Have you ever been to a conference and the speaker is getting ready to talk about something difficult or tough, and he says with a wink, “I’m not talking to YOU; I’m talking to your neighbor.”
Well, this is one of those times.
It’s so disappointing when I see people who have amazing talents and gifts and yet, they don’t have two pennies to rub together. I think it’s downright offensive to have a God-given talent that you’re not utilizing to serve people. And, if you’re serving people, you should have more money, right?
So today, I’m going to share some good old-fashioned tough love. I’m going to outline ‘for your neighbor’ the likely reasons that despite everything they have available to them (talents, beauty, intelligence, life, just to name a few) they continue to find themselves poor. But more importantly, we’re also going to discuss ways that they can take control of their situation and enjoy the wealth that is meant for all of us.
Three Reasons Why ‘Your Neighbors’ Are Poor
1. They’ve Lost Sight of the Basics
When it comes to wealth, these four items are deal breakers. These principles are foundation level, must haves when it comes attracting wealth. Some of our neighbors seem to have lost sight of the basic principles of wealth building.
- Listening: One of the prominent things that keep people poor is being a poor listener. Everyone loves a good listener and for some reason just about every successful (i.e. wealthy) person is good at it on some level. Being a good listener allows you to pick up on opportunities and golden nuggets in the speaker’s words. Want a rule of thumb to follow? Always wait at least 3-5 seconds after someone else is done talking before responding!
- Look People in the Eyes: Are ‘your neighbors’ ultra-depressed to the point that they mope around staring at the ground wherever they go, avoiding eye contact with anyone including themselves as they brush their teeth in the morning? Not only is this horrible for posture, but it speaks volumes for where people are financially. Raise that chin up! Keep your eyes up throughout the day or else miss out on big opportunities of all kinds.
- Dress for Success: From the four year old barely recognizable sneakers on their feet to the epic $2 thrift store threads on their back, some of ‘your neighbors’ are poor because they dress poorly. When we have no respect for the way we present ourselves to the world, then the world has no choice but to take us at face value!
- Attitude is Everything: Simply put, they’re poor because their attitude sucks! They’ve got a list of excuses a mile long. They complain too much; whine too much. And, worst of all, this attitude is killing what remains of their work ethic! Someone said to me recently, “If I had your money, I’d be happy like you.” My response was, “if you were happy like me, you’d have more money.”
2. A Prevailing Negative Perception of Money
Does your neighbor believe “money is the root of all evil?” Do they say, “money’s not important.” With this type of money-perception, they’re likely stay poor for a long while. Remember, you get what you ask for!
Or perhaps, ‘your neighbor’ constantly obsesses over the so-called economic collapse? Here’s a reality check: most of the filthy rich in days past made their fortunes or at least the foundations for them, during economic down turns. It doesn’t matter where you live and it doesn’t matter what’s going on in the greater economy. As my business coach and mentor Lisa Nichols says, “I didn’t participate in the economic downturn. I just checked ‘No’ on the Evite!”
Remind ‘your neighbors’ that the relationship to money is private. When they don’t align and rethink their perception of money to something more positive and productive, they’re doomed to remain poor!
3. Their Finances Suck!
Seriously, if they’re sinking in bad debt faster than an anvil in quicksand, then this could be a key indicator as to why they’re so poor. The pointless game of trying to keep up with the Jones’s is a marketing creation; besides…who are the Jones’ anyway???
You Know They’re Poor If…
– If they’re trying to present a lifestyle to the world — big fancy house, expensive cars and designer clothes — that is completely based on debt, they’re probably poor.
-If they’re wearing a $200 pair of shoes, but have no savings, no college fund for their kids and are carrying ridiculous balances on their credit cards, they’re probably poor.
– If they participate in “retail therapy” to feel better about the fact that they don’t have any money, then they’re probably poor.
The Way Back to the Promised Land
Ok, so there is certainly hope for all of our neighbors. I truly believe that wealth is available to all of us. Because you now have a clear picture of what ‘your neighbor’ is doing, you can now reverse engineer the process to ensure that you lead a life of happiness, love and prosperity.
Let’s start with the basics. Actively engage with other people. Look at them in their faces, truly listen with an open mind and always present your best possible self to everyone you meet. By treating yourself well, you become an excellent example of how the world is supposed to treat you. Also, get control of your attitude. Decide that you’re going to take on a more positive outlook even before all of the positive things have come into your life. Release yourself from victimhood, blaming, justifying and complaining. Replace these thoughts with strength, courage, responsibility and knowledge.
Work on changing your relationship with money. It is a wonderful tool to allow you to experience life more fully. It only has the power you give it. Decide that you want it so that it can be used as a force for good in your life. And whenever it comes your way, be appreciative of it. It doesn’t matter if it’s $1000, $100 or one penny, receive it, celebrate it and know it was a gift just to you.
Next, get control of your finances. Create a spreadsheet to understand how much you earn, how much you have and how much you owe. This will help your get a clear picture of your situation so that you know where you are headed. Also, take an inventory of your personal assets and decide how you could put them to use to make money for you if you really put them to work on your behalf. Your assets are not only the things with a tangible monetary value like a car, home or household items, they should include other attributes you possess such as marketable skills, intelligence, strong work ethic, supportive spouse and family, background in a particular industry, etc. Your assets could have tremendous value if you put them to use. We will be doing a powerful Asset Plan Development exercise in our ‘2nd Paycheck Without a Second Job’ Live Seminar on Saturday, June 22nd in Plano, TX. Finally, develop a financial plan for your family that will allow you to enjoy your earnings, save, invest and properly care for your family.
Wealth is all around us and is absolutely meant for each of us. Reject the premise that there is something great and noble about being poor. No matter what good you want to do in the world, be it being a great parent, a loving god mother, an honest businessman or a caring volunteer — I assure you, the good you want to do in the world can be more greatly enhanced by having more money. Please share with ‘your neighbor’ these sage words of Wallace D. Wattles from his groundbreaking book The Science of Getting Rich written in 1910.
WHATEVER may be said in praise of poverty, the fact remains that it is not possible to live a really complete or successful life unless one is rich. No man can rise to his greatest possible height in talent or soul development unless he has plenty of money; for to unfold the soul and to develop talent he must have many things to use, and he cannot have these things unless he has money to buy them with.