I spoke with my mother last night for the first time in months. It was my first night off in 3 months, and my office was closing down at 9pm, so I had a few hours to relax before heading to the gym for my usual shower, shampoo and shine routine. And while the phone was ringing, a light green praying mantis was just chillen, walking up my windshield, scaring the crap out of me!
During our conversation I told my mom how I was doing, adding the usual, “I’m ok mom, everything is going well. I got a raise, still working everyday, still never been happier…”. I also mentioned how I’ve been finally saving my money and putting it into the Mooch Mobile; getting a new gas tank, new seatbelt, tune-ups, oil change, radiator etc. She takes care of me so I will no doubt take care of her. But what’s great about my mechanic, even though he is an hour away from me, is that he is in my barter group. This means I only pay him for parts in cash, and the labor I pay him in barter bucks. Barter bucks is the same as cash, with the same value as cash, only you can use it strictly with members of not only your barter group, but 1000s of others internationally. In short, you’re trading a service for a service. That’s what barter is. People have been doing this for centuries.
What do I barter? Since my expertise is in web, graphic and print design and development, I can offer anything from websites to logos, to graphic design, even print products such as business cards, brochures and flyers. Over the past few months, I’ve accumulated over $2000 in barter bucks, and I’ve only spent about $600 of it on my mechanic after 4 trips to the shop. I saved $600 in cash because of barter – awesome!
I’m bringing this up because I want my homeless friends and those who are unemployed to realize you can still make progress and obtain food, shelter, clothes, almost anything, just by offering your services. Are you good at sewing? Are you a mechanic? What about a tutor? A wedding planner? A personal trainer? There’s literally no restrictions here, if you have a service to offer, you can find a clientele. I’ve mentioned before the clients I’ve obtained even without my barter club connections – a lawyer, a dentist, a hair salon, a tanning salon and a chiropractor. Because I offered something I have or something I can create, I got legal advice on creating my LLC, got my teeth cleaned and whitened, got 10 haircuts, got 6 months of tanning and I am STILL seeing my chiropractor!
Word of mouth is a gold mine for small businesses, so get the word out about your services, and get a clientele going. Use CraigsList, use MoochList, use Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, get out there and learn how you can survive pretty well while spending little to no money at all, and at the same time, earning money, or food, shelter, and learning how to create a business all at the same time.
If you have any questions at all, hit up Mooch!