Wednesday, 26 August 2009
Ever laughed at someone who picked up a couple of cents from the sidewalk? I have. I had a friend who would always do it. I would get this embarassed feeling from being around him, it would make me feel really awkward. It didn't bother him. Five seconds later, of course, the strangers in the street who I felt embarassed in front of no longer existed in my life. But my friend had made one cent.
When he got home every night, he'd empty out his pockets and any spare change he had he'd put in this old water bottle.
We both never had much money in those days. And I used to moan about it a lot. I'd moan about the lack of opportunities, the lack of work, the lack of everything. But there was money right in front of me. If I was to go into the street right now, I'd find heaps of change in a matter of minutes. I'm not suggesting we should all go out into the streets and hunt down money, but I do suggest a slight change in approach to these things.
What made me feel awkward in front of my friend was that feeling of 'that's pathetic' or 'I don't want to look like the type of person who picks change off of the sidewalk.' Well that's my ego talking. That's the same ego that feels inferior of big scary jobs and the same ego that thinks I'm too good to be cleaning toilets for a living. Well, I need to get past that ego. I need to realize it's not real. It's a thing in my head that has been holding me back and will continue to do so for years.
So, a few months after the incident in the road, I was pretty hard up for cash. And so was my friend. But then he emptied out his big container and a few other little pots of pennies he had around his apartment. I did the same in my apartment.
Well, I found $23. I was quite proud of that. My friend found that he had $742. He says that about $500 of that was from picking up money that was left around, over many years. That might sound crazy, but it's really not that unrealistic.
If you ask anyone who keeps a jar for spare change, they'll find no trouble in coming up with $50 every few months. Just think, if you consciously make the effort to put a few little coins in a jar, and you get over being afraid of the coins near the gutter; then you'll have begun to change your mindset.
You need to change your relationship with money. And you can do it by realizing that one cent gained is one cent nearer to being where you want to be financially.