Check’s in the Mail

Inbox and outbox in one.
Inbox and outbox in one.

I just now opened the letter from my company containing my September commission check. Yippee! That’s a small Yippee!, because the check’s not huge, but it’s worthy of celebration nonetheless. From such starts are mighty somethings built.

It’s the kind of something that makes the difference. The way money’s earned is important to me. Selling to people who either don’t need, don’t want or won’t benefit from my products wouldn’t sit well. I have problems with otherwise legal businesses that aren’t good – gambling enterprises spring to mind, likewise tobacco conglomerates and even liquor vendors. No-one forces anyone to buy or be a part of that stuff, nor are they 100% bad, but still, I wonder about their overall usefulness to the world.

In that vein, I like to think of money that comes into our lives as sweet money or sour money. Sweet money is the result of either doing the kind of work you really like, the dividend of doing some good for society, is passively but responsibly earned, or some combination of those elements. I like to think that we – you and I – could eventually earn most or all of our money this way.

Sour money would be money we gain from the opposite side of that coin. Money from a job we hate, or a dead-end job, or cash earned from ripping off people, or taken irresponsibly or by deception falls into this category. Sour money sours our life, in my opinion, and needs to be supplanted as soon as possible with sweet money.

My aim is to earn enough passive sweet money so that I can choose my days’ activities. It’s the end result of my building your own trust find idea. By creating a sufficient pool of, in my case, happy customers who return to buy their household essentials each month, that aim is possible. The truly shocking thought is just how possible it is, with time and diligence.

Even though I start with but a tiny check and a muted Yippee!

On The Edge of Experience

That's my car, in the woods. The redwoods.
That’s my car, in the woods. The redwoods.

Some weeks I stand up and take a good look around. Inhaling a deep breath, I like to take stock of what’s happening beyond the immediate things, to check all bearings of the compass.

This week is one of those where I feel we’re all on the edge of our experience  horizon, right at the limit of the bell curve. Don’t these frightening facts make you want to create your own independent source of income?

Taken from Zero Hedge:

~ According to Gallup, we have just seen the largest drop in U.S. economic confidence since 2008.

~ One of the largest furniture manufacturers in America was recently forced into bankruptcy.

[important]~ Overall, corporations announced the elimination of 387,384 jobs through the first nine months of this year.[/important]

~ The number of announced job cuts in September 2013 was 19 percent higher than the number of announced job cuts in September 2012.

~ The labor force participation rate is the lowest that it has been in 35 years.

~ Approximately one out of every four part-time workers in America is living below the poverty line.

[important]~ Incredibly, only 47 percent of all adults in America have a full-time job at this point.[/important]

~ U.S. consumer delinquencies are starting to rise again.

~ The Postal Service recently defaulted on a 5.6 billion dollar retiree health benefit payment.

~ The national debt has increased more than twice as fast as U.S. GDP has grown over the past two years.

[important]~ Median household income in the United States has fallen for five years in a row.[/important]

~ Former President Jimmy Carter says that the middle class in America has declined so dramatically that the middle class of today resembles those that were living in poverty when he was in the White House.

~ According to a Gallup poll that was recently released, 20.0% of all Americans did not have enough money to buy food that they or their families needed at some point over the past year.  That is just under the record of 20.4% that was set back in November 2008.

~ Right now, one out of every five households in the United States is on food stamps.  There are going to be a lot of struggling families out there this winter.


Not Fenced In


Is is a fence, or is it a challenge?
Is it a fence, or is it a challenge?

Between us and our aims are the obstacles that prevent our aims being achievements. If the path between here and there was as well-paved and straight as a New York sidewalk, everything would be easy.

And everyone would be doing it.

Scarcity is what makes doing the hard stuff worthwhile. In other words, because obstacles and challenges  exist, few people apply the energy and creativity. That’s where the scarcity lies – few are the people who want their aims so badly that they don’t see obstacles, they see opportunities. They don’t see fences, they see through the fences.

Fences are designed to either keep people out, or to keep people in. Oftentimes, it’s not clear which one has precedence. But there are a few things about fences we need to understand. For one thing, no fence goes on forever. On the northwest frontier between India and Pakistan is a giant fence, so well lit at night you can see it from an overflying airliner. But this fence, the biggest I’ve ever seen, does not extend beyond the Himalaya, nor beyond the Arabian Sea. It’s big, but not infinite.

Fences are often see-through. That’s a big advantage for those of us wanting to breach them, because we can decide on the best course of action depending upon what’s on the other side. We can climb over, or go under, or go around or simply snip a hole in the fence. Seeing what’s over there helps us keep focus and plan.

And some fences are simply not fences that we need to bother with. Sometimes the best course of action is to simply turn around and see what’s in the other direction. Which shows that any obstacle can be thought of as existing only if we face it.

Deciding that might be the most important weapon a fence has.

The Virtue of Patience

We wait all night for this moment.
We wait all night for this moment.

I’m so new at the sales game that I don’t trust my instincts yet. Maybe I should never trust my instincts, and instead rely on something more tangible. What that thing might be I don’t know, although I have a suspicion that experience will end up being high on the list.

My interest in trusting instincts stems from trying to figure out how to think about people I meet who I think would be wonderful customers. To put it another way, when I meet what I consider a person who would benefit from my company’s products, I wonder whether I should approach them right away or some time in the future.

A case in point is a gentleman I know, Chris. I’ll use his real name, because I am pretty sure that one day he will be a customer and therefore feature hereabouts. Chris used to tend bar at a restaurant I went to a few times. He stood out as a superior service-oriented guy, one with an awesome memory and understanding of what makes a customer happy. Chris always remembered my name, my drink, and a little of my history. He knew how to connect.

Having given up drinking for a while now, I hadn’t seen Chris for maybe two years. I was at my favorite coffee spot, and there he was. Naturally, he spotted me first, and called out. Being so out of context I stumbled over who he was, but only for a second. Unbeknownst to me his wife worked in the lounge too, although I’d only seen her there a couple of times.

Chris has given up the bartending to take up healthcare sales – long term care to be specific. Seems like a good move to me, especially because we’re in Florida, and because he won’t be selling insurance. But that job is still working its way towards him, with some of the details yet to be solidified. He’s waiting for the owner to officially sign him up. So it’s a stressful and uncertain time. Probably not the right point at which to start him on another new idea.

However, it’s crystal clear to me (instinct only!) that Chris and Caitlyn are ideal prospects. Not only are they young, with a young daughter, they’re both fitness experts and clearly into being both healthy and wealthy. Caitlyn, I discovered today is a qualified personal trainer too. Could this be any better?

But I’m going to wait just a fraction of time. Not only do I want Chris to think of me differently from my drinking days, but I want to allow him time to mellow into his new job. I have no clue about how much headspace he has for yet another element in his life, but I’ll guess that it’s not much. Being a guy, I understand that when he’s squared away with that, he’ll be fine.

Patience, then, I hope will be rewarded. I could make the best presentation to the most likely people in the world, but if the timing’s wrong for them, it might all be for naught.

The other side of that coin is that I will never know the state of someone else’s mind, and that my job is simply to set an appointment and give a presentation. Maybe. But these two folks aren’t going anywhere, so a few weeks won’t make a difference.

We’ll see.