Ask James: LOVE, SEX, BUSINESS, DATING, and GREED

woman

I used to religiously read “Dear Abby’s column” as a kid. Then I would buy the collected columns (since she had decades worth of material) when they came out in book form. She had been doing it since 1956 and her daughter continues the tradition. And then there was “Ask Ann Landers” which was every bit as good and done by her twin sister. Of course they couldn’t use their real names. “Ann Landers” real name was “Eppie Lederer”. I fantasized they were related to me (my great grandfather’s last name was “Lederer”).

People would ask them anything. I remember one in particular. A woman followed her husband late at night to a strip club. The man went in the back with a woman. Later, under interrogation from the woman, he claimed  that “all I got were sexual favors”.  In other words, he was trying to say, no big deal. This girl wanted to know (from Abby, or Ann, I forget which) if this was ok.

I forget their response. Who cares. I wanted questions like that. I’d lay down the line for that poor woman and tell her what goes on in the real world.

The other day I tweeted I would answer any and all questions on twitter from 4 to 4:30 (making it easy for people who trade the markets since at 4 most markets are closed. The questions started coming in at 3:45. I loved it. It was a way to help people in short bursts. I tried to get as many answers in as possible before 4:30. I think I finished around 4:40. Below are the questions and my answers. In some cases I expand a little. I plan on doing this every week.

I don’t know if this works in column format (i.e. this blog post) but we’ll see.  This is an experiment.

 

ONLINE DATING

@jaltucher What are your feelings concerning online dating? Would you treat it like a new business, considering the interactions?

@jeehtoven i treat online dating EXACTLY how i treated starting a business. And don’t forget to cut losses quickly!.

Expanded answer: I was online dating before I met Claudia. I tried every service. Heck, I even created a service! I was online 3-4 hours a night (when I wasn’t on a date) sending out messages to profiles I liked. I spent an hour filling out the eHarmony form and only at the end they told me I wasn’t qualified (“Our research shows that people who are separated ususally do not have relationships that work out.

I cut losses very quickly. If a conversation started (some services allow for instant messaging) that I felt was going nowhere I stopped it. If a date happened and I sensed it wasn’t going to work out, I cut it short and that was that. Even if I felt like things could move forward, if I didn’t think it would end in long-term relationship, I stopped it.

(every guy who starts online dating starts off with this fantasy or related)

I had very clear goals. I wanted to fall in love. I wanted someone to fall in love with me. I didn’t want any games where we had to pretend to not love each other while we slowly eased into it. I work pretty fast.

But it was work. Every day sending messages. Every day trying different services. And then the actual dates. If you just try haphazardly you will never get anywhere.

And for me it worked.

WHEN IS YOUR NEXT BOOK COMING OUT?

We’ve been brainwashed in every way. By the government that promises to protect us, by Wall Street, which promises to make us wealthy, by our teachers, doctors, insurers, etc who promise we will have a better life if we follow their rules. They will keep us safe. They will supposedly make us happy.

In my book, “I Was Bind, But Now I See”  I explore how they brainwash us, what we can do to reverse the negative effects of it, and how we can find true happiness by exploring the American frontier, which has run cold on the outside but still burns deeply within us.

Click here for the paperback. Kindle will be ready in a few weeks.

ADVENTURE OR INERTIA

kaisdavis:  how do you take that next step towards living and adventure when life is full of inertia to stay silent and still?

Answer: @kaisdavis do both. have adventure. give yourself time to stay silent and still.

Expanded answer: I realize my answer now is not necessarily answering his question.

On any given day, the general tendency is to just do your normal routine. The “Normal Routine” is a jealous beast. It doesn’t want us to do anything new. So it basically has us in the routines that keeps us trapped into continuing its follies: We eat heavy, greasy food which weighs us down and keeps us sluggish. We drink – which further removes the methods by which we can escape out of the box we’ve carved out for ourself. We go to our shit jobs so we can pay back our student loan debts . We hang out with our friends.  I would like to hang out more with friends. But it’s hard to do that and plan for the exciting future which we can rightfully claim to be ours.

The key ultimately is to first figure out how to get rid of the inertia and then the real LIVING will come.

I’ve had periods of real inertia. Where all I could so was sit around and be depressed. The only way I’ve ever been able to come out of it was by following the ideas in this post:

How To Be the Luckiest Guy on the Planet in 4 Easy Steps

IS GREED GOOD?

@tradefast is greed good?

@tradefast greed is good because w money u can help people, help your descendants, and buy freedom to pursue spiritual pursuits. $$

Expanded answer:

The phrase “greed is good” has become a cliché for periods of excess like the 80s or the mid 00s. Where real characters like Ivan Boesky or fictional characters like Gordon Gekko use it as an excuse for their own illegal activities.

However, don’t believe the hype. Don’t just watch TV or read the newspaper headlines and nod your head with everyone else: “They are all out to get me with their stupid greed.”

I have greed to make money. I want to feed my family. I want them to have shelter. I want to be able to afford if they get sick. Furthermore, I might want to start new companies, or create new jobs, or work on other ideas and innovations instead of working as a salesclerk in the Verizon store (as the guy who caught Derek Jeter’s ball did, and he then handed the ball back for free instead of taking the potential $250,000 offered).

Greed is good if you are good.

IS THE WORLD ENDING?

@ginger_gal (I can’t find her exact question) asked something to the effect: with Europe about to default, high employment, gold (the ultimate fear metal) on the rise, why should anyone still be bullish?

My answers:

@ginger_gal lowest yields in 50 years, highest profits ever, lowest P/E ratio versus yields, cheap large-cap stocks

@ginger_gal Gold is just as fiat as paper. The global economy is bigger than gold. I bet on innovation and not a rock

@ginger_gal dont forget in 1981 all South Amer defaulted (and we had HUGE exposure) and inflation was double digits and cold war

@ginger_gal none of those things have anything to do with wealth creation in this innovation world we live in.

Expanded answer:

The last two are the most important.

Fact: right now the top 5 banks in the US have 3% exposure to European debt. (How can this be? Becausee China is buying up all the European debt in their attempt to take over the financial planet).

In 1981 all of South America was in default. The top 5 banks in the US had 263% exposure to their debt. We had 17% inflation/bond yields. Millions of jobs were being lost because of the high rates and inflation. And we had the Soviet Union with thousands of hydrogen bombs pointed at your home. Not to mention the revolution in Iran, unrest in India / Pakistan / Israel, etc.

And yet what happened: a two decade boom?

Ignore world politics, ignore the government statistics, ignore the headlines which try to make you scared, ignore the pundits who sell newsleltters based on fear and greed.

They are all out to SCAM you. If you are putting your hopes and future happiness  on the thought that the world is going to end you’re going to be dead wrong.

Here’s a link to my Dow 20,000 prediction.

Someone then asked me a related question:

IS IT POSSIBLE TO START A BUSINESS IN THIS WORLDWIDE DEPRESSION?

I couldn’t find who asked it but someone asked if its possible to start a business in this world Depression period we are going through.  My answer:

jaltucher James Altucher

i forget who; someone asked if 1 can start a biz in this world depression. Groupon started in November 2008! Don’t let media fear stop you!

Expanded answer:

MANY people were critical of this answer. How come? Because of all the media hype pulling Groupon’s numbers apart and saying this is a horrible business.

FACT: Groupon is the fastest growing revenues business in history. They started less than three years ago and have 1.5 billion in revenues this year.  The founders have already cashed out probably close to a billion dollars.

Someone said, “but they don’t make money”.

Excuse me, isn’t it enough in less than three years to be pulling down 1.5 billion in revenues? Most companies don’t get to, or don’t even want to, be profitable until they’ve been in business 5-10 years. They have to GROW first. Amazon took a decade and now they are spewing profits right in our faces and they will continue to do so forever.

November, 2008 was a scary month:

–          The financial system was collapsing

–          Unemployment hadn’t yet skyrocketed but was about to.

–          I was lying on the floor of countless hotel rooms crying about my lack of luck.

–          Company after company was going out of business.

Did that stop the Groupon guys? Should it stop you, just because they aren’t yet profitable? And, by the way, I can find countless examples of companies started in the Great Depression that became amazingly profitable. But let’s leave it at this: don’t let the news stop you from beginning your path to World Domination.

(Burger King started during the recession of 1953)

 

HOW DO I GET MY BOYFRIEND TO TAKE AN ADVENTURE

sayahillman Saya Hillman  @jaltucher How do I get Boyfriend to quit 9-5 so we can #workshift & how do I bring Fear Experiment to other cities? bit.ly/oO55Ju

jaltucher : @sayahillman make a blog, “30 reasons you love him”. one post per reason. Final post: the reasons he needs to quit. $$

 

Expanded Answer: I’ve also used this answer in private emails with people. One guy once said to me his wife complained to him he wasn’t romantic enough AND she wanted him to start a business away from his parent’s business. I gave a similar answer and I gave it to him step by step.

Use blogger or WordPress. Title the blog “30 reasons I love him” or “30 reasons I love her”. Make on post per reason. Include a photo and just one or two words per post. On the final post, close with what you think he/she should do.

They will love you, you’ll get what you want. If you don’t, then couple’s therapy is needed.

I’ve used this technique myself. I had Claudia wrapped around my finger by the end!

 

HOW DO YOU KNOW IF YOU ARE IN LOVE?

@RolandBarat how do you know if you are in love or just limerice?

@jaltucher: @RolandBarat you know you’re in love if within 30 years you still want to take care of them when they r sick. $$

 

Expanded Answer:

This is another way of saying, you don’t know right now. You just met the girl. You’re having sex. You love her unique smile – unique from every other smile you’ve ever been given. She gets you to do things you never thought about doing before. She gets you to laugh. She gets you to daydream about what life would be like with her, and you hate the thought of life without her.

I get it. We’ve been there. Done that.

And then it doesn’t work out

That’s ok. Most things don’t work out.

But we’re not in tomorrow and we’re not in today.

Always ask yourself: What am I going to do TODAY. Today is the only day that matters. Do you want to love her today. Then go for it.

And then, if 30 years from now, when she’s sick and you are legitimately feeling bad and doing everything you can to make sure she feels better – then you know you love her. But don’t think too hard about 30 years from now. Enjoy today.

(will I love her in 30 years. I hope so! But where's my breakfast!?)

EBOOKS

@eradke asked: “Where will e-books be 5 years from now?”

I said, 80% of book sales.

Expanded answer:

I was at a dinner sitting next to “Binky” Urban (the most successful literary agent in history) and Tina Brown, publisher of Newsweek and The Daily Beast, among other things. I asked them both about the future of publishing.

Urban said, “Publishing is doing better than ever. I’ve seen more 7 digit advances for first time novelists than ever before in the past six months”.

Tina Brown said, “Book publishing is dead. Its all e-books.”

I think they are both right.

But I know my own behavior:

Behavior #1: I go to a bookstore, pick out all the books that look interesting to me, and then sit down on a chair right there in the book store and buy them on my kindle app on my i-pad. Amazon benefits and not the bookstore. Maybe this is not fair but this is how I do it.

Behavior #2: I no longer publish with traditional publishers. I self-publish  in both kindle and e-book. And most of the sales (I can see all the numbers) come from the cheaper kindle version.

This is related to another question asked me but I’m self-publishing another book within the next four weeks: “I Was Blind but Now I See” about how to break down the myths that we are bombarded with every day so that we can find success and happiness. I’m going to use the same technique to self-publish and probably launch the book by giving it out for free at Barry Ritholz’s Big Picture conference where I am speaking.

That’s my behavior. But before long everyone will be doing the same thing as me.

Here’s why I no longer publish with a traditional publisher.

Here’s how I self-published.

WHERE WILL I BE IN FIVE YEARS

@ClarkCovington asked me where I see myself in five years

@ClarkCovington where do I see myself in 5 years? i honestly don’t know. I NEED help figuring that out.

Expanded Answer: I write every day and post on this blog about 3-4 times a week. I enjoy it. I’m also in a bunch of investments, private and public.

I’d like to figure out the next steps with this blog, if there is one. I’ve rejected all advertising (I think it would cheapen the blog right now). I don’t know what to do. I have a new book coming out in a month and in December I have a comic book coming out based on the blog.

But if anyone has ideas what else I should be doing I’d be happy to hear them.

 

THE SELF-HELP INDUSTRY

@steveroh asked what I saw as most comical about the self-help industry.

@jaltucher: @steveroh most comical abt self-help industry. the fact that many so-called “gurus” have no real life experience, no kids, no hardship.

 

Expanded Answer: I think of the self-help industry much how I think of the media industry. Mildly informative if you can pluck out the gems but mostly dangerous. Many of these so-called gurus need to make a living so pluck away at the fear and greed strings on the emotional guitars of their willing adherents.

Many of these people have never lost a home, lost a business, lost a wife,  lost a family, and suffered real hardship but then claim the label of “coach” or “guru” and have at it. Then ten years later we hear about the sex scandals, the financial scandals, the cover-ups, the killings, the real “secrets” in The Secret.

I wish people would be honest. Instead of saying “this is how to be perfect” I wish these people would start from the premise, “hey, I’m striving also. I’m trying to figure it out. Here’s what’s worked for me. Here’s what hasn’t worked for me. And, by the way, here’s the screwed up crap I’m dealing with today. I hope I survive also.”

Just be honest.  Is it really that hard in every industry to be honest? Particularly an industry that , first and foremost, about honesty? (Just like the finance industry should be but isn’t).

 

MORE QUESTIONS:

There were a lot more questions. I think I answered 50 in about 40 minutes. But this post is already too huge.

I really enjoyed doing this. I wish I could do it every day. I’m going to do it again next Thursday. I hope there are a lot of good questions.

I post articles in various sites: Business Insider, Huff Po, WSJ, TechCrunch, etc. I get both good comments and negative comments. The good far outweigh the and the bad comments usually come from people who have their own issues to deal with.

But I just got this email two seconds ago and reflects the sentiments of other emails I’ve been getting lately. I really appreciate it and it makes me happy:

“Reading your blog has helped me remember that even if I have a hard time
forgiving myself for my mistakes, it’s OK to keep on keepin’ on. Thanks for the
humor and the insights.”

That’s why I do this blog.

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  • http://wagefreedom.com Tom

    “But if anyone has ideas what else I should be doing I’d be happy to hear them.”

    Ah James you are something else. Please continue this thing you’re doing.

    Your style is making whole swathes of the shallow, pretense-laden blogosphere irrelevant, just like great novelists used to do.

    • http://wagefreedom.com Tom

      I meant ‘like great novelists used to do to the status quo with their books.’

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=650774911 Joe Harper

        quote ” most comical abt self-help industry. the fact that many so-called “gurus” have no real life experience, no kids, no hardship ”

        I could not agree more. I’m reading ‘quit your job, live anywhere’ advice from CHILDREN. Their product is not self-help but discontent. I really agree with your statement and Tom’s. When I started this journey of life assessment, this blog hit me right between the eyes, like you were ‘reading my mail’. I started reading these 20-somethings blog on self-improvement, entrepreneurship, quitting soul-crushing jobs and got sucked in to a pit of despair for the summer. This week it occurred to me that I had been suckered again, I had been marketed a product called discontent but that really my life is pretty awesome. However, I’m now working on my exit strategy and being sure to pack my play things…

        • S34ndad

          So true about the 20 something “coaches”. I dont want to hear someone telling me to quit my job with no bills/responsibilities/commitments or who hasnt invested years getting to a place. I also dont want to hear from someone who has an undisclosed safety net like a spouse who’s floating them while they “try something fun” or family money, a trust fund, a huge bank account, pension income or whatever teling me to take that leap. Not to pick on her, but I liked Gretchen Rubin’s blog a lot more before I found out some of the background/history.

  • http://twitter.com/TradeNerd Kurt

    “I don’t know if this works in column format (i.e. this blog post) but we’ll see.  This is an experiment.”
    I think it worked well and I look forward to the post next week.

  • http://www.parmcharm.com karen parmelee

    Thank you James! You give so much of yourself in the blogging and twitter advice forums – thank you for your unfailing assistance, insights and friendship!

  • Anonymous

    One of the most entertaining blogs of all time, @jaltucher thanks for the value this blog and never stop in being true to yourself. You are a modern day hero hahahaha

  • http://www.kararane.com kara rane

    I enjoy Dear Abby & Dear Ann ,,,but this Dear James might really be it.

    • http://jamesaltucher.com James Altucher

      It would be my evil plan come true.

  • Alex

    I have nothing insightful to add except that I liken your content to Wikipedia articles. Any link you put up to past entries, I’ll click, read and hopefully absorb enough information for future reference.

    • http://jamesaltucher.com James Altucher

      Thanks Alex. That’s a great comparison!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=572545922 Claudia Azula Altucher

    Where is my breakfast? You know WHAT?! ;-)

    • http://jamesaltucher.com James Altucher

      It’s ok. Today.

  • http://charts.indonesiamatters.com/ David

    “Ignore world politics, ignore the government statistics, ignore the
    headlines which try to make you scared, ignore the pundits who sell
    newsleltters based on fear and greed.”

    Something I learned from reading Livermore today – in a bull market, the bad news WILL get ignored, in a bear market, like now, the bad news is like oh my god SELL – this is what you are missing, you may be ‘objectively’ right but don’t matter, it’s how the markets react that matters, if you’re a trader and also if you’re an investor. Some day you’ll be right, that day aint here yet.

  • Anonymous

    Gold is just as fiat as paper. The global economy is bigger than gold. I bet on innovation and not a rock

    Fiat gold? What are you talking about, James? You can’t “print” gold out of thin air, that’s the whole point. And of course the global economy is bigger than *any particular* asset but so what?

    dont forget in 1981 all South Amer defaulted (and we had HUGE exposure) and inflation was double digits and cold war

    No offense to our friends in the south, but what was the total productivity of the continent during 1981? 3 dollars? Honestly, what was the real risk for debt holders at that time? And yes, life didn’t end during the inflations of the 70s but it was hard on my family and I don’t want to go through that again.

    Ignore world politics, ignore the government statistics, ignore the headlines which try to make you scared, ignore the pundits who sell newsleltters based on fear and greed.

    Agreed. 100% agreed. Fools and knaves rule the media and government.

    none of those things have anything to do with wealth creation in this innovation world we live in.

    This is an important insight and it should be broadcast far and wide. At the same time, however, I think that your historical perspective is too skimpy because it’s restricted to the period that only spans part of your short time on this earth. If you expand your time frame even just a little you will see that for lots of people the times might as well have been end-times. And although I don’t place myself in the Apocalypse Now crowd, I think it shows a lack of humility to believe that humankind today has miraculously escaped the mundane yet terrifying perils of the past.

    • Steven

      Gold has intrinsic value for being resistant to corrosion and conductive of electricity. It has fiat value because people agree it has value beyond its physical properties. You can’t eat gold. You presume you could exchange it for money or food. If you’re investing in computer shares of gold (ETF) then you’re really into fiat gold.

      The retail level investor is late to the party by now. The value is being manipulated by the power brokers and it is probably the next category of asset bubble. When they’ve had their fun and made their money, the market will collapse. BTW, if the shit really hit the fan a 50lb sack of flour or rice would be worth more than gold.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000617577904 Brian Walker

        “if the shit really hit the fan a 50lb sack of flour or rice would be worth more than gold.”

        Gold has been considered money for thousands of years…before cell phones…before electricity…before trains…before planes…before processed food…before kitchen appliances…before laptops…before Jesus…before the internal combustion engine…before stove tops, bbq gas grills, ronco food dehydrators and latex condemns. Gold has been money for thousands of years, even during shit hitting the fan events. What’s more practical to carry with you, a 1 oz piece of gold bullion, or a 50lb sack of flour?

  • Caroline

    how should a person go about getting rid of excessive apathy and negative outlook?

  • Janus

    Three thoughts, two related, one not. First the unrelated thought.

    I have to disagree about gold and agree with mikeyhell. Gold is fiat in the sense that it and silver are supposed to be the U.S.’s currency, but that was picked because it evolved as a medium of exchange. The Constitution simply acknowledged that fact.

    Second two thoughts. I work for Leo Burnett. He started his ad agency during the Great Depression and it is now the third largest in the U.S. — and the biggest in the U.S. outside NY. There is always opportunity.

    On the subject of advertising, why aren’t you doing it? It’s not evil. And as you said, greed is good. Make money off this blog.

    • http://jamesaltucher.com James Altucher

      I feel there might ultimately be better ways to build the blog. I might get too obsessed with traffic numbers if I put ads on. That’s itneresting about Leo Burnett. I didn’t know the agency started in the Great Depression.

      Gold I think lost its use as a currency when it became clear that the global economy couldn’t be hampered down by the logistics of digging a metal on the ground. We’re too big for gold.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000617577904 Brian Walker

        Hi James, ever read Hans Herman Hoppe’s take on the there is not enough gold argument?

        http://mises.org/daily/2492#i2

  • Chuck

    put some advertising on this blog, it’s really not that big of a deal
    think about it
    no one cares about this, but you

    • http://jamesaltucher.com James Altucher

      I guess my gut has just told me its not the right thing to do yet.

      • StreetofWalls

        You are a fantastic writer, you deserve advertising

      • Kevin Faul

        How about this: advertise for yourself. Advertise for $5 donations you will use for a directed investment. You take the $’s you get, invest it in something you think is worth it and tell us about the results. Show people how to take money and use it. Most people are terrible with money.  That would be cool. You already advertise your ‘luckiest person book’ (I bought it just to support your blog work, worth the $7 or whatever). Don’t spew crap advertising at us. Avoid the NASCAR advertising look. Maybe if you get enough and make enough with what you get, you can give dividends back to each donor, or offer us something else. That would be cool.

  • StreetofWalls

    Did you use the logic greed is good when you sold stockpickr? It probably gave you the freedom to do what you really want to do, so now you don’t have to take advertising! You are a genius

    • http://jamesaltucher.com James Altucher

      I wish I had been greedier then.

      • StreetofWalls

        How did you develop the relationship with thestreet? Did you write for them too? Do you know Ronnie G. I used to run a non profit program with her. She is really great. My email is info@streetofwalls.com to take it offlline. Thanks again for your postings. I truly enjoy them. Btw, I went to a presentation talking about financial influencers online and you were listed next to Buffet – no joke

  • modernmind

    (advertising)…it’s not ever the right thing to do…if you do you’ll just be another “insert noun here”
    like the guy who froths at the mouth from The Big Picture.

  • Andrej

    You write you’d rather bet on innovation than on a rock. It seems to me that because you got into the investment industry in the 1990s you’re always waiting for a return of the 1982-2000 (Dow Jones)/1994-2001 (Nasdaq) bull markets. Eventually, they’ll return and it will be a good idea to invest in stocks, like in 5-10 years? But sometimes the right thing to do is to invest in a rock. The Dow Jones stagnated in nominal terms (and got hammered in real terms) from the end of the 1960s till 1982. Even though there was great technological innovation (Apple, Microsoft) during this period, you’d have been much better off investing in a rock.

    • http://jamesaltucher.com James Altucher

      I don’t know. When innovation was slow in the stock market I bet on the innovation that I provided. I turned out to be my own best asset class. Will it be in the future? I don’t know.

      • Andrej

        You bet on the innovation that you provided because you’re an entrepreneur. It’s like Steve Jobs saying in 1975 that he had all his money in Apple because he bet on the innovation that he provided. That doesn’t mean that the average person – who will never be an entrepreneur – should invest in stocks now. The only way the average investor can protect the purchasing power of their savings is to invest in long term bull markets.

        • http://jamesaltucher.com James Altucher

          The problem with that line of reasoning is that the average investor is the last one to learn when a bull market is over. I don’t necessarily recommend that the average investor invest in stocks either (see my post on that topic). The system is rigged. The avg investor is largely screwed and so either has to invest in himself or lower expectations about what type of wealth is available out there.

          • Andrej

            I agree that the average investor invests in a bull market when it’s too late. I thought your recommandations were for the average investor. If your recommandations are not for the average investor, whom are they for? 
            On June 2, you wrote that “over the next 12 to 18 months I expect to see Dow 20,000.” – http://www.jamesaltucher.com/dow-20000-10-reasons-why/. So far, it’s down 10 %.

            On October 25, 2010, you wrote gold was in a bubble – http://www.jamesaltucher.com/2010/10/447/. So far, it’s up    32,5 %.

          • http://www.facebook.com/alex.freeburg Alex Freeburg

            I’m 28 and settling into the idea that the best thing I can do is invest in myself. I also think it’s the hardest thing to do. You must know the Marianne Williams quote (often attributed to Mandela): 

            “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?’ Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”

            She is talking about investing in oneself in spiritual terms.

            I think the daily practice is what will give me the discipline to execute an investment in myself. It’s one thing to imagine myself running my own firm, it’s another thing to land a client, to complete a project worth paying for. It’s so much harder to execute an investment in myself than click send on stock market order, but who am I not to try? 

            Making lists like a fiend helps; the daily practice helps. 

            Thanks for everything!
              

  • http://twitter.com/bclund bclund

    Most importantly…..any relation to poker pro Howard Lederer?

    • http://jamesaltucher.com James Altucher

      No, although I had dinner with him once in 1999 and he recommended stocks relating to slot machines,

  • http://twitter.com/bclund bclund

    Most importantly…..any relation to poker pro Howard Lederer?

  • AFan

    Re: Groupon.  Don’t worry about profits!  Just look at growth! 
    Isn’t that the kind of thinking that caused Dot Com Bubble 1.0? :)

    • http://jamesaltucher.com James Altucher

      I think thats the kind of thnking that casued the growth of the US. When did railroads start making a profit? or car companies. It took decades.

      • sdw

        Look up James J Hill in wikipedia.
        A lot of railroads were dot com bubble 1.0 and had bankruptcy problems, not his, profitable from end to end from the start.
        marketing ‘growth’ versus real growth, everything old is new again

      • sdw

        Look up James J Hill in wikipedia.
        A lot of railroads were dot com bubble 1.0 and had bankruptcy problems, not his, profitable from end to end from the start.
        marketing ‘growth’ versus real growth, everything old is new again

      • AFan

        “… Ford Motor Company was immediately profitable, with profits by October 1, 1903 of almost $37,000.”

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Ford_Motor_Company

        That said, I like the positive attitude of the post, but I guess I took issue with the particular Groupon example because those guys aren’t even on the road to profitability (unlike say, an Amazon.com).

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_DEE4LYXXASKAPJPAVG7VRAXNZM Whistle

    hey James what’s you opinion on the 9/11 hoopla

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_DEE4LYXXASKAPJPAVG7VRAXNZM Whistle

    hey James what’s you opinion on the 9/11 hoopla

    • http://jamesaltucher.com James Altucher

      Well, it was a horrible event (I was at the WTC at the time) so I didn’t watch any of it. I also think its a travesty that we’ve now spent $3 trillion in Afganistan and Iraq (which had nothing to do with 9/11) in “retaliation”. What these countries need now (and the Afgan rebels that we initially funded in 1980) is our economic help and rebuilding so that the entire world can move forward and not just Ground Zero.

  • Kevin M

    It worked, Dear James is a hit. BTW – I am still on the politics & media fast I started about a month or so ago based on one of your blogs and it is working. I can tell I am happier and just feel more positive in general.

    • http://jamesaltucher.com James Altucher

      You picked a great time also to begin your media diet. The media has been on an onslaught of fear and panic.

  • Kevin M

    It worked, Dear James is a hit. BTW – I am still on the politics & media fast I started about a month or so ago based on one of your blogs and it is working. I can tell I am happier and just feel more positive in general.

  • charity

    Great post.  Where do we send our questions for Thursday and when?

    • http://jamesaltucher.com James Altucher

      Hi charity, thanks. I think every Thursday from 4-4:30 on twitter I will answer questions. I’ll start tweeting around 3;30 that I’m accepting questions and then at 4 I will start answering them.

  • http://Www.brookefarmer.com Brooke Farmer

    James, that snippet at the end from the email you received could probably have been written by any one of your regular readers. In fact that sentiment probably has a great deal to do with why I sent the email I did last night. You’ve been through the darkness which makes you very insightful.

  • trevor

    Fuckin’-A, James. You are my light in the dark that is my workday cubicle.

    • Phjcox

      Agreed. Sitting in my cubicle now…this blog is great.

  • Dominic Lavelle

    “just be honest”. That’s exactly the advice I gave to a guy I work with today. Life’s so much easier when your just honest with everyone.

  • http://twitter.com/Cool_Hand Rob Prince

    All I know is yours is the only blog I read every post on. Every time. I feel in my gut that you are spreading truth. So keep it up. Ignore the haters. There are plenty of us that admire your views and support what you are doing. Thank you.

  • http://twitter.com/Ed_Forson Eddie Forson

    This is such a great post James! Funny and enlightening at the same time.