E, S, B, I.
When I first saw “the grid”, I thought they were mystic markings. I could not have been closer to the truth.
Robert Kiyosaki, in his book, Rich Dad, Poor Dad, talked about the 4 quadrants: E for Employee. S for the Self-employed. B for the Business Owner and I for the Investor.
Only thin lines separate the 4. But in reality, millions of dollars and a vast chasm divide them.
And boy, I am finding out what it takes of me to cross that chasm.
I have to tell you – there is an extraordinary amount of pressure. And a feeling that I cannot shake off: of biting off more than I could chew.
It is Robert’s fault. He has always lauded owning a business and investing (the right side of the quadrant) so I have set my sights on being those. But what I am hearing are warning bells in my head. It is deafening. And I long to return to the comfort of E, of S (the left quadrant).
The Left Side
If one is employed – he only needs to do what he is supposed to do, no more, no less: come on time, be presentable, think some, eat some, play some. And then at the end of a 15-day period, there is an infusion of funds. Money! And without fail. It is not much, but even the businessman has to admit: the regularity carries with it a charm, too.
The self-employed have it harder but a harder territory carries with it greater rewards (think 5 zeroes). Belonging to this quadrant are the lawyers who have set up their own practice, doctors, some professionals, some not-so, and the actors and the actresses – but their pay is limited with the hours of the days, and not showing up means lesser zeroes.
The Right Side
Okay. Business owners and investors (the more evolved business owner) have it the greatest. Apart from money (lots), they have in their hands buttons for control – control over their time, how much money to give to the government, what to pursue, who to pursue, all the trappings that money can buy (or attract). But behind every businessman-turned-millionaire story is the back story: inhuman work hours, doing the work of 5 or more people… Name it they have done it – beg, steal, borrow, the accounting, the contracts, the creatives, the marketing, the evaluating, the letter writing, the thinking, dealing with people, negotiating, planning, selling, cajoling… I should know. I am in the thick of this back story (well, what I hope will be a back story). And can I just add? – it does not end there: from time to time come those little heart palpitations and unbidden thoughts: “Why are you doing this? Are you crazy?” To be capped by the ringing of a defeatist battlecry: “Give it up. Give it up.” And then I would think: wouldn’t it be great to just go back to the simple life, a time when work need not be taken to the home, to nights when there need not be any presence of mind (mind has maxed out its quota during the day), when there are no million and one books and letters and documents to read and study, nights when playing with a daughter, reading, watching television, not thinking – is possible?
But Robert Kiyosaki also said that if one persists, he will cross over. (he has no choice)
Persistence. Dependable Napoleon Hill, in his book Think and Grow Rich, mentions four simple steps:
- A definite purpose backed by burning desire for its fulfillment.
- A definite plan, expressed in continuous action.
- A mind closed tightly against all negative and discouraging influences, including negative suggestions of relatives, friends and acquaintances.
- A friendly alliance with one or more persons who will encourage one to follow through with both plan and purpose.
My friend and business partner had on her Gmail status: drowning in physical clutter and work. I had to smile. I messaged her: “Mare, I feel the same way. Head aching sooo bad. But you know what? I know that I am doing this for me and that I can stop or slow down if I want to but I don’t want to.” (was that me?)
I don’t want to stop. I have to keep thinking that thought, believe, persist.