The way flowers need bees and the ocean needs the moon, people need money, and as per usual, people don’t have money. If you really think about it, all of the issues we face on a day to day basis which cause stress can be traced down to money, or lack of.

What college should I attend?

I need a job!

The kids need new clothes.

What’s for dinner tonight?

It's the little things that add up, faster than our debt, leading to total chaos. To save you the time you’d spend reading a book on becoming financially stable, because time is money, here are 5 easy steps that will make you less rich than Rockefeller, but richer than Chad from high school.

Step 1: Knead the Dough

In order to bake a cake you’re gonna have to work with ingredients, and if you don’t have ingredients you don’t have a cake. To make money you need money, and luckily there are many ways to get it. Getting a job is a good start, anywhere, making enough money to work with. Take your talents to the street and bring a hat or open guitar case. Some people are fortunate enough to have parents with money, so ask them for a few Benjamins. Borrow some, from a relative or friend, and once you get the ball rolling you’ll be able to pay them back in no time.

Step 2: SAVE SAVE SAVE

I’m sure you have heard this one too many times, but saving your money is key to becoming wealthy, especially if you don’t need to spend it. As soon as that paycheck comes in, buy food, water, and any other living essentials. Once that’s done, keep the credit/debit card at home, put the spare change in the piggy, and relax until next payday. Soon enough you will find you have more money than you need, but remember to keep saving. If you start at a young age then adulthood will be so much easier. You don’t need to spend at all because you’re living off your parents, and all the living essentials should be covered.

Step 3: Invest

Don’t start investing if you can hear the change in your piggy bank when you shake it. Investing is something one should do when they have enough money to maintain themselves for a while. Take any extra money and invest it, don’t ever invest everything you have, though. Investing doesn’t necessarily mean buying stock and spending thousands of dollars, hoping to double your money. Investing just means making more than you spend, kind of like the little kids selling lemonade on the corner. They probably spend between $4-8 on the lemonade mix which makes around 50 servings. At 50 cents a cup, they’ve made $25, more than tripling their original investment. Don’t think too hard about investing, but don’t just do it on impulse either.

Step 4: Expand

A good example of expansion would be fast food chains. They start with one franchise, make money, then use it to open a new franchise and so on. A couple kids won’t be able to run 20 lemonade stands, though, you’re gonna have to let some dough go to hire people. You want to be careful when choosing employees, making sure they won’t be bad for business. The old “smile and wave” may be cliche, but will ultimately result in consumer satisfaction. Another factor to consider when expanding is location. Every business has a target audience they are selling to, make sure to branch out into areas where there is an abundance of your target audience.

Step 5: Keep Kneading the Dough

You’ve got the ingredients at this point, now work with it. Your business may be flourishing for a couple of years, but soon enough people will get tired of lemonade. Keep kneading the dough, coming up with new ways to advertise or new products to sell. Give the people what they want so that they keep coming back for more.

Step 6: Smile

You may be wondering why there is the sixth step if the title only mentions 5 easy steps. That’s because the first five steps are easy, this last one is hard. Becoming rich has nothing to do with financial stability. Live in the moment, skips some stones across a pond, pretend the ground is lava, try keeping the light switch between on and off, laugh out loud, and spread the joy by smiling at others. Who knows, that smile could make their day.

We get so caught up in what is good for us, but who decides what is good for us? That’s why the 6th step is so difficult because it takes time to realize that we decide what is good for us. If it happens to be money that brings you joy, then so be it, as long as you want it that way.

I don’t live in a house, my clothes are either second-hand or hand-me-downs, and food is never a certainty, but boy am I one of the richest people you will ever meet.