Section 1. chapter 1 — change your mind, change your life
“All of us have the power
of choice. I choose to be rich,
and I make that choice every day.”
You’re about to embark on this work/study program because you want to change your life. But before you change your life, you need to change your mind. Your thoughts and beliefs are deeply ingrained, so deeply ingrained that you may not even be aware of how much they’ve shaped your financial woes. If you harbor the hope of financial freedom, self-awareness is critical. In this chapter you’ll be taking an inventory of your attitudes. You’ll learn which ones are helping you and which ones are holding you back. And under Rich Dad’s guiding influence, you’ll encounter a wealth of new ideas that have the power to steer you in a different direction, down the path to financial freedom. Whether or not you travel this path is up to you.
* What Are You Thinking? *
Rich Dad Tip:
“Money is just an idea.”
When you look in a mirror, what do you whisper? Do you berate yourself with comments like “I’m overweight” and “I’m getting old”? Or do you stand tall and say “I look great!” A mirror reflects much more than what your eyes see. A mirror reflects your inner thoughts and your beliefs — your soul. Listen to the thoughts that come from your soul. Are they negative? You’ll never embark on the road to riches if you let such thoughts constrain you.
Rich Dad Tip:
“There is nothing more powerful than an idea whose time has come, and there is nothing more vulnerable than someone who is still thinking old ideas.”
* The Nattering Nabobs of Negativism *
A well-known figure in the political world once coined the phrase “nattering nabobs of negativism” to refer to habitual naysayers. People will conjure up any number of excuses not to choose wealth, excuses that say more about their inner thoughts than about the difficulty of achieving wealth. Are you a nattering nabob of negativism? Take a look at these excuses, and see if any sound familiar:
“I can’t give up a regular paycheck.”
“Invest? You want me to lose all my money, don’t you?”
“I don’t have any money to invest.”
“I tried that before. It’ll never work.”
“I don’t need to know how to read financial statements. I can get by.”
“I’m not smart enough.”
“My husband would never go for it.”
“My wife would never understand.”
“What would my friends say?”
“I’m young. I’ve still got time.”
“It’s too late for me.
“You can’t do that.”
* Talk Back *
If you’re harboring negative thoughts, you need to understand what they really mean. For example, if you tell yourself “I can’t stop working and start my own business — I have a mortgage and a family to think about,” you might really be saying “I don’t have time, and I’m too tired to learn anything new.”
It’s time to dig deep down and unearth your personal truths. Jot down the negative statements you whisper to yourself and, after some honest soul searching, record the personal truth that lies beneath each:
1. Negative Thought
(ex) “I can’t do it.”
2. Personal Truth
(ex) “I am afraid of trying.”
Sometimes we let negative statements play over and over in our minds like endless mantras. Once you know the truth beneath your negative statements, talk back to them. Start an argument with yourself! Think of ways to counter each one.
If you’re having trouble identifying what’s holding you back, keep a daily journal.