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When I reflect on my life up until this point, I like to think about how I ended up right here right now. Obviously, each and every decision I made pushed me in one direction or another. That goes for all of my decisions – financial, educational, relationships, etc. After much reflection, I have come to realize that I have a single trait that has helped me immensely. That single trait is being coachable. By being coachable, I have taken actions that have propelled me in positive directions and led to my current position. And I have to say, I’m quite happy with my current position. So if you’re sitting there wondering what the heck I’m talking about and thinking you might benefit from being coachable, read on!
What Does It Mean To Be Coachable
Being coachable doesn’t just mean you get better at playing a particular sport. Sure, it does apply to playing sports, but being coachable can be also applied to any area of life. So just what does it mean to Be Coachable? Here’s a quick and dirty rundown:
- Ability to listen
- Open to the opinions of others
- Recognizing you’re not always right
- Being intrigued by the experiences of others
- Willing to try new things
- Open to trying a new way of doing something
- Willing to take action
As you can see from the list above, being coachable encompasses quite a few things. In my opinion, the most important characteristics of this trait are listening and taking action. One without the other won’t amount to significant change. And without significant change, you’re going to be spinning your financial wheels in place for a very long time. This I know firsthand.
Thinking back, I never thought I was smart enough to go to college. And I was certain I wasn’t rich enough. Growing up in a tiny house (8 x 50′ trailer) wasn’t trendy when I was a kid. These days, people choose to live tiny for a plethora of reasons.
Those reasons range from environmental to chasing an early retirement. Unfortunately, my family lived in a trailer because we couldn’t afford anything else. So not cool. Back then, I was embarrassed and stigmatized for my family’s position. I shouldn’t have let it bother me, but I did. After all, I was just a kid.
Thankfully, our trailer was on the right side of the tracks, so I got to go to a really good school. That opened my eyes to wanting more out of life than just the hand I was dealt at birth. But even though I wanted it, I still didn’t know how to get it. That’s where being coachable came in handy.
I wanted what a lot of people want out of life. I wanted a college education, a nice home, and a family. But most of all, I didn’t want to have to stress over money. After high school, I immediately went to work in a factory where I met an engineer who told me I was smart enough to go to college and that I should look into the local community college.
Then Take Action
Well, I did just that. Without telling a soul, I did a little research, applied and was accepted. I went back to that engineer a few weeks later and told him that I was starting evening classes the very next semester. Today, I’m sitting here with a master’s degree in a scientific field and a high-paying job to boot.
That was one of many moments in my life where I listened to someone else’s opinion, was willing to change what I was doing, and took action to catapult myself to a new place. I was coachable. Without making that first change, I would never be in the position to build wealth and chase FIRE/FIOR the way I am today. If you want to hear me tell more about this story, you can hop on over to the ChooseFI Podcast. Or, take a listen here…
Other articles you might enjoy:
- How We’re Achieving FIRE/FIOR Through Selective Frugality
- 5 Reasons You Need To Track Your Net Worth To Build Wealth
- 9 Money Hacks That Took Us From The Poorhouse To The Penthouse
- The Simple 1-4-4 Rule We Use To Grow Our Wealth to Staggering Levels
Actionable Steps To Build Your Wealth
Whether you’re buried under student loans or just about to pay off your mortgage, considering a few of these actionable steps could get you to your financial goals much faster. Check them out.
1. Be Coachable
Let’s start off by being 100% clear, being coachable is the first step in building wealth – short of an inheritance or winning the lottery, of course. So, open your mind to new possibilities and let the opportunities roll in.
2. Take Inventory
In order to eliminate debt and build significant wealth, it is essential to know exactly where you stand. Taking an inventory of all of your assets and liabilities will allow you to get a snapshot or your net worth. Net worth is nothing more than Assets – Liabilities. Don’t panic if yours is a negative number. Everyone starts somewhere and by reading this article and taking some actionable steps, you’re already ahead of half of the population.
When I say take inventory, I mean sit down with a spreadsheet or pen and paper and list out all of your assets and their values. Then, do the same for your liabilities. Liabilities include anything that takes money away from you (house, cars, student loans, personal loans, credit cards, etc.). Don’t forget to record all balances and interest rates.
3. Prioritize Debt Repayment
When paying off debt, it’s best to prioritize it based on balance and/or interest rate. There are two popular methods for debt elimination you should consider – The Debt Snowball and the Debt Avalanche. The first focuses on paying off the lowest balance debt first; the latter focuses on paying off the highest interest rate debt first. Regardless which one you choose, you’ll end up in the same place – Debt Free!
During debt prioritization, consider a few companies that might be able to optimize your payments and even reduce the amount of money you pay in the long run.
4. Track Your Net Worth
I cannot stress this point enough. Without tracking our net worth, we wouldn’t be in the position we are in today with our money. Being able to open a website or app and see in black and white our overall financial health has been our single biggest motivating factor in our wealth-building journey.
Although we love old-fashioned Excel spreadsheets for money management, we also love using the free and secure tool, Personal Capital. With Personal Capital, we get to track our net worth, watch our mortgage balances plummet, and run retirement calculations to project our FIRE date.
And, it only took a few minutes for us to link all of our accounts to keep a pulse on our net worth. The best part about net worth is, whether you’re focusing on paying off debt or investing in the market, your net worth goes up! #motivating
So, if you’re not already tracking yours, I highly recommend you give Personal Capital a try today.
5. Build Wealth On Autopilot
After you have all of your financial ducks in a row, sit back and relax because you’re going to be building wealth on autopilot. And when you’re building wealth on autopilot, you don’t need to worry about anything other than living your best life.
Whether living your best life means sipping margaritas on a Caribbean beach or relaxing in your PJs by a fire, having a healthy financial portfolio will give you the option.
And there you have it, what it means to be coachable and why it’s vital for building wealth and living your best life. It’s not enough to just want things to change, you have to make them change. Go get yours!