Episode 20: The Wealth On Any Income Book – Section II – Step 2: Your Five Year Goal – Transcript
Hi Folks, Welcome to the Wealth On Any Income podcast. This is where we talk about money tips, techniques, attitudes, information and provide inspiration. I’m your host, Rennie Gabriel.
In the previous episode I described the two missing ingredients in most goals, how to work with other people and write down the milestones of your progress. When you incorporate these two items into your goal achieving structure you have a 90% or more likelihood of success.
Today, you will hear how to write your goal from the future; the five year goal I wrote that led to the award winning, best-selling book that I’m reading to you; and finally, you will have the opportunity to write down your five year goal. It will be a around 15 minutes today.
As I read, I could stumble over some words. I am not a professional voice over actor so please forgive me if that happens.
The Five-Year Financial Goal
This could be considered the first tool to creating anything you want. But, it’s so big and important it’s like the box that holds all the tools. While we will be focusing on financial issues, please recognize the power of this toolbox. It’s not that it’s a five-year goal: it could be one year, ten years or one hundred years. It’s not even required to be a goal. It could be an objective, mission or vision. The power is in writing it down.
There is a powerful way to write your five-year goal that is more effective than any other method I’ve researched, studied, tested or used. There are two basic ways you can do it: You could start thinking about a five-year goal by saying to yourself, “Here is where I am today. And, based on where I am today, this is where it looks like I’ll be in five years.” That’s one way of doing it.
That’s not the way I’m going to ask you to do it. That’s writing a goal in the present and figuring out what it’s going to look like in five years. The process I’m recommending comes from Barbara Sher’s book, Wishcraft. What I want you to do is make believe you’ve got a magic wand. (Pick up a pencil or pen and wave it around. Stop worrying if you look silly or not. Wave it like it has magic, because it does.) Wave that wand like you can have anything you want.
What I want you to do now is divorce yourself from the present. I want you to stand in the future of what you want and write a goal based on what you want. This is the most important concept to grasp: Pick the future you want from the future, not from the present. This is to be a goal not connected to or built from where you are today, but based on the future you want to have.
This is how I wrote my goal in 1994:
It is January 27, 1999. I am thrilled and happy being interviewed on Good Morning America about my book Wealth on Any Income. Through my company, The Financial Coach, I am a nationally known and respected speaker and consultant on the issues of people’s feelings and attitudes about money. My workshops, materials, tapes and books have helped thousands of people handle their money more effectively.
Let’s examine the components of this goal.
“It is January 27, 1999.” Was that the date at the time? No, I said write it in the present tense and stand in the future. Mine was five years in the future when I wrote it in 1994.
“I am thrilled and happy being interviewed (here are the feelings and the action verbs) on Good Morning America about my book Wealth on Any Income.” When I show up on this show, will you be able to measure if this happened? It is specific, isn’t it?
“Through my company, The Financial Coach, I am considered a nationally known and respected speaker and consultant on the issues of people’s feelings and attitudes about money. My workshops, materials, tapes and books have helped thousands of people handle their money more effectively.” That’s what I wrote.
I only had three handicaps when I wrote that goal. The first handicap was I didn’t know how to write well. Second, I didn’t know how to write a book. And third, I didn’t even know anyone who knew how to write a book.
Would it have made any sense to write this goal if I stood in the present and looked at where I was? No. Instead, I stepped into the future and I wrote a goal based on what I wanted! And, guess what? The handicaps got solved.
I shared the goal with my ex-wife. I said, “I want to have a book out, but I don’t know how to write a book.” She responded, “Why don’t you talk to Steve?” This is her brother, my ex-brother-in-law. I forgot he was an author! Have you heard of the publishing house, Prentice-Hall, the big publishing company? That’s who published his books. And, guess what? There were only four authors with that company that generated more in book revenues than he did. He was their fifth largest, income-producing author, with a seven-figure annual income. The guy knows how to write books, and it’s my own ex-brother-in-law. So I called him up and said, “Steve, Will you show me?” and he said, “Of course.”
I went to his home in Del Mar and I found out the mechanics of how to write a book. Now, the only problem was, I didn’t know how to write.
Next, as a member of an apartment owners association, I was given the opportunity to write some articles for their magazine. I didn’t think I knew how to write, but because I continued to share with people what I wanted, I met someone who was writing for a newspaper, Mischa Martin. I asked her (again, help from other people) if she would read my article and give me some feedback. And she said, “Sure.”
We got together over lunch one day. She was looking over my article and asked if it was okay to make some corrections. I said that would be fine. She showed me how I had the present tense and the past tense in the same paragraph. She corrected the grammar. She asked me what I meant to say with some sentences. With her red pen, she cleaned up the whole thing. When she handed it back to me, it looked liked it bled to death, so I commented, “Boy, I knew I didn’t know how to write.”
She said, “You write beautifully, what are you talking about?”
I responded, “What do you mean? Look at all these corrections you made.”
She looked at me kind of puzzled and said, “I just did what an editor would do.”
I blurted, “Oh! You mean that’s not the same as writing?”
She replied, “No, writers write. Editors edit.”
I’ve never forgotten that, and I would have never learned it unless I had written a goal from the future, not the present.
Something else I learned: I can be an author, and not even write down one word. Do you think Lee Iacocca or Jerry West wrote their own autobiographies? I can tell you they didn’t. They were the authors, but not the writers. A writer was hired who physically sat down and wrote the book.
Your Five-Year Financial Goal
Now it’s your turn. I want you to take five minutes to write either a financial or a career goal that describes what you want five years in the future, written from the future. If you take any more than five minutes, then you may be filtering out what you think you can have. Stop listening now and write down what you want as a five-year career or financial goal. Obviously if you are driving, you will have to do this later. But don’t wait to do this until the right time. The right time is right now.
Fill in the blank with a date 5 years in the future
It is ________________________________________ (date). I am Fill in the blank with your feelings and the action verb(s) _____________________ ________________________.
If you are walking, jogging or driving, when will you do this? Did you stop and write? Come on! This is for you. If you were in one of my workshops you couldn’t get away without writing a five-year goal. Everyone else around you would be writing while you were staring into space. I’ve got what I want. It’s time for you to work on getting what you want. By the way, if you have some conversation in your head about what you deserve, or don’t deserve, drop it! Just write what you want, please.
You cannot do the next step unless you’ve written your five-year goal.
For the next step, you can either work backwards to figure out where you need to be at 2 years, 1 year, 6 months, and so on. Or, you can jump to what needs to be done tomorrow.
Fill in: It is ___and whatever date you are listening to this ___________________
This process came from the book Wishcraft by Barbara Sher. It’s one of the best books I’ve read on how to get what you want. Barbara was a therapist in New York and did workshops all over the country for the Learning Annex. When I attended one of her workshops she made a suggestion to me that sped up by years the attainment of my goals.
To figure out what you can do tomorrow, create a list of all of the items you can imagine which need to be done to achieve your goal. Look over your list and ask yourself the question, “Can I do this tomorrow?”
It seems like every goal I’ve seen had the same first step. It was research. Research is going to Google, a library, bookstore, magazine stand, or talking to someone who might have some information.
As an example, let’s say you want to be a doctor in five years. Tomorrow you could talk to a doctor to find out what to do first. You could call up and ask, “What do I do to get started? What do you suggest? What do you recommend? Who else can I talk to?” You could go up to a librarian and ask for books to research. You could call a medical school and ask for some advice.
If you want to have an international business you could call the chamber of commerce, go to the library, or ask someone you know if they know someone who has an international business. Key point: When you ask someone for assistance and they don’t have the information or knowledge on your subject, ask them who they know who might know, and contact that person.
The Action Structure to Produce Results
What you are now beginning to create I call the Action Structure to Produce Results. You’re writing down what you want. You’re writing the timeframe for completing certain milestones, you’re figuring out what you have to do to get started, and you’re going to be talking to people who can assist you.
Now you must write down specifically what you will do tomorrow. Let me repeat that. You must write down specifically what you will do tomorrow. You must write down who you will talk to, where you will go, and what time of day you will do what’s needed. This is where your appointment book comes into play, or calendar, smart phone or whatever you use to remind yourself of what needs to be done. If you don’t have one, go buy one, that’s your first step. Go out tomorrow and get an appointment book or daily planner. The structure that produces results comes from writing down what you need to do and placing it where you will see it so you can act on it.
Also, today or tomorrow, find the people, or person who’ll be willing to hold you accountable for doing what needs to be done to get what you want. Remember, you don’t do this stuff by yourself. “Wealth creation is a team sport, not a solo sport.” Where do you find this person? Ask a friend, relative, co-worker, or neighbor. Join a 12-step program, church, temple, or support group. Form your own if you can’t find one. Bring together people who want to change their lives and use this book as a guide to getting started.
Now, finish this sentence: Tomorrow I will _(whatever)__at ____ (time of day)___.
Remember, write it down where you will see it and take action on it. Tell others what you are going to do and ask them to check with you to see if you did it. Set up a specific date and times to speak with them. You could earn a living as a “life coach” just by following this structure.
The resource section in the first edition of the book listed various books, tapes, meetings, magazines, newsletters and organizations you could use for support in achieving the goals you desire. The concept behind that list was more important than what was on the list.
Let me illustrate the concept by asking you the following:
Did you eat yesterday?
Did you eat again today, or plan to?
Yes? Oh! What was wrong with what you ate yesterday?
Is there something wrong with you that you need to eat every day?
Do these seem like dumb questions?
Of course, there’s nothing wrong with what you ate, how you ate, or who you are. It’s natural to eat every day. Your body uses up the food and you eat again. This is natural and normal.
Let’s try some other questions:
Did you bathe yesterday?
Did you bathe today?
Do you figure you’re probably going to bathe again tomorrow?
If you answered yes, does this mean there is something wrong with the way you bathe?
Could there be something wrong with you?
Gee, maybe this is natural, too. Is it possible this is normal, too? Your body gets dirty and you have to wash it again if you want to be socially acceptable.
Okay, I know I’m going to get you on this one. Do you feel inspired to take action on your financial goals because of me reading this book to you? If you’ve listened this far I would expect your answer to be yes. Have you ever been to a workshop, or read a book, or listened to a sermon or tape program and afterwards felt motivated to take some action? Did that enthusiasm wear off after a few days? Did you ever wonder if there was something wrong with the message you got, the person who delivered it or something wrong with you when it wore off after a few days? Lots of people say they felt this way, or thought this.
I don’t get it. What produces more results; your body or your mind? Your mind, right? It’s the mind that produces the results, and you feed and bathe your body every day, and it wears off - that is normal. When motivation wears off, why do you act like something’s wrong? How come you’re not rushing to read another book, or listen to another tape or CD, or pick up the phone and talk to someone who can support you? This is called feeding your mind. If this is what you do, congratulations! If this isn’t what you do, how come you’re not feeding your mind again? Isn’t that what’s missing? When you’re not motivated or inspired anymore it means your mind is hungry. So feed it.
That’s why the resource list was so important as a concept. It listed food for your head. It’s natural for the motivation to wear off, just like it’s natural for the food to wear off. It doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with what you heard or who said it. It doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with you. It’s natural that it wears off; it means your mind is hungry and you just need to feed it.
Just like your body needs food, it also needs exercise. If you went to the gym and lifted weights once, would you expect that to last you for the rest of your life? No? Then why would you expect to attend a financial planning workshop and expect to be inspired for life?
It seems as though many people think, “Oh, golly, I guess there’s something wrong with me.” It would be like thinking, “I showed up to the gym once and lifted some weights and figured now I’m fit.” Or, “I went to a workshop once and got inspired, but it wore off, so there’s no point going again. I figure it ought to last for two years.” That’s stupid, isn’t it?
Our drive, motivation and inspiration will wear off just like the food we eat. We all need to continue to feed our minds because that’s what produces the results. With awareness, tools and actions, you can create the financial prosperity and financial freedom you desire. After you complete the next two sections, I invite you to write to me and tell me how successful you’ve been using this program. I’d love to hear from you.
How the Problem Started
You’re not alone and it’s not your fault. Remember the questions I asked about where you learned how to handle money? Whenever I ask those questions, the results are the same. Whether it’s in my public workshops or corporate training, when I address a conference of accountants or financial planners, or even when I train high school teachers, the answer is the same: Less than 10% of the people were given instructions early in life on how to handle money. That means while we are all expected to know how to handle money, 90% of us have not been taught. This is why I say it’s not your fault.
Here’s your opportunity to grow: Write down YOUR five year goal and who you will work with to bring it to fruition.
In the next episode we’ll address some challenges and how to solve them. We’ll cover Step 3 where we will discuss the difference between good debt and bad debt, and how you can use good debt to create wealth.
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Until next week, be prosperous. Bye, bye for now.
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