Detoxify Your Life

Detoxify Your Life

I recently wrote “We Have A Duty”, but I only asked you to join me and didn’t provide ideas for us to accomplish our goal.

Let me start with a story. Kurt Vonnegut and Joseph Heller were at a cocktail party hosted by a wealthy billionaire. Vonnegut said to Heller “Joe, how does it make you feel that our host yesterday may have made more money than your novel ‘Catch-22’ has earned in its entire history?” Heller responded “I have something that he’ll never have. I have enough.”

You have enough. What does “Detoxify Your Life” mean? It means three things:

  1. Spend less than you earn.
  2. Remove desire for material goods.
  3. Remove physical clutter from your life.

The idea is that by doing these three things, you’ll eventually be content with what you have. If you are content with you have, you will naturally spend less, as you won’t desire more. As an ancillary benefit, being content with what you have is one of the keys to happiness.

Don’t take it from me though, Mark Cuban wrote a post titled “How To Get Rich”. Mark wrote:

So what should you do to get rich ?\ \ Save your money. Save as much money as you possibly can. Every penny you can. Instead of coffee, drink water. Instead of going to McDonalds, eat Mac and Cheese. Cut up your credit cards. If you use a credit card, you dont want to be rich. The first step to getting rich, requires discipline. If you really want to be rich, you need to find the discipline, can you ?\ \ If you can, you will quickly find that the greatest rate of return you will earn is on your own personal spending. Being a smart shopper is the first step to getting rich. Yeah you have to give things up and that doesn’t work for everyone, particularly if you have a family. That is reality. But whatever you can save, save it. As much as you possibly can. Then put it in 6 month CDs in the bank.\ \ The first step to getting rich is having cash available. You arent saving for retirement. You are saving for the moment you need cash. Buy and hold is a suckers game for you. This market is a perfect example. Right at the very moment when cash creates unbelievable opportunity, those who followed the buy and hold strategy have no cash. they cant or wont sell into markets this low, that kills the entire point of buy and hold. Those who have put their money in CDs sleep well at night and definitely have more money today than they did yesterday. And because they are smart, disciplined shoppers, their personal rate of inflation is within their means. Cash is king for those wanting to get rich.\ \

In “We Have A Duty”, I also wrote Andrew Carnegie’s three tenets. They shouldn’t be practiced linearly. Learn, earn, and give now. This is also what “Detoxify Your Life” is about. Go around your house, and gather up stuff that you haven’t used in awhile. If you have old clothes in your closet that you haven’t worn in six months, box them up. That George Foreman Grill that you never use, box that up too. Those running shoes, ya, those need to go to. Either run, or get rid of them. Anything in your house that you can live without and you don’t use, box them up. Take these boxes to charity. You are now making a difference. Plus, you’ll have more room in your house. You’ll have less clutter. Less things to maintain. Less things that could possibly rob your thoughts when you could think about more important things. If someone asks you what you want for your birthday, I highly encourage you NOT to ask for any physical item. Ask for a gift card, cash, or a donation to charity in your name. This way you can prevent more material things from entering you life.

I realize this all very difficult. At least it was for me. Change won’t happen over night. It may be very difficult to get rid of stuff in your house. I’ve been practicing these three things for about two years now. I’ve finally paid off my credit card debt. This has all been tough, but very worth it. When it comes down to it, legacy is greater than currency.

If you can start by practicing these three things, we can achieve our long term goal. We can change the world.

You can follow me on Twitter @jprichardson


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