If you’ve been reading my articles then you know that I like to write about philosophy and self-help topics more than the topic of investing and there is a reason for this. Even though I love to talk deals, in my experience I have found no matter what you are investing in, the act of investing is just another piece of the puzzle in the grand scheme.
We spend our days investing in lots of things. Many times, we spend so much time focusing on what we should be doing, how we should be acting and who we should be associating with that we get wrapped up in almost a mindless pattern fixated on material acquisitions.
Again, I go back to the idea that there is no sanctuary that you will arrive at. You won’t wake up and just be a different person that has a bunch of money and lives all the desires that you want. Even if you became a millionaire overnight in stocks, you still had to work for that change.
Life is a process.
Jim Rohn says “success is nothing more than a few simple disciplines practiced every day.”
It’s the process of developing habits. Then those habits mold us.
Too add to that idea, another favorite of mine is, “the chains of habit are too light to be felt until they are too heavy to be broken”.
Don’t forget there are good habits and bad habits, and the definitions can change without you knowing.
Many times, in my music career younger musicians would ask me how I did it or what the secret was. And I would always smile, thinking back on the hours and hours of practice, dedication, sacrifice, and discipline I invested into my craft.
And on top of all that a little bit of luck.
What’s the secret, is a tough question to answer because we are all different and we all have different prices to pay. Only you can tell what that price is.
I once listened to a radio show host doing a fake commercial on weight loss. He went on and on about how his new program would instantly drop pounds. And the secret was… “put down the F’n fork”.
It made me laugh out loud because literally that is the answer. I’ve struggled with weight my whole life, in all cases the secret to losing weight is to eat less. But it’s hard to say no. What gets us in trouble in the first place is a pattern or habit of mindless eating then boom, we are wondering how to lose the weight now.
The same applies to everything we do in life. I find that many times the answer is to consume less including information, TV programs, books, etc. We must slow down and learn to say no.
As Ajan Cha says, “put the books down and learn to read your own heart”.
We aren’t used to the pain of saying no to ourselves, to discipline, to self-regulation.
Self-regulation is the ability to act in your long-term best interest, consistent with your deepest values.
To realize that a Hershey bar at midnight might not be in my best interest...If my goal is to lose weight.
BUT! If the goal is to enjoy a tasty treat and relax, then have at it.
I once heard a rant about keeping a budget and the speaker said children do what feels good, adults formulate a plan and put it into effect. As tough as it is to hear, it’s true. Sometimes you must do what you don’t want to do.
The only way to have clarity in each of these ventures is to listen to your heart and let your life breath. In music, it is the space between the notes that touch your heart. Avoid the urge to fill every space.
Recognize that the pain of failure, the pain of mistakes, the pain of difficulty, the pain of patience, the pains of delayed gratification, the pains of scarcity are all part of life.
Consistent repetition and failure until you are successful. And only you will know how far you can push your limits.
But most importantly, check in regularly with how much pain you are putting yourself through, don’t forget to stop and smell the roses and enjoy the things in your life now.
Time is one thing you can never get back.
“Time is not money, time is life” ~ Thich Nhat Han
Appreciate your life with what you have in this very moment.