Setting Out to Prove Anything Sets You in the Wrong Direction

Setting out to prove I was better than poverty

I’ve shared it before, but I could mine it for years the lessons learned in one decision.  After one year of the grind of minimum wage and having a jerk for a boss, I decided to go to college. As I took the career assessment tests and browsed the college catalog, I kept returning to a single factor.  Money was the only factor. I never wanted to live in poverty again. I wanted to prove I was smarter than that, better than that. If I’m totally honest, after a life of feeling like a nobody, I wanted to show that I was somebody.

Indeed, I did prove to be somebody. The youngest person to manage and open a new branch location. Vice President at a young age. I wined and dined with millionaires in their homes and the finest of restaurants. A beautiful home and family. An active volunteer in the community. I had arrived at the wrong destination because setting out to prove anything sets you in the wrong direction.

Consequently, having been knocked on my can in the financial crash, I set out once again with something to prove. Money conveniently removed from the equation, I set out again.  Since I thought the lesson was about money, I did not focus on money at all. It was a charitable endeavor but the underlying need to prove was still there.  However, this time (thank God!) I learned much faster. Setting out to prove anything, sets you in the wrong direction.

What we try to prove with money

Similarly, humans set out every day to prove something when it comes to money. Either it’s to prove they’re somebody by making a lot of money or they are as good as others by spending foolishly to keep up with the Joneses. Ironically, the only thing setting out to prove anything with money proves is that we have a lot to learn.

Grab your journal; it’s your turn to grow

Take a few moments and reflect on your current income producing activities.

  1. When you’re honest with yourself, is there something you are setting out to prove?
  2. Are there signs that you are heading in the wrong direction? What steps can you take to correct course before a crash, illness or some other means comes along and corrects course for you?
  3. Have you already learned this growth lesson? Perhaps it’s your turn to pass along the wisdom to your friends and family by sharing today’s post.

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