This is a question everyone needs to ask themselves
Being poor is easy.
Ok, before you sik Alan Jones on me, hear me out.
So let’s assume you are the average Australian. You earn the average wage. You have average wealth.
Now lets say you want to increase your wealth. You want to be one of the top 10%. You want a six-figure income and a thumping portfolio.
How much work is ahead of you?
Quite a lot, right? You’re going to have to put in a bit of effort. Things are going to have to line up. A bit of sacrifice is required.
(That said, at this point I can guarantee most people are over-estimating what’s involved. The road is tricky, but not that difficult. I think the reason more people don’t take it says more about where are comfort zones are at than anything… but that doesn’t fit into the picture I’m trying to paint with this blog, so for now, let’s just say ‘wealthy is hard’.)
Now let’s imagine going the other way.
What does the journey from average Australia to the poverty line look like?
Typically it involves some tragic life circumstances, but lets say you did it by yourself. What would it look like?
It involves spending money recklessly, doing nothing to protect your wealth and assets, doing nothing to secure a solid income stream. It involves letting the boss know what you really think of him.
Poverty is a hard place, but the road there is easy. It requires no effort at all. In fact, it’s the destination you end up at if you put in no effort at all.
Do you see what I mean?
Now, I definitely don’t want to suggest that everyone living on the poverty line is there because they didn’t put in the effort. Absolutely not. Poverty is generally the result of a complex of wicked factors – which includes everything from trauma to substance abuse, from education to public policy settings.
My guess is that it’s almost never the result of a lack of effort alone.
But I’m talking about you here.
And what I want to identify is the inertia that keeps so many of us trapped in ‘average’.
To become wealthy and financially secure you’ve got to achieve a certain escape velocity, and that requires real effort. It requires more effort than we’re currently giving our lives right now, almost by definition.
And that means that treading water and just keeping things ticking over requires about as much effort as we’re giving our wealth right now.
And if we stop moving, we very quickly start sinking like a stone.
Now so many people come to me because they want to give their lives ‘less’ effort – they’re burnt out in the hustle of the 9 to 5, and they want to spend more time with their family, more time with their friends, or just more time with themselves.
But we can’t go straight there. We’ve got to plot a course and set a course of action. Depending on where you’re at, that might only take 18 months, but whatever the case, it’s not going to happen over night.
You’ve got to put in the work. You’ve got to plant the seeds if you want to harvest the fruit.
But the question I want to ask you is this: are you avoiding taking the action required to get your finances sorted because you realise that it’s just a bit of work?
And do you then dress your laziness up as some sort of righteous refusal of money and the material world?
Do you convince yourself that you’re ok with the life outcomes you are getting because you secretly don’t want to put in any more effort?
Do you? Be honest now. Do you?
These are questions we all need to answer.