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We Should All Be Millionaires: A Woman’s Guide to Earning More

We Should All Be Millionaires: A Woman’s Guide to Earning More PDF

Author: Rachel Rodgers

Publisher: HarperCollins Leadership


Publish Date: August 2, 2022

ISBN-10: 1400221684

Pages: 288

File Type: Epub, PDF

Language: English

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Book Preface

I believe every woman should want to be a millionaire.

If you agree with me, this book is for you.

If you strongly disagree with me, this book is definitely for you.

Every woman needs to see at least seven zeros in her bank account, at the bottom of her own balance sheet, and in her cumulative net worth. Every woman needs to know what it feels like to wield economic power. That’s how we make change. That’s how we serve our children. That’s how we serve the world.

I want you to know what it feels like to be a millionaire. To own a home with no mortgage. To have the freedom to leave a job you don’t love. To have more time to spend with your favorite people doing things you enjoy. To have more time to rest.

I want you to know what it feels like to be a millionaire. To have more than you need and be able to put that surplus money to work for your children, my children, and our children’s children. I want you to know what it feels like to solve community problems like providing for kids who can’t afford school lunch or creating a community garden by simply writing a check. I wrote this book, because that’s not the world we’re living in right now.

The data is daunting: Women are afraid to ask for the money they deserve and need (and are less likely to get), afraid to make more than their partners, and afraid that having a career means not meeting their family’s needs. Screw the thigh gap, let’s talk about some other gaps: white women make 79 cents compared to a dollar made by a white man, and Black women make 62 cents.1Sixty-two cents, y’all! Women also pay more for their debt than men,2 are less likely to invest than men,3 and are therefore 80 percent more likely to be impoverished in retirement.4 When it comes to business, women entrepreneurs raise less money than men,5 and only 2 percent of women-owned businesses ever hit the seven figure mark.6 All of this despite the fact that research shows that women are better investors and better leaders than men.7

We are going to change all of this, and this book will show you the way. In this book, we are going to cover things you’ve never seen before, and I am going to teach you how to:

  • Build serious wealth.
  • Increase your income significantly within one year.
  • Get on the path to becoming a millionaire within three years.
  • Stop getting in your own way.
  • Increase your power, peace, and joy.

And, most important, how to start making Million Dollar Decisions and the exact steps you need to take to get on the path to millionaire status, no matter your current situation or earnings.

Here’s what you will not see in this book: me telling you to stop drinking your three dollar latte or to stop being a shopaholic (these are the ridiculous messages women are inundated with by so-called financial gurus on a daily basis). Here’s what I will tell you: how to start making a lot more money. You will learn how to add income streams without hustling all the time and start generating an extra $1,000 or $5,000 per month. In this book, you’ll learn how to expand your income rather than contract your expenses.

And here’s why: whether we like it or not, money is the source of real power in society.

There’s very little any of us can do—to get paid for the true value of our work, to make our own decisions, to control our lives, and much less to move women, marginalized communities, and society forward—without the freedom that money can buy. Your options in life are likely to remain limited if your resources are also limited. And, yes, this is a sad state of affairs. I, too, would love to live in a world where that wasn’t the case, but that world doesn’t exist. And so, sisters, to claim more power in the world, we need more money.

Some of the power money offers us is emotional. When we have money, we are confident that we can build wealth and earn more. When we don’t, we always fear not having enough and being judged for it. I learned that lesson at a young age as a kid in New York City, standing in the grocery store checkout line embarrassed about having to pay with food stamps. I remember feeling shame and looking around hoping that none of my friends from school would realize that my family was receiving public assistance.

Many of my schoolmates lived in nice apartment buildings with nice furniture. They went to Kumon, a tutoring program, after school and took art and violin lessons. They had summer passes to the local community pool. I didn’t have any of those things, because my parents couldn’t afford them. But I went out of my way to pretend that my family’s financial struggles didn’t exist.

I remember in sixth grade being invited by a group of friends to go on a shopping trip to the outlet stores in Reading, Pennsylvania. I was excited to go but didn’t have any money to actually shop. But my mother always found a way. My dad had been doing odd jobs, and one of them was refilling vending machines. He got paid in coins, and that’s the only extra money we had. The morning of the trip, my mother and I sat on the floor of our living room rolling quarters. I went on the trip with $33 in rolled coins.

During the trip, I’d browse the stores with my friends and, while they made their purchases of new clothes and sneakers, I’d pretend that I didn’t like anything because I didn’t have enough money to buy them. Eventually, I did find something I could afford: a wallet. Looking back now, I realize how aspirational to purchase a wallet when I had no money. Even then, I believed that one day I’d have enough cash to fill a wallet. I waited until all my friends left the store, and then I bought my new discounted leather wallet with my rolled coins.

Being financially poor can define who you are and shape what you think you are capable of. When your bank account is empty, you are assumed to be lazy and uneducated, an unproductive member of society incapable of making your own way. My parents were hardworking, smart, and quite productive but I wonder if they knew that? For a time we lived comfortably, but there were other times riddled with layoffs from good jobs, addictions, and all the disadvantages that come with living under constant financial distress. Would money have solved all our problems? Of course not, but it sure as hell would have solved a lot of them.

Money also creates power by giving us autonomy. When we have money, we can make decisions that improve our quality of life and the lives of others without needing anyone else to weigh in. When we have wealth, we can be independent and make our own decisions.

The opposite is true when we’re broke. When we don’t have money, we can be stuck at a job where we’re being sexually harassed (because we need that paycheck, dammit) or with a man who’s abusing us (because we need the asshole’s financial support). We can’t even donate to causes we care about or financially support the political campaigns of people we want to represent us in government. It’s harder to advocate for ourselves or others without money, autonomy, and power.

If we as women are truly passionate about improving our lives, making the world a better place for our children, and getting equity for all marginalized people, then we need to step up and make bank. That, in my opinion, is the way we take back the power we deserve from people who underestimate and undermine the contributions women like us make to the world every day.

We’ve tried using our voices to speak truth to power. We’ve tried marching. We’ve tried writing letters to our representatives. We’ve tried volunteering in our kids’ schools. We’ve tried creating organizations and nonprofits that advocate for the kind of change we want to see in the world. We’ve begun to raise hell and use our voices, but we need to start playing a different game.

A game we can win. Even though the rules that apply to men don’t apply to us.

We all know a wealthy white man who achieved his success by knowing the right people, by easily landing his first great job, by asking for what he was worth. When a man succeeds this way, he is praised. But when a woman tries to assert herself, she’s called a bitch—or worse. As women, and especially as women of color, we need to wake up to the fact that our rules for playing and winning the game of success aren’t the same as a man’s. And that’s a good thing, because the rules that work for men don’t work for us. The old boys’ club that ensures a white man’s success is not available to us. And if we think about it, we’ll realize we don’t even want that version of success. Women need to define success on our own terms and go after our goals in our own ways, even if it seems crazy or risky or unusual at the time.

Because I’ve seen over and over again that doing things our own way as women works. When I was a lawyer first starting out, I knew I didn’t want a prominent position at a fancy law firm, because I was so over the toxic culture that rules in those institutions: the rigid nine-to-nine schedule, the limited vacation time, and office politics that always resulted in white men winning and a Black woman like me losing. During my limited experience working in corporate firms, I witnessed things like a partner throwing a stapler down the hallway while screaming at the top of his lungs, and being admonished because I got busy doing important research and wasn’t there to receive the lunch delivery I had ordered for senior associates (clearly senior associates can’t be meeting delivery guys at the elevator to get their own lunch. As if!).

So I decided to open my own virtual law firm, which enabled me to work with clients remotely while wearing a flowy kimono from my kitchen table (I call her my Rich Lady Kimono—she’s real cute). And it worked for me, to the tune of $700,000 in annual revenue. Many of my clients, friends, and colleagues asked me how I built such a successful business, and I started teaching them my strategies. Eventually, there was so much demand for business coaching, and I enjoyed it so much that I decided to close my law practice and coach full-time. I transitioned to coaching other women on how to run a business, manage their money, and turn their intellectual property into an empire, which has turned my six-figure business into Hello Seven. (Literally, that’s the name of my company.)

I’ve learned how to play the game of success by my own rules. And in this book, I’m going to help you define your own success and chase after your goals on your terms. It’s time for all of us to make a lot more money. And by doing so, we’ll literally spread our wealth around, take our power and agency back, and ultimately change the world. So, you know, small things.

This is the part of the book where you start to think, But, Rachel, there’s no way I can earn a million dollars, even with your help.

And this is where I’m going to tell you that you are absolutely wrong.

You’ve got kids? Babies at home?

Me, too. I was breastfeeding my youngest when I wrote this.

You’ve got a husband or partner or life companion?


You’re Black, Asian, gay, trans or member of a systemically oppressed community?

Talk to the Black woman who is writing this book.

Stuck in a job that won’t promote you or give you more than a 3 percent raise?

Been there.

You’re an entrepreneur who is stuck at $50,000, $100,000, or barely making a profit?

Done that.

The reason you’re not a millionaire—yet—isn’t because you’re not capable. It’s not because you’re not smart enough or not pretty enough. It’s not because you’re too loud or too quiet. It’s not because you didn’t get good grades in college or because you don’t have enough experience. It’s not because you’re too Black or your butt is too big (can a person ever be too Black? Can a butt ever be too big? The answer to those questions is no and no). And it’s certainly not because you’re not talented enough. It’s not because you’re a person of color, not because you identify as LGBTQ+, not because you’re married, not because you’re single, not because you are pregnant, not because you have kids, not because you’ve chosen not to have children, not because you grew up low income, not because you grew up middle class, not because you live in an expensive city, and not because you live out in the country.

Those are not the reasons you’re not wealthy. As I explain in the first half of this book, women, including myself, have learned to make a metric ton of excuses about why we can’t earn as much money as men. That’s a big reason we aren’t winning the game that men have successfully played for years. Most of us aren’t even on the game board, because we have been taught—by our well-meaning parents, role models, and systemic racism and sexism—to give away key resources.

Strong women like us routinely forfeit our independence, our time, our power, and ultimately our success. We tolerate bullshit and feel guilty advocating for our own needs in our homes, at work, and in our national politics. Deep down, a lot of us believe that we are somehow at fault for not getting what we deserve, whether that’s equal pay or a spouse who does their share of the chores.

But the truth is that we can and should think differently. In the second half of the book, I offer five specific, practical shifts I’ve made—and helped other women make—that create wealth. The big secret that most men won’t tell you is that amassing cash isn’t really about the money.

It’s about feeling like a million dollars every day. Because when you feel like a million bucks, you are far more likely to earn a million bucks.

It’s also about daily habits and beliefs. Not hustling for everyone else, never questioning your own instinct and value, not doing every possible thing for anyone who asks, and not being truly all in are the key ways that women like us limit how much we can earn, save, and invest. In this book, I’ll show you how doing less can help you earn more, and why investing in yourself is the best choice you can ever make.


No, it’s not. Here’s the problem: While six figures in annual revenue sounds like success, it doesn’t feel like success. Fixed expenses are increasing at a faster rate than incomes, making it harder to live a comfortable lifestyle in American cities.8

MagnifyMoney ( did an indepth study in four hundred metro areas across the United States on what it looks like to earn $100,000 and found that most households are spending $25,000 or more every year on their housing alone. These households are spending $10,000 or more each year on childcare as well.

Even in the most affordable metro areas in the United States, $100,000 households are left with 2 percent disposable income (that’s only $2,000 per year) after paying their basic expenses. In other words, even when you earn $100,000, you are likely only one emergency away from financial distress.

In 2018, with the economy at its most robust in years, 61 percent of Americans said they could not cover a surprise expense of $400. In 2019, a study by the AARP found that 53 percent of American households did not have an emergency savings account—including a quarter of those who earn more than $150,000 a year.9

And remember, the goal isn’t just to get by, the goal is to live a comfortable life and to make a big impact on the world. How are we going to back our desired political candidates, contribute to important charitable causes, and help the people around us if we are barely making ends meet?

No, Sis. It’s time to shoot for a million.

Okay, but how do you define millionaire?

I define a millionaire as a person who has more than $1 million in assets or who generates an income of $1 million or more per year. When you are making this kind of money (trust me, it’s possible), you can enjoy your life and make the world a better place.

When I began my career, I was making $41,000 per year as a law clerk for a state judge. Back then, I couldn’t have pictured being a millionaire, but I was already on the path to making millions even if I didn’t realize it. My only real asset at the time was my ability to earn a living. At the time, I didn’t realize how quickly I could increase my earnings so I moved into a cheap basement apartment, lowered my monthly expenses, and began building my law practice with just three clients (who were all friends of mine). I used my one asset (my earning potential as an attorney) to build more significant income. In my first year of business, I made approximately $60,000, more than my previous salary as a law clerk. The following year, I made $300,000, and the business continued to grow year over year until I hit $1 million in revenue. To this day, my business is my most valuable asset.

But that’s not the only way to become a millionaire. My friend Emma Pattee is a millionaire. She owns $1 million worth of real estate. When she was just out of college, she decided she wanted to buy her first property. So she rented out the bedrooms in her apartment and slept in the living room so she could live rent free. She didn’t buy nice clothing or furniture and lived as frugally as possible. She worked a full-time job, and on the weekends she would find discarded furniture, restore it, and then sell it on Craigslist for a profit. She lived like this until she could afford the down payment on her first property. She rented out that property and earned an income from it. And then she saved up to acquire her next property. She did this for ten years, and now she is a millionaire who doesn’t have to work. She spends her days with her son, being an activist, and doing creative writing.

Another friend, Teri Ijeoma, is a millionaire as well. Teri was a schoolteacher. She loved her job, but when some big administrative changes came to her school, she found she no longer enjoyed the work. So she decided to cash out her 401k and use the money to trade stocks and try to earn a living from the stock market. Her first goal was to make $300 per day in the stock market. She met that goal after a few months, and then decided to see if she could earn $1,000 per day. She met that goal, too. Eventually, through day trading, she accumulated $1 million in assets. Teri is now a millionaire.

One of my clients is an attorney named Rosezena Pierce. Rosezena left her law firm job to start her own trademark law practice. When Rosezena and I began working together, she was making about $150,000 annually in her practice. After about eighteen months of working together—during which she worked hard, hired employees, and acquired more clients—Rosezena had her first $100,000 month. She is now the owner of a seven-figure law practice, a million dollar asset. Rosezena is a millionaire.

There are many paths to becoming a millionaire, and you are already on your way. If you have a retirement or savings account, own real estate or stock or have a business that generates income, you have assets that make up your net worth. In this book, you’ll learn how to grow those assets to $1 million or more. And if you are starting from scratch like I did, and your only asset is your earning potential, you can turn that into a million dollars too. Stick with me.

At this point, you might be wondering who am I to be telling you all this. Well, for starters, I’m a millionaire. I’m also a mom with three young kids, a bonus daughter, and a loving husband, and I’m the employer of over a dozen people who work for me in my business and my home. My mission is to make as much change and positivity in the world as I can for other women, for Black people and other folks who have been marginalized by our society, and for my children.

But, as I mentioned earlier, I wasn’t always wealthy, successful, and confident.

I grew up low income. My dad passed away when I was in seventh grade. My mom was battling an alcohol addiction when I was a teenager, so my older sister and my best friend’s family who lived down the street looked out for me. When I had my first child, I was broke. My husband and I were living in a cheap-ass apartment in Phoenix, Arizona. My first business attempt (a T-shirt company) never got off the ground; my second business (a virtual law firm) thrived, but practicing law wore me down; and my third business, Hello Seven, has helped dozens of women, including myself, make bank.

That’s me: a Black woman with plenty of kids and a husband and lots of responsibilities, who started with literally nothing but passion. I’ve made my dreams become my reality. And you can, too.

The American government is gravely disappointing. In the United States, access to education includes becoming saddled with massive student loan debt; we lack universal healthcare and universal childcare (unlike most other Western countries); and systemic racism and sexism abound in all our institutions. I don’t spend a lot of time raging against corrupt politicians in Washington. My chosen form of protest is to make money and use it to create the change I want to see in the world.

Martin Luther King Jr. said: “Privileged groups seldom give up their privileges voluntarily. . . . We know through painful experience that freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed.”

Demands require capital. It takes money to lobby Congress. It takes money to support protestors who march in the streets. It takes money to bail out activists and fund research that provides evidence of the need for change.

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