Neither a Lender Nor a Borrower Be
When you start becoming a wealthy man or woman, your friends and family may be less than supportive.
I’ve had people disagree and say to me: “My wife is extremely supportive of what I’m trying to do,” and so on.
Let me clarify. People who are in direct line for a shovel full of gold from your heap are, of course, likely to be fully supportive (although often they are secretly resentful too – I will explain in a moment).
I’m talking about those who won’t benefit directly from your courage, skill and determination. They are the ones who will seek to undermine your efforts.
It’s not out of malice or hatred.
It’s because if YOU succeed it sends a message loud and clear to them that THEY could succeed too. That means hard work and change for them – and so they will select the easier route of dragging you down to their level. That saves them the bother of changing.
Trust me on this one as I’ve seen it many times. I only mention it so that you are aware that one of the penalties of getting wealthy is you may attract the resentment and hostility of your friends and family – those who claim most to care about you!
And, by the way, please do NOT think that giving money to friends and family (sharing your largesse) will in any way buffer you from their scorn. It will not.
They will gladly take the money of course, and smile, and thank you and say how clever you have been. Secretly they will despise you.
Again, it is not a character flaw on their part but basic human nature.
Turn it around and think about it. You’re struggling to make ends meet and a friend or family member bails you out to the tune of ten grand. Phew! You’re really VERY grateful on one level. But what’s the secret message from your benefactor?
I think it’s this: “Dear oh dear, you have got yourself into a bit of a pickle haven’t you? I see that you’ve totally failed to do one of the simpler and most basic things a human can do which is to spend less than you earn. Oh well…(sigh). Don’t worry, because I, you see, have mastered that skill a long time ago and can not only provide easily for myself and my family, but have generated a surplus which I am able to give to you, poor sap, to bail you out of the mess you’ve created. Here, take this £10k loan/gift.”
No matter how nice the gesture, no matter how close you are to the person, no matter how sincere and grateful they are, that is still the message which is heard loud and clear.
The result? Resentment.
My advice? Be very, very careful about helping people out financially. And if you DO give, do it with an open heart.
Do not expect more than token thanks, don’t expect to get paid back and at least prepare yourself for resentment and hostility.