Have you ever noticed HOW certain people talk? No, not their accent, or their choice of colloquialisms or regional phrases, I’m speaking of the attitude behind their choice of words.
The perennially poor tend to think of themselves and money in one sense while the wealthy think of themselves and money in a completely different fashion. One group only thinks about what they don’t have and what they can get. The other group thinks about how to provide value so that money will flow to them and allow them to achieve their desires. These thoughts manifest themselves in the way both groups speak about money and opportunity. And words soon transition into action … or the lack of it. The good news is that even the poor can change their thoughts and attitudes – it’s really the only thing we are 100% in charge of – and in many cases, that change on the inside precipitates a change on the outside.
Wealth isn’t money. It isn’t gold, silver, stocks, bonds, investments, real estate, office buildings, shopping malls, oil wells. diamond mines, yachts, mansions, or anything of a physical nature. Wealth is thoughts. It is how you see yourself and how you think of opportunities. Let me give you an example:
I know a young man who reasoned that to make some money he would need to offer something for sale. Since there isn’t a decent place for teenagers to hang out in his city without being run off by the police for loitering, he thought, “If only I could create a place for kids like me to gather and just hang out.” So he went to the local hotel, rented a large meeting room for $120, hired a DJ for $200, and set up a “dance party.” He invited the popular kids from three area high schools and offered to give them a cut of the money collected that night. Yes, he charged $10 for each person to come to this party and gave the 6 popular kids a pool of 10% of the proceeds for them to split. That night 258 teenagers showed up. He paid the DJ, paid for the room, paid the commission to his friends, and walked away with over $2,000 in one night! He’s done this three times in the last year.
Another person I know found an old, bombed out 1967 Mustang convertible and bought it for $300. It was in horrible shape, had been wrecked, and was generally disgusting. But this guy saw something others didn’t. He worked on it for the better part of a year, restored it’s 390 cubic inch 6.4L V-8 engine, smoothed out the dents and dings, put in hours and hours of sanding and bodywork, then sent it out for painting. When he received it back he reworked the transmission, completed the interior restoration and installed a new convertible top. All in all he spent almost $15,000. A few weeks later he was offered $45,000 for it and eventually sold it for over $50,000. He then started working on a 1972 Corvette and did the same thing but this time he made even more money.
Another guy I know loved to fish, and loved trout fishing in particular. He found an old fishing camp that had been in terrible disrepair for quite some time and bought it at an estate sale auction for a fraction of what it was worth. He found that much of the timber in the lodge was in decent shape but several of the cabins on the property needed a lot of work. He set about rebuilding the property and installed an in-ground pool, a new dock, and did a LOT of landscaping. Once he had the place looking good enough for pictures, he began marketing 2 and 3 day fishing vacations to businesses looking to reward their salespeople and customers with guided fishing trips. Today, he and his entire family live on the site and they have carved out a wonderful life on a beautiful trout river. He fishes, cooks, and entertains for a living.
Each of these people created wealth. They combined a good idea, hard work, and a passion for what they enjoyed with some sweat equity and made lot of money and even made a life because of it. They didn’t get trapped by thinking:
- If I earn more money, I’ll just have to pay more taxes.
- At my age, it’s too late to start over.
- I’ll get started tomorrow … or the day after.
- Only Wall Street types ever make good money.
- Why should I follow my dream? I’ll only fall on my face.
- I’m too scared to get started. I’ll just wait.
- I can’t because of [X] – the reason you insert here doesn’t really matter.
- Everything and everyone is against me.
Don’t misunderstand. They may have each thought these things at some point, but they didn’t get paralyzed by these type of thoughts. They each transformed their fears into action and those actions made their individual lives better.
The key is to get started. Today.
What will you do to improve your circumstances?