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7 Everyday People Who Made Their First Million

WesleyAugust 10, 2017

6. Deanna Jump, Lesson Plan Millionaire

Yes, lesson plans. Seriously. Lesson plans! Deanna Jump made herself a millionaire from selling lesson plans online! She was a kindergarten teach in Georgia who had really great lesson plans, so one of her co-workers suggested that she put her lesson plans online on a website called Teachers Pay Teachers. Her first year in 2008 she made $300 for the year. A lot of people may have given up then. A lot of people would be sure their idea is just a $300 a year idea after having a first year like that.

The difference for Deanna was that she kept going. Her husband encouraged her to keep trying, and she became a millionaire selling her lesson plans on somebody else’s very specialized platform. It’s an absolutely amazing story and it’s a story that is becoming increasingly more common and will only accelerate as we move deeper into the digital era of the 21st century. Being good at something, anything that has some value to some community, and being the best at it, no matter how niche it is, online can be a very viable path to a million dollar net worth.

I mean think of how small a platform Teachers Pay Teachers must be compared to so many other platforms out there. It’s not YouTube. It’s not Facebook. It’s not even Etsy. It’s just a website for teachers to sell other teachers educational materials and lesson plans. While there are a lot of teachers, that is still a relatively niche group, and not all teachers are going online to buy lesson plans. And yet this very specialized niche platform is big enough for one seller to become a millionaire.

Sometimes the more niche the better. It’s more special if it’s niche. It’s more important to the people who care about that niche. It’s more personal. It’s something those people care enough about to spend money on it. It’s something that matters to them. And it’s also small enough that you can make a big name for yourself and be the best in the world at something in your niche. Like Deanna Jump.

7. Tim Grittani, Penny Stock Millionaire

Remember Julie Broad and her husband Dave Peniuk who were determined to turn their $16,000 savings into more? Into millions? Well Tim Grittani took his life savings of just $1,500 in 2010 and decided he would risk it to make more. He decided to put his money into penny stocks. Now remember Broad and Peniuk who made their big money on real estate were trashing stocks as an investment. They had a pretty good argument too for going into real estate instead of stocks. You get to leverage your investment, and therefore your returns, by a factor of ten. There’s potentially less risk as well.

But this guy Tim went ahead and decided to invest his paltry $1,500 in stocks, and not just any stocks. He went for penny stocks! The lowest life form in the stocks universe. The stuff Jordan Belfort would pump and dump to the tune of hundreds of millions as unsophisticated investors lost money. Well Tim decided these shares valued under $1 apiece were his ticket to riches, and he turned out to be right! In 2013 he told CNNMoney, “I’ve been trading every single day for almost three years, and it’s been a slow, day-to-day process. Investors in penny stocks should be prepared for the possibility that they may lose their whole investment.”

But that slow, day-to-day trading process battle hardened Tim into a guy who knows how to pick winners and losers, and he turned his initial investment of just $1,500 into a multi-million dollar stock portfolio. He even shares investment advice now on his blog, Trade the Ticker. The big take away here is find your own path. Don’t necessarily listen to anyone on the specifics when they give advice about how to be wealthy. Learn from their attitude, their positivity, their perseverance, their energy, their desire to be rich. Then chart your own way toward millions.

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