Rich Dad / Robert Kiyosaki Blog

May 10, 2009

What is FINANCIAL SECURITY?

Filed under: Articles — Tags: — ~ @ 2:54 am

 

What is FINANCIAL SECURITY?
Is there more to financial security than money?
by Robert T. Kiyosaki
So, just what is security? Is it . . .
A high-paying job?
Working for the government?
Working for a large corporation? 
Money in the bank? 
Investing in stocks and bonds?
A retirement plan? 
Medical and life insurance? 
A savings account? 
Working for a small company? 
Working for yourself?
Marrying someone rich?
Having a gun in your house?
Owning real estate?
A burglar alarm?
These are the traditional “things” people feel will make them secure. The trouble with these answers is that none of them comes with an ironclad guarantee. What may constitute security today may fall apart in the future. What may seem like security is often only a delusion. Regardless, people turn to those sources listed above because they don’t know what else to do. In the long run, hooking up with one or more of these “security systems” can end up preventing you from ever finding any real source of security.
“Train now for a high-paying job with a secure future,” radio commercial blared. Riding in a cab through downtown San Francisco, I saw streets that were crowded with men and women in dark suits rushing against a background of bums and beggars. I wondered who felt more secure — the bums and beggars or the corporate warriors. As I looked at their faces, employed and unemployed, few of them appeared to be feeling secure.
It was 1981 and I knew first-hand what insecurity was all about. I had lost everything, jeopardized my father’s property and was in the midst of digging myself out of a hole, desperately attempting to save a sinking company.
I had one thing going for me after being humbled into realizing I did not know all the answers. I had made the decision to learn from my mistakes. I quit pretending that I knew everything and began to discover what I did not know.
I vowed to master the art of business. I realized that if I mastered that, I would no longer have to be a slave to a job or dependent on the stability of the economy. If I was truly a good business person son, I could make money i’ doing anything. And if I could make money doing anything, then I could do something that satisfied my heart, my soul and I my spirit. If I was truly a good businessman, I could give my unique gift to this world. That would be the greatest joy of all. It had been tough for me to commit to learning rather than going for the dollars, as most of my friends were doing during the booming ’80s. But I had discovered the hard way that at this point in my life I had to put all my energy into learning rather than earning. For a while I would make knowledge my top priority, much more important than money. Even though I would have a lot less money than my friends for a few years, my true wealth (knowledge) would eventually pay off, and it would continue paying off for the rest of my life.
While growing up I learned about investing. I knew how to make money with money. When my mother told me to “study hard so I could get a good job,” I didn’t listen to her. I was convinced that I already knew it all. I would get rich through investing. However, investing failed to give me a sense of being a productive, contributing member of society. By 1977 I was feeling incompetent and unfulfilled. So I decided to become a businessman. I set out to build a business. Well, the business did very well for a while, then failed. It would be easy to say that it failed because of a crooked partner who literally ran off with the profits. But that wasn’t the real reason. It failed because I continued to act as if I knew all the answers. The bottom line is that I lost all my money because I would not admit to myself that I had a lot to learn about business. My arrogance was very expensive.
After losing my company, I had several lucrative offers. Although the money was tempting, especially when banks and creditors were hounding me, I continued my educational process, learning how to be a complete businessperson.
But that isn’t all I was learning. Part of my discovery was that in order to be a good businessperson I would have to learn how to become a kinder, more open human being. After four years in a military academy and six years as a Marine Corps officer, I had become tough. I treated people in my company like members of a combat squad. Not only did I alienate my partners, but my wife left, too.
By 1984 I had become a little more civilized, in both my business and personal life. I met my wife Kim and we were married in 1986. In 1987 we celebrated the most important financial event in our lives since losing my company. My net worth was at zero. We cheered wildly. For years we had been looking at a net worth so far in the red that even a glimpse of a zero looked pretty good. My assets finally equaled what I owed.
Five years later, having mastered the principles of business and put them into practice, Kim and I were able to retire. Our reason for working shifted from working just to earn more money to working because it truly nourishes us. The money continues to pour in, but now we have the luxury of viewing our work as a way to make a contribution to society.
My definition of security has radically changed. Today, security means:
1. Working when I want, where I want and with whom I want.
2. Knowing how to enjoy prosperity whether the economy is up or down.
3. Being willing to lose everything and knowing I’ll be wiser when I get it back.
4. Not having to work at anything I don’t want to.
5. Not spending hours each week stuck in commuter traffic.
6. Achieving everything I want without damaging myself, my family, the environment or anyone else.
7. The ability to increase or decrease my income at will.
8. Freedom from all money worries.
9. Freedom to live wherever I choose.
10. Traveling with pay and enjoying frequent vacations.
When I think about our society’s misconceptions about security, I am reminded of something that happened when I was a pilot in Vietnam. During a combat mission, every pilot “for his own security” wore a bullet- proof vest, or “bullet bouncers.” I saw what happened to a pilot when a large caliber bullet hit his “bullet bouncer.” It didn’t bounce. When the bullet hit, the vest acted more like a net, catching the bullet and spreading its impact over a wider area, virtually crushing the pilot’s entire body. Some security! Next day, as I prepared for my mission over a hot combat zone, I realized
the vest provided nothing more than a false sense of security. What’s worse, it hindered my arm movements, interfering with my ability to fly. I knew that my only real security was knowledge — what I knew about combat and flying — knowledge acquired through hours of trial and error, through making mistakes, correcting them and learning from them. I jettisoned the vest that day and never wore it again.
Security in the real world is just like that vest. Our security comes from trust in ourselves, not from externals like the bullet bouncers of modern life — the right college degree, working for a company that offers good benefits, or even working in the government where nobody gets fired. Each time I take a risk, make a mistake, correct it and learn, my security increases because my wealth (knowledge) increases.
Security will forever elude those who follow the rules learned in school — be good, do as you are told, don’t make mistakes, etc. All these rules do little more than stop the learning and personal development process. In today’s rapidly changing world true security can be found only in ourselves and in our ability to admit what we don’t know, learn, and thus grow from any situation.
Most of us are so enamored of the idea of security that even when unhappy with our jobs we stay with them, year after year. The truth is, staying in situations which are unsatisfying only increases our sense of insecurity. We begin to feel there is no other choice but to sell our souls in the name of security. When we’ve committed ourselves to a life like that, it becomes very difficult to see that we’re sacrificing ourselves every moment of every day to a false sense of security provided by a “bullet bouncer” that really doesn’t work. Even when we’ve seen evidence proving that the safety vests don’t work, that they even seriously restrict our movements, we continue to cling to them.
Our social system creates fearful, specialized drones who believe that their lifetime security means getting a good job with plenty of benefits. A prime example is in the timber industry, now under attack by the environmental movement, automation and exports. Once an industry with a fairly high degree of job security, it is now undergoing tremendous change. People who believed they had a job for life are finding themselves starting over, looking for work in a new specialty.
If they were generalists, thinking for themselves, they could profit from the change. Change brings new opportunities. Granted, such opportunities are not always clearly apparent. Often they have to be created, and this takes the skills of a generalist. But as long as we have been trained to just do as we’re told and not ask any questions, we can never be much more than robots, totally dependent on others to provide us with a place to work and a paycheck at the end of the week.
Change is now so rapid, owing in part to the fastest changing technology in the history of humanity, that job security itself has become obsolete. Becoming a generalist allows a person to benefit from change. The generalist has
the skills to build a new way of life, to create alternatives instead of being trapped in co-dependent relationships with companies which themselves are addicted to false security and resistance to change.
What does it mean to be a generalist? John W. Gardner, the founder of Common Cause and former president of the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, once wrote: “What we must reach for is a conception of perpetual self-discovery, perpetual reshaping to realize one’s best self, to be the person one could be.” That’s the essence of the generalist, to be constantly moving toward a horizon which can never be reached.
Cavett Robert pointed out in his book, Success With People Through Human Engineering and Motivation, that preparation for the future can no longer mean preparation for a specific job. The world is changing so quickly that even in a specialized field such as medicine, law, or economics, a person must expect to be retrained at least four times during his or her lifetime. He states, “In our approach to knowledge we must realize that preparation is a constant process of change with no ending. It must be forever moving, never static. School is never out for the person who wants to succeed.”
To be a generalist means to always stay open and alert to change. It is found in our constant and continuous preparation of ourselves to function in the changing world around us. The generalist’s motto, which is more important today than ever before in history, continues to be that success is a journey, not a destination. Above all, the generalist is one who never ceases to grow.
A best-selling author, Robert T. Kiyosaki retired in 1994 at the age of 47 from the business and teaching world. His last entrepreneurial business was an international educational company that produced the world famous seminar Money and You. He lives in Phoenix, Arizona with his wife Kim while he works on his second book. He is deeply concerned with the ever-widening gap between the ‘haves’ and ‘have nots’ in America. Robert’s financial freedom allows him the time to dedicate his life to this pressing problem.

Is there more to financial security than money? By Robert T. Kiyosaki

So, just what is security? Is it . . .

A high-paying job?
Working for the government?
Working for a large corporation? 
Money in the bank? 
 Investing in stocks and bonds?
A retirement plan? 
Medical and life insurance? 
A savings account? 
Working for a small company? 
Working for yourself?
Marrying someone rich?
Having a gun in your house?
Owning real estate?
A burglar alarm?

These are the traditional “things” people feel will make them secure. The trouble with these answers is that none of them comes with an ironclad guarantee. What may constitute security today may fall apart in the future. What may seem like security is often only a delusion. Regardless, people turn to those sources listed above because they don’t know what else to do. In the long run, hooking up with one or more of these “security systems” can end up preventing you from ever finding any real source of security.

“Train now for a high-paying job with a secure future,” radio commercial blared. Riding in a cab through downtown San Francisco, I saw streets that were crowded with men and women in dark suits rushing against a background of bums and beggars. I wondered who felt more secure — the bums and beggars or the corporate warriors. As I looked at their faces, employed and unemployed, few of them appeared to be feeling secure.

It was 1981 and I knew first-hand what insecurity was all about. I had lost everything, jeopardized my father’s property and was in the midst of digging myself out of a hole, desperately attempting to save a sinking company.

I had one thing going for me after being humbled into realizing I did not know all the answers. I had made the decision to learn from my mistakes. I quit pretending that I knew everything and began to discover what I did not know.

I vowed to master the art of business. I realized that if I mastered that, I would no longer have to be a slave to a job or dependent on the stability of the economy. If I was truly a good business person son, I could make money i’ doing anything. And if I could make money doing anything, then I could do something that satisfied my heart, my soul and I my spirit. If I was truly a good businessman, I could give my unique gift to this world. That would be the greatest joy of all. It had been tough for me to commit to learning rather than going for the dollars, as most of my friends were doing during the booming ’80s. But I had discovered the hard way that at this point in my life I had to put all my energy into learning rather than earning. For a while I would make knowledge my top priority, much more important than money. Even though I would have a lot less money than my friends for a few years, my true wealth (knowledge) would eventually pay off, and it would continue paying off for the rest of my life.

While growing up I learned about investing. I knew how to make money with money. When my mother told me to “study hard so I could get a good job,” I didn’t listen to her. I was convinced that I already knew it all. I would get rich through investing. However, investing failed to give me a sense of being a productive, contributing member of society. By 1977 I was feeling incompetent and unfulfilled. So I decided to become a businessman. I set out to build a business. Well, the business did very well for a while, then failed. It would be easy to say that it failed because of a crooked partner who literally ran off with the profits. But that wasn’t the real reason. It failed because I continued to act as if I knew all the answers. The bottom line is that I lost all my money because I would not admit to myself that I had a lot to learn about business. My arrogance was very expensive.

After losing my company, I had several lucrative offers. Although the money was tempting, especially when banks and creditors were hounding me, I continued my educational process, learning how to be a complete businessperson.

But that isn’t all I was learning. Part of my discovery was that in order to be a good businessperson I would have to learn how to become a kinder, more open human being. After four years in a military academy and six years as a Marine Corps officer, I had become tough. I treated people in my company like members of a combat squad. Not only did I alienate my partners, but my wife left, too.

By 1984 I had become a little more civilized, in both my business and personal life. I met my wife Kim and we were married in 1986. In 1987 we celebrated the most important financial event in our lives since losing my company. My net worth was at zero. We cheered wildly. For years we had been looking at a net worth so far in the red that even a glimpse of a zero looked pretty good. My assets finally equaled what I owed.

Five years later, having mastered the principles of business and put them into practice, Kim and I were able to retire. Our reason for working shifted from working just to earn more money to working because it truly nourishes us. The money continues to pour in, but now we have the luxury of viewing our work as a way to make a contribution to society.

My definition of security has radically changed. Today, security means:

1. Working when I want, where I want and with whom I want.
2. Knowing how to enjoy prosperity whether the economy is up or down.
3. Being willing to lose everything and knowing I’ll be wiser when I get it back.
4. Not having to work at anything I don’t want to.
5. Not spending hours each week stuck in commuter traffic.
6. Achieving everything I want without damaging myself, my family, the environment or anyone else.
7. The ability to increase or decrease my income at will.

8. Freedom from all money worries.
9. Freedom to live wherever I choose.
10. Traveling with pay and enjoying frequent vacations.

When I think about our society’s misconceptions about security, I am reminded of something that happened when I was a pilot in Vietnam. During a combat mission, every pilot “for his own security” wore a bullet- proof vest, or “bullet bouncers.” I saw what happened to a pilot when a large caliber bullet hit his “bullet bouncer.” It didn’t bounce. When the bullet hit, the vest acted more like a net, catching the bullet and spreading its impact over a wider area, virtually crushing the pilot’s entire body. Some security! Next day, as I prepared for my mission over a hot combat zone, I realized

the vest provided nothing more than a false sense of security. What’s worse, it hindered my arm movements, interfering with my ability to fly. I knew that my only real security was knowledge — what I knew about combat and flying — knowledge acquired through hours of trial and error, through making mistakes, correcting them and learning from them. I jettisoned the vest that day and never wore it again.

Security in the real world is just like that vest. Our security comes from trust in ourselves, not from externals like the bullet bouncers of modern life — the right college degree, working for a company that offers good benefits, or even working in the government where nobody gets fired. Each time I take a risk, make a mistake, correct it and learn, my security increases because my wealth (knowledge) increases.

Security will forever elude those who follow the rules learned in school — be good, do as you are told, don’t make mistakes, etc. All these rules do little more than stop the learning and personal development process. In today’s rapidly changing world true security can be found only in ourselves and in our ability to admit what we don’t know, learn, and thus grow from any situation.

Most of us are so enamored of the idea of security that even when unhappy with our jobs we stay with them, year after year. The truth is, staying in situations which are unsatisfying only increases our sense of insecurity. We begin to feel there is no other choice but to sell our souls in the name of security. When we’ve committed ourselves to a life like that, it becomes very difficult to see that we’re sacrificing ourselves every moment of every day to a false sense of security provided by a “bullet bouncer” that really doesn’t work. Even when we’ve seen evidence proving that the safety vests don’t work, that they even seriously restrict our movements, we continue to cling to them.

Our social system creates fearful, specialized drones who believe that their lifetime security means getting a good job with plenty of benefits. A prime example is in the timber industry, now under attack by the environmental movement, automation and exports. Once an industry with a fairly high degree of job security, it is now undergoing tremendous change. People who believed they had a job for life are finding themselves starting over, looking for work in a new specialty.

If they were generalists, thinking for themselves, they could profit from the change. Change brings new opportunities. Granted, such opportunities are not always clearly apparent. Often they have to be created, and this takes the skills of a generalist. But as long as we have been trained to just do as we’re told and not ask any questions, we can never be much more than robots, totally dependent on others to provide us with a place to work and a paycheck at the end of the week.

Change is now so rapid, owing in part to the fastest changing technology in the history of humanity, that job security itself has become obsolete. Becoming a generalist allows a person to benefit from change. The generalist has the skills to build a new way of life, to create alternatives instead of being trapped in co-dependent relationships with companies which themselves are addicted to false security and resistance to change.

What does it mean to be a generalist? John W. Gardner, the founder of Common Cause and former president of the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, once wrote: “What we must reach for is a conception of perpetual self-discovery, perpetual reshaping to realize one’s best self, to be the person one could be.” That’s the essence of the generalist, to be constantly moving toward a horizon which can never be reached.

Cavett Robert pointed out in his book, Success With People Through Human Engineering and Motivation, that preparation for the future can no longer mean preparation for a specific job. The world is changing so quickly that even in a specialized field such as medicine, law, or economics, a person must expect to be retrained at least four times during his or her lifetime. He states, “In our approach to knowledge we must realize that preparation is a constant process of change with no ending. It must be forever moving, never static. School is never out for the person who wants to succeed.”

To be a generalist means to always stay open and alert to change. It is found in our constant and continuous preparation of ourselves to function in the changing world around us. The generalist’s motto, which is more important today than ever before in history, continues to be that success is a journey, not a destination. Above all, the generalist is one who never ceases to grow.

A best-selling author, Robert T. Kiyosaki retired in 1994 at the age of 47 from the business and teaching world. His last entrepreneurial business was an international educational company that produced the world famous seminar Money and You. He lives in Phoenix, Arizona with his wife Kim while he works on his second book. He is deeply concerned with the ever-widening gap between the ‘haves’ and ‘have nots’ in America. Robert’s financial freedom allows him the time to dedicate his life to this pressing problem.

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