Health, money, motivation, Personal Success

Want to be a Millionaire?


W is for Wealth and Wisdom*

What I know through years of experience:



*Part of my alphabiography project



Personal Success



When I was very young (maybe five years old),  my mother made rings out of dandelions. She’d pluck the weed and create a knot with the stem and, smiling, put the ring on my finger. I felt special and lucky. Within hours, the dandelion wilted, the yellow flowers tinged with brown. It was my first lesson of impermanence.

We were poor and a part of me knew it, but mostly, I was blissfully ignorant. I reveled in the smell of burning wood in the Iowa autumn. I loved the dandelion rings my mother made and I loved watching “The Muppets” on TV. All of this was (relatively) free. I thought everyone had a father who came home exhausted and discouraged. I thought everyone shared one bathroom in their family. I thought everyone fought over money.

I’m a lot older now and I have learned this: wishing for “stuff” always leads to disappointment. Nothing you can buy will deliver anywhere near the satisfaction of smelling burning wood on a Midwest autumn evening, or watching the “Muppets” on a chilly Halloween night or wearing a dandelion ring your mother makes just for you.










money, Personal Success




Its not about the money, its about adding value and bringing something to the table.

Peter Sage

There are a lot of mixed signals in our culture about money. One fallacy is that you have to be dishonest or mean to be rich. Another is that your self-worth is linked to your income. Together, this creates a heartless, soulless society. Scary, to say the least.

Mr. Sage once said, “Chasing money is like chasing your tail, it’s never going to happen, because you have to pursue adding value, not money in and of itself.”

I believe that if you pursue something that helps others, the money will follow. We all have tools to self-empower and prosper.

We just need to add value to society with those tools.





money, Personal Success

Money Is Only a Tool (Ayn Rand)


What are your beliefs about money? That you’ll never have enough? That only greedy people are rich?

Money is energy. You receive it in return for your work. If your work is valuable, you will receive currency. Focus on the giving and the rest will take care of itself.

We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give. –Winston Churchill

Funds (like people) escape those who squeeze too tightly. Do good work, serve people generously, and wealth will come.

Health, money


If you haven’t read Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell, you need to put it on your reading list as soon as possible.


In nine chapters, he illustrates and analyzes the factors for quirky successes as well as a few quirky disasters. One of the strong influences for some very interesting anomolies is the culture factor. For example, in the chapter “The Ethnic Theory of Plane Crashes,” he states: “Planes are safer when the least experienced pilot is flying because it means the second pilot isn’t going to be afraid to speak up.” One particularly frightening example Gladwell uses is that of Korean Airlines between 1988 and 1998. Their plane crash rate was 17 times higher than the U.S. In Korean culture, a subordinate (in this case, the first officer) plays a very passive role. This is not ideal in cases of inclement weather, mechanical failure or pilot fatigue. Only after a major revamping of their work culture, did KAL improve their safety status.

Continuing this analysis, I believe there is also a socioeconomic culture that keeps some people “down.” High SES kids are taught early to “speak up” and even question authority if they see fit. Low SES students generally do not question “experts” and do not feel they can ask questions in the classroom or the doctor’s office. Assertiveness is a skill that needs to be modeled and taught because a lack of it leads to apathy in health and wealth.



Gladwell, Malcolm. Outliers: The Story of Success.
1st ed. New York: Little, Brown and Company, 2008.