Lying Is Easy, Creating Wealth Is Hard
My rich dad said, “You can believe any lie…if you tell it to yourself enough.”
For instance, some people tell themselves that they’re poor because other people are conspiring against them. Rather than fight, they give up and blame others. Other people tell themselves, “Money isn’t everything,” and use that as an excuse to not have ambition when they really mean, “I’m afraid to fail.” Still, others tell themselves, “It’s just a small fabrication. It won’t hurt anyone, and it will help me get ahead.” They believe that it’s OK to lie for financial gain.
The problem with lies is that eventually when repeated enough, they become true lies. And when lies become true lies, they lay the foundation for even bigger lies down the road.
From my experience, people never achieve success because they are too busy lying to themselves. Most of the time, they lie out of fear or laziness.
Here are the most common lies people tell themselves about investing:
Lie #1 Investing is Risky
My poor dad often said, “Investing is risky.”
My rich dad often said, “Being financially uneducated is risky.”
Most people know they should invest. The problem is that most people say, “Investing is risky.” The reality is that it’s not—it’s just a lie they tell themselves so they don’t have to actually take a risk and become financially educated. Warren Buffett says, “Risk is not knowing what you are doing.” Again, the keyword is you, not the investment.
In today’s economy, it’s much riskier to rely on your employer for your well being than it is to become financially educated and to invest your money wisely. It’s also risky to put your money in the bank and collect interest that barely covers inflation…and if inflation really takes off, you’ll actually lose money. As many people learned over the last decade, it’s risky to consider your personal home as your primary investment. And it’s risky to put all your hope in a broker and a 401(k) for your retirement investments.
Lie #2 I Can’t Afford It
My rich dad forbade the words, “I can’t afford it,” in his house. In my rea father’s home, that’s all I ever heard. Instead, my rich dad required his children to ask, “How can I afford it?”
The words, “I can’t afford it,” shut down your mind to possibilities—you don’t have to think. It is a poor and lazy mindset. The words, “How can I afford it,” open up your mind, forcing you to think and search for answers. It is a rich and creative mindset.
Most important, asking, “How can I afford it,” release the potential of your human spirit to battle with the lazy mindset. Most people think using the words, “We can’t afford it,” teaches them to battle greed, but really it teaches kids to find excuses, which leads to laziness.
Lie #3 I Don’t Have Time
For most of us, this statement probably rings true. We feel we don’t have enough hours in our day to accomplish everything we want. We have full-time careers, a spouse or relationship, even children, plus additional day-to-day activities. The thought of adding another thing, even something as important working towards financial freedom, seems overwhelming.
So how, then, do the rich seem to accomplish so much more than the poor in the same 24 hours? It’s not because they don’t have the same time-consuming responsibilities or activities. It’s because they know how to generate time the same way they generate wealth.
Creating more time for yourself starts with knowing your priorities. The rich know that financial independence is one of the most important things in their lives.
If you were diagnosed with a rare disease, you would make going to the doctor your top priority. You wouldn’t put it off a few weeks, or wait to go to the pharmacy to pick up your medications when it was more convenient. Getting back to a healthy state would be the most important thing to you.
It’s the same with your money. If your finances aren’t healthy, they won’t get any better until you start taking care of them. And that means making them a top priority.
Lie #4 I Don’t Have Money to Invest
Even though the world is filled with example after example of people who started with nothing and have created tremendous wealth, many people still believe this lie. Even though we know if we took a billionaire like Richard Branson and stripped him of all his wealth, he would become wealthy again… and even though there’s evidence all around us to the contrary, there are still scores of people who believe it takes money to make money.
Why is this lie such a big problem? Because it steals a person’s hope. If I have no money and I choose to believe this lie, then in my view all is lost. So many people these days feel that without money they have no power. They feel trapped in the rat race because they feel that money is the key to escape.
To those who may be in this same situation of having no money to invest, remember this: most people who are self-made success stories are hard workers. They work hard to accomplish their dreams. They work hard on their mission. The rich don’t work for money, but they do work to learn. In the book Rich Dad Poor Dad you’ll find that those are the first and last lessons of the book. So an essential personal characteristic we can develop is that willingness to work and learn.
Words Have Power
The power of words to make one successful is one of the more counterintuitive things my rich dad taught me. To drive it home, he gave me the assignment to go to dinner with my poor dad and listen to what he said, the words he used, and the message behind them.
After the dinner, rich dad asked what I heard. The basic premise that I heard from my poor dad was, “I’ll never be rich.” I explained how I realized I’d heard him say this nearly my whole life.
Just because you don’t have money or education, this is no reason to give up on your dreams of financial freedom. First, change your attitude. I don’t want to hear excuses. You are probably in a temporary situation you can do something about!
Next, take action. Make your financial goals a priority, and do what it takes to get a financial education. There is plenty of information out there. You just need to access it and apply what you learn.
Everyone starts out with challenges—even successful people. Overcoming those challenges and reaching one’s goals despite the odds stacked against them, is what propels some people to success. For those who buy into the excuses about why they can’t achieve something, their thoughts become a self-fulfilling prophecy. If you are depending on others for your financial well-being, ignoring economic conditions and making excuses, then I’m sorry to say it, but your chances of enjoying financial freedom are slim.
With this in mind, make learning about money a priority today. Get the financial education you need to succeed, and most importantly, take action on what you learn. Then, excuses will be a thing of the past, and you’ll have control over your finances no matter what happens in the future.
Editor, Rich Dad Poor Dad Daily