Over the years I have seen many people think about getting rich, proclaiming affirmations, visualizing, meditating and going to conferences yet they don’t get rich.
That’s because there is one thing they don’t do. Michael Yardney tells us what it is.
Kevin: A couple of weeks ago I had a really interesting conservation with Michael Yardney, where we actually talked about are great people property investors born? One of the things that you highlighted for us, Michael, was that great people actually take action.
I’m interested to know from you what actually stops people from talking action? What holds them back?
Michael: Kevin, sometimes they think it’s lack of knowledge, sometimes clearly you haven’t got enough money or finances, but in general, what it is is fear. They worry about things, Kevin, and that’s what stops them taking action. That’s the big difference between successful people, investors, or in any other sphere, and an average person.
Kevin: Are there a number of fears, Michael? I know the fear of success is one that you and I have talked about in the past. Are there others?
Michael: Yes. Look, I think the big one is fear of failure, but different people treat fears differently. I read once that Tiger Woods keeps training, uses a coach continuously, plays his game at the intensity he does because of fear also, but his fear is of not being the best, that somebody else could actually catch up – and in fact, I think they have, haven’t they over time?
Kevin: They have.
Michael: That’s what drove him for a long time. So fear can drive you positively or it can drive you negatively.
One of them is failure, but in fact, as we said when we had that session a couple weeks ago, successful people expect it, know it’s going to happen, and on that basis, it doesn’t scare them because they know it’s what has to happen along the way to learning the right way to do things, Kevin.
Kevin: Quite often I’ve seen people where one of the irrational fears, I think, is the fear of being ridiculed. “I won’t give my opinion here because people will think that I’m silly,” or “I won’t do this because people will think I’m ridiculous.”
Michael: Yes. Exactly right. There’s no doubt that people are concerned about what their friends, what their mates, what their spouse will say. The problem is you can’t control it, and you shouldn’t let other people stop you achieving your dreams because in this lucky country we live in, we all have the ability to become financially independent and use property as a vehicle to do that.
It’s sad that people let that happen to them. No one has ever died from embarrassment, Kevin, so tune out from the critics and focus on what you want to accomplish.
Kevin: You mentioned earlier the fear of failure. On the flipside of that, people are also afraid of success, aren’t they, for what people will think of them and say about them, Michael?
Michael: Very much, Kevin. In my study of the wealthy people – and I’ve mentored over 2000 people in the last ten years – surprisingly, this fear of success can almost be as paralyzing as the fear of failure. It often follows on: once you’ve conquered that fear of failure, now, ironically, they worry that they could be successful and what will other people say?
In general, it comes from a feeling of being uncomfortable. It comes from a fear of not being worthy. It comes from the things that they learn when they’re a child about not being greedy and about rich people are ugly, greedy, slum landlords.
I don’t believe it’s a fear that should be founded. We should feel value in ourselves and understand that if you’re successful, you’re not actually going to stop other people being successful. If you’re successful in an honest way, what you’re going to do is provide good accommodation as a property investor, to give good housing to other people. In the process, you’re going to make some money, you’re going to get some financial independence, and it’s not going to stop anyone else in Australia doing that, Kevin.
Kevin: It’s interesting that, the fear of not being worthy. I’ve been to a number of your conferences, and that’s one of the telling things, I think, when people start to talk about this. It is a fear that most people have, isn’t it? It seems to be born in us.
Michael: It is, Kevin. A lot of people sabotage themselves in the process of that. They don’t feel that they’re worthy of it. “I’m not one of them. I’m not those rich people over there.” And so it actually stops them taking the steps, it stops them taking risks because they feel that they don’t deserve it.
Kevin: It’s interesting, Michael – and you touched on it there – I want to stay on this fear of not being worthy just for a moment because I think it’s a key point. One of the ways to overcome that, it would seem to me, is that if you give back to a community, in other words, you invest in your own worthiness.
Michael: Kevin, that’s a great point because I must admit when I first started investing, I chased money for all the wrong reasons and sabotaged the first half of my life. In fact, it does go back to that, when I’m being honest; I didn’t feel I was worthy because some of the things that my parents – my father in particular – said to me when I was young. Therefore, I tried to prove him wrong but if you do that without feeling worthy, when you get the money, you don’t really know the right things to do with it, either.
When I found a more important valuable cause for becoming wealthy, for giving to my family, for giving back to the community, for giving back to charity, that made it my obligation to become rich because I had a really good purpose for it and I had to follow through.
Kevin: It is like investing in your own worthiness. Michael, obviously, the fear of debt is one thing, but I’m interested to know from you is it necessary to get rid of all of your fears to succeed?
Michael: No, it’s not necessary to get rid of all of your fears to succeed. Rich and successful people also have fears, Kevin. They have doubts, they have worries, but they don’t let them get in the way. They don’t let them stop themselves.
Basically, the big difference is unsuccessful people have fears, doubts, and worries but they let those feelings stop them while the successful investors, businesspeople, entrepreneurs keep going.
See, the thing is that it’s normal for your brain to bring up fears. It’s your brain protecting you. It’s doing its job. It’s keeping you in your comfort zone. I guess it’s what protected us when we were cavemen living in the caves there and things could maybe attack you, so it keeps you in your warm, fuzzy, comfort zone.
What I’ve realized over the years, though, is you actually have to learn to be comfortable with being uncomfortable. If you stick and persevere with what you’ve always done in your comfort zone, you’re never going to get to the next level. So what this means is you have to feel comfortable feeling uncomfortable instead of retreating back into your cave, Kevin.
Kevin: Well said.
Michael: Pat yourself on your back and say, “Hey, that’s great. I’m moving forward. I’m going ahead. I now have got these little funny knots in my tummy but that means I’m actually extending my comfort zone.”
Kevin: Yes, I love that saying – and we’ll leave you with this thought – become comfortable with being uncomfortable.
Michael Yardney, thank you so much for your time.
Michael: My pleasure, Kevin.