Given yesterday’s holiday, it’s natural to focus on all the people, events, and experiences for which you are thankful. As I reflect with family and friends, I am truly humbled by my good fortune.
Over the years I’ve been the lucky recipient of the teachings of many thoughtful mentors. Together they provided the tools and perspective I needed to escape my youthful circumstance and build the type of life I desired. These days I strive to return the favor both with my daily actions and through my writing and coaching endeavors. In a way, this blog helps me do this as well, by providing a forum to pass on knowledge I’ve acquired and, in many cases, was given to me without expectation of my repaying the favor.
A reader recently inquired about money management. I’m not a financial advisor and though very much a capitalist, not particularly motivated by the accumulation of wealth. I enjoy the finer things to a point, but as a writer, I’m more often turned on by ideas than possessions. Still, given the economy, it is a topic worthy of attention.
So while we are being thankful, allow me to pass on two financially oriented lessons I acquired from my grandfather, a man who lived through both the depression and WWII.
- Strive to Put a “Year in the Bank”: Chasing that goal forces you to live below your means. Achieving it considerably reduces your stress. Sickness, job loss, and unforeseen expenses don’t hurt as much when you have that kind of a cushion.
- Carry a C-note: This was before the era of cell phones and credit card mania, but the idea was, carrying a $100 bill makes you walk a little taller and ensures you have enough cash on hand to get yourself out of a jam.
If you’re scraping by and the thought of an untouched hundred dollar bill seems like an impossible luxury (never mind saving a year’s salary) fear not. I was there myself, for a very long time and the one thing I know is that anyone armed with perspective, forged by persistence, and endowed with a little creativity can achieve success – however you define it.
Being thankful for what you have and/or the opportunity to pursue new goals is a great start and the perfect mindset for making it happen. So thank you for reading. And thank you for seeking that something more.