Passionate Pursuit of Purpose

The spoils go to the persistent

Posted by on Mar 12, 2014 in Character Development, Finding Destiny, Leadership | 2 comments

The spoils go to the persistent

Dr Kelly Flanagan made the following comment in a recent post:

“I have been a witness to people who quit avoiding suffering and decide to carry it—venturing into the world full of courage, because they know they can bear the weight of it, because they know it won’t overwhelm them, because they know they can stand strong in the midst of it.”

Success doesn’t usually go to the most talented or the luckiest.  It usually goes to the one who was beat down, failed, was rejected…. And then they got back up at tried again this time a little smarter.  Every time they get knocked they get up again.Depositphotos_3337475_original

Four years ago my investing in rental real estate had almost bankrupted our family.  I had to negotiate out of a deal I had made.  I had made a commitment and it had led my family to the point… “where keeping that commitment would have meant taking food and shelter from my children.”

At that moment I could have quit, here are a list of excuses that would have convinced most it was a “smart decision to get out of rental properties:”

  • It is too hard to find good tenants; especially in that neighborhood.
  • Maintenance costs on older homes are to high
  • The economy is so bad tenants don’t have money to pay rent
  • You have to be rich to invest in real estate
  • With all the new rules it is impossible to borrow money to renovate a home

I didn’t make a list of excuses, I made a list of lessons learned.  Then I got better as a property manager. I became a better business man.  And I became a better husband and father. Using these lessons I focused on the properties we had left. I was determined to do it better.  Many of these hard lessons became the foundation of our current success.

2013 was our best year ever, and I still have lots of improvements to make to my systems and procedures.  Our success would not have happened if it wasn’t for those hard lessons and experiences we had 4 years ago.
Our rental income is now a substantial source of income for our family.  What once threatened to take food from my children, now allows me to stay at home with them 2 days each week.  We are on our way toward our long term family goals.

I could have let frustration, suffering, struggle, and pain stop me from being a property owner. I could have let those failures beat me up.  I choose to chalk-up the $50,000 loss to education expense.  I chose to persist and pursue my dream.

My success in real estate hasn’t come because of luck, talent, or inheritance.  Success came because I persisted after setbacks and failures. Letting my failures and setbacks teach me.

What is your success story? When have you been beaten down but kept going to find success?

 

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail Read More

How to increase your minimum wage!

Posted by on Feb 11, 2014 in Character Development, Finding Destiny, Perfect questions, Personal Finance | 1 comment

How to increase your minimum wage!

First the impact of raising the minimum wage for everyone:

1.    You will have fewer jobs:now hiring

Most minimum wage jobs are basic entry level jobs. These jobs require little training or specialized skills.

Which means; when the labor costs gets to a certain level; companies can often develop a machine to replace that job.  (PS the machine rarely takes breaks, doesn’t need days off, no health insurance). Some jobs will be replaced by automated systems and machines.  Fewer jobs for those with little training or skills.

How many baggers do you see at your grocery store these days?  How often do you self-scan your items? How often do you hear an automated response when you call a company?  Companies found a way to design away the jobs.

How many Cashiers does Amazon have?

2.    People have less incentive to improve themselves.

If your minimum wage is $11 to $15 per hour some people will be satisfied with that income level and not do technical training that makes them more valuable to society.

Every day we each rely on millions of people to make our lives more convenient and enjoyable.  Many of these people you will never see, and yet their contribution to our lives is vital.  The more skills and education people have the more they can contribute to the rest of us.

So, please go out and be the best “you” you can be, it will bless the rest of us.

3.    Your burger will get more expensive:

That increase in labor cost has to be passed onto the consumers.  It will increase inflation.  Prices of products increase and this will especially hurt those most sensitive to these price changes.  Those most sensitive to price changes are often the same who the minimum wage increase is designed to help.

The cost of living will rise and people will again scream for another increase to the minimum wage. The cycle and situation will remain the same…

So, What is the solution?

Minimum wage jobs are not designed to be a career.  They are a starting point not the finish line.

Here are 3 idea for increasing your minimum wage:

    • Education:  This doesn’t have to be a traditional college so here are some other options
      • Technical school, there are great programs for becoming a better you in several fields.
      • Apprenticeship, some of these are formal, or you can also find that talented local person who will train you in an informal process through experience.\
      • Military: most jobs in the military don’t involve carrying a rifle every day. They train you with real world skills that will transfer to your life after the military
    • Entrepreneurship: this is finding a need and filling it by providing a product or service.  Instead of looking for a job look for a way to serve others. If you looking for a way to get started try Dan Miller’s 48 low cost business ideas.(Affiliate LInk)
  • Persistence: If there is a position you want, keep pursuing it.  Then once you get it, keep pursuing and working hard.

“When you do more than you get paid for eventually you’ll be paid for more than you do.”- Zig Ziglar

Comment below: tell us what other ways people can increase their minimum wage?

 

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail Read More

Doing your taxes is as easy as managing your fantasy football team?

Posted by on Jan 23, 2014 in Perfect questions, Personal Finance | 4 comments

Doing your taxes is as easy as managing your fantasy football team?

1040One of the DIY tax programs describes doing your own taxes “as easy as managing your Fantasy football team.”  This may or may not be true depending on 3 factors:

1.    How good of a Fantasy Manager are you?

2.    How complicated your Tax situation is?

3.    How much time you plan on investing in your tax education?

How good are you?

I play in 3 fantasy leagues and I am a mediocre manager.  I spend probably 1 to 2 hours per week during the season reading news.  Then I listen to sports radio and watch 3 to 5 games each week.

During the 15 week season, I spend about 12 hours each week on football related education.  Not including listening to sports radio while driving.  I suspect the better managers spend even more time.  And the worst, ignore their teams, have guys on byes in the starting roster and finish last, and probably spend almost no time.

It is probably not a linear relationship and there is a lot of luck.  However, the more time you spend the greater your chances of winning your league.

How Complex are your taxes?

If you have no kids, don’t own your home, and your only income is from a w-2 job… File your own.  Your difficulty level does compare to “installing a light bulb, or being a bad fantasy manager.”  Easy peazy!

It is amazing how often smart people miss things deductions on their tax return.  Or deduct things that could get them in hot water with the IRS.   Just because you are smart at your specialty, doesn’t mean you will prepare your taxes correctly.  It seems our government enjoys changing the tax rules and adding lots of new ones.

How much time are you going to spend learning about taxes?

I spend about 180 hours per year on my football education.  Thanks to that I am a mediocre fantasy manager.  I spend around 1500 hours each year learning and preparing taxes.  I am a very good preparer, and constantly getting better.  Let a professional’s experience work for you.

Yes I know this article may seem self-serving, and it is because I want to serve you.  I want your taxes done correctly.  I want to see you become wealthier each year.

Last year over 55% of my clients paid less than $95 to have a professional prepare their taxes.  Let me help you file your return with confidence.   Learn more about my tax preparation services here!

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail Read More