Monday, January 16, 2017

Why Your Plan is More Important Than Your Investments. Robert Kiyosaki

Why Your Plan is More Important Than Your Investments. Robert Kiyosaki
The difference between financial planning and financial vehicles
A while back I was a guest on an investment radio program in San Francisco. During the show, a man called asking for advice on investing.
“I’m 42 years old. I have a good job, but I don’t have any money. My mother has a house with almost $700,000 in equity. She said I could borrow some of that to begin investing. What should I invest in? Stocks or real estate?”
“Do you have a plan?” I asked.
“I don’t need one,” he said. “I just want you to tell me what to invest in. I have the money, and I’m ready to go! I just need to know what market you think is best.”
“If you’re 42 and have a good job,” I said, “Why do you have no money? If you lose you mother’s equity money, can she continue to afford the house with the added debt? And if you lose your job or the market crashes, can you afford to live at the current lifestyle you have?”
“That’s none of your business,” he said. “You don’t need to dig into my personal life. All I want is investment advice, not personal advice.”
Investment advice is personal advice
One of the most important things rich dad ever taught me was that investing is a plan, not a product or a procedure. He also said, “Investing is a very personal plan.” So, he believed that all investment advice also required personal advice.
Rich dad often compared investment products to cars. The reason why there are so many cars is because different people have different needs. For instance, a single person might not need a nine-passenger van, but a family with five kids might. A farmer would rather have a truck than a sports car.
“That is why investment products are called investment vehicles,” said rich dad. “They get you from point A to point B, from where you are financially to where you want to be.”
For each person, the plan will be different, depending on various personal goals, details, and realities. That is why it’s important to have a personal plan, and why, if you need advice, you need an advisor who understands your personal situation.
It takes more than one vehicle
Rich dad also pointed out that a big trip often takes more than one vehicle. For instance, if you are travelling from Hawaii to New York City, you need to take either a boat or a plane. This is because there is a big ocean between the islands and the mainland.
Once you reach land, you can either take a bike, walk, rent a car, take the train, or bus into the city. One is not necessarily better than the other. It depends on your plan. If you have time and want to take things in, then walking or riding a bike would be a good choice. If you have to make a deadline for a meeting, you would probably want a car or take the train.
Likewise, depending on your objectives, it may take a number of different vehicles to achieve your financial plan.
The vehicle is not the plan
Most people focus on investments vehicles as if they were the plan. But imagine going to a ticket counter and asking for a plane ticket but not knowing where you wanted to go. It wouldn’t be very productive—and it would be costly.
That’s how most people invest. They look for the vehicle like stocks, bonds, mutual funds, real estate, and focus on those rather than on their investment plan. They should instead make a plan and then choose the right vehicles to achieve that plan.
Don’t fall in love with your vehicle
This is also why rich dad cautioned against falling in love with your vehicle. On most trips, he pointed out you don’t own your vehicles; you simply use them for the time needed. For instance, you don’t own the plane you use to get from point A to point B. And you don’t own the cars you rent or the train you purchased a ticket for. They are useful for a time and purpose, but not for everything.
Many people fall in love with their investment vehicle. They think that stocks or real estate are the best way to invest and the only way to be successful. Again, this is a focus on a vehicle rather than a plan. Fall in love with your plan and use whatever vehicles are necessary to accomplish it.
What’s your plan?
So, do you have a plan? What vehicles will you need to meet that plan? If you’re not sure of the answer to those questions, a great place to start your plan is by increasing your financial intelligence through financial education. Attend a workshop, or if you’re ready, get a coach to help you plan. And as always, there’s no better day to begin your financial journey than today.

5 Steps for Discovering Your Plan for Success by Robert Kiyosaki

5 Steps for Discovering Your Plan for Success by Robert Kiyosaki 

Finding out what you want in life and how to achieve it


When I was a young man, I set a goal of being a millionaire by the time I was 30 years old—and I did. The problem was that I immediately lost all that money. I had flaws in my plan, flaws that taught me some valuable lessons.


The lessons I learned from my experiences, successes, and failures allowed me to adjust my plan so that I could become financially free again by the time I was 47 years old.


The point is that I never changed my plan. I simply adjusted the strategies I used to execute it. I improved on it more and more. Sticking to my plan helped me to achieve my goals.


Often in life, when our plan doesn’t turn out, we abandon it all together. That is the wrong approach. Rather, a failed plan first requires an assessment of what went wrong. More often than not, the plan needs some adjustments, not to be abandoned.


But before you can do any of this, you of course need to know your plan. So, how do you discover your own plan?


1. Take your time


Good plans rarely happen overnight. To find the right plan for you, you need to think long and hard about your life, what you want from it, and where you want to go. This can take days, weeks, and sometimes months. Take the time to discover and define what is really important for you in life.


During this time, don’t talk with others until you know what you want. All too often, people either innocently or intentionally impose their ideals on others instead of respecting what others want for themselves. This is your time to define what you want for you.


2. Find a coach


Once you know what you want in life, find a coach that you can trust. This should be someone who has successfully done what you want to achieve. Ask them to provide their qualifications and interview several people. It will be an eye-opening experience for you.


Your coach is there to guide you when you develop your plan and to ensure you stick to it. A coach isn’t there to coddle you; your coach is there to push you when you don’t want to be pushed and correct you when you need it.


3. Set realistic goals


Lots of people abandon a plan, not because the plan is bad, but because the goals were not realistic.


Identify goals in a way that reflects what you want in life. Lots of people say, “I want to be a millionaire!” Don’t do that. That’s a cold, stale and lofty goal and one that is easily dismissed, especially when you’re having a hard time making your first $10,000.


Set goals that are real to you: “I want to have enough passive income to cover my family’s expenses so I don’t have to worry about money and I can spend all my time with my children.” That’s better! Figure out how much passive income you need to achieve it and put a plan in place.


If you make your goals more personal, you’ll have a better chance of sticking to your plan to achieve your ultimate goal.


Don’t just sit on one goal and think that’s it. Start with small, realistic goals then improve or add to those goals as your financial education and experience increase. It’s best to learn how to walk before you run a marathon.


Don’t get discouraged if you make mistakes. Having realistic goals doesn’t mean you’ll win one hundred percent of the time. Mistakes are part of the process of learning from and achieving your goals.


4. Get a team


Business and investing are team sports. As your plan evolves, you will need team members who can assist you in achieving your dreams. Members of your team might include a banker, accountant, lawyer, broker, bookkeeper, insurance agent, and/or a successful mentor.


Each of these team members will need to be vetted by you. Don’t just take anyone onto your team; instead, find the right player for each position.


When you have assembled your team, meet with them often. I held meetings with my team over lunch for many years. I learned a lot about business, investing, and the process of making money through these meetings.


5. Mind your business


Whatever your plan, always remember the words of rich dad, “Regardless of whether you work for someone else or for yourself, if you want to be rich, you’ve got to mind your own business.”


Don’t be distracted by side projects. Yes, it may earn you an extra buck but it just ate up your time; time that could’ve gotten you closer to your goal. If it doesn’t move you in the right direction in relation to your plan, don’t do it.


In minding your own business, you will be more in tune with the market’s feedback and you’ll be able to adjust your plan accordingly. Be diligent and keep going one step at a time. Do that and you’ll have a great chance at getting everything you want in life.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Writing a book is like going on a long road trip.

Writing a book is like going on a long road trip.
You can’t get to the end of your journey until you’ve
traveled each and every mile of the road ahead.
While there are always many routes to get to your
destination, The Write Practice’s Book Writing Roadmap
is designed to guide you on your journey with more fun
and less frustration.
You can write a book! Just follow the map to get there.
introduction
THE MAP
ONE: Write a one to three sentence premise
TWO: Picture your ideal reader
THREE: Write a one-page outline
FOUR: Write one chapter at a time until your first draft
is finished
FIVE: Read through your book without editing
SIX: Rewrite until finished with your second draft
SEVEN: Get beta readers/a critique group/a content
editor
EIGHT: Rewrite until you finish your third draft
NINE: Get beta readers/a critique group/a copy editor
TEN: Publish
For more visit thewritepractice.com/writeabook
table of contents
ONE: WRITE A ONE TO THREE
SENTENCE PREMISE
Whether you’re writing a book or a blog post, it’s
tempting to just dive into your writing project. However,
you will save yourself time and create a better end
product if you settle on a solid premise before you start
writing.
If you’re writing fiction, your premise needs to contain
four things compacted into just one sentence:
1. the protagonist
2. the setting
3. the problem the protagonist faces
4. the protagonist’s goal
In nonfiction, the premise explains the main argument of
the book, explains the problem the book is trying to
solve, and then describes the method for solving that
problem. In nonfiction, your premise should be two to
three sentences.
one
TWO: PICTURE YOUR IDEAL
READER
The definition of a story, according to dictionary.com, is:
A narrative, either true or fictitious, in prose or verse,
designed to interest, amuse, or instruct the hearer or
reader.
Note the key words: interest, amuse, or instruct.
When people write solely for themselves, they tend to
write stories that aren’t very good, selfish stories, stories
that don’t instruct, amuse, or even hold a reader's
interest.
When people write for others, especially if they write for
one specific other—their child, their lover, their best
friend—they tend to write stories that are exciting, full of
life, real.
The best stories are not about how the author feels. The
best stories are about how the reader feels.
two
For example, when J.R.R. Tolkien wrote The Hobbit, he
never thought anyone would be interested in it. Tolkien
wrote the novel as a bedtime story for his four children,
in other words, as a way to connect more deeply with his
family. One of the best selling books of all time was
written by a man who didn’t even intend to publish it. He
only wrote the book to entertain himself and his kids.
Before you write your first line, decide whom you’re
writing for. Tape their picture next to your writing desk or
to your computer screen. Each time you write, think,
“What would they like to read?” It will make for a better
book, but it will also make for a much more fun writing
process.
two
THREE: WRITE A ONE-PAGE
OUTLINE
Plans are worthless, but planning is essential.
Before you begin writing, plan out your book in a onepage
outline. Don’t take the outline itself too seriously, as
everything can and likely will change. Use it, instead, as a
chance to think through your story from beginning to
end. You will likely come back to this outline again and
again throughout the writing process.
For your plan, use this century-old writing advice as your
guide:
In the first act get your principal character up a tree; in
the second act, throw stones at him; in the third, get him
down gracefully.
three
Use this very simple five-part model as a loose guide (it
works for fiction and nonfiction):
ACT I
1. SETUP: Why should we care? about this character?
about this idea? about this problem?
2. THE PROBLEM: You/your character wants
something… but there’s a problem. What do you/
your character want? What is the problem? And
why does it have to be solved now?
ACT II
3. MAKE THE PROBLEM PERSONAL: Why is this
problem so hard to solve?
4. SOLUTION: Solve the problem.
ACT III
5. RESOLUTION: Why does it matter that this problem
is solved? (Or for tragedies, what does the world
look like now that it hasn’t been solved?)
For maximum drama, I like what Randy Ingermanson
says: “All but the last paragraph should end in a disaster.”
three
FOUR: WRITE ONE CHAPTER AT
A TIME UNTIL YOUR FIRST
DRAFT IS FINISHED
Write each unit of your book in one sitting.
It’s good to have a daily word count requirement, e.g.
1,000 words per day. But the best strategy is to write
each unit of your book, whether that’s a story/scene/
chapter/section, in one sitting.
The human brain is made for story. We have been telling
stories since we were cavemen around campfires. Take
advantage of that built-in need to finish telling a story by
writing it all down in one sitting. It’s much harder to tell
(or write) a story when you’re interrupted halfway
through.
Note: there is no getting around the fact that writing a
book is hard. It is here where most people quit. This is
where you most need to picture your ideal reader (see
step 2) and get an accountability group, usually made up
of other writers, who can keep you focused on your goal.
four
FIVE: READ THROUGH YOUR
BOOK WITHOUT EDITING
After you finish your first draft, read your manuscript
through by yourself without editing.
After writing, you are too close to have any objectivity
about your book. Don’t waste your time editing your
book line-by-line when you’ll likely have to rewrite, or
even discard, major sections of it.
Instead, get a fresh perspective and see what holes need
filling, what chapters need to be rewritten, and what
sections need to be thrown out completely, by reading
your book from start to finish.
While you shouldn’t edit as you read, you are
encouraged to take notes or jot down any ideas you
have for the next step.
five
SIX: REWRITE UNTIL YOU
FINISH YOUR SECOND DRAFT
Your second draft is meant for major structural fixes.
If you found any major holes in the reading stage, your
second draft is the time to write or rewrite chapters and
scenes.
After the discoveries you made reading your book in
step five, you may even decide to rewrite the whole
book.
six
SEVEN: BETA READERS/
CRITIQUE GROUP/CONTENT
EDITOR
Send your manuscript to a group of up to thirty friends
and fellow writers for feedback. Through these beta
readers you will finally be able to get a sense of what
your book really is, not what you think it is. Beta readers
bring fresh eyes, and by listening to them as they talk
about your book, you'll be able to see what's ready for
publication and what isn’t.
It’s better to get as many people from as varied
backgrounds as possible rather than just asking a few
people you think you can trust. You will have a better
sense of what is working and isn’t working in your book—
and feel less personally stung if one person doesn’t like
part of your book—from a wider survey than a narrower
one.
If you can afford it, hire an editor to critique your book
after your second draft, giving a high-level overview of
your books major problems.
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EIGHT: REWRITE UNTIL YOU
FINISH THE THIRD DRAFT
Now that the major structural changes have been made
in your second draft, it’s the time to polish your prose.
Your final, detailed line edits don't come until your third
draft. First drafts are for digging the book's foundation,
second drafts for framing the house, and third drafts for
finish work.
Get polishing.
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NINE: BETA READERS/
CRITIQUE GROUP/COPY
EDITOR/PROOFREADER(S)
Another round of beta reading. If you’re part of a critique
group, this is a great time to begin sharing your writing
with them.
If you’re thinking about self-publishing, it’s essential that
you hire a line editor or copy editor to go through your
prose with a fine-tooth comb. Not only will you have a
better book because of it, good editing is the best way
to learn the writing craft.
nine
TEN: PUBLISH
Celebrate! You finished your book! Regardless of
whether you publish it or not, you’ve done something
most people only dream about.
Publishing is the most exciting and stressful part of the
book writing process, but it’s much too big a subject to
go through here. Here is a brief preview of our
publishing roadmap to get an overall sense of what
publishing involves.
1. Platform
2. Agents/Publishers vs. Self-Publishing
3. Pre-launch
4. Publish
5. Promote
Congratulations! You’ve accomplished something
amazing. Now, get to work on your next book!
For more visit thewritepractice.com/writeabook
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