I was gathered with a small group of friends around a backyard fire pit last weekend and the topic of real estate came up. Not entirely surprising considering the majority in this group were either real estate agents, investors or mortgage brokers.
Being on the younger side of this crew, I leaned in to hear stories about what sorts of decisions these parents of teens & college-aged kids were making.
We started discussing what it takes to purchase your first home in this economic climate. One of the seasoned mortgage brokers said matter of factly, “Kids will need down payments from their parents.” He was convinced it was the only way they would get a foot in the home ownership door.
In a way, this made me sad. The divide between rich and poor is getting stronger. If you come from money, you have a leg up. This isn’t anything new, but the dissolution of the middle class is far more severe than previous generations.
I thought back to my own situation. My parents paid for three years of college (I supplemented the rest with Miss America scholarship earnings and running start). But haven’t so much as bought me a dinner since. James and I bought our first home together when I was 32. He has never received financial help from his parent’s, either. We have no safety net. There will be no inheritances for us. This creates a different type of urgency when it comes to money.
This conversation got me thinking about the “American Dream” and if it is even achievable in our current day…?
The American Dream is synonymous with the idea of success, prosperity, and happiness. It is the belief that with hard work, sacrifice, and determination, anyone can rise from the bottom to the top and achieve their dreams.
I’ve always loved how this idealization teaches us to take full ownership over our lives, because truly, ownership is ESSENTIAL to creating anything transformational.
But, with the evolving economic, social, and political landscape, realizing the American Dream in the 21st century has become increasingly difficult.
Here’s what it REALLY takes:
Education: Education is the foundation of a successful career and financial stability but as I mentioned last week, you cannot rely solely on traditional education. You need to READ books and LISTEN to alternative ways to build wealth outside of the standard advice of getting a good job with benefits, clipping coupons to save here and there, and stuffing anything and everything extra into a 401k. That just ain’t gonna cut it.
Hard Work: Hard work and dedication will ALWAYS beat talent. Persistence, perseverance, and putting in the hours are critical factors to success. You cannot expect success and freedom to come easily, yet, technology continues to train our brain that things DO come easily. We can listen to any song, watch any movie, read any book, find any recipe - all at our fingertips! Most things are getting easier and faster, but financial freedom is the one thing you cannot microwave.
Networking: Ever heard your “network is your net worth”? Connections are crucial for success. Building and maintaining a network of contacts, friends, and mentors can provide vital opportunities and referrals, as well as potentially open up alternative career paths and business opportunities. Do EVERYTHING in your power to get in the room (be it virtual or in-person) to learn and connect. You cannot put a price tag on the value this brings.
Financial Savvy: A good understanding of personal finance, savings, investments, and debt management is crucial to achieving financial stability and setting goals for the future. Living well within your means, crushing consumer debt (anything that doesn’t put money back into your pocket), investing early and often are critical strategies for achieving long-term financial security, as is having wealth protection (insurance) and a place to grow your money tax-free (my speciality).
Adaptability: Finally, as technology, culture, and society advance, the ability to adapt and evolve is vital. Resilience, with the ability to change, learn, and grow, is increasingly important in the modern, ever-changing job, and industry markets. Recognizing new opportunities, pursuing alternate career paths, and adapting to change are essential components of modern-day success.
If you go looking, you can find stories of courageous and forward-thinking people all over the United States who have risen from humble beginnings to create spectacular lives for themselves and future generations!
Someone I personally think of is the CEO, mentor and genius businessman Hiep Tran. He is the mastermind behind Amare Global, a company I’m partnered with which focuses on mental health and wellbeing.
His parents were Vietnamese immigrants and were determined to help him lead a different life. He grew up working in the family restaurant. After five years in college as a biology major, he dropped out. He then went to work in merchant processing, which taught him how businesses run and gave him a diverse perspective. He went on to build tremendous wealth and freedom in that industry; retired, then decided to build a business stemming from his life mission to spread the word of holistic mental wellness solutions.
His story is proof that dedication and perseverance can be the stepping stones to creating a thriving businesses through passive income – even when nobody thought you could!
In this fast-paced world, where the barriers to success can seem overwhelming, it is essential to stay focused on the end goal for YOUR FAMILY and YOUR MISSION.
You CAN achieve freedom.
You live in America.
You speak English.
You have more opportunities than anyone in the world.
People literally risk everything to get here.
Yes, you need persistence, dedication, and a never-give-up attitude- but you also need to take advantage of opportunities that align with your vision.
✨ BELIEVE your success is inevitable and it will be.
Hire a Pro: My expertise in entrepreneurship paired with financial strategy allows me an alternative perspective to wealth building than the typical financial advice from talking heads. If you’re ready to learn new approaches that will help you achieve your financial goals; crush debt, protect your wealth, and grow your money tax-free, schedule a wealth strategy session now.