What Does It Mean To Be Wealthy

With respect to the above, I am reminded of a television advert some years ago aimed at selling a well loved Australian brand of chocolate biscuits. These were not just any choc biscuits, they were Tim Tams! They were made with a choc filling and each biscuits was then dipped and coated in more chocolate. You get the picture.

Anyway, the scene is set where a young man strolling on a beach on a hot summers day finds a bottle on the beach. When he unscrews the cap, a genie pops out and offers him his one wish. He says to the genie, “I want to be cool and I want to be rich”. So, the genie obliges by turning him into a packet of Tim Tams and sticks that in the fridge.
The advert finishes with a couple of attractive girls opening the fridge and are pleased to find the nice cool and rich Tim Tams as their afternoon snack. Win, win I think.

The point of this story is to draw your attention to the fact that if you cannot succinctly define what it means to be wealthy you may find it a bit of a struggle to become wealthy.

I have expanded on what I mean here: What does it mean to be wealthy Lorwai TAN recording

In essence there are two aspects to consider; firstly the tangible or material wealth. Secondly, and equally important is the intangible, and it encompasses qualities such as good health, happy and fulfilling relationships with most importantly being at peace with yourself.

The dictionary defines (material) wealth as “an abundance of valuable material possessions or resources”. These resources allow you to be financially free which means you are able to live a lifestyle of your desire without having to work or rely on someone else.

To determine if you have an abundance of valuable material possessions, follow this simple exercise. Take a piece of blank paper and draw a line down the middle. Heading one column, write “assets” and the other “liabilities”. This is the quickest way to determine your nett worth. It is basically what you own (free hold) minus what you owe ie how much of that is tied to loan repayments (debt). Hopefully you come out with a positive (in the black) rather than a negative (in the red) number.

So the name of the game is to increase your nett worth. And surprisingly one of the habits you want to cultivate is that of being able to receive with thanks and gratitude the good that comes your way. This may include the odd compliment! Learn to be an excellent receiver and do not deflect or downplay its value.

Remember the Universe is there to do your bidding so if you want material gain, don’t keep turning down the good things that come your way. The Universe will do as instructed!


The Secret of Success

The secret is that there is no secret.

Click here to listen to the full 60 minutes Audio of Secret of Success on my program \”Your Money and Your Mindset\”

Below is the synopsis if you can’t wait!

It is a series of sequential steps that anyone can take if they so choose and success will almost be guaranteed.

Step1: write down your goals on a piece of paper. Just thinking about it means that what you desire is still an intangible concept.

The magic starts when your goals take on a physical form.

Use the SMART method as a guide to help you (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Timeframe)

Step 2: start moving-literally get off from where you are sitting and start doing (this constitutes activity).

The good thing is that motion will quickly tell you if you are heading in the right direction towards your goals or not.

It is essentially a feedback mechanism that indicates to you in no uncertain terms if you are on the right track.

Step 3: know that there is an art to setting goals. The most efficient way is to divide them into four sections and I have listed some examples in each category i) physical (losing weight or getting fit); ii) mental (attending professional development courses to improve your career prospects); iii) emotional (making time to regularly spend with people who are important in your life) and iv) spiritual (communing with Nature and getting in touch with you, the real person).

Step 4: create a vision board or goal book where on one page you have images and pictures of your goals and on the facing page, write in the present tense what achieving this goal looks, feels, smells and tastes like. Always have a start and finish date, and a reward for when you reach that goal.

Investing the emotional energy into this activity engages your subconscious into putting you in the right spot (sometimes literally) for the opportunities as they present themselves to you.

And here is the real bonus, as you go about on a daily basis achieving small victories in regard to the steps you take towards achieving your goals, you discover your life purpose.

This is the person you were always meant to be.

Yours in health, wealth and happiness

How To Deal With Negative People in Your Workplace

Much like bacteria and viruses, there may be someone at work whose negativity can infect your otherwise upbeat outlook on life and bring you down.

Be aware that their influence will be highly detrimental to your ability to reach your personal and professional goals.

These people can masquerade as informed (amateur) social commentators with a pool of opinions larger than the Hoover Dam.

Initially the effect may seem subtle but over time, as you politely listen to their litany of “everything in my life is awful”, “businesses are rolling downhill faster than a group of scouts on a camping trip with food poisoning” and “my gout just gets worse every Thanksgiving”, you subconsciously start to buy into their brand of what is wrong instead of focusing on what is right in your world.

As they saying goes, “misery loves company”, so here are some strategies you can use to prevent becoming suckered in and losing your energy to them.

1.    Avoid them like the plague (they literally are the plague). Spend minimal time sitting next to them during coffee breaks if you have to. When it gets beyond your tolerance threshold, politely excuse yourself (with a knowing smile). It’ll kill them to want to know what you know.
2.    When they stop by your desk to talk about their awful weekend, spring one on them and say, “Gee, didn’t you enjoy a single minute of your time off work?” Get up from your desk as if to head off to an appointment and don’t get into a conversation with them on this topic.
3.    This one takes a bit of chutzpah. Firmly and with empathy say that you feel really flat after social conversations with them, and that in future could we just stick to work related topics (and not how horrible their job is).
4.    Imagine a bubble of white light around you that keeps the nasties out. If possible, have some upbeat music on your iPod that you can listen to when you are at your desk, even if it is only for 5 minutes.
5.    We attract certain types of people into our lives for a reason. Spend some quiet down time considering what it is they are here to teach you. Learn the lesson, bless and release them and move on.

Yours in health, wealth and happiness

Your Money and Your Mindset: Interview with Mr Paul Blackburn Part 2

Paul Blackburn’s brush with prostate cancer was his wakeup call to becoming serious about wealth creation for himself. He has written this book to share the strategies that have made him a millionaire today.

In this interview he describes some of the success characteristics of his millionaire clients. These include being unafraid to ask for help with their finances. They are unconcerned with what others think of them for their frank admission that they do not know everything.
This group of people is willing and happy to pay for financial and life coaching if that is what is required to get them to the next level of achievement.

Another practical tip he has for us is to save a percentage of our income that becomes the foundation of investing in a business. This slow and steady strategy helps a person acclimate to being wealthy. In his words, “They have time to be comfortable around a lot of money and are less inclined to squander their wealth”.

Paul’s take home tip: “A well kept secret of the wealthy is that they take time out from their businesses to recharge and re-energize. This freshens their business practices and they come back to make even more money!”

Interview with Mr Paul Blackburn Part 2 (unlinked)

How to be your accountant’s best friend

In this article I am assuming that you, the reader are a solo entrepreneur who runs a home based business.

If we held a straw poll right now, I would bet that 9 out of 10 of those surveyed would rather have a root canal than keep track of the stock inventory, sales and accounts paper work in an organized manner so beloved by all accountants.

Yes, I know you can get software like MYOB to do most of this stuff, but really, wouldn’t you rather be out there connecting with your customers, shootin’ the breeze, wheeling and dealing. That’s what it is all about, isn’t it?

Every year you promise yourself that you will not turn up at your accountant’s office with a shoebox full of receipts and cocktail napkins scribbled with orders you took over the phone in your hurry to seal a deal.

I will also point out the obvious that the IRS takes a dim view of people relying on their fuzzy memories when making business expense claims.

Below are some suggestions that you may wish to use so as to avoid the same scenario next year.

If you hate technology and computers, invest in a stack of manila folders. Yep, it is that simple.

Colour code the folders according to:
i) income from clients, shares, property investments, managed funds, inheritance
ii) your utility bills,
iii) advertising costs,
iv) internet service provider, web hosting and domain name purchase costs
v) postage and stationery (as opposed to stationary as in standing still which where you don’t want your business to be)
vi) car repairs and running costs
vii) medical and dental care premiums
viii) car, home and contents insurance costs
ix) income protection insurance
x) supervised childcare fees
xi) accountant’s fees
xii) lawyer’s fees

This is by no means an exhaustive list but you get where I am going with this, yes?

If you secretly fancy yourself a techno geek then step up to the next level and use a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet to track your incoming and outgoings using the same categories as above.

My friend, in the eyes of your accountant your reputation will forever be redeemed because it reduces the amount of time he/she has to spend trawling through your paper trail.
Consequently the shorter billing time segments means that they charge less to prepare your tax statement.

If you are unsure about what expenses constitute a legitimate claim, do not be afraid to ask your accountant.
Remember tax laws are regularly reviewed and new rulings handed down so any CPA worth their salt should keep up to date with new developments.

Yours in health, wealth and happiness

Financial Freedom Mindset and You: Aspire and Emulate

If you want (aspire) to be wealthy, then copy (emulate) what wealthy people do, say, think and observe how they behave.
If you think this is a drag, then continue as you are and do not be surprised that your circumstances and bank balance remain the same.

One characteristic of successful people is that they have acquired a reading habit.

Success doesn’t leave cryptic clues but blatant and obvious signs. Case in point: I once heard a multi millionaire marketer say that “Leaders are Readers”.

Hey, when they offer free advice, take it.

This weekend head off to your community library and borrow a book.

Not just any book but take yourself to the biography section and load up on the stories of people (dead or alive) who have made, and in some cases lost and regained their fortunes. It is hard to go past the biographies of Donald Trump, Warren Buffet and Richard Branson.

Just to round out your education, pick biographies of people who are leaders in the very tangible sense of the word such as Gen Colin Powell. He of the Operation Desert Storm fame tells of his humble beginnings and how he rose to the top as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. My interpretation of his message is that if he can, anyone is able to do the same.

Or people who did not give up after what the average person would call having given it a red hot go and then still falling short of the mark. President Abraham Lincoln is the character who comes to mind (I won’t spoil it for you but the teaser is that he failed more than a couple of times to get elected to public office).

The other option is even more fun-approach a successful person (read millionaire) in the same field or business as yours and invite them to lunch or dinner (and pay for the meal!).
This may be a bit daunting for you but it is exactly what I did. I figured that if I extended the invitation and got a flat “No”, it’s not going to kill me-tomorrow the sun will still rise and set.

I took this millionaire couple to dinner, and had a first hand opportunity to ask them questions about their approach and outlook to running their business. The information I got was priceless.
And you know what, they are just normal and nice people like you and me.

Yours in health, wealth and happiness

That’s What Friends Are For

Remember when Stevie Wonder, Luther Vandross, Dionne Warwick and Whitney Houston sang this number?

There was not a dry eye in the house and for good reason; other than yourself the next best thing to have around is a best friend.

I am not referring to acquaintances, but real and genuine people you’d want to spend time with and vice versa.

We all have or had one as we were growing up and some of these people have stayed in touch until today whilst others were THE best friend at a specific time in our lives.

It is said that we are known by the company or friends we keep so pause for a moment and think of the qualities we want in our friend(s). Note how many of these reflect our own values.

Here are some of the qualities I wish for in a friend: dependability, thoughtfulness, loyalty, trustworthiness, honesty, kindness and a keen sense of humor.

Extrapolating from these are also ones that support a healthy lifestyle for example, fans of physical fitness, and a sense of culinary adventure and unafraid of trying new exotic cuisines.

Finally, ones that indicate a positive attitude towards life, for instance, the ability to bounce back quickly after a setback and who do not seek to blame others or circumstances for lives that are less than happy and fulfilled.

In a round about way I am referring to intrinsic and extrinsic values that shape our self image. Now remind yourself that you cannot out perform your self image.

Warren Buffett had this to say on the topic of friends:

I like having an expensive private plane, but owning a half-dozen homes would be a burden,” Buffett noted. ”Too often, a vast collection of possessions ends up possessing its owner. The asset I most value, aside from health, is interesting, diverse, and long-standing friends.

Maybe that is why he is such an extraordinary multi billionaire investor.

Yours in health, wealth and happiness

Let’s Play “What if..”

We all know what is best for us to do in order to get where we want to go, and what we want in life.

You don’t have to be Einstein to know that that regular exercise keeps your body fit and healthy. Same deal with what we eat, the double choc chip ice cream with hot fudge sauce sprinkled with toasted peanuts tastes great while we are busily shovelling it down the cake hole but has that helped us with maintaining a healthy weight?

The maxim that Knowledge is Power isn’t quite what it is cracked up to be. Actually, applied knowledge is power. There’s that “A” word again, applied.

Doesn’t matter that you have read up all the theory in the world about swimming in a pool, but if you don’t do it ie the action of moving your arms and legs in a rhythmic fashion to propel you forwards, you’ll sink like a stone.

When I am procrastinating and occupying my time doing things to displace such as answering emails or net surfing, I eventually get to the stage where I have to ask myself “What if I do focus on getting my business plan written like I planned, what is the result of doing this”.

I immediately get a very strong positive feeling (humans are a swarming pool of emotions and feelings, like it or not) and I start to feel the sense of accomplishment that comes with completing a task that moves me one step closer to my personal goals and dreams.
And then, I actually make a start on this project!

Secondly, it gives me momentum to do to the next task that requires my attention without me being distracted by the television, or the latest online “news” about another Hollywood star’s fifth nip and tuck and third relationship in as many years.

So, for the next two days (Thursday and Friday) before we cut loose for the weekend, just take the time to play “What if…” Please comment next week about your experience with this little exercise, because I am all ears!

Yours in health, wealth and happiness

What Are Your Daily Success Rituals

Some of mine are:

1) Looking at mirror every morning and saying aloud, “Today I am grateful for”:

the roof over my head, or
my family, or
being fortunate that I can afford a hot breakfast etc”

(Spend a minute thinking about the blessings in your life. It could be as simple as being able to walk and talk, feed and dress yourself)

2) Getting to my office and catching sight of my mission statement as I turn on my Mac and spending a minute thinking about what it means to me

3) Greeting colleagues with a bright smile and a “Good morning”

4) Answering the phone clearly with “Hello, Lorwai speaking”

5) Giving the person I am talking to whether over the phone or face to face my full attention (no wandering gazes or checking of emails as I am speaking to them).

So why be so fussy about these things?

It sends messages to your subconscious that you are a valuable and worthwhile person.
Therefore when you feel good about yourself, you tend to adopt a spirit and outlook of abundance.
When things are in abundant supply, we as generous beings want to share with others.

Get where I am going with this?

You are setting up a virtuous cycle where you giving freely to others, gets them to also give because you have made them feel good.

When you put out positive and uplifting vibes, you attract people with a similar outlook into your life. Our beliefs are reflected back to us, so if you think everyone is out to get you, guess what.
Similarly, if your belief is that the people you encounter are nice and considerate (because that is how you see yourself), it is exactly what you will consistently come across.

Whatever you focus on GROWS. (I’ll give you a moment to think about this)

No one becomes successful in isolation. It happens because there is mutual benefit to be derived by all parties and this is not necessarily in the form of dollars and cents (that is the nice bonus!).

If we agree that is the case, why not enjoy the company of the people around us on our journey to success.

Yours in health, wealth and happiness