The 4-Hour Workweek.
• Read The Millionaire Next Door. Don’t do anything it says. Just realize that’s the boring way to be a millionaire.
• Follow James Altucher on Twitter and Facebook.
• Ignore anyone on TV offering financial advice.
• Master the art of persuasion. Become a marketing and copywriting expert. (Do just this one thing and you will never go hungry.)
• Hang out with rich people.
• Invest your money in your own businesses, where you have control, as opposed to other people’s businesses (via stocks, bonds, 401k’s, etc.), where you have no control.
• Buy real assets as opposed to paper assets.
• Stop being consumer-oriented. Save your money.

4. Spiritual Enlightenment

• Become a serious truth seeker. Value truth at a very high level.
Have integrity. Do what you say you’re going to do at all costs. Tell the truth.
• Do the opposite of what you feel like doing approximately 95 percent of the time.
• Ask yourself, “Where did this world come from?” routinely. Try to answer the question.
• Understand that you are here on earth for a very specific reason; you’re no accident. Commit your life to discovering this reason.
• Routinely give a percentage of your time and money away to people who need help. Don’t mourn the loss of the money. You’re connected to those people, so ultimately you’re giving it to yourself.
Take breaks all throughout your day. Go outside and just observe the beauty of the sky and nature all around you. Turn off your mind and just soak it in. Realize that it’s all alive and in a constant state of flux. And it is a scientific fact that you are connected to it all. The world is more fluid than it appears to be. It’s more of an ocean than a collection of separate objects. As a matter of fact, the reason most people are so hypnotized and tranquilized by water views (and the ocean in particular) is because it makes them feel the fluidity of nature—and therefore of themselves. It brings them down to earth and more in line with reality.

Wake up every day just as passionate about growing physically, mentally and spiritually as you are about growing financially. This is the enlightened path to true and lasting wealth.



“Learning is the beginning of wealth. Learning is the beginning of health. Learning is the beginning of spirituality. Searching and learning is where the miracle process all begins.” – Jim Rohn

Daily habits are what separate the wealthiest among us from the poorest. Check out 10 rich habits to take up to reach and maintain your wealth potential.

Preston Ely is founder and CEO of, an Inc. magazine "Fastest Growing Company." He has built and sold multiple businesses and was recently voted one of Fast Company's "Most Influential People On The Internet." He makes $0 a year teaching success principles; he makes millions of dollars a year applying them to his own life and businesses. He writes articles for for the fun of it. Follow him at, on Facebook and on Twitter.