In every blogger’s “About” page, there is a profound story about how some life trauma or achievement transformed the author and inspired him/her to start a blog. Unfortunately, I have no such story to tell. I am an ordinary millennial man living, working and studying like every other men and women like myself. However, I like to think that there is a philosophy in everything we do, even in the most mundane and repetitive task. And if there is a philosophy, it is worth written down and be contemplated upon.
A good part of my day, solid 8 hours at least is used to make money, whether it is working in my corporate job, taking care of my side business or investment, or simply reading on things that may present me a new opportunity. Though the term, ‘make money’ sounds base, and it is as if I’m boasting about how much money I can make, this is certainly not my intention. What I truly enjoyed is the different aspects associated with the process of making money. This includes, laboring for a reward, making a trade/exchange, identifying a piece of value to invest, get creative on financing, identify a favorable odds to bet, etc.
There are a good number of people out there who does things just like me, and they have plenty of money advice to give. There are also financial gurus out there who offers a vast amount of good money management techniques. However, this is not one of those blogs.
This is a blog written for people who seek to convert money into money making experience. That is, people who enjoyed the process of making money as a way of learning about the way of business, the working of financial machine, and the spirituality in spending/saving/investing money. And this is not a how-to blog with financial advices, but rather my views I throw out there for like-minded people to contemplate, criticize and feedback.
Since this is about ultimately an experience, there is an emphasize on the mindfulness in making money.
To be mindful, is to be meditative. This is my current experiment of my attitude towards money, as it gives me tremendous peace in approaching my finance. Like a Japanese tea master performing a tea ceremony:
“If you pour a cup of tea, you are aware of extending your arm and touching your hand to the teapot, lifting it and pouring the water. Finally the water touches your teacup and fills it, and you stop pouring and put the teapot down precisely, as in the Japanese tea ceremony. You become aware that each precise movement has dignity. We have long forgotten that activities can be simple and precise. Every act of our lives can contain simplicity and precision and can thus have tremendous beauty and dignity.”
Reference: Trungpa, Chogyam (2010-09-28). Cutting Through Spiritual Materialism (Shambhala Classics) (pp. 156-157). Shambhala Publications. Kindle Edition.
Therefore, being mindful is to focus on the present moment, and disregard the future and the past. This means, do not think of the financial goals while making money. I shall be ridiculed by all the world’s financial gurus here, since meeting a budget, arriving at a certain net worth, achieving debt-free / financial freedom are the core motivations! No, there is no goal in mind while making money, just be aware of the money making process and enjoy the current moment.
One shall focus only on the most current moment – Negotiating a deal solely being aware of all the negotiation strategies, the attack and defense, but none of the end reward and one’s emotional attachment to it. Or trading in the market and simply be aware of all the trading rules and game plans, and not be caught off balance by greed or fear. Fantasizing a blissful future state so as to motivate oneself to work hard today disrupts the peace of mind and the focus. The tea master only focused on the each step of preparation of the tea, and a good cup of tea will ensue.
The most important part in the process of making money is the learnings one has attained and the experience one meditated. If someone ask me why I bought a stock, or invested in bitcoin, by saying ‘because everyone did it’ I would fail to be a mindful investor. If that is the case I shall simply give my portfolio to a fund manager or ‘everyone’ to manage. If following the trend is what one does, then there is no meditation to speak of. It’s as if the tea master doesn’t perform the tea ceremony, but bought a tea bag for everyone to share. One becomes flimsy and agitated, yearning for quick result. One lose the sense of being deliberate in one’s task.
If being rich is merely a chance encounter then there is nothing to be proud of. It is equivalently of winning a lottery, or inherited a large sum of money. There is nothing to be respected of. The ‘G-money’ will just be ‘Money’. This is the admonition I reminded myself, and the reason I maintained this blog.
So, keep calm and make money.