When writing the title of this article, I was sure it would bring more readers than my previous articles. To tell you the truth, I believe that very few people would miss an opportunity to learn how to make money, especially if it is an honest way of making money. However, this article is more about my short-lived journey in the crypto world and the mistakes I made while still being able to make money.
Before we dive into how I made $800,000.00 with cryptocurrencies, let’s start from the beginning: How I got into cryptocurrencies.
How it all Started
The first time I heard about bitcoin was at the beginning of 2017, precisely March 2017. At the time, Bitcoin was already well known amongst techies but still relatively unknown to the outside world. This was a couple months before the media frenzy on cryptocurrencies.
As it piqued my interest, my first approach towards Bitcoin was to try and understand the technology and its usefulness. When I started my research, the only articles I could find online were articles that shun a negative light on the digital currency.
As some of you might suspect, the results of my research were like this:
- Mt Gox goes bankrupt
- Ross Ulbricht’s ongoing trial
- Neo & Bee collapse amid allegations of fraud
- Charlie Shrem’s public arrest and two-year prison sentencing
- Moolah shuts down as its CEO is suspected of fraud
- The Chinese government tries to censor media coverage of bitcoin
…And the list goes on.
Nevertheless, I did not let myself get discouraged by the bad press. I decided to dig deeper and focus my research on a somewhat more technical level. I had given myself an objective of understanding wallets, mining, cryptography and blockchain technology.
I was still trying to figure out in what ways was the blockchain technology revolutionary.
What I read on the technology did not disappoint.
After that brief phase of research, I came to the conclusion that Bitcoin definitely had an amazing technology, but was still sceptic as to whether it would be something that could be adopted by our society in a very near future. Of course, it has game-changing technology that potentially threatens many financial institutions, but it was far more technical and complicated than I anticipated. I would not expect the average person to understand how it works and be ready to implement the changes required for adoption in their daily life. Furthermore, my belief was that not one person on earth could walk up to me and convince me that they fully understood the Bitcoin whitepaper.
Also, the visionary founder (Satoshi Nakamoto) was still unknown, which only deepened my scepticism. As far as I knew, this whole thing could be a huge scam.
At that point in time, I decided not to make another move. I decided to keep my distance and see how everything would unfold.
Several months passed without me buying anything or doing any cryptocurrency related research – it definitely was a mistake.
We are now in May 2017. As I am sitting in one of my mathematics class when boredom decides to strike. I spend a little time navigating the web, and ultimately my browser lands on the yahoo search engine page. There, I see in bold letters “Bitcoin surges XXX% since XX/XX/XXXX….many new millionaires minted this year “.
Say no more.
I quickly head over Coinmarketcap and decide to verify the price of bitcoin as well as other digital currencies that had piqued my interest at the beginning of the year.
What I noticed was a total shock.
The price of bitcoin had gone from $ 900.00 to over $ 2000.00 in just 4 months. The same thing happened with Ethereum. Its price went from $ 19.00 to over $ 200.00. Mind you, the increase in price was relatively small compared to other cryptocurrencies. There were many other relatively unknown coins such as Pivx that did a little over 100-fold increase over the 4 months and Vertcoin who also did a 100-fold increase in the same period of time.
Yes, the potential profits I could make with cryptocurrencies led to my first cryptocurrency purchase.
After that, I decided to take a small amount of money and invest everything in Ethereum. To my understanding, Ethereum was called the Bitcoin 2.0 as it solved many of the issues bitcoin initially had. It also had a mainnet that was released and there were multiple projects already being built on it. Naturally, I went with the project that seemed the most promising to me. So there went $400.00 on my first investment ever.
When I woke up the next morning, again, to my shock, I was already at + 120%. Seeing the price increase so rapidly and giving huge returns made my body tingle. From there on, my bank account became a colander. The money would never sit in my bank account. Every amount that I received from my part-time job went directly on crypto exchanges. For some time, it was approximately $400.00-$600.00 every two weeks that was poured into Coinbase and other crypto exchanges.
Seeing these returns would have an effect on my mind I was not expecting. It is something I had not noticed earlier, but looking back, the value I attributed to money was quickly decreasing and my thoughts started to become irrational.
For someone like me, with a mathematics background, who was always used to thinking rationally, it was something new. I could not fully grasp my head around the concept of seeing these types of returns.
I grew impatient.
After only the second week, instead of waiting for my Coinbase limit to be increased, I decided to create accounts on multiple exchanges, regardless of the fees and started buying into almost all the interesting projects I could find. In fear of missing out on profits, I forgot one of the most important mottos in my life: Patience is a virtue.
Seeing the returns I was getting on my investment was ecstatic. What was going on in my head at that moment was indescribable. I realized that it was possible to make an absurd amount of money in a very little time and with very little effort. At the time I was very naive because it was my first experience as an “investor” and did not understand that a major part of it was due to dumb luck.
When I say Patience is a virtue, it really is.
Fast forward, we are now in October. For the first time as an “investor“, I live what I call “Bloodbath” or what my friends and I call “Red October“. Everything I invested and all the profits I made was gone. Gone without warning. I never could have known that it was coming and that was the scary part of investing in cryptocurrency.
You risk losing everything you invested!
If I had decided to wait a little bit and not rush into buying everything earlier, I could have purchased all of my cryptocurrencies at better price points. Thus making greater returns.
For several weeks, I was forced to sit on the sidelines because I was afraid of investing any more money and seeing it go down the drain.
After a couple of months in the game, I became somewhat accustomed to the cryptocurrency ecosystem, and the short bear market in October allowed me to focus and analyze multiple cryptocurrency projects. I filtered some of them, who I thought had potential and I decided to put some money aside in case I was ready to invest again.
Fortunately, the month of November seemed to be very promising and I started seeing a lot of profits.
Luckily, I was able to get into a lot of projects very early.
As of the month of November, my wallet had the following cryptocurrencies: Raiblocks (Now Nano), Vertcoin, Antshares (Now Neo), Litecoin, Ethereum, Omisego, Bytom, Stratis, Golem, Qtum.
Total Wallet balance was ~ $30,000.00 USD.
In about five months, I made a profit of 1200% All from an initial investment of ~$2,500.00 USD.
The beginning of the downfall
There is no doubt that December was the craziest month in cryptocurrency history.
People were literally becoming millionaires overnight.
By mid-December, many of my friends were already invested in different cryptocurrency projects and we were all in a somewhat similar situation.
However, the hunger for greater returns kept increasing.
The same questions kept coming back:
How can we make more money?
Which are the best projects to invest in right now?
How can we make 10,000,000% return?
After some research, some of my friends introduced me to other “faster” mechanisms for making money with cryptocurrencies: Lending.
In the week that followed, I was introduced to a few dozen lending platforms. Bitconnect, Davor, Hextracoin, you name it. As I kept researching how the lending platforms were operating, the videos on youtube about lending platforms were on the rise. People were looking for easy money wherever they could find it.
I decided to try for myself, while being fully aware of the risk. My friends convinced me to do a lending platform ICO (Initial Coin Offering) and we managed to flip our $200.00 into $7,000.00.
Initially, everything went well until it didn’t. During the month of December all the way through January, we started seeing multiple lending platforms disappear with their customers’ funds.
Then it happened to us. Multiple platforms where we had money disappeared and some of them never truly delivered on the project. Many were scams. It definitely was a learning lesson, and if it is too good to be true, then it definitely is. Do not get fooled.
At that point in time, I had not yet realized how irrational the market had become. That was a huge mistake on my part.
If I had noticed earlier, all the signs were there.
However, losing money with the lending platforms was not a big issue. My crypto net worth in the month of December had become considerably high. Especially for an undergraduate student, working part-time job to support himself.
As of the end of December 2017, My initial investment of ~$2,500 had turned into approximately ~$813,000.00 USD in a little over half a year.
Then came the bear market in January 2018, where the market lost about 75% of its previous value. Very difficult times for many cryptocurrency enthusiasts and investors. During the bear market, we’ve seen investors go from millions to almost losing it all (if not losing it all).
Crazy isn’t it? but wait…
THE BIGGEST MISTAKE I MADE WAS NOT TAKING ANY PROFITS DURING ALL THOSE MONTHS!
As of today, I am currently down about ~80% from my all-time high, but still in profit. Last year has been a roller coaster ride and 2018 has allowed me to revisit a lot of my investment methods and what I truly want to take out of my journey in the crypto world. I am a lot more disciplined on my investments and I am grateful for the opportunity of being one of the early adopters of a technology that is truly a game-changer.