10 Inconvenient Truths about Money You Need to Know

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Making money is probably the most misunderstood topic in today’s society.

The reasons for this are many and vary from “low-level” causes, such as the lack of proper education in the public system, up to “high-level” ones, such as the innate nature of humans.

The end result is that the majority of the population is walking around guided by a deeply flawed mindset, committing money mistakes on a daily basis and struggling to get ahead in life and enjoy a prosperous existence.

In this article, I am going to discuss several truths that you need to know in order to make financial progress and set the foundation for living an abundant life.

As you might have gathered from the article’s title, this is not going to be your generic, run-of-the-mill advice (“Clip coupons to save money!”). I am going to discuss truths that are inconvenient to hear and might make you uncomfortable.

If you are offended by hard-to-swallow truth, you can always take the “Blue Pill” of life, exit this blog and forget about it. The rest of you, get ready for a bumpy ride!

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1) No one cares about you

Starting our list, this item might sound perplexing to some (especially younger people), but it is 100% true (and something that ordinary folks discover during their older age).

You might think that you are somehow important and your life matters to those around you.

The truth is: No one cares about you.

Your boss doesn’t care about you.

Your employees don’t care about you.

The entrepreneur you want to mentor you doesn’t care about you.

The investor you seek funding from doesn’t care about you.

The government and the politicians don’t give a shit about you.

Other people care about you only to the amount of value you offer them. In order to become important on this planet, you must become of value so that you are in a position to abundantly offer that value to others, which will in return give back to you.

Now, don’t take this personally. This is true for every human being out there, myself included. Actually, this is a great thing since it works as an equalizer in society. The one that provides the most value, also gets the most in return.

How does this apply to money?

Well, in order to be rewarded with lots of money, you need to offer ample value first.

If you are in business, your company has to provide value to its customers in order to increase its revenue and profit.

If you want to connect with successful individuals and learn from them, you need to provide some form of value first (e.g. work for them for free).

If you want your employees to be loyal to you, you need to make sure they get their paycheck and also grow as professionals.

Summing up, no one is going to care about you because you are a “nice” person. You need to raise your value to the eyes of others, and only then you will be able to reap the rewards.

2) The amount of money you have is a reflection on the amount of value you have provided

Tightly related to the previous truth, this one states what should now be painfully obvious.

The amount of money you have (or lack of) is a direct reflection on the amount of value you have provided (or failed to provide).

This is the reason why people like Bill Gates and Mark Cuban are billionaires. They have built companies that have provided insane amounts of value to the world and have positively affected the lives of hundreds of millions of people.

If you have been flipping burgers all your life, you have obviously failed to make an impact on the world and that fact will be sorely reflected on your bank account.

Look, getting a job, any job, in order to get access to quick means of cashflow is perfectly acceptable. But if after a decade you are still working for minimum wage, you clearly don’t understand how money and value works in society (and you are soon going to be replaced by a robot).

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In order to win the game of wealth and get rich, you need to systematically provide tons of value, thus improving the lives of people in society.

As a corollary to the above, you might recognize that by merely working as an employee (or a freelancer), you will not be able to reach and influence many people.

This is totally true and the reason is that we are finite creatures and as a result the value we can directly generate is also finite and actually capped by a low ceiling.

The only way to resolve this limitation is to work towards the direction of creating a system that will generate value instead of you. The “system” here is a just another word for “business”. Welcome to entrepreneurship!

Of course, you can’t just start any type of business, because you might fall into the same trap of capped value. You need to build a business that leverages an expandable business model and has the potential to scale enormously.

To sum up, just remember the following equation:

Making Money = Providing Value

3) In order to THRIVE, you have to go against the masses

Look around you. Does the majority of the people seem to be thriving? Hell no.

Then, almost by definition, if you aspire to lead a fulfilling and rich life, you need to go against the masses in certain aspects and ways.

Now, don’t get me misunderstood. I am not advocating doing things differently than the majority just for the sake of it. Some things are not very debatable and you need to follow what works well.

For example, driving on the wrong side of the road is probably not going to work very well for you, and neither is jumping off an airplane without a parachute.

Following the herd will allow you to survive. We are social animals and imitating what others do comes naturally to us. But in order to rise above the mediocrity, you will have to go against the current.

Having said that, let’s examine some examples where you should be thinking differently.

The majority of the population is living paycheck to paycheck or at best saving 10% of their income. You need to save upwards of 80% of your income.

The majority of the population is trapped in the rat race failing to make any significant progress. You need to stay clear of the rat race and find alternative means of making money.

The majority of the population is dropping half of their monthly salary on a mobile phone. You invest your money into your business to grow it to a million dollar beast.

The majority of the population is watching reality shows on TV turning their brains into mush. You read business blogs, study books and only watch entrepreneurial shows.

The majority of the population is mindlessly living in the 9-5 matrix. You decide to swallow the “Red Pill” and embrace entrepreneurship.

When it comes to money, the best warning flag is “everyone”. If everyone seems to be going to one way, you need to pause before you follow them and think hard what your best option really is.

4) You are finite and Time is your most precious asset

One of the biggest difference between rich people and all the rest is that the former deeply understand their finiteness and extremely value their time.

Here is something to think about:

If every decision you make and every action you take is dictated by the fact that your first priority in life is to protect your time and increase its value, you will deterministically become wealthy at some point.

On the contrary, think about what the majority of the people do with their time.

You see people standing in line for hours to get a free burger or a free ice cream.

You see people trading their lives away being stuck in a 9-5 job.

You see people on Black Friday waiting for hours to save a few hundred bucks.

You see people arguing online about trivial matters such as a sports team.

Do these folks seem to value their Time?

If you want to get wealthy, you have to value your time at a greater rate.

Of course, this will not happen automatically and instantaneously. And no one will value your time more just because you say so.

In order to achieve this, you should increase your value on a daily basis. As your value as an individual increases, so does the value of your time.

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At the same time, you need to choose activities that yield positive ROI both in time and in money. Examples of those are reading books, working out, building a business and so on.

Here is the mantra I want you to live by:

“My life is worth more. My time is worth more.”

5) The best investment is in yourself

Many aspiring wealth builders often ask me what is the best financial investment for their money.

Or they will ask me if they should invest in the stock market and how.

Unfortunately, these questions show a lack of understanding about how wealth building works.

Let’s see why.

Suppose you manage to save $10,000 (which in the grand scheme of things is nothing, but it is quite considerable if you are just starting out).

Let’s say that you plow that money into the stock market and it is a good year for the market, so you get a 10% return (which is on the higher end of market returns) at the end of the year.

Congratulations, you are now the proud owner of $11,000 (before fees and taxes)!

Now ask yourself. How has this changed your life? What impact do those extra $1,000 have on your day to day life? In short, essentially nothing.

What you should strive to achieve is to build a system (see business) that you can predictably put $1 in and get $2 or more out. This is the only way to build wealth, which by nature is exponential.

Building this system is impossible, however, unless you have acquired the appropriate knowledge and unless you have improved yourself. That is why, the best investment of your money is in yourself.

Investing in yourself means getting self-educated via books, articles, courses and seminars. It means being mentored by a successful entrepreneur. It means getting the proper nutrition. It means working out and exercising regularly.

Following those, the next best thing is to invest directly into your business, which is actually an extension of yourself.

In the beginning, you will probably not be able to find how to turn $1 into $2 right away. This need experimentation, which in turns needs money. And after you have found that formula, you will need more money to scale things.

So, unless you have amassed a significant liquid net worth (to the tunes of mid six figures), please stay away from financial investing and allocate the little and precious money you have in activities that will make you a more valuable person.

6) Making excuses is easier than making money

If you get into a conversation with a person that has failed to achieve any financial progress, you will undoubtedly notice a disturbing pattern. That person will be able to offer an abundance of excuses why he has not been able to accomplish more:

“The government is stealing from the poor and giving it to the rich!”

“I don’t need to save. We only live once. YOLO”!

“Oh, I can’t start my own business now, I am too old.”

“Oh, I can’t start my own business now, I am too young.”

“I can’t find a job. The market is crap right now”.

And so on, and so forth.

Of course, making an excuse is infinitely easier than making money.

Think about it, it only takes a few seconds to come up with it and utter it. While building a successful business and making millions is a decade long endeavor.

So how can you leverage this piece of information?

Well, whenever you find yourself ready to make an excuse about why you haven’t made the progress you want, you need to stop and think hard about it.

It does not make you any good to justify your lack of progress. It’s a temporary “feel-good” response that will halt your long term progress.

And finally, you need to ask yourself: Do you want to be right or do you want to be rich?

7) Everything in your life is YOUR fault

This is one of the reasons why making excuses does not make any sense. Because deep down, everything in your life is your fault.

Everything that happens in any of the aspects of your life, be it your finances, your relationships, or your health, is ultimately your responsibility (and only yours).

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Living paycheck to paycheck? Your fault.

Yous business failed to gain traction? Your fault.

You have a negative net worth? Your fault.

(Note: I am obviously not referring to cases where your life is impacted by a horrible random accident, a non preventable disease or something similar.)

Now that’s awesome. It is liberating actually. Why? Let’s see.

First, it means that every positive aspect of your life is also your “fault”, i.e. you have caused it to happen.

Your business explodes and you reach a $1 million net worth? Awesome, it’s your fault!

You have created a network of successful people that share advice with? Great, it’s your fault!

You have amassed a humongous amount of money over years of hard work and now are free to live life at your own terms? Exquisite, it’s your fault!

The second and most important aspect is that since everything is your fault, you have the power to change your current conditions. That’s powerful.

Since your income is your fault, you are in position to increase it if you wish. Granted, it won’t happen overnight, but if you work at it, you will eventually raise it to the point you wish.

Since your business activities are your fault, you can turn things around and gain more success.

Everything in your life is your fault. And that’s awesome, because it means that you can change anything in your life you don’t like.

8) Your daily habits dictate your levels of success

Humans are creatures of habit. A habit is just a way for our brain to save energy by executing tasks on auto-pilot without having to do much thinking.

If you think about it, our lives consist of several habits that we execute daily. We are, what our habits are.

As a result, any success or lack of, that we have in our lives is predicated on the habits that we have built.

When is it more probable to succeed?

When you routinely spend 3 hours per day on TV and “social media”, or when you allocate that time reading and getting self-educated?

When you spend time watching the games of your favourite sports teams, or when you spend time building your business?

When you are wasting your nights drinking with your “buddies”, or when you are building strong relationships with successful people in your industry?

Here are some habits that will help you achieve success:

  • Waking up early
  • Drinking lot of water
  • Reading books
  • Exercising and working out
  • Following a proper diet
  • Working productively
  • Networking with valuable people
  • Tracking your personal finances

The first step in changing your life is changing your habits. Getting rid of the unproductive ones, and incorporating new, productive ones in your daily routine.

A good exercise is to sit down and think what daily habits you are currently on and that are halting your progress. Then, replace those with more beneficial ones, like those I mentioned in the list above. Start there.

9) You need OFFENSE, not DEFENSE

One of the biggest lies perpetuated by personal finance gurus is that wealth is built by focusing on your Defense. The truth is that wealth is built by having your eyes on Offense.

First of all, by Offense and Defense, we mean personal Income and Expenses, respectively.

So, what is some common advice that you might hear?

“Clip out coupons to save a few bucks.”

“Stop drinking coffee outside the house, that latte is expensive.”

“Don’t book a direct flight, do some layovers.”

Do those sound familiar? I bet they do.

The problem with this approach is that it is attacking the issue from the wrong perspective. Here is the fundamental flaw:

Expenses are capped. Income is not.

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This means that you can’t live with zero expenses (and actually you don’t want such a life), whereas your income has unlimited potential and this is where you should be focusing.

Now, to address the obvious. I am not advocating superfluous expenses. Quite the opposite.

In fact, I have mentioned many times (in this article included), that while you are in your wealth building phase you should strive to save more than 80% of your income.

Why do they do that then?

Because focusing on the expenses part is actually easier. It is much simpler to fumble around with some coupons than to actually go out and build a valuable online business. And unfortunately, people are attracted to easy, short term “solutions”.

Another thing that the “gurus” fail with, is that they address the low impact costs.

It is ludicrous to talk about saving a few bucks on coffee when you have a mortgage that sucks out one third of your monthly income.

It is irrational to focus on coupons when you are driving around a brand new convertible that costs two times your annual income.

Take care of the “Big 3”, and then all of your focus should be on increasing income.

The Big 3 are:

  • Accommodation
  • Nutrition
  • Transportation

Now, on the Offense side, i.e. your income, there is no limit. As we discussed, the more value you offer, the more money you make.

Wealth is created by exploding income coupled with disciplined expenses.

The best way to achieve is this, is to build a scalable business. After you are making 5 or even 6 figures per month, saving a large portion of your income will be as easy as it gets.

10) You need a 10-years long time horizon

Perhaps the most inconvenient, yet most important truth of all.

In order to be financially successful, you need to have a decade long time horizon.

Most people underestimate the amount of work and effort that is required. They prefer to engage in “get rich quick” schemes instead of planning their lives over the next ten years.

Nothing valuable is built in a few weeks or months. All the “overnight successes” you learn about in the news, are actually the results of efforts that took years to manifest.

If you want to make millions, you need to plan your life accordingly. Nothing is going to happen by luck or by accident.

In the beginning, you will need to be incredibly patient. Wealth is built exponentially, and in the early stages, the results are going to be petty.

Stay on the track of self-development for 10 years, and I guarantee you that you are going to be much richer, both in your bank account and in your personal life.

Conclusion

Most people are governed by a flawed mindset when it comes to money.

There are inconvenient truths that people fail to acknowledge or are just ignorant of.

In this article, I have discussed 10 of those truths. Here they are again:

1) No one cares about you

2) The amount of money you have is a reflection on the amount of value you have provided

3) In order to THRIVE, you have to go against the masses

4) You are finite and Time is your most precious asset

5) The best investment is in yourself

6) Making excuses is easier than making money

7) Everything in your life is YOUR fault

8) Your daily habits dictate your levels of success

9) You need OFFENSE, not DEFENSE

10) You need a 10-years long time horizon

By embracing these truths, it is certain that you will boost your financial results and lead a rich and fulfilling life.

Every week day I am dropping short-form value-bombs on LinkedIn. Connect with me now!

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