A lot more of our life is subject to chance then we would care to admit. We end up our paths because someone around us influenced our decisions. Or at least the framework by which they are made.
This doesn’t always translate to doing the same thing as someone else. It can be the exact opposite. Sometimes those around us regret a choice they didn’t make or an opportunity they didn’t have so much they attempt to correct their mistake through our life.
A lot of the times this can be a good thing but this doesn’t mean it does not come with its own risks. Part of the reason so many of us end up on the path we took is that someone has already shown us the blueprint on how to turn this into success.
What if this isn’t the case? What if you are building your own path from scratch?
I find the concept of a Tennis advantage kind of fascinating. In most sports once you’re tied and score you just have whatever the next number is.
Not in the wacky world of tennis. In tennis you gain an advantage over your opponent. Both literally and figuratively.
The good tennis players can block out the advantage and play the game the same as they always have. The best players excel when their back is against the wall. Either way they don’t let the fact that the other player has an advantage force them to quit.
Why do we treat advantages so different in personal finance stories?
Every time I read a personal finance success story the comments section is filled with people attacking the advantages that person had. They use this to brush the story aside.
“Look at the advantages this person had. Some of us don’t have that opportunity! Must be nice…”
The story has now become worthless to them and they proceed to live their un-advantaged life.
Except that everyone has some advantage.
Even the most skeptical and downtrodden among us has some advantage.
There is a lie that the personal finance world has been telling its readers for many years now.
Actually, lie may be a strong word; it’s really more of a misdirection that capitalizes on false ideas.
We tell people that it is possible for anyone to become a millionaire knowing that their eyes fill with dollar signs and dreams of Rolls Royces parked in their 18 car garage. The reality is a lot more pedestrian when your bank account reaches 7 figures.
This should come as no surprise to those of you that have read The Millionaire Next Door. The vast majority of millionaires live in middle class neighborhoods and are far more likely to drive a Camry then they are a Bugatti. So where is the disconnect between perception and reality?
The problem is that when we think millionaire we actually think of being rich.
Being rich and a millionaire are used interchangeably but the two are not that similar. We grow up thinking a 7 figure net worth allows us access to the country clubs and private drivers but in reality a million dollars will fade away quickly if you attempt to use your assets to support this lifestyle.
Therein lies the difference between the two.
Being a millionaire is a matter of net worth and being rich is a matter of income and spending. This is why the millionaires are still getting their hair cut at super cuts while the rich are flying to NYC to meet their $1,000 hairdresser.
When I left the military I was convinced I was heading towards a future full of fast cars, Hollywood parties, and all the mimosas I could drink.
Turns out my car was already fast enough, Hollywood was too far away, and I hate champagne. Needless to say life did not go the way I had hoped it would. That’s not to say it was terrible it just wasn’t what I had left for.
Luckily, I knew that my present experience was not the end of the story.
MY “WORST” JOB
“I’m so scared of failure”
I have heard people say this a million times over. Usually when we are talking about goals or dreams and I ask them why they haven’t pursued something yet.
I always say the fear of failure has crushed more dreams than real failure could ever hope to. If you are afraid to start then your chance of success is exactly 0%. Success only exists due to the possibility of failure! We must not let this fear deter us from starting.
This is true for personal finance, entrepreneurial goals, or any other task in life. Failure will happen on some level, I guarantee it. I can’t tell you when it will happen or what shape it will take. Only that it will happen.
Failure is a useful tool to show you where the weaknesses in your plan(s) were. It’s only permanent if you stop after you reach that failure.
This is the second month of me sharing my monthly failures and this time I brought backup!
I’ll share some of my failures from this month and then some failures from other bloggers around the web.
You aren’t the only one failing. We all are.
What will you do after that failure?