Monthly Archives: September 2012

IT’S NOT WHAT YOU MAKE IT’S WHAT YOU KEEP

saving and spending

saving and spending (Photo credit: 401K 2012)

In order to be wealthy you have to choose to have more money than bills. Being wealthy is not about how you look, who you know or who knows you. It is a lifestyle, but that lifestyle is the practice of leaving as much money in your pocket as possible. I have clients with great incomes who over extend themselves by spending every dollar they earn and sometimes more. Even if you earn millions technically if you do not have enough money to pay your bills you are broke.  It doesn’t matter how much money you earned if you did not keep any of it.

I have also worked with people who made less than $100,000 a year and because they had great spending habits they had less stress, all their bills were paid, they could afford their lifestyle and they were not broke.

I often share a spending plan with my clients that I love so much. It is called the 4, 3, 2, 1 method. This one will keep you in line very easily if you follow it. It is good for self employed people too. Once you take out money for taxes you can begin splitting up your money in this manner. Your household expenses should be 40% or less of your earnings. The next 30% should go to meals, entertainment, rewards, shopping, travel and things of that nature. You should save and invest 20% of your money and the last 10% should go to gifts, tithes and charity.

For example, if you make $6,000 per month estimate your taxation at about $1,800.  This will leave you with $4,200; 40% of that is $1,680.  That should go towards things like mortgage, utilities, household maintenance and insurance. 30% of $4,200 is $1,260 and this amount should fund your dates, girl’s nights out, your basketball league, amusement parks and eating out.  20% of $4,200 is $840 and that should be split up between your savings and investment accounts.  The last 10% is $420 and that should be used to pay your tithes or if you don’t go to church often, use it as a gift and charity fund.  People will ask to borrow money, but do not loan it to them.  Just give them a gift and do not worry about getting it back.  It will come back to you 100 fold.

In order to do this you may need to live in a smaller house, drive a less expensive car and curb your shopping enthusiasm. I am not suggesting you stress yourself out being frugal or stretching every dollar. I am suggesting that you do not worry about whether you look wealthy because looks are deceiving. If you have a fancy car or big house it doesn’t mean you are wealthy; it means you have a lot of bills. And if your bills exceed the amount of money you have allocated to pay them you are broke in your fancy house.

Don’t be careless. Spend 20-30 minutes a day managing your money and earnings and you will feel wealthy, look wealthy and actually be wealthy.

Counting the zeros…Now That’s Presidential! 

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BRIDGE THE GAP BETWEEN YOUR IDEAS AND YOUR ACTIONS

Bridge / 橋(はし)

Bridge / 橋(はし) (Photo credit: TANAKA Juuyoh (田中十洋))

We often think about the tasks we should be doing in order to become or continue our success. We have a good idea of what we need to do to get to our goals but we just can’t seem to get the momentum going to get us there.

Success doesn’t just blow into your life like a summer breeze. And when it does come it will not stick around unless you cultivate it like a garden. Waiting for success to happen to you is not a good idea. You have to take the good ideas you have and put actions behind them. It is easy to think about or even write down what you need to do. It is another thing to actually begin doing those things that will keep you on top. The way that you bridge the gap between your ideas and your actions is to break the ideas down into small actionable tasks.

For example, if your idea is to get your product on TV, some of your tasks may be to research which TV stations have the same target market you do or figure out which time slots target your audience. Maybe you will make a list of people you want to send your samples to. Then you will want to follow-up. My point is getting your product on TV doesn’t just go from your idea to done. It takes several steps in between and you have to take those steps. The bridge is the movement, the momentum and the stick-to-it-ness you bring to the idea. Basically your daily activity will take you from where you are now to where you want to be.

When actions speak louder than thoughts…Now That’s Presidential!


THINK OF A STORY THAT MAKES YOU SMILE

The pursuit of happiness does not mean you will not get down or discouraged sometimes. Even the happiest, most successful person will find herself in a moment of pity. When things do not go your way, when the deal falls through, when you seem to be chasing your clients to pay you or when there are not as many clients as there use to be you may feel defeated. That feeling can take away your joy.

It is okay to be down sometimes, but pick yourself up quickly. Think of a happy, funny or encouraging story that puts a smile on your face. It can be your own story or one someone else told you. It could be a story from a long time ago or just yesterday. Whatever it is, go all the way into the story like you are watching a movie. In your mind see the colors, smell the aromas, feel the air, hear the sounds and be the audience for the greatest show on earth. Laugh out loud and bring yourself back up to a happy place.

Trouble doesn’t last if you take action fast you will cut the downtime short. Sometimes you just want to be sad and complain so you can get attention. Understand that you are human so you will have human behaviors, but do not use it as an excuse. Get the attention you need and move on fast. The key is getting through quickly.  Unhappiness is no fun and your life should be fun. So if you are ever down get right back to your happy place with your own personal mental stage play.

Getting back up…Now That’s Presidential!


DON’T TAKE ANYTHING PERSONALLY

The Scenic Railway at Luna Park, Melbourne, is...

The Scenic Railway at Luna Park, Melbourne, is the world’s oldest continually-operating rollercoaster, built in 1912. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In the book “The Four Agreements” Don Miguel Ruiz suggests that one of the agreements you should make with yourself is to not take anything personally. One of the reasons you should make this a practice in your life is because people do what they think is the right thing for them at the time. Their decision making process has very little to do with you. You also have to consider that people make decisions based on past experiences.

In most cases humans will chose the path that is most comfortable for them. When they have hurt you most of the time it was because it was more convenient or comfortable for them to hurt you rather than get hurt themselves. So when that happens, understand where it comes from and try not to take it personally.

You do not have control over what people do. You only have control over how you decide to react to what people do. What is interesting is that Don Miguel Ruiz says whether it is an insult or a compliment don’t take it personally. They should equally roll off your back. You should not be moved, be it positively or negatively, by every word, action or reaction someone else has. If you allow yourself to do that you will get lost and finding yourself amongst everyone else’s ideas of you will become difficult.

You must remain the same. Be calm and stay mild. Emotional roller coasters are stressful. Successful people limit stress that they can control. You can control how you decide to react to someone else’s actions. Make a decision not to take it personally.

Take the compliment, insult, anger or praise in and release it. It is not important because you already know who you are, what you are capable of and what you are doing. Stay unmoved and make decisions from a calm place uninterrupted by others actions. You are free.

Getting off the roller coaster…Now That’s Presidential!