Jay Leno has amassed a net worth of over $400 million by managing his money intelligently and investing in himself. No one accrues a nearly half billion dollar fortune by being irresponsible with their expenses.
The secret to Leno’s success, as he revealed to us, is to have multiple sources of revenue.
“I had two jobs because I realized that was the quickest way to become a millionaire,” shared the 67-year-old former Tonight Show star, who hosts CNBC’s Jay Leno’s Garage now.
As Leno was establishing himself in the industry, he saved the money he was earning while working at a car dealership to establish a secure baseline income, while spending the funds earned through is career in entertainment. As Leno’s career as a comedian grew, he reversed it.
“Then I got to the point where the comedy money was, like, five times the other money, so I decided to flip it around and save the comedy money,” he continued. “I would always spend the lesser amount of what the two were.”
Even when Leno first started hosting The Tonight Show on NBC in 1992, he stuck with this strategy. He covered his living expenses with what he earned from the comedy shows he was performing on the side.
“I pretended as if I didn’t even have the Tonight Show job,” said Leno. “You know, when you start making money, you get lazy. I wanted to make sure I always had that hunger, so I never looked at [the Tonight Show money]. It would go directly into a bank.”
Hosting The Tonight Show made Leno as much as $30 million per year, but rather than get caught up in material excess, he saved the money and through strategic investments, turned it into a fortune.
Leno is still doing two or three comedy gigs per week, because as he quipped, “if you do something and it works, then keep doing it.”
The lesson that can be learned from this is that multiple revenue streams are the key to financial freedom. If you have a day job and it’s paying you $100,000 per year, use it to pay the bills while investing what’s left over into business ventures that you’re good at. Always invest in yourself and NEVER take your income for granted.
Life has taught me that the less uncertainty I can create, the happier I will be. The only way to remove uncertainty and fear from your life is to take action and invest in yourself.
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