The Greatest Cause of Financial Failure

What small tips and tricks have you found that made a difference in your personal finance life? What great article did you just read? Found a great blog?

Moderator: lvergon

29days
Posts: 12
Joined: Tue Jan 04, 2011 4:33 am
Contact:

The Greatest Cause of Financial Failure

Postby 29days » Mon Feb 14, 2011 1:50 pm

Our greatest cause of financial failure is a general lack of financial knowledge and awareness. We erroneously think our shoddy financial state is the result of our “less than desirable” income, but that is merely a faulty deflection – it’s blaming the effect rather than the cause.

Most of us will carelessly and unknowingly let a fortune slip through our hands during our lifetime.

Let me share a simple story that illustrates how this frequently happens.

Although this incident took place over twenty years ago, I still remember it vividly. I was enjoying a beverage one afternoon at one of Kingston’s many patio bars when I couldn’t help but overhear a conversation among the three owners of the establishment. The proprietors were three brothers named Andy, Tom and Mike. They were in their late twenties or early thirties and they lacked for nothing when it came to energy or testosterone.

Andy was the oldest, and clearly the brother with the final say on many matters.

This story began with Tom excitedly entering the bar to announce that he had just scored four “free” tickets to see the Blue Jays in Toronto.

If you’re not a baseball fan you might be wondering why this would even be remotely exciting. Come to think of it, if you are a baseball fan you’re probably wondering why this would be even remotely exciting, but back then not only were the Blue Jays winning the World Series, but they played in the newly built, state-of-the-art retractable SkyDome, and tickets were next to impossible to get.

As Tom explained to Andy, these tickets were worth at least $200 and since they were free they had better make plans because the game was only two days away.

I think Andy had either quit smoking or he used it like worry beads, but he always had a plastic drinking straw in his mouth. Andy sat down at a nearby table and chewed on his drinking straw as he considered Tom’s proposal. After a couple of moments of thought Andy bluntly replied that he couldn’t go because he couldn’t afford it.

Mike, the youngest brother, was at the other end of the bar and when he heard Andy suggest that he couldn’t afford to go he almost came unglued. “What are you not understanding about free?” he shouted as he hurried over to confront his older brother. “How can you not afford free?” Mike demanded.

Andy was thoughtful. He wasn’t prone to hasty decisions. He chewed on his straw for a few more moments, while he genuinely rethought the matter. Mike and Tom hovered over Andy as he pondered his decision and then he said it again, “Nope. I can’t afford it.”

Tom threw up his hands in exasperation and said to Andy in exaggerated emphasis; “Andy, THE TICKETS ARE FREE! NO COST! FREE!”

At this point Andy could no longer contain himself. “Free? Free? Are you two nuts? What do free tickets mean anyway? Why is it so hard for you to understand that I don’t have the money right now? Look, let me break it down for you! The game starts at 1 pm right? We drive three hours each way so add $30 for a tank of gas. Parking is $25. I know that you guys will have a few drinks during the game so let’s add another $30 for beer. I also know that while you’re in Toronto, you’re going to want dinner after the game so let’s add another $200 to that. I also happen to know that after dinner you’re going to want to go to a couple of clubs so let’s add at least another $200 to the tab, and it’s a safe bet that none of us will be in any condition to drive the three hours home so let’s add another $200 for a hotel.

“Now,” continued Andy, “stop me if anything I’m saying isn’t making sense. When we finally wake up Sunday morning, you guys are going to be famished, and I know you’re going to eat breakfast at the hotel so let’s add another $30 to the total.”

Andy had been jotting his numbers down as he spoke them, so he took a moment to tally them up. When he finished his addition he threw the pencil onto the table and said, “Your free tickets will cost us $715.”

There was a moment of stunned silence. By now the rest of the patrons had tuned into the conversation so no one spoke for a few moments while Andy’s calculations sunk in.

Strangely enough it was Andy who spoke first. Breaking into a broad grin he said, “Okay, let’s go. Just don’t tell me it’s not going to cost anything because you got ‘free’ tickets!”

Me, and everyone else had a good laugh at Andy’s unexpected response, but I’ll never forget the lesson.

Andy really wanted to go to the game and clearly part of him knew he really shouldn’t go for whatever financial reasons were going on at the time. But the interesting thing is that Andy was the only one who bothered to look at the big picture.

We all make decisions and do things from time to time that we know may have some negative consequences. The important thing is that we make our decisions from knowledge and awareness. For financial reasons Andy knew he shouldn’t go to the game, and maybe he decided to over-rule those reasons because he felt it was more important to spend some time with his brothers. I never inquired why he changed his mind nor does it matter. The message is that Andy thought the problem over carefully, looked at all the ramifications and made his decision from a position of awareness.

That’s today’s simple lesson. Make whatever decision you desire, but don’t get fooled by “free” tickets, “free-coupons” and other sleight-of-hand sales tricks. Advertisers successfully use these tactics all the time. They give away little incentives or weekend getaways to get us to patronize their business and before we know it wham … we’ve spent far more money than we ever intended.

When it comes to spending, saving or investing the money you earn make certain you’re aware and that your eyes are wide open.

Richard is the author of 29 DAYS ... to save money and achieve financial independence. You can learn more at http://29daysto.com/

Stripes_Fan
Posts: 22
Joined: Sat Jan 29, 2011 8:23 am
Contact:

Re: The Greatest Cause of Financial Failure

Postby Stripes_Fan » Mon Feb 14, 2011 6:16 pm

Good read, this reminds me of every time my wife talks me in to taking a vacation. We're going to Las Vegas for her birthday and it will be "free" because her parents are paying for everything. Free except we have to pay for plane tickets and whatever else they don't pay for.

29days
Posts: 12
Joined: Tue Jan 04, 2011 4:33 am
Contact:

Re: The Greatest Cause of Financial Failure

Postby 29days » Tue Feb 15, 2011 10:12 am

Thanks for your reply. That was my smile for the day. Alas, none of us can totally escape ... so I guess the next best thing is at least to know that we're going to get screwed!! :)

MrPolarZero
Posts: 21
Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2011 1:57 pm
Contact:

Re: The Greatest Cause of Financial Failure

Postby MrPolarZero » Tue Feb 15, 2011 9:34 pm

very interesting story. Perhaps it is really vital if you are armed with financial knowledge so you can prevent these dilemmas.

kombat
Posts: 1979
Joined: Tue Mar 11, 2008 12:19 pm
Location: Ottawa, Canada
Contact:

Re: The Greatest Cause of Financial Failure

Postby kombat » Wed Feb 16, 2011 6:22 am

MrPolarZero wrote:very interesting story. Perhaps it is really vital if you are armed with financial knowledge so you can prevent these dilemmas.


OK, this is driving me nuts. This poster is clearly a bot, posting computer-generated posts. But where are the spam links?

Tightwad
Posts: 1351
Joined: Mon Nov 01, 2010 5:15 pm
Contact:

Re: The Greatest Cause of Financial Failure

Postby Tightwad » Wed Feb 16, 2011 7:11 am

kombat wrote:
MrPolarZero wrote:very interesting story. Perhaps it is really vital if you are armed with financial knowledge so you can prevent these dilemmas.


OK, this is driving me nuts. This poster is clearly a bot, posting computer-generated posts. But where are the spam links?


Isn't all of this user's posts literally spam without links since all it does is promote this "29 days" crap?

Every post reads like a book excerpt.

Stripes_Fan
Posts: 22
Joined: Sat Jan 29, 2011 8:23 am
Contact:

Re: The Greatest Cause of Financial Failure

Postby Stripes_Fan » Wed Feb 16, 2011 1:19 pm

Yes, I thought he could be a bot as well, or a foreigner which is more likely (probably chinese) He doesn't only respond to 29's topics he responded to mine as well. Maybe someone is trying to make the forum seem more active by having these short posts. I'm good at conspiracy theories.

DoingHomework
Moderator
Posts: 5602
Joined: Wed Sep 23, 2009 9:01 am
Contact:

Re: The Greatest Cause of Financial Failure

Postby DoingHomework » Thu Feb 17, 2011 12:41 pm

@29days: What is the point of all your posts, aside from promoting your books?

And, why don't you actually respond to anything? You simply post a long message full of parables but no actual information then you are gone.

Definitely seems like spam to me.

29days
Posts: 12
Joined: Tue Jan 04, 2011 4:33 am
Contact:

Re: The Greatest Cause of Financial Failure

Postby 29days » Thu Feb 17, 2011 2:07 pm

I have absolutely no idea about this bot stuff. If there is anything that I can do to prevent it please let me know.

Sincerely, Richard Fast

DoingHomework
Moderator
Posts: 5602
Joined: Wed Sep 23, 2009 9:01 am
Contact:

Re: The Greatest Cause of Financial Failure

Postby DoingHomework » Thu Feb 17, 2011 4:13 pm

29days wrote:I have absolutely no idea about this bot stuff. If there is anything that I can do to prevent it please let me know.

Sincerely, Richard Fast


Once again, no response.

What is your main thesis Mr 29?

What is the capital of Colorado?

I don't think you are a bot but you do seem incapable of engaging in dialog. It seems like copying and pasting excerpts from a book you are trying to sell is enough to tax your mental resources. Am I wrong?

29days
Posts: 12
Joined: Tue Jan 04, 2011 4:33 am
Contact:

Re: The Greatest Cause of Financial Failure

Postby 29days » Fri Feb 18, 2011 1:25 pm

Hey DoingHomeWork - I'm not trying to piss anyone off. I'll stop posting. Best regards.

DoingHomework
Moderator
Posts: 5602
Joined: Wed Sep 23, 2009 9:01 am
Contact:

Re: The Greatest Cause of Financial Failure

Postby DoingHomework » Fri Feb 18, 2011 1:54 pm

29days wrote:Hey DoingHomeWork - I'm not trying to piss anyone off. I'll stop posting. Best regards.


It is not my place to tell you to stop posting. I was merely getting the impression that you were a bot and was testing you on it. You post copies of the rambling newsletter you send out and you do not otherwise participate in the forum. It just seems odd.

If you feel you have something to say then why don't you comment on others' posts and offer helpful, specific advice to people independent of trying to sell them a "program."

Tightwad
Posts: 1351
Joined: Mon Nov 01, 2010 5:15 pm
Contact:

Re: The Greatest Cause of Financial Failure

Postby Tightwad » Fri Feb 18, 2011 1:55 pm

29days wrote:Hey DoingHomeWork - I'm not trying to piss anyone off. I'll stop posting. Best regards.


Nobody said you had to stop posting. We'd just like more interaction so we can learn from each other. Posting a bunch of pages from your books might help your book sales & blog readership but it doesn't do much for the rest of us.

Stripes_Fan
Posts: 22
Joined: Sat Jan 29, 2011 8:23 am
Contact:

Re: The Greatest Cause of Financial Failure

Postby Stripes_Fan » Sat Feb 19, 2011 8:06 pm

I think he just wants input on his book, nothing is wrong with that. If you think he's making a killing off of advertising his book on here, he's not.

User avatar
Jethro
Site Admin
Posts: 238
Joined: Wed Apr 04, 2007 9:14 pm
Location: Orygun
Contact:

Re: The Greatest Cause of Financial Failure

Postby Jethro » Mon Feb 21, 2011 10:24 am

Stripes_Fan wrote:I think he just wants input on his book, nothing is wrong with that.
Actually, if he is just posting excerpts and links, without actually discussing any of it after he posts it, then there is something wrong with that. If he is not willing to discuss it here, then his posts are considered spam.

29days- If you would be willing to participate in discussions in the threads you make (including questions specifically addressed to you), I would not have a problem with you posting here. But if you are not willing to discuss your own posts on this forum, then I think it would be best if you followed through with your last post in this thread.
If life gives you tomatoes, make pico de gallo.


Return to “Tips, Tricks, Links, Pointers”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users