by Guest Author Grant Cardone
Editor's note: This great essay by best selling author Grant Cardone reminds the editor of the admonition of the precocious young Taylor on the 2007 reality series "Kid Nation", but in a more positive way than many viewers felt when Taylor met disagreement with her actions in her role as mayor by defiantly uttering: "Deal with it!" In Cardone's case the advice is much more positive, but still comes down to the bottom line: Deal with it!
The New "Real" Economy and what the Middle Class in America must do to survive.
The economy that we are in is a new economy and people need to get out of the mentality that it is bad and that the end of the world is coming. People need to start planning for this new economy - it is not going to get better. Look, I am 54 years old. I tell my wife everyday, don't plan for a better economy, what we need to have is a better plan for this new economy. It requires planning, it requires a real purpose. The goal posts have clearly been moved. So many of us thought we were on the 10 yard line and now we found out no we're on the 40 yard line. So you just need a new plan now that is not emotional, that is based on logic and that you can execute.
Those in the middle class are at risk because they base their life on just getting by and what they need. The middle class is failing, the more the politicians talk about taking care of the middle class the worse the situation gets. The more they (politicians, government) go to fight for them the worse it gets for the middle class.
The first thing people need to understand is the middle class was built 50 years ago. Back then my dad was trying to get into the middle class. Today people are trying to hold onto something that is basically moving out and away from them. Whereas 50 years ago they were trying to get something that was coming in a tide to build up America. That tide is now going out so it requires a different plan. The plan used to be: I am going to buy a house and live in it for 25 years and I am going to pay it off and create my wealth there. It is different today, if you are 50 - 60 years old, your house is not going to be your retirement. You are not going to be able to retire when you thought you could and it will require an acknowledgement that new income and a new thinking which scraps the concept of just enough is the only way forward.
The middle class was built on a concept of "just enough." I am going to work just enough, I am going to save just enough and I am going to have just enough to make it. But many people today are out living their retirement. We just didn't plan to live until we are 90 and also possibly having to take care of our children like many of us are having to do now. As I talk about in the 10X Rule, whatever you think it is going to take, multiply that by 10 and maybe then you'll be safe. The concept is what is enough for you to retire. People spend more time planning a vacation than they plan how to create enough money, save enough money and invest that money correctly so they can live a life of freedom. America is a country that is based on this concept of freedom and it takes finances to do that. If finances are important then people need to invest time and energy. My wife and I sit down every Sunday with my three year old and nine month old daughters present, and we actually go over our finances. Every Sunday we do this, now many people say that Sunday is a day of rest, we spend 40 - 50 minutes, maybe a full hour or more, talking about where are we going, where are we spending money on things that are unnecessary, where can we make more money, where we both can get on the same page with what we are doing with what we have and how we are treating money. I know what we are going to need in the coming years so we are actually giving this thing, this wealth development, this idea, this concept of creating personal freedom for ourselves "attention." Whatever you give attention to is what you are going to get in life.
Take the new healthcare legislation that President Obama and the Congress have enacted. You just got a new 20% tax because the middle class is paying for this; if you do not make $120,000 a year you are paying for healthcare no matter what side you vote on. Everyone across the board is going to see their healthcare cost go up. You are not even planning on it but people could be paying anywhere from six to 16 thousand dollars a year. That does not affect wealthy people. A guy making a million dollars a year does not care if he needs to pay the 16,000, he already paying it. It's the middle, the guy earning 30, 40, 50 thousand dollars, the guy on retirement. Take my sister who is 65 years old and thought she'd be retiring now, but is stuck between taking social security or working a couple extra hours. The government gives crumbs - if the government is giving you money it is a crumb, it is a leftover, it is dog food. They don't call it that, they say they are going to take care of you. You want to become independent of the government. Any hand out they give you is for a vote and I am talking about both sides. I don't support a political party, what I support is the American, the middle class American family coming up with a logical plan.
If you are 58 years old and need to go back to work, do it and do it now. You have to understand right now that bad news is your friend. Your biggest asset is all the bad news, because all the other people that are your age are giving up. And what you want to do is not do what they are doing. It is during contractions like this that people can actually make their biggest moves in life because the shining star stands out on a stormy night. If you can see through the clouds, that one shining star gets all the attention. So if you can be that beacon, the positive person that wants to contribute, that wants to give more to do more and wants to get back in the workforce and give more than you're getting, that is so exceptional today. It is so hard to find that and, trust me, there are companies out there that value that regardless of your age, value someone showing up for work early, staying late.
Young people cannot do that. Which is better: A kid 23 years old getting out of college who's interested in getting a girl or a 55 years old retiree who was planning on hanging it up about right now but shows up early and stays late? Who will connect better with the public? The mature person has advantages. Use them.
You have to be willing to embrace all the opportunities in the marketplace. You have to be exceptional, you just have to dig in right now. There are four actions that people take. Two of them: they do nothing or go backwards. A lot of people are doing that now, actually retreating from the environment. Or they do the third thing which is just enough. This average action is the most dangerous. What you want to do right now is overachieve. You actually want to do what you blame younger people for not doing. That is what the baby boomer must now do.
About the Author
Grant Cardone is a New York Times best-selling author, star and executive producer of the reality TV show Turnaround King, host of the Cardone Zone radio show and is regularly seen on Fox Business, NBC and Business Insider. He was named the Top Sales Expert and a Top 10 Business Coach to follow on Twitter.
His commentary on business, financial and social issues have been carried in a wide variety of publications including Huffington Post, Entrepreneur, Forbes, the Los Angeles Times, and New York Post.
A self-made multi-millionaire that literally created himself from nothing, Cardone is the Founder and CEO of three multi-million dollar companies. He is best known for customizing programs to either maximize a companies profitability and brand and also has also been known for his work in turning around companies. Fortune 500 companies, small businesses, success-minded individuals and entrepreneurs in the automobile industry, banking and finance, fitness, manufacturing, MLM, real estate, retail, sales and telecommunications have benefitted from his expertise.
He is the author of five books (listed below) all written since the 2008 financial crisis, that provide the principles and techniques individuals must follow to flourish and win:
- Sell to Survive
- The Closers Survival Guide
- If You're Not First You're Last
- The 10X Rule
- Sell or Be Sold
Cardone’s ultimate ambition is to help the over 7+ billion people of this world to live more successfully, both in their professional and personal lives. Continuing the tradition of bringing innovative sales training tools, technologies, and solutions to life, Cardone has two interactive online sales training centers—CardoneUniversity.com and CardoneOnDemand.com. Follow him on Twitter @grantcardone.