May 11-May 15, 2020
a look back at this week’s essays…
Money. Let’s Talk About Money!
I collect art. I also collect books, beer bottles, and cigar lighters. I enjoy collecting them all. But there is something I get from my art collection that I don’t get from books, bottles, and lighters: I get richer.
Click here to read more.
The Simplicity Imperative
There are probably a hundred personal productivity mistakes I have made in my business career, but most of them can be sorted into three persistently wrong-headed impulses…
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Fear and Hope for Young People Today
“I feel sorry for young people today,” a friend said to me recently. “They are growing up in a terrible time.” I gave him a sympathetic nod. I didn’t want to get into it. I don’t have the same feeling. And I’m not even sure why…
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- How much do you remember about this week’s “Words to the Wise”? Use each of these words in a sentence:
* dilettante (5/11/20)
* respite (5/13/20)
* breviloquent (5/15/20)
- Fill in the blanks in this week’s quotations:
* “There are two ways that art is judged as good: connoisseurship and _____.” – Michael Masterson (5/11/20)
* “As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be _____; solitude will not be solitude, poverty will not be poverty, nor weakness weakness.” – Henry David Thoreau (5/13/20)
* “‘_____’ is the thing with feathers / That perches in the soul / And sings the tune without the words / And never stops – at all” – Emily Dickinson (5/15/20)
- Are these statements True or False?
* Prices of investable art follow the stock market. They immediately rise when the stock market rises, and fall when the stock market falls. (5/11/20)
* COVID-19, the disease caused by coronavirus, spreads the same way as chickenpox, measles, and the common cold. (5/13/20)
* Dr. Matthew Schmitt developed a breathing exercise to help people stop smoking. (5/15/20)
recommended links from this week’s blog
* “Stephen King Has an Idea for the Story Joe Biden Could Be Telling” in The New York Times – A solid interview with a very good writer. Click here to read it.
* “Seymour the Squirrel and the Avocado Helmet” – Is this animal abuse? HERE
* “Lockdown is a huge mistake…” – A dull presentation, but it’s from someone (a Nobel Prize winning scientist) that understands the math. HERE
* Whether it’s caused by COVID-19 or another illness, you can help relieve mucus buildup in the lungs by following this doctor’s “rule of threes.” Click here to see how it’s done.
* “To prevent the next pandemic, it’s the legal wildlife trade we should worry about…” – In this essay from National Geographic, a biologist argues that viruses can spread as easily from the trade of legal wildlife like frogs and monkeys, a multibillion-dollar global business, as they can by bats and other exotics in “wet” markets. Click here to read it.
* This poignant video of a music teacher trying to convey her thoughts and feelings about shelter-in-place through a heartfelt song nearly brought me to tears. HERE
I’m a 51-year-old actor living in Los Angeles. I’ve been fortunate enough to work on many great projects in the past 30 years, but haven’t created any savings. What advice or suggestions do you have for creating wealth at this stage of my life?
Ah, to be 51 again!
Lucky you! But I get it. When you pass that 50-yard line, the end zone is no longer a distant possibility. And as an aging actor, you may be anticipating less demand than supply of your talents in the future.
But you didn’t write for my encouragement or sympathy. You want advice, or at least a suggestion or two that you can make useful. I’m happy to oblige.
The first thing I’m going to say is something you already know and may not want to hear. The bottom-line reason you haven’t saved any money till now is not because of any or all of the dozens of serious financial challenges you’ve faced in your life so far. It’s because of all the thousands of small decisions you’ve made about working and spending and (not) saving.
Take responsibility for that.
You don’t have to beat yourself up about it. There are millions of happy people that live without the burden of that responsibility. And some portion of them make it through life without a care in the world. But you have a care. You are concerned about the lifestyle you’ll have in the coming years. And with good reason. The country is broke. The entertainment industry is in lockdown. Your prospects for making good money in the future are narrowing with each coming birthday. It’s almost enough to make a person think, “Why me?”
Since I’ve written thousands of pages on your question already, I’m not going to waste your time or mine repeating bits and pieces of them in truncated form today. Instead, I’m going to recommend that you read two of the books I’ve written (under my pen name “Michael Masterson”) in a specific order.
- The Pledge: Your Master Plan for an Abundant Life– If you let it, this book will get you over the hurdle of making the changes you need to make to accomplish your financial goals.
- Automatic Wealth: The 6 Steps to Financial Independence– This is basically a blueprint for acquiring wealth. There are plenty of books out there that do this. Some of them are very good. What I like about Automatic Wealth is that I know the blueprint is real because it’s my blueprint. And I know it’s easy to follow because I hate complicated plans.
If you are willing to read these books, I am confident you’ll have the answers you are looking for. If you are not willing to read them, I’ve got another book for you. It’s called Living Rich. It’s about having a truly rich life on a modest budget
Have a question for me? Submit it on our Contact Us page.
For a look back at the stock market, click here.