In this article today:
- How do You Know What to Be When You “Grow Up”…Again?
- The Ultimate Lifestyle Decision
- The Freedom Factor
- How to Become a HUGE Asset to Your Self
- Does Believing in Your Self Matter Anymore
- If you’ve missed out on Happiness, you might get a dose today…
- Freedom comes from having financial and emotional security.
“I don’t really know what I want to do … with my life … when I grow up … to make me happy … to … “
No one does!
I sat down with some new friends here in Sofia, Bulgaria yesterday. March 3 is analagous to July 4 in the U.S., so the streets were lined with throngs of people… I typically go to great lengths to avoid such times and places.
We had all of my least favorite discussions. This often happens when people are familiar with my work but are somehow threatened or feeling the inadequate need to justify one thing they might have and the lack of another.
“Kevin, I’d rather be happy than have money.”
My response is always something similar to, “Would you rather have your daughter or son?”
Or, “Would you rather have your pretty girlfriend there or a job?”
The responses are in the realm of, “well you can have both you know…”
I then respond, “Oh good point. You can have both safety, security, wealth, money (whatever you want to call it) AND happiness…you know.”
It’s a paradigm breaker.
I’ve had this conversation hundreds of times in the U.S., all over the world and now here in Bulgaria.
There is a strong correlation between income and happiness whether people want to look at the best research or not.
Some psychologists will tell you that, “That’s true Kev, but only to about $50,000 of income.”
But they are wrong. The research shows otherwise. To be sure, someone who earns $250,000 is not 2.5 times as happy as someone who earns $100,000 but they will on average tend to be HAPPIER.
A big problem when talking about happiness is being able state clearly and unambiguously what it is and what it means.
Go ahead, try it before reading on.
Don’t worry, it’s not for anyone else either.
Meanwhile, it’s easy to describe your income. You look at the bottom of page one of your 1040 and you pretty much have it nailed right there.
The ignorant skip past money because they feel no compulsion to secure their future.
As the beggars approached me yesterday, I saw a lot of very sad faces and heard a lot of very tragic stories.
I can’t prove this, and I don’t have the time or inclination to do so, but here’s what my best guess is, where people don’t have means to have natural gas to stay warm, dryers to dry their clothes, space to have even miniscule privacy in their homes, very few choices as to what they will do with their lives, forget having dreams and fulfilling them, the human mind MUST grab on to SOMETHING to make the Self “feel better.”
What I hear people REALLY telling me is that they have more good feelings than they have money to have other experiences and things.
What I don’t have is any data to show me just how important those good feelings are, how long they last, and how the person evaluates their lives in the privacy of their own residence.
What I do read is that Bulgarians report themselves to be among the unhappiest people on the planet. Americans report themselves to be among the happiest people on the planet.
And by the way, I take “life satisfaction surveys” with a grain of salt.
I’ve labored this critical point about money vs. happiness because lack of one can be an excuse to highlight the other.
I well remember being 12 years old and knowing factually that money would have bought food, while happiness, which could have been nice, couldn’t have been as important as going hungry at night.
As you look at your current life and your future, consider that you can have LOTS of POSITIVE adjectives to describe yourself and your life experience. You are NOT limited to one or another.
…and don’t let anyone sell you on any other line of thinking.
It’s rare that someone can have life experiences X,Y,Z (living in the city for example) and be able to feel any possible connection to A,B,C (say people who have a family farm) or passion toward D,E,F (doing what you love and getting paid for it).
It’s like food.
You are familiar with what you’ve had all your life.
Someone says, “Hey would you like to try some… sushi, tofu, Asian salad, soy milk?” and I simply am not that interested and almost prefer not to do so. Then I try all of them and you find that I absolutely love one or two of the bunch. You’d never have known.
The rest? You wonder how they qualified as a food item.
In the Genes?
I saw Rod Stewart at Caesars Palace 3 years ago in Vegas. During one of his wardrobe changes, his daughter, Ruby Stewart, came out and belted out a tune. She is very good.
Not at all.
How did she become such an excellent singer?
It’s gotta be in the genes, right?
Not at all.
It’s what she has lived and experienced her entire life.
The real question is what ELSE would Ruby Stewart do? It would be darn difficult to jump from what you live, experience, react and respond to … to something else.
Had she grown up in a political family, her propensity for life work would be politics. Had she grown up with a psychologist it would be psychology.
Think about Michael, Jermaine, Tito, etc. Jackson. Must have been the genes, right?
You move in the direction of the flow around you.
When there is no life direction around you, you only move toward what you must do to survive. When there is movement in a family or a group the chances of “getting somewhere” increase dramatically.
If you grow up the child of an entrepreneur, you have your 5,000 hours of discussions about entrepreneurship by the time you are 15 years old. It would be difficult to move in another direction. That 15-year-old has heard and “knows” more about entrepreneurship than 98% of people 3 times her age.
This happens in every family. Unfortunately, not all families (and friends) have parents with strong ongoing interests that captivate the imagination. When they don’t, the children wonder what they will do when they grow up. They have nothing to latch their potential fascination on.
Ideally, you want to talk with your kids about your fascinations when they are pre-school age. This way, they have a working knowledge, fascination and compulsion to perform three or four of your passions by the time they are 12.
You are working at job Z. You start to wonder if you might be ready for a career switch to selling real estate, insurance, commercial property, medicine, engineering, whatever. How about that Coffee Table Business I’ve been talking with you about?
But you’ve been in job Z for 1,5,10,20 years.
Someone says, “You’d make a great Doctor or Real Estate Agent or Architect, or Salesperson”.
And for you, in your mind, there is no connect.
You can’t imagine what it would be like.
You’ve never done it. You may never have read about it or seen other people do “it” and listen to stories about “it.”
“How could I possibly earn a quarter of a million dollars per year without leaving my living room?!”
It’s completely foreign to 97% of people. It’s a completely normal experience for a few million across the globe.
There’s a lot you don’t go do because you’ve never done it … or “worse,” you’ve done it once and, of course, you showed no talent at it. You were terrible at it and therefore you didn’t return to it.
Parents that don’t move their kids into the flow end up with kids without interests.
That would make sense.
You and I live in a world where people simply assume that either we have a knack for something or we don’t.
You try it.
You move on.
Nothing wrong with moving on, but hang on, there are GOOD reasons to try a few more times.
Why There’s No “Sticky Factor”
The fact is that unless you are burgeoning with happiness and abundance with your current job/career/world/life … it’s very possible that what you tried and failed at might be an answer.
So here you are at job Z. You’ve done it all these years. You certainly aren’t going to leave today but you decide to TRY something else…like an Asian Salad.
You try A, it’s uncomfortable.
You try B, it doesn’t “feel right.”
You try C, you didn’t make any money that day/week at it.
You try D, you were criticized and decided to pass.
You try E, you found it mentally too challenging.
You try F, you found it too physically difficult.
you THINK ABOUT A-F and have the same result.
My best guess is that your experience was precisely as it should be.
If you’ve never written a book, it looks like a daunting task. OK, it IS a daunting task.
Most people had parents who didn’t experience or thrive in daunting tasks or life situations.
But let’s say you got it written and then it was done. Now no one buys it.
You had a job other people thought was cool but you took a dislike to it fairly quickly.
I want to take you today into that other world of experience. I want to take you into the world where there is Freedom. Then if you’d like, I’d like to show you how to have it, if you decide you’d like to try some things you aren’t likely to … like … at first …
Want to try on some Freedom of Choice?
Freedom, particularly Financial Freedom, is about having choices.
Most people immediately think that they will choose something that is strictly fun and go do it and become financially free.
That’s not how it works.
Returning to Rod Stewart and his daughter…
She lived her entire life observing how challenged her Dad would be about negative publicity, critics, reviews that might not have been stellar.
So why would anyone who sees all this frustration, and often pain, pursue something so painful?
Through the Fire
Because of the pain!
IN SPITE OF the pain and frustration, the man, in this case, thrived as an entertainer.
There’s no surprise that someone is going to write something nasty in the Sunday Paper. There is no surprise that someone isn’t going to like you no matter how philanthropic you are.
Of course you’ll be the entertainer.
Is entertaining always fun?
It requires a personality that is absolutely controlling and trusting all at the same time. The performer, in this case, has to set all the wheels in motion and then trust people to keep them there. It’s more work to entertain than it is to be a janitor or a laborer. The painter goes and paints. The entertainer has dozens of variables to perfect that people in other professions don’t even know exist.
I painted for two summers while at university.
The toughest part about painting is inhaling paint all day and falling off a ladder every now and then. Beyond that … you paint.
It’s not incredibly intellectually or creatively taxing. There is no significant stress 90% of the time.
Not so in entertaining. It’s the absolute opposite. There is no set process in entertaining. There are familiar steps and sequences, but you are constantly forced to create and generate something new, unique, exciting, fun, thrilling and fascinating.
That’s why the kid grows up to be like the parent.
They see the results in spite of the pressures and taxing requirements.
They have something to attach their fascination to.
And after all, all kids are smarter than their parents. So if Dad can churn out 24 books, what could I do?!
Finding Your Fascination
But … what if your parent didn’t have these fascinations, passions and interests?
It matters, but not as much as you might guess.
You find your own.
It means you have the ability to make decisions and do as you choose. That is a rare experience in today’s world.
So why don’t more people go and do something that requires pain and learning?
Because it looked so easy from the outside.
They couldn’t have dreamed of the pressures, the pains, the frustrations. It’s a lot easier to keep doing what is easier.
And by the way, for a lot of people it’s the best thing to do what is familiar. We’ll talk about this next time. I’ll explain how to know whether you should stick with what you are “doing” or go out and face a new experience every day.
Hint: If you respond to pressure and pain in a productive and powerful fashion, you should get your butt out there and ATTEMPT X 10 times. If you don’t … you need to learn to respond to pressure and pain FIRST and THEN consider moving into other ventures.
Key Point: SUCCESS comes hand in hand with HIGH Pressure and SIGNIFICANT PAIN.
Let’s look at what might bring someone to such a place.
The Freedom Mindset Principle One: Your undiscovered passion is not likely to be fun on attempt one.
The Freedom Mindset Principle Two: Your undiscovered passion is going to be HARD from day one and it will NEVER become easy, or you instantly fail. As soon as it is second nature, you’ve left success and achievement and moved toward mediocrity.
When you have Freedom, when you have a Success Mindset, it’s not going to be fascinating or exciting in week one. It’s not going to be attention sustaining the first couple of weeks.
Change Up Every 7 Years
It’s going to “require motivation.” You’ll wonder why you chose this crazy idea to pursue. And the reality is you have no idea whether THIS PROJECT is THE PROJECT. You just don’t know because you almost can’t know. Give “life options,” like your future careers or Coffee Table Businesses, a little time.
Assume you’ll have a new career or a newly evolved career, every 7 years in the future. Begin to see possibilities for excitement, passion, compassion, lust and all the other cool experiences you can feel.
If you don’t, you will end up eating junk food all of your life….
A parallel: I didn’t quit with my first two books. They sold 1000 and 3000 copies respectively. It was *hard.* And the idea of trying to “get people to buy my book,” was really hard. (Not to mention a REALLY foolish and naive mindset on how to sell books.)
It was uncomfortable and didn’t feel “right.” I didn’t make any money at it. I was criticized about everything from the grammar, to the layout, to the … use of ellipses … to you name it. It was mentally overwhelming and the time commitment was brutal.
As you can see 20+ books later … I no longer use three dots to cause an instant of thought and consideration. You can see the … conformity can’t you?
The first two books didn’t sell. They are pretty darn good, but they didn’t have an author who knew how to sell them. Such is life.
So quit, right?
Well wait a minute.
What’s the alternative?
I’ll explain shortly that I’m really not one of those people who is cut out for “a job.” I’ve had plenty.Are you?
We did some research and found out that based on the Social Security Administration records I had my first actual social security wages (taxed income) when I was 12 years old. (I worked at McDonald’s in Park City, Illinois) The record shows I didn’t have social security wages when I was 13. That must have been because my step dad was terminally ill and then passed away that year, but the following year there was a significant amount of wages paid, at age 14.
We also figured out that in my entire life, spanning now what seems close to one million years, I’ve never had a “paid day off,” ever from any job. That was interesting.
Getting Hired is Difficult? You’d Be Surprised.
I’ve also been able to figure out that since that time at age 14, I’ve never been unemployed for more than two consecutive days and I can remember being fired from both McDonald’s I worked for as a kid…
The only positive comments someone could say about that young Kevin Hogan, as an employee, was that I was honest. I busted butt for anyone who hired me. I always got a job done even when I stayed late to finish work others did far quicker than I did. I gave a million percent to the company or person that wrote me a check.
Aside from being an asset, those are the four factors that will convince anyone to hire you. I’ll come to being an asset shortly….
I really was not a star to say it politely, at anything I did whether I was 12, 14 or 22.
I worked harder than anyone, but I was very average in the results department when it came to working for other people. For my own businesses like delivering newspapers from age 10 – 14, shoveling driveways, age 11 – 14, cutting lawns age 12 – 14, selling greeting cards from age 10 – 15…those were all different. I was very good at all of them.
A number of physical moves (4 high schools in 4 years) slowed down the business ventures and forced me back into “job mode.”
Time after time I was in this “job” life and not only was I mediocre at it, the “rules” never made sense to me. The work was always paying too little for the effort expended and I didn’t enjoy being told what to do. I was terrible at receiving criticism.
So, I could continue working in “jobs” or finally decide at age 22 that it was time to become independent. Talk about scary.
I had no idea what I would do. I had no real talents that I could figure out how to apply in real life. I had a whopping 3 years of college education before the money ran out and I had to leave college. It was a decade before I could begin the process of resuming that madness…
I did have an advantage. Hard work never bothered me. I always worked, usually seven days per week. But I didn’t have a clue about my future life.
I tried numerous contracts with companies or did things on my own. I never just went in for the day or week. I was able to figure out that being good at anything would take commitment.
Finally it became obvious that it was time to take a REAL inventory.
This was the first BIG STEP toward FREEDOM. It looked very much like what I talk about in the Wealth Accumulation Course.
A Freedom Mindset Inventory you can use…
The Freedom Mindset Inventory
Do this and your world will start to change…
- Write down what YOU absolutely don’t like to do; and then what you CAN’T do? Obviously there are times when you have to do what you hate to do, to pay the bills. Make a long list of stuff you hate to do and stuff you physically can’t do. We’ll come back to this list later.
- Then make a REALLY long list of what would you be willing to do if you had to? (Hint, it probably should include a lot of stuff you don’t like to do.)Now, come up with a much shorter list…
- What are you good at, and/or what do you get “fired up” about?
I was good at handicapping. I will save the childhood handicapping stories for another day and jump straight to age 21.
I connected with Bob McCune, a Las Vegas handicapper. (I would eventually meet Bob three years later.) I mailed Bob all articles related to the Minnesota Vikings from the Minneapolis Star Tribune and when he received the hometown info, he would then factor that into his weekly picks for people who bet sports in Las Vegas.
He also used that information along with info he collected from others like me around the country to win the Las Vegas Hilton Football Handicapping Contest the next year. I’ve entered this same contest with the best handicappers on planet earth and found that I still have a long way to go…
Bob was a warrior for sports handicapping to be a profession not tainted with the problems of the time.
He showed me how the bad guys worked in the industry. He showed me how to be ethical in a field of a lot of unethical people.
Those same “marketing cons” are now used by the entertainment business to “promote” …garbage… reminiscent of The Secret, and similar. All that for another day, as well.
A Possibility Emerged!
I enjoyed doing the research. It was interesting and I was young and I worked for cheap, mostly because it was cheap or nothing and in the 1980’s, there was a lot of nothing. I called him on the phone with anything that happened late in the week that wouldn’t reach him by mail in time for the weekend.
If you enjoy the process of research (or whatever your first discovery is) on X, it probably will transfer to some y’s and z’s, but obviously not all y’s and z’s.
It was fun. It was interesting. And it was cool to be connected with one of the better handicappers in the field. Three years later, when I met Bob and his sweet wife, Maise, at his home in Las Vegas, I saw exactly what I wanted to be doing. He had a Coffee Table filled with papers, statistical equations, charts. It was a beautiful home office mess. It was the perfect life.
I had experienced for a few hours what a COOL LIFE would be like.
Not the handicapping, which would be cool but not pragmatic, but doing what you love at home and be able to earn a good living at doing just that.
And so it was …
I loved handicapping, but the business was not one you could chance from outside Nevada. Heaven forbid.
I handicapped for years using the systems I learned from Bob and used them … for my own … personal use.
But he lived a life like I had never seriously thought possible.
You don’t want to simply think in terms of a career or job, but think in terms of processes and activities that you enjoy that span across dozens of careers.
The Ultimate Lifestyle Decision (ULD) Was Now Made
I would, at the very least, have my “office” as my home. I sold advertising and all kinds of stuff that required leaving the house daily, but I determined my own income, for better or worse, and I liked being in control of my own life.
So this lifestyle contrasted heavily with the “job” lifestyle. A job was “there,” and my “work” was “here.”
And THIS feels very good.
It’s something that most people will never feel and although Financial Freedom has a price, it is worth all of it and more!
Here’s the real mindset of successful people….
The Mindset of Successful People
So much is written on the mindset of successful people.
Most of it is …bunk.
But there is some good stuff. And from the good data we learn quite a bit.
Achievers are studied in athletics, music and scholarship, but not as much so in the areas of life that you and I dwell in.
What is usually written about achievers who have attained financial freedom, is generally written by people who have not achieved, succeeded or attained financial freedom.
Thus, most of what you read about “success” is ridiculous.
It must be how say, cooks, instantly know when the author of the cookbook isn’t really a cook …
And that is OK, because it’s not a requirement, BUT, there are biases projected into the minds of achievers by those who are not.
The vast majority of people who achieve aren’t trying to “get rich.”
On the contrary, they are in the process of (and will continue to be) living a life of financial freedom.
My outcome for YOU is to be able to live the life you want, in any economy, at any time, at just about any place and be able to thrive.
Successful people, people who achieve, people who live a life that they choose, think very differently than everyone else. They process information differently.
The Ultimate Freedom Factor
Whether you are, or will soon be financially free, comes down to one core element in the brain:
The Ultimate Freedom Factor in the Success Mindset .. is Decision.
Hold that thought….
Some people sat back today and wondered if they would have a job in six months.
Some people sat back today and wondered if they would still “be in business” in six months.
Some people sat back and started innovating, creating and developing new ways to serve people, clients and customers.
Most people don’t try to succeed or achieve, they try to survive, and most people are pretty good at survival. In fact the wiring for survival is the strongest of all drives.
Humans will do almost anything to survive. And that is a good thing.
So if we will do what it takes to survive, then why worry about tomorrow, today?
The answer is that you don’t need to “worry” about tomorrow. You simply have to plan for it and be prepared for what isn’t in the game plan.
Financially Free people are prepared for the unknown. They KNOW the unknown is going to be there tomorrow or the next day, so they have met that certain outcome with a plan that has been modeled and tested.
Tip #1: Most people won’t lose their job in 2017. Even in a depression (and that could happen) most people keep on working at the same job. But don’t let “probably” get in the way of intelligent preparation for what is POSSIBLE. It certainly can and does happen.
The person with the Mindset of Success will not worry about that day. The worst thing that can happen is you don’t work there any more. It’s what people pray for, right?!
Therefore, it is common sense to prepare for what happens on that day, if it does come.
Imagine you got fired.
You’ll have a job *the next DAY.*
I can’t remember ever losing a job and not being instantly employed within 24 – 48 hours, and those were in times of recession.
The bigger question is, “How could you NOT be working in 24 hours?”
People will be afraid because they won’t make as much money at something else…
- How do they know?
- Are they talking about the first six months or the first six years?
- There is a presumption of permanence in people’s fear.
Here is a fact about Getting a Job Tomorrow:
If someone is willing to work hard, do things that are difficult, do more than the crowded lunchroom full of useless employees, be loyal and devoted, they WILL be working in 1-3 days.
There are thousands, maybe millions of jobs for people who will bust their butt. Why are they not working? Because they didn’t go get a job TODAY.
People are free to work.
Here is The Freedom Factor
Become an Asset
Begin innovating your life into being a person who is an ASSET and NOT a LIABILITY.
In government work there are liabilities…and liabilities. Everyone costs money to employ…no product is produced. (OK the post office actually does a good job at delivering the mail, really!) It’s a lousy model that always breaks in the end.
Oddly, and unfortunately, government jobs for the last 3 decades are often the most “secure,” and here I’m defining “secure” as being locked in the same building for 30 years and not having to concern yourself with ever visiting another building….secure. 0/7 of the employees provide the jobs for the other 7/7. Having a secure job is also something prisoners that cost $60,000 annually to house get to do…
In business, this is not true. In business about 1/7 of the employees provide the jobs for the other 6/7.
Don’t get me wrong, there are people in business who are not in revenue producing jobs who matter…like the guy who keeps the water coming to the house and the sewer plant moving along…the police department…the gal who fixes the computer system when it goes down, the janitor (and he doesn’t need to be there if everyone learns to pick up after themselves)….and…ah maybe the two people in R and D who actually do D and don’t just do R.
And yes, there are a few others who the 1/7 are happy to support.
YOUR “security” is really wrapped up in your MINDSET which is oriented toward the power to produce revenue.
Those people who are ASSETS do NOT lose their jobs except in rare cases like takeovers.
Success and failure are, for the most part, replicable and easy to predict.
The Success Mindset might benefit by a high IQ and it certainly will be assisted by EQ. Emotional Intelligence IS, after all, the ability to influence.
…but the reality is that everyone who is successful today will almost certainly be successful in any society, in any economy. The person who doesn’t succeed in a free country, won’t succeed anywhere.
The good news?
Is there a way to have true security?
It’s a choice.
There is almost absolute security in being certain in your SELF.
When you KNOW that you will overcome challenges, you KNOW that you will be fine. How do you KNOW?
You know when you overcome challenges every single day. You don’t know by “believing.”
You overcoming everyday challenges by DOING.
YOU are YOUR insurance policy in life.
You are either an asset or a liability.
Look, if you are not in that Mindset of Success yet, do this…
Imagine living your life with the unshakable belief that you have what it takes to succeed, no matter what else is happening around you. Imagine never feeling frightened by outside influences again. Imagine knowing that even if the worst case scenario were to happen, you could relatively easily and fairly quickly pull yourself up by the proverbial bootstraps and do what is needed to be done to get back on track.
You would NEVER allow yourself to let your family and loved ones down. Regardless of what anyone else does, YOU are the sure thing. You either can or can’t, will or won’t.
It’s a choice.
You’ll either be able to do it by being an asset or not – by being a liability.
THAT’S TRUE SECURITY.
It’s the best kind of security, because it empowers you to feel in control of your life – if not every situation, at least the outcome of the bigger picture.
The Success Mindset Draws from Personal Power
Power comes from knowledge.
Power comes from knowledge like electricity comes from a power plant. The plant is only “potential power,” until it is used, and then of course it is indeed power.
Power is not the power plant, but it COMES FROM and is GENERATED by the power plant.
Knowledge in some domain or niche or field, knowledge that is beyond the norm, is not a commodity, it is a VIP Ticket to security.
Personal Power is the ability to harness that knowledge and use it.
When I talk about power, I’m talking about harnessing knowledge and creating value, on purpose, with intention.
Next week we will investigate how you can use knowledge, as power.
Reserve your spot now!
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