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That One Question
Why? The answer to that question should always be at the forefront of your mind.
I think its very important that you figure out "why" before jumping into any venture or project. The answer to "why are you doing this?" will be your motivation for pushing forward in whatever you decide to do. When you get to that point where you want to give up. When you feel like everything is conspiring against you. When it just no longer seems worth it.
Everyone has a "why" - you just may not know what yours is. To figure yours out...try this exercise I learned from The Success Principles by Jack Canfield. Secure a spot in a quiet and comfortable place. Grab a piece of paper and number it from one to thirty. Next, begin listing all of the things you want in life. These things can be possessions, skills, memories, experiences, or whatever. Just beware, the beginning of your list may seem a bit shallow or self serving, but its okay, you're only human. Around number 15 or 17, you'll start listing the deeper and meaningful desires of the inner you and ultimately what will keep you pressing forward. For comparison, my list started off with things like an AWD black on black Tesla Model S, craftsman home on 50+ acres with a private lake, and $20k in monthly passive income. Eventually, I began to write down things like provide a summer program for at risk kids, reduce suffering in any way possible, build shelters for homeless/refugees, etc. If you're like me and get to 30 - but you're in the zone, by all means keep going. You may surprise yourself!
Another way to go about this is to make a Why Tree by repeatedly asking yourself "why". Like this: "Alex, why do you want to invest in real estate?" So I can make money. "Why?" So I can buy back my freedom. "Why?" So I can spend time teaching kids about personal finance. "Why?" Because its important to me. Some "whys" may have more than one answer. I could have said "to buy a white on black Volvo XC 90" when asked why I wanted money. For my tree, "Alex, why do you want to invest in real estate?" is the trunk, "so I can make money" is a branch, "to buy a white on black Volvo XC 90" is leaf, but "so I can buy back my freedom" would be a split off branch with its own branches and leaves.
Make sure you view this list or tree daily. It'll help keep your "why" alive and fresh in your mind. Jack Canfield suggests doing this upon waking every morning and before falling asleep each night. To keep your "why" even more present, you can make a vision board or screen saver with visual representations of your "why".
What are some of your whys? How long is your list? How big is your tree? Please share! You never know who might be able to help you out or even has a similar why and want to partner up!
“My library is an archive of longings.” ― Susan Sontag
Read. A. Book.
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