Were are we all, as human being going?

48 Replies

I'm very new to real estate investing, however, not new to psychology. I grew up in a family that puts a lot of value in material possession. It does the good of giving a goal to aim at. when we have a goal we will do as much work as it takes to achieve that goal. It takes a strong mind to do that, over and over again. Once we get this possession then what? Even if it is a great cash flowing multi unit fully rented out, now what? Well we have the buying power/capitol we wanted but somehow we still feel unfulfilled. So what if our subconscious actually was hiding the real goal from our conscious mind? What if the real goal is just the chance of getting that multi unit? Getting to meet new people and make new relationships. Getting closer to a spouse doing a flip project together. Just some food for thought, take time and remember why you are really doing this  

Uh, yeah, money.

It's about making money, and what that money affords you

For me, money equals freedom. And I will use that freedom to spend time with family, watch my kids grow, and retire on my terms.

Hi Shane,

I think it depends on where the need for possessions is derived from.  Nothing wrong with wanting possessions and nice things in life.  Let's be honest.  Nicer things are better built, better quality, and you enjoy it more. 

If someone is buying Gucci loafers, Rolex President watch, Mercedes S class, 4000 sqft house etc to show off and portray an image to others then they will never be satisfied and never truly be happy. Now if the same person is buying these things for themselves and no one else then the true intent is genuine.  They will be happy because the material possession is goals and items is set for themselves and not for others.  They are in no need to impress others. 

As we enter a new age where social media dominates our culture and people are so concerned with image, I see more and more people care about what other people think.  It's funny to me.  People will go in debt buying things they don't need to show off to people they don't know and don't care about them.  Fascinating from a psychological standpoint.  

As you buy one property and move to the next it should bring you enjoyment.  There is always another deal and more you can accomplish.  Happiness and fulfillment is a choice.  I choose to be happy today, I am choosing to be nice, I am choosing everything.  This is my choice.

@Frank Wong. Those are very good points and well thought out. Even in the idea of having a set goal to achieve a material possession may be what the mere shell of the goal is, however, if you pull that goal apart and stretch it out you'll find something deeper. What's within the shell of the goal is the development and extension of character itself. For expample, buying your first rental property and learning to manage your tenants. You begin to develop a more structured character of your own to put forth to your tenant in the desire to train a good tenant. Similar to being a good boss, you take on more responsibility. I'm not saying there's anything wrong the having goals obtaining to having a nicer car and house, however, I have the idea that there's more to that goal. Maybe the most important part. 

@Shane C. Downs

You're looking for development and fulfillment through real estate, joining the cult of personal and spiritual growth and finding one's life meaning through employment. 

So I have to emphasize that, once more, real estate, landlording to be specific, has emphatically NOT made me a better and finer human being. My personal search for meaning, my journey of self-discovery, ended quite some time ago, and it didn't end with collecting rent from people every month.

I am not progressing along my personal path of rising from Being into Spirit, climbing the Divine Ladder of Ascent, passing over the Hill of Difficulty and through the Slough of Despond to reach the Celestial City.

Little by little, day by day, Jesus is not changing me for the better.

It's about money, Shane. What I choose to do with the money is my business, and whether I buy prostitutes and cocaine with it, spend it betting on cockfights, or donate it all to Save the Whales or Save the Children or Save the Cute Stray Animals, none of THAT is going to make me a better and finer human being, either.

I'm still a sinner, no better than the next guy, no more developed, no more refined, no more worthy of grace, no less deserving of the pit, and talk like yours worries me.

Because it's only a hop, skip, and a jump away from the psychology of personal growth to understanding myself as a more deserving person than my tenants because I worked and saved and bled to own the roof over their heads, and they didn't, so God has rewarded me on Earth with riches to show His favor and punished my tenants with a lack of money to show His rejection. That's in a part of town I would prefer never to spend time in after dark.

@Jim K I wouldn't say I'm searching for divine meaning within business/real estate. Divine meaning is always changing and stays within the individual. Collective meaning/ideas or idealogy are something to be worried about. What I'm talking about is integrating personality within an individual. Facing challenges with a structured meaning is how thats done. You'll never be better than the next person. Everyone sins, misses the mark, and everyone is tempted by sin as well. Sin is an animal waiting at the door for you to let it in. The main defense stated in the bible is to take your burden forth rightly and become a better person. Taking on more responsibility, it's in every decision we make. It's not to be better than someone else, its for the betterment of life its self

@Jason D I agree with you that it's for family, your self, and the future. What I'm pointing to is that through these challenges theres development of character we don't even see or notice necessarily. 

@Shane C. Downs

Well, for someone who's not looking for diving meaning, you sure have a lot of pop-psychology code words for the cult of work as personal and spiritual development in your writing:

1. "...we have the buying power/capitol [sic] we wanted but somehow we still feel unfulfilled..."

2. "So what if our subconscious actually was hiding the real goal from our conscious mind?" 

3. "What if the real goal is..."

4. "Getting to meet new people and make new relationships."

5. "Getting close to a spouse..."

6. "...remember why you are really doing this"

7. "...pull that goal apart...you'll find something deeper..."

8. "...develop a more structured character..."

9. "...there's more to that goal. Maybe the most important part."

10. "Collective meaning/ideas or idealogy [sic] are something to be worried about."

11. "Facing challenged with a structured meaning..."

12. "...stated in the bible is to take your burden forth rightly and become a better person..." (show me a citation for that sort of modern personal improvement message in the New Testament, go ahead)

13. "Facing challenges with a structured meaning"

14. "...for the betterment of life its [sic] self"

15. "...through these challenges theres [sic] development of character we don't even see or notice necessarily.

You're like reading a semi-literate version of Stephen R. Covey, Latter Day Saints development theology translated into pop-psychology terms, dependent to independent to interdependent. What's next? Once you develop enough as a human being, it's time to follow the Principle and get that second wife?

I'm sorry, but for me, it all smacks too much of LDS and prosperity gospel and character-building through challenges and pulling yourself up by your own Horatio-Alger bootstraps and eventually being so developed you can't help but hide the salami in another woman. Let me guess what your personal mission statement is: "I strive to continuously improve myself in everything I do."

Which in the end really means that others who are not continuously improving themselves...who don't approach life with the same ideology (AND IT IS AN IDEOLOGY) well, they deserve what's coming to them, right?

The achievement point is often anticlimactic...and high achievers always continue to move the goal line further out.  I've learned to love the process of achievement rather than just the result.  And there are many things worth doing that have near zero percent chance of success.  Took me 40 years to learn this.

@Shane C. Downs I would agree that when we push through challenges, we sometimes learn things about ourselves. But, if I didn't already think could get through them, I wouldn't have pursued real estate.

I think you have to have the drive and the character to do this in the first place. I dont think that actually doing it changes any of that

Originally posted by @Mike Dymski :

 And there are many things worth doing that have near zero percent chance of success.

That's some real food for thought.

I liked your reply OP. I can not disagree. I think about my new approach to RE. I am getting more confident in the process. It does go deeper than money. Perhaps, it all ties back to it though. While we are on the mindset thing today I will take the crazy spiritual approach. Today, I am an eagle, soaring high above the trees and assessing properties. Not for rabbits but for value. 

Originally posted by @Jason D. :

@Shane C. Downs I would agree that when we push through challenges, we sometimes learn things about ourselves. But, if I didn't already think could get through them, I wouldn't have pursued real estate.

I think you have to have the drive and the character to do this in the first place. I dont think that actually doing it changes any of that

Try raising the bar then...to goals and challenges that are currently unthinkable.

I do this solely for a community outreach project to bring people up and offer affordable low income housing to people who would otherwise move away or go homeless . My daily goals center around getting these disenfranchised downtrodden citizens up to the level where they can be active parts of the community and restore their personal dignity back to them .. eh, who am I kidding ? I’m a slumlord in it for the money 

@Shane C. Downs Money is a tool, a means to an end, not the end itself. This tool, like any other, can help or hurt you, can set you free or hold you back. Thousands of carpenters have used saws to make untold wealth. Other have us the same tool to remove their fingers. 

Your description of having lots of money/things yet still feeling unfilled rings of the Hedonic treadmill: "the tendency of a person to remain at a relatively stable level of happiness despite changes in fortune or the achievement of major goals. As a person makes more money, expectations and desires rise in tandem, which results in no permanent gain in happiness."

So the real question is, how do we all avoid the treadmill?


@Bill F. Good question, very well put as well. My idea would be to always be looking internally. Through every decision you are affected and so is everyone around you. Carl Jung put it, As far as we can discern, the sole purpose of human existence is to kindle a light of meaning in the darkness of mere being. 

I know what you mean. Honestly my heart has never been in real estate investing itself and I was only doing it for the money. My sister and I are partners and she loves real estate investing so much, her heart IS really in it.

So she keeps working all of her deals and now I just get a little involved when I feel like it. Like this new deal she's got going. It's a commercial lot that had a trailer house on it that was being used for a business office. It also has a billboard on it. She's moving the house to another lot to sell. Then she's building a retirement community on it which has already been approved by the planning commission.

I didn't feel terribly inspired to get involved in any of it to this point. But I do feel inspired to get involved in the creation of the business side of the retirement community.

You gotta go where your heart takes you. Otherwise why are we all even here?

Having said all that, who doesn't love to have more money?

I feel so lucky to have the best of both worlds in the comps service my sister and I created. I get to do what I love, business and marketing, while creating a better financial future for me and my family. And she gets to make money doing what she loves, her deals and the sales side of our business. She's the talkative one so she does all the sales and I'm more introverted computer techy person so I do all of the behind the scenes stuff.

Things just work when you follow your heart and use your strengths and let someone else cover your weaknesses. That's why we make perfect partners and why we're both so happy with what we do and making money at it too.

@Jim K. You're reading into something thats not there. Most of my ideas, which are fragmented, are derived from 20th century psychologists and their writings. I am still a Christian, but there's more to the teachings in the bible stories. What I stick to as a rock in my mind is what I just previously posted to Bill F by Carl Jung. I know the world is suffering but we can shine a little bit of light on who we are. My ideas stay fragmented and will change. They will not turn to myself becoming a demi god as you seem to think so. I don't know true path of life, all i know is this is how you develop your ideas.

@Lori Greene that is good to hear. It also sounds like you've become closer to your sister. You maybe even inspiring her everyday without even knowing it. That's what I like hearing from people 

@Jim K. I agree with that article. What I think happens is people shred their religious structure of beliefs and just replaces it with work/career. It's the same thing that happened with the rise of the Soviet Union. People put all the faith into a structured government. I aim more to the individual with ancient structures. They're a set of principles, however have to be tied into your own derived ideas. Sounds like you are in the same spot as me 

Originally posted by @Jim K. :

@Shane C. Downs

You're looking for development and fulfillment through real estate, joining the cult of personal and spiritual growth and finding one's life meaning through employment. 

So I have to emphasize that, once more, real estate, landlording to be specific, has emphatically NOT made me a better and finer human being. My personal search for meaning, my journey of self-discovery, ended quite some time ago, and it didn't end with collecting rent from people every month.

I am not progressing along my personal path of rising from Being into Spirit, climbing the Divine Ladder of Ascent, passing over the Hill of Difficulty and through the Slough of Despond to reach the Celestial City.

Little by little, day by day, Jesus is not changing me for the better.

It's about money, Shane. What I choose to do with the money is my business, and whether I buy prostitutes and cocaine with it, spend it betting on cockfights, or donate it all to Save the Whales or Save the Children or Save the Cute Stray Animals, none of THAT is going to make me a better and finer human being, either.

I'm still a sinner, no better than the next guy, no more developed, no more refined, no more worthy of grace, no less deserving of the pit, and talk like yours worries me.

Because it's only a hop, skip, and a jump away from the psychology of personal growth to understanding myself as a more deserving person than my tenants because I worked and saved and bled to own the roof over their heads, and they didn't, so God has rewarded me on Earth with riches to show His favor and punished my tenants with a lack of money to show His rejection. That's in a part of town I would prefer never to spend time in after dark.

landlording had the exact opposite effect on me.. I lost trust and faith in tenants..  Every time i try to do something nice i got burnt.. I am just too nice and giving of a person to be an effective landlord..  I cant see how land lording has any significant benefit to inner personal growth.. First time you walk into a home you just spent 10k fixing up and its now got 5k of damage.. its sours one.. i know it did me. 

My favorite how to not landlord by Jay Hinrichs is the case of a tenant i had in Kokomo IN.  its freezing one winter they just had a new baby or so says the PM.. they say they cant pay for heat and rent.. if I would just let them slide 3 months we can add it to the remainder of months and be caught up..  Well of course I agree.. they stay the 3 months packed up and left..  :)  Jim Wise has the best saying 

Its a SAVAGE business and that it is  at least in the bottom 1/2 of the renter pools.. the top half has its own challenges but non pay and destruction are not one of them.. more like wanting the homes to be perfect.

Originally posted by @Bill F. :

@Shane C. Downs Money is a tool, a means to an end, not the end itself. This tool, like any other, can help or hurt you, can set you free or hold you back. Thousands of carpenters have used saws to make untold wealth. Other have us the same tool to remove their fingers. 

Your description of having lots of money/things yet still feeling unfilled rings of the Hedonic treadmill: "the tendency of a person to remain at a relatively stable level of happiness despite changes in fortune or the achievement of major goals. As a person makes more money, expectations and desires rise in tandem, which results in no permanent gain in happiness."

So the real question is, how do we all avoid the treadmill?

One only has to look at some of the high profile suicides of the last 20 years to see that no manner of wealth can in itself create happiness

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