The following is a guest post from Nathan Clarke of Millionaire Dojo.
The Easy Way To Go From Ordinary To Extraordinary
If you were to ask people if they would rather be ordinary or extraordinary, you’d probably get a unanimous answer of extraordinary! Most humans want to do things that a lot of other people haven’t yet. The problem is, we don’t put in the work to become extraordinary. A lot of times, all it takes is a small amount of effort over time to progress tremendously. I’ve been guilty of giving up on things in the past that wouldn’t have been very hard to accomplish if I had put in a little time and effort. For me, personally, I get distracted by new ventures and stop working on something to go try something else.
So, how can you be extraordinary when it comes to your wealth? The FIRE movement is definitely becoming more popular, but isn’t the norm by any means. If you’ve got no debt; are saving 20% or more of your income; and have a decent amount invested, you’re probably doing a lot more than the average person. It doesn’t take much to be extraordinary when it comes to money. I’m not talking about becoming a billionaire; that would be extraordinary even among rich people. I’m talking about accumulating enough wealth to be financially independent. You know, the stuff every FI blogger is preaching about these days.
Even though it’s becoming a bigger movement, one of my friends and I are the only two people I know in real life that are actively pursuing early retirement. I probably have a smaller than average network of friends, but I still know a lot of people. So, why isn’t financial independence more popular? Why aren’t more people trying to get out of the rat race as fast as they can? I’d say it’s due to people not being exposed to the concept but that can’t be it. I think it’s what I was saying earlier, most people don’t want to continuously put in the small amount of effort.
Take Dave Ramsey, for instance. The guy gets more popular each year and the only thing he teaches is the basics of finance. He literally calls his own methods “the baby steps.” You could learn 90% of what he teaches by reading one blog post. How is it that he has a huge fan base that tune in every day for years to listen to his show? I think the main reason is because people stop putting in the small amount of effort and have to start over. Sure the callers can be entertaining but the entertainment dies off after a while of listening.
Giving up is the number one reason you aren’t extraordinary.
Giving up is the number one reason you aren’t extraordinary. -- Millionaire Dojo Click To Tweet
I don’t care if it’s money, relationships, careers or any other part of life, giving up is how you stay ordinary. Literally, if you just continue to put in small efforts, over time you’ll stand out. Eventually, you’ll be considered a master of whatever it is because very few people have been doing it as long as you have. My martial arts instructor is in his 70’s and has been training since he was a teenager. I have never seen anyone come close to bettering him and it’s because he’s been doing it so long. Sometimes, it’s okay to give up on something if it isn’t bringing you joy or not getting you closer to where you want to be. Giving up on something you hate doing can be a good thing. Why do we give up on the things that will benefit us and we don’t hate doing? Must be laziness.
Your efforts compound over time.
I’ve only been in the blogging game for a couple of months now but I’ve noticed something. I’m currently getting a lot more page views everyday than when I started. The efforts I made with each post are adding up and the page views are growing because there’s more content on my site. With each new post, there’s the chance of it going viral and drawing more and more people to my website. It’s the same with virtually every other aspect in life. If you are putting in efforts and being creative, you will gain traction over time. This is obvious with investing. Even just putting in small amounts of money each week will see a nice return due to compounding interest.
By taking small steps, you get to see progress quicker.
Coming up with a big plan and having an awesome end result in mind are great things to do when taking on a new venture. If you don’t set little goals though, you are a lot less likely to get to your desired end result. A few months ago, I started counting calories. I had a goal of losing twenty pounds. I was able to shed the weight by only eating 1500 calories and reached my goal in a couple of months. One of the things that kept me motivated was to think in 5lb increments. If I could just get to that next 5 pounds, I’d be that much closer to my end goal! If I hadn’t had the smaller 5lb goals, I might have gotten discouraged and gave up along the way. Using smaller goals is a great way to make progress. My goal of becoming a millionaire is pretty huge so I’ll need a lot of smaller goals to get me there.
So what does it take to become extraordinary with money?
If you take the principle of not giving up, and apply it to the right financial advice, you will become extraordinarily wealthy. Get any non-mortgage debt taken care of, build some savings for emergencies, start putting as much money as possible into Vanguard index funds and your set! That’s the skeleton, anyways, and if you’ll stick with it, you’ll have some extraordinary wealth in a short amount of time.
The path to financial freedom is so simple that everyone should be doing it. The only reason financial independence is extraordinary is because most people spend all their money instead of investing it. If you can break away from the consumerism mindset that has developed in this country and realize you have enough to be happy, you’ll inevitably become a millionaire in your lifetime.
Isn’t it awesome that you can grow your money to where it makes enough money for you to live on? Isn’t it even more awesome that you can do it at a young age? It really does only take a few elementary habits to become wealthy. Are you going to be extraordinary?