I use this Facebook page to communicate to my financial clients and other advisors who I coach. Every time I sit down to write something I am thinking of things that will help both groups of people to grow and to learn. Usually I get my topics from something that happened that day or something I heard or read on the Internet. Today my topic comes from a question I get from almost everyone I deal with. The question is “why doesn’t everyone do this”? The statement is “No one else does this”.
Many are afraid of doing something that most others aren’t doing. For me I use it as a litmus test. Most people aren’t making conscience decisions about their finances or their lives on a daily basis, they just let life happen. One problem with this is that it will usually have you doing things that you observe others to be doing. And most people are just barely making it day to day in life (at least as it pertains to money and health…my two areas of expertise). My wife and I make decisions the other way around. We look around at the norm and ask “why”? I don’t want my balance sheet looking like everyone else’s. I don’t want my diet or workout routine to look like everyone else’s. Those who have created a dent in the universe (hat tip to Steve Jobs for such a cool quote) have never gone along with the crowd. They move upstream, they take the path less traveled, and they do things that others aren’t willing to do.
Living life that way does not necessarily mean you will find “success”, but I guess it depends on how you define success. In finance I would suggest that success means having maximum cash flow and maximum benefits from your money. Money should provide security, certainty, protection, flexibility, and opportunity for you and your generations yet to come. Furthermore, money should provide you with the chance to create a legacy now while you are alive to see it. And that legacy doesn’t necessarily need to be monetary…you don’t need to leave lots of money to your grandkids if you don’t want to, but having the money that allows you the TIME to be with your kids and grandkids more NOW (while you are living!) is also legacy.
In health I would say a definition of success would be building your body to be as functional as possible. It should move and stretch and be able to run, walk, climb and live the life alongside loved ones who are doing the same things. Your body should be healthy enough to take advantage of nature and all things outdoors. Nutrition and exercise shouldn’t be something that you dread or that holds you captive and makes you live life as if you are constantly “falling short”. Your nutrition and exercise should compliment your life and add to it, not subtract from it.
But to achieve the things I lay out in the paragraphs above you will need to be brave enough to say NO to the investment newsletters and the financial talk show host who comes to your church to sell you his book and seminars. It means you must say NO to the pills and the juice diet or the 6-minute abs stuff. You must say NO because the one size fits all is simply garbage. It promises so much and delivers so little. Nothing that “works for everyone” can work for you if what you are looking for is great success, abnormal results, or anything that is uncommon in nature.
If you are a client of mine or a student of mine, I desire you to be the Navy SEAL of your world. I want you to be the hero of your story. I know this sounds nuts. Why would a financial planner write THIS kind of stuff??? Who does this??? Well, no one does this. Every other financial guy out there wants to put out the same drivel. They mostly don’t want to take the time to write deep and personal things to their audience. They just want to grab some pre written literature put out by their company about index funds and they slap it on their website as if it’s their own thoughts. I think more of my clients and students than to ever do that. I want to be the hero of my family and my life…of course I want that for you too!!!!
If you work with me it’s because you want to be better. You want to do more. You want excellence. Me too! So together we will do just that. And we start by burying, once and for all, the question, “why isn’t everyone doing this”? Most people aren’t willing to ask for help. Most don’t want a coach in anything…they think they should somehow be a master in every domain in life. But great success comes from doing the opposite. It comes from looking around and being different!
Here is a practical way to debrief:
What one thing have you learned from me about your finances that had you ask “why isn’t everyone else doing this”?
Now ask yourself these two things:
Would Joe have me do this if it wasn’t going to make my finances better?
Does Joe do this on his own balance sheet?
What one thing have you done this past week about making your nutrition better?
If nothing, why not? Do you need coaching in this area?
Is it something that seems like a fad or a quick fix?
What one thing have you done to improve your exercise program this past week?
If nothing…do you need coaching in this area?