That messed with my head. Would I have noticed the concierge working long hours, the sleeping business men, the terribly ill people headed to work if I hadn’t myself been sick? Would I have known their drugs are full of caffeine to work through their illness? Would I have looked at this way-of-life and mine and seen the similarities in a negative way? No. If I hadn’t been ill, I probably would have looked for condos thinking, “These people get me.” Holy crap…how do I convert to Shintoism? Is there a form?
I would have liked to spend another day petting sacred deer and getting enlightened by shrine maidens, but Nara was our last day before the big journey home. While waiting for our flight, there was a TV story with English subtitles. Einstein took a tour of Japan and announced, “Of all the people I have met, I like the Japanese the most…” As if on cue with my own interest, it then related Einstein’s theory of happiness, “A calm and modest life brings more happiness than the pursuit of success combined with constant restlessness.”
OK, Shinto gods, I get you. Maybe I don’t need a new car, designer clothes and a new tablet. Maybe what I need is a reminder that I’m my own emperor and I get to decide what’s important.
If you’re wondering if this story ends with me living a monk-like possession-less existence, think again! I have a family and a mortgage for crying out loud! Daycare costs more than my mortgage. I can’t take a vow of poverty! Along with the free enlightenment, I bought a bunch of money and success charms. I’m certainly not swearing off the all mighty dollar. However, this trip had me rethinking the way I spend those dollars.
The important things in life are family, friends, and a successful career. When your asset collection is looking a little thin, it’s difficult to enjoy the beautiful things in life. Up until this point, I’ve been spending my life focusing on short-term cashflow instead of looking at the bigger picture – asset collection. I wrote a little bit about asset collection here, but I will continue to learn and build the knowledge base for your benefit and mine. Basically, asset collection is purchasing things that make money, not things that acquire debt. These things can include real estate, stocks, bonds, and profit producing assets like CRM software and lead generating services. Basically, skipping those designer shoes and spending that $200 on a US copyright and ISBN for your book. This is asset producing spending behavior.
Maybe I did get a little bit of inspiration for “enterprising ventures.” It just wasn’t the inspiration I was expecting. Stay tuned for more articles on asset production as I learn more and more on the subject!