Random thoughts and articles

How to make your First Million

The first thing I want to explain is that by million I don’t mean money. I mean users, customers, or people who you helped. This is how I measure success. If you want a get-rich-quick scheme, get out of this article.

I will not lie to you and I have no idea how to become successful with shortcuts. By my measures, I’m already a millionaire. Iris has more than 1 million users and I just turned 21 several months ago.

I also failed a lot. Iris is my maybe my tenth try and this is why I try to share as much experience I have so other people can do it faster and less painful. I also do it as a thank you for all the people who have helped me in my life. You can’t do anything alone.

If I had only one word to tell you it will be


Work for others first. I mean you need experience. You need a deep understanding of your industry and you can’t do this with reading. You need practice and you need to surround yourself with the best people in your industry. You can’t do it yourself. Work for others some time and learn.

Do it for free if they don’t want to pay you. Clean the bathroom, I don’t care, but work in the best company in your industry somehow. This goes not only for work but for sports, science, and everything. Be apprentice. Find the best teachers and

Suck the knowledge

Out of your teachers. Suck the knowledge out of your coworkers. Suck the knowledge out of your parents. Suck the knowledge out of everybody you meet. Shut up and listen with everything you have.

You will never learn anything new when you talk. This is why you have one mouth and 2 ears. Shut up and listen.

Write notes

Write down everything. I have hundreds of notebooks and to do files everywhere. I may never look at them, but I know that every idea or thought is there and I don’t need to remember anything. This is particularly good if you are super stupid and don’t remember anything like me.

Do something you love

Starting your own thing is hard. In fact, you will probably fail. Not probably, you have a 0.01% chance of success. The odds are against you. You will cry, you will be hungry, people will laugh at you and you will probably lose everything you have.

So make sure that you do something you love. This way even if you fail you will still be happy deep inside of you. No matter how silly the thing you love is, do it. Do something you love and

Don’t follow the trend

This goes hand by hand with the above thing. You will never be first in something that’s trending. The odds are against you again, so pick your niche. Do something strange which nobody else is doing.

Don’t follow the trend and don’t do what everyone else is doing. Be a monopoly or 10 times better than all the alternatives.

Quit your job

If you want to be successful you need to put everything you have. If you don’t believe enough in your idea to quit your job, nobody else will. If you don’t quit your job, don’t do it at all, you are not made for this, watch TV, get good sleep and be happy.

There is no need for everybody to be successful and everybody to be rich. People are different and everybody has his own version of success.

But if you want to do this you need to take the risk. It’s important to understand that

You can’t have it all

You just can’t have it all and you need to choose. I call this the 3 types of marriage. You can marry your business, marry your work, or marry your spouse.

Trying to make a balance is like driving a car and kissing your girlfriend. You are neither paying enough attention to the road, neither to your girl and you will eventually crash.

All choices are good, but you can’t have it all. In different parts of your life, you will have different marriages so try what works best for you.

I guess you have decided to marry your business, now you need to

Make it a habit

The good thing of having your own business is that nobody tells you what to do. The bad thing about having your own business is that nobody tells you what to do.

In order to not waste your time doing shit and fail, you need to make your work a habit. Basically that means that you need to work day and night 16 and more hours per day.

You need to start thinking on your own and to set your own tasks and deadlines. This is probably the hardest thing in the beginning and it helps if you are broke like hell and don’t have other choices. You also need to

Work like hell

No more holidays, no more parties, no more fun, and sleep. No New year, no Christmas, no Birthday. In the first couple of years, you need to work like hell, putting all your energy, focus, and power in it.

Well if you want to succeed. Otherwise, do whatever you want, but don’t cry when you fail. Aside from this make

Small steps every day

When you have so much work to do it’s hard to even start working. It’s like trying to get out of bed when it’s super cold. Choose something really small and work on it. When you complete it work on something else. It’s crazy how much you will advance doing all these small steps.

If you still can’t start, hack your environment. For example, if you can’t get out of bed, because it’s cold, sleep with a maximum amount of clothes and no blankets. Throw all distractions in the garbage. Throw the cookies in the garbage if you want the good body and hack your environment somehow to make it easy for you.

One of the best productivity hacks I have heard in my entire life is to make your bed at the morning. The second best tip is

Go to the gym every day

The gym is the best habit and a will building machine. Go to the gym every day, not for the body, but to build willpower and good habits.

I go to the gym basically to take showers and I always end up doing at least several sets of training which feels nice and charges you to do more work.

Live alone

This should be your top priority. If you for some reason still live with your parents get out of them and don’t ever return. I don’t care if you are going to live on the street or on a friends couch. You can still see them from time to time, but don’t live with them. Living with a girlfriend/boyfriend is ok if you want to make a family, but if you start your own business you will fail at both anyway.

It’s sad, but sometimes our closest people are the most toxic ones. This is one of these emotional problems that you need to solve ones and for all. Live alone, start taking responsibilities, and deal with problems yourself.

Before you start to do anything, start to live alone. This leads me to the next thing which is

Break up with everyone

If you are doing it right, everyone will leave you anyway, but you need to make up your mind that your social life will disappear.

It’s sad, but I don’t want to lie to you. You will be alone and lonely for a really long time. You will lose your closest friends and probably your partner. I just wanted to warn you that this journey is really lonely and you need to start to find happiness in the simple things and to love yourself. Again you can’t have it all, sorry.

Focus on 1 thing

You should choose only one thing and focus on it in the long term. Becoming the best in something requires a lot of time and effort and you can’t be good at everything.

Focus on one thing and become the best in it.

Eat your own shit

Whatever you do, you should use it yourself. Don’t make something for other people. Make something for you and show it to other people.

This way you know that you have one customer and this is you. If there is one there will be others. If there is none, there is none.

Sleep less

Sleep is one of the things that will never be the same again. You will start to work several days in a row without sleep then crash for day and wake up in terror that you have lost so much time.

If you don’t get enough sleep to learn to sleep faster, not less, but sleep faster. This is super unhealthy, but there is no other way. Try to eat better and to train more, because you will never get a good night’s sleep again.

Read more

You need to start to learn things yourself and the best way to do this is to read books, but not just any books. Read autobiographies of super successful people and read a lot of psychology and technical literature.

Magazines don’t count. Newspapers don’t count. Love stories don’t count. Love your work instead. Listen to audiobooks all the time if you don’t have enough time for this, but 30 minutes before bed works fine.

Find social hobby

The sole purpose of this is to not get crazy. You need to meet people and you need to make new friends. Believe me, you will get crazy otherwise. Find some group sport or other social hobby and practice it daily.

Start to use social media

Not to chat with friends, but for marketing. Share what you have done every day. This way you can find some followers and some people will start to use your product.

In this noisy world you can’t get without social media, but please don’t waste your time with it. Your sole purpose is to spread the word about your product, to motivate others, and to share stories. Don’t ever look at your news feed. If you want to see what some friend is doing use this brilliant invention called the cell phone, don’t stalk him.

Believe in your product

Truth to be told in the first year nobody will give a shit about you and your product. You should be the first person to believe in it. If you don’t believe in your product nobody else will.

Help others

You should never start with the purpose of making money. Your purpose should always be to help others achieve more, be more, and do more. People use something which helps them and makes them better. People pay for something they need. Nobody gives a shit if you are broke, you need to solve some problem. The money will come. Maybe.

Think long term

Well in the first year nobody will ever be heard of you because your product will be broken. You need at least 2 years to start to make a minimal amount of progress. Think long term and start something for 10 or more years. You can’t climb to the top for a day. I’m sorry, but you need to put your life on it.

This means years. Not passive income, not shortcuts, not any other kind of shit. Years of hard work. Prepare for it.

Live with less

Learn to live with less. You will not have money anyway so learn to use them wisely. Learn to invest every dollar and learn to value every cent.

Live with less money, fewer luxuries, and less baggage. Cut every expense that you can.

Spend less than you earn

This is maybe the most stupid advice, but this is actually what makes people rich. If you want to be rich you should spend less than you earn and invest the rest. Simple as that.

Never give up

I don’t know how to explain this, but you should never accept defeat. Either win or die. Burn all the bridges and just don’t fail. You should never ever give up.

You will fail a lot, but don’t ever think of giving up. Remember that you can’t fail if you continue to try different things. You fail when you stop trying. You win the game in your mind first, then in real life.

Aim for 100 million

This way even if you fail and get 5 million you will still be pretty successful. You should set your goals as high as you can. You should have goals so big that people think you are crazy.

Dream big. Dream impossible dreams. Make them possible.

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3 replies on “How to make your First Million”

I agree with a lot of what you’ve written here and I’m naturally very solitary and have never needed other, I do have a girlfriend however; are you seriously suggesting that if someone had a partner they can’t be successful?

You can, but your partner should believe in you. If not you will probably fail.

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