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Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Patience.... Patience.... Patience

What's our greatest problem as a Nation, as a Culture and as Individuals?

Poverty, Disease, Debt, Stress, Unemployment .....

Yep - and more.

But what falls in the "All of the Above" slot?


I remember this poster from way back in the early 70's....

Except the one I remember had the 2 vultures gazing over a desert scene with some poor dehydrated dude crawling on his last legs (make that hands and knees) and the vultures waiting for his imminent demise.  This one's close enough.

We live in a society of instant gratification. 

I want it.... and I want it NOW!

Let me give you a financial example.... Just call this post a two-fer.... Patience and Fiscal Responsibility.

Who ever heard of saving your money and paying cash....

For a TV.... or a Car.... or even a House?

25 or 30 years ago, that was the norm.....

Nowadays - how many people can say they've purchased any of the 3 above with cash.....

Ok - maybe a TV.... but when's the last time you heard someone say, they went down to a car dealership and wrote out a check (that was NOT funded from a loan) for a new vehicle? or God forbid, pay cash for a house?

It just doesn't happen anymore.

Why not? 

Because we have no patience..... It's so easy to just go down to the bank and get into debt.... don't get me started on that one....

But patience as a virtue, as a characteristic, as a habit.... is the culmination of many prior actions, decisions and responses.

Let's continue the example above.

How do you save to buy a car?  The operative word is "save".

How do you do that?  There's only so much money right?

You sacrifice.... something else.

Huh?  Whacchu talking about Willis?  I ain't doing no altar thing with an animal and though I despise my kids at times..... well they are my kids and you could go to jail for stuff like that.


I'm talking about giving up something else that you spend money on.  

Like say in your budget..... Budget - what's that?  Isn't that where you spend money.... to rent a car?

That's exactly what I'm talking about America.

Patience and Budget - you're reaching here Wills.

Not really.... remember we're using the Cash for Large Ticket Items example..... and this is a two-fer.

In order for you to know what you have to give up in order to save money to pay cash for a Large Ticket Item, you have to know what you're spending money on and how much you're spending and be able to separate the wheat from the chaffe.... (What's chaffe?  Go read your Bible or Wikipedia - You probably need both.)

That requires you to track your spending for some period of time.... usually a year to 18 months to allow for seasonal tendencies (like Christmas and holidays and vacations, etc).  There are bank and credit card statements for this.... it doesn't take 18 months.... probably one weekend.  God forbid you spend a weekend analyzing your finances.... you might miss a concert or a game or happy hour or something important like that.

But if you lack...... Patience..... do it for 3 months or so (that should take you about an hour or two) and you'll get a pretty good idea of how much you spend on eating out and cigarettes and booze and golf and tennis and nails and the deer lease and all the other things listed above and... Oh - I love this one - Pets.

Holy Bejeebers - People can't afford a decent car or to save for a kid's college but they can spend $1500 a year on their pet.  And don't tell me you don't spend that much on them either, cause if you're taking care of a medium sized pet the right way, you're spending that much and more.

So - let's pull this together now for this example.

Step 1: Desire to Save for a Large Ticket Item.
Step 2: Do a Budget and Define Cost as Needs and Wants - i.e. Must Have it to Live vs Could Live Without it.
Step 3: Prioritize the Discretionary Items - the Wants
Step 4: Identify Which Ones You Are Willing to Eliminate and How Much Money that will free up monthly.
Step 5: Set up a Separate Account for that money to go into.
Step 6: Have that money auto transferred from your paycheck into that account on the equivalent of a monthly basis.
Step 7: Track the Budget and the Savings.
Step 8: Remain Disciplined.

Did you know you are supposed to have 6 months of living expenses in cash in an Emergency Fund?

Again, how can you know how much that is unless you know how much you spend over the course of a year?

I know people who are high level managers and big wigs in companies and people that make < $30000  a year that don't even know how much they spend on a monthly or yearly basis.  We all need to have a budget and track it. 

So how do you Build and Exercise Patience?

By building a Base of Self Discipline and Self Sacrifice and Understanding of the Subject Matter that requires your Patience.....

And all of these things take Time.... which is the Essence of Patience.

Life lived properly..... takes Time.... and that Time spent properly is Your Life.

This is Circle of Life stuff, Simba.

I have made so many mistakes in my life and I can say, almost without exception, that every one of them stemmed from my....

Lack of Patience.

Saving for a Large Ticket Item may take several years.

Building a Relationship or Judging a Relationship to be Worthy or Not Worthy.... minimum time is 2 years.  (Uh oh - here comes the three-fer.)


Because anybody can put on an act for a year.....

But in 2 years, they're gonna slip up and show you their true colors....

In that time, they're likely to see stresses - family, job, sickness, loss, gain, etc. - and you're gonna get to see how they respond to them.

And guess what - you're gonna experience those same things.... and they're gonna get to look into your little Window of the World too and watch you dance.

And you're gonna change.... And they're gonna change....

There's an old saying in my line of work....

If you got time to do it over, you got time to do it right the first time.

Have a little patience.

Sing it Axl.....


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Argggg, was just trying to take my name off but does it really matter? So here is my comment again:
    Fine post sir. I'm living the life of patience right now and your right it ain't easy but it makes you real.


  3. Here's a further thought....

    Patience.... for Patience sake is meaningless.

    You have to ask yourself.... What am I being patient for? What is the goal? What am I going to get or gain by my patience? What is the risk of not being patient?

    If you can't come up with concrete answers to these questions.... sadly... you may be confusing patience with indecision, apathy or just plain ole laziness.

    Only you can decide.

    Thanks for your comment.