Have you ever seen a person you know, that had the same beginnings as you, but then years later he became extremely wealthy and successful, to the extent that you wondered about what he did to achieve all of this or how he got started?
During a weekend, I saw a picture on the internet showing a Lamborghini Car and beside it a question which said: ‘’ why haven’t you ever seen a Lamborghini advertisement on TV? Because the people who can afford them aren’t sitting around watching TV’’.
After I finished reading I smiled and I started asking myself some questions. And the best thing which can happen to a human being is an incident which triggers him to ask himself and to start searching for some answers. So I started asking myself: ‘’why I never thought about it from this angle before? And what do successful people do which separates them from the others? What makes the difference?’’. And for the weeks which followed this funny incident, I couldn’t stop myself from thinking about answers to my questions. I focused on this topic to the extent that I was trying to analyze any success story that I saw in front of me. But I was never able to get concrete answers. Until one day something happened by coincidence, and I succeeded in finding some answers. But the comic thing was that I found those answers in an unexpected place.
I am a fan of watching old movies and old short series. One day I was watching an old series which is inspired by a true story. This story was about a man who was very poor and with no education and his journey until he rose up to the top to be a huge millionaire and a successful businessman.
The story started with him searching for a job in order to earn his living, and after days and weeks of searching, he finally found a job as a hard worker in a metal scrap shop where his job was to transfer the huge scrap metal parts and to organize them.
I was inspired by his life story to the extent that I watched this series three times from the nineties till now. But I never saw or searched for the details. I never questioned myself. I remember that I was watching this series for the first time together with family and friends and our intentions were only to watch the series as spectators who are watching an interesting life story which will end a beautiful successful ending. I had sight but I could not see.
After watching it another time by coincidence, while my brain was focusing on trying to find answers to my questions, I was able to understand the hidden message, and I discovered that this man was always doing three things differently that I was never focusing on before:
First, he was very persistent. He was never targeting or thinking that he will become a great businessman or a millionaire from the beginning. As any usual person in his situation, he was only dreaming of finding a job and having a steady income so that he can survive. But what he had from the beginning was persistence. He was very persistent no matter what he passed through and no matter how many times he got knocked down. And each time he got knocked down he was always rising back up and continuing his road without giving up.
Second, He was monitoring his habits and he was constantly replacing bad ones with good ones. As an example, in the series and after he was just hired, he heard from a lot of his colleagues that their salaries are not covering their expenses. So he started observing them and he discovered that they spend a lot of money each day on coffee and tea and other small things which seem uncostly, but when they are compounded and added together, in the long run, they amount to a lot of money. That encouraged him to monitor himself and to control his expenses especially the soft small ones which we as humans generally don’t notice. He used also to set some savings targets and tried his best to achieve them, and on top of this, he used to set targets for how much, in general, he wants to spend per day on coffee and tea and other small things.
Finally, he was always doing what the others do not do. I remember in the series that his official working days in the shop were six days per week with average working hours of 10 hours per day and with only one vacation day per week. So normally, on the vacation day, all of his colleagues were using their day off to relax and recover. But he did not follow this approach. He was always trying to find a way to earn more money and to grow, and that triggered him to think about selling some metal scrap parts on the vacation day on his own, especially that there were no shops open which mean no competition. And because he was always monitoring his expenses he was able to save some compounded money and this money was sufficient for his startup. And that’s how it all started with him.
I was very impressed with those three lessons to the extent that I started applying them directly and I was always telling myself: ‘’I will try, and even if I couldn’t apply them fully from the beginning, I will keep trying step by step until I reach what I want’’.
And as soon as I started applying those three lessons, my life started to change literally.
I started believing more that life is about ups and downs and that I can win one time and I can lose another, so I became more persistent.
I started changing my personal bad habits and started tracking my expenses, and I discovered a lot of things about my financial habits after only one month of monitoring them. I also discovered that those small expenses when they are saved and compounded together, they can make huge savings in the long run.
I ignored the naysayers and the people who tried to convince me to be just a copycat from them or to take everything ‘’as it is’’. And now, and before taking any action, I always start questioning myself three questions: ‘’Why am I doing this action? Can I make this action in a different unique way? And are there any possible ways of improvement? ‘’. Asking myself those three questions helped me come up with better ideas. This reflected on my life as well as my work and attracted the attention of my superiors and the people around me, and gave them the message that I am different.
And now, each time I see a Lamborghini picture or a Lamborghini car in the street, I always recall those three lessons that I learned: to keep persistent no matter how many times I fall down, to monitor my habits and form better ones, and to do what others don’t.
As Jim Rohn, the author and motivational speaker said, “For things to change, YOU have to change. For things to get better, YOU have to get better. For things to improve, YOU have to improve. When YOU grow, EVERYTHING in your life grows with you.”
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