DrivenWoman talks about money this month. The theme inspired me to share a thought that has stayed with me since reading Napoleon Hill‘s book ‘Think And Grow Rich‘. He explains the secret of creating wealth as how useful you are to the universe: “Determine exactly what you intend to give in return for the money you desire. There is no such reality as ‘something for nothing’.”
For me this totally makes sense. Money is not something evil or something you must desire as such, it’s simply a measure of your personal usefulness to the universe. If I create something that is going to help many people, they will be happy to depart some of their money in exchange of my services. ‘Helping’ can come in many shapes, it might be about creating products that make people happier, more beautiful or save them time; or it could be services like DrivenWoman that helps them to become more confident in what they are about.
And most importantly, the idea of money as a measure of individual’s usefulness helps to create a more neutral and healthy relationship with money.
But let’s look at work that is extremely useful to others but doesn’t yield a lot of money to the doer. Nursing or taking care of others has historically been typical women’s work. The problem is scalability. Taking care of one person at a time is very valuable, but it doesn’t warrant a big pay check. Same goes for all jobs where value is created one client at a time. The work can be extremely valuable, but unless it’s scalable, the private car with a driver will be a distant dream.
However, if you were a nurse and became the best in your field, nothing can stop you from starting an on-line tutorial service, writing a best selling book or creating other scalable material to expand your reach, and thus help more people. The more people you are able to help, the more universe is willing to reward you with money. Internet offers a great opportunity for anyone with specific expertise to scale their idea and make more money.
It’s easy to say, I know, ‘I don’t have any ideas, other people do’.
Well, I didn’t have any ideas either 5 years or 15 years ago. What made a difference was a decision to go look for ideas. A decision to start improving myself.
It’s important to appreciate the two resources we all have in our disposal: our time and our money. To change your financial future you should be putting aside one or both of these resources.
Just imagine if you consistently put aside 10% of your time to learn new skills or to slowly grow a small side business, after a year or two you will be able to either get clients that pay more, a pay rise at your job or a side income from a small business that will able you to leave a job you may no longer feel so passionate about. According to Hill’s concept, universe’s reward will await because you have become more useful to people around you.
If putting time aside is not realistic, then 10% of income could be put aside into an investment. Translating the idea of ‘usefulness’ into investing means saving and investing into businesses that are useful to as many people as possible.
Often women are too modest to claim the full payment for their own usefulness.
Yes, we are useful and we may even be producing something hugely scalable, but because we either think we haven’t deserved the money or that being useful is big enough reward for us, we don’t claim the money that is rightfully ours. We pass by the whole money issue like it didn’t exist. The truth is that the universe is most likely rewarding our usefulness generously, but it’s going straight to some guy’s pocket if we don’t stand up to ourselves.
Jennifer wrote earlier about women’s attitudes and the modest view we take on money. ‘I just want to pay the bills. I’m happy with that.‘
Could a concept of ‘being useful‘ change our ambitions about money?
I definitely want to say: ‘I’m going to be as useful to the universe as I possibly can! And from now on, I’m also going to allow the universe to bring me the money!’
What do you think? What kind of ideas have you had recently about being useful? What do you think is stopping women being more accustomed to money? Please comment below.
Have a great, wealth conscious week.
You can find Napoleon Hill’s ‘Think And Grow Rich’ book review in the DrivenWoman reading list.
DrivenWoman ‘Wealthy Woman Workshop‘ is on 4th of September. Join an inspiring evening that may change your perception of personal wealth.