Swim With The Sharks – Financial Freedom Programs

Even though we have well-paying jobs we may wish to augment our income to step up the pace to achieve our financial goals more quickly than the daily grind might provide. If you are in that boat, good for you! That is the American Way!

You will soon find (if you haven’t already) that there are many “programs” available offering the promise of financial freedom.

These “programs” can include, but are not limited to, things such as:

  • Multi Level Marketing
  • Network Marketing
  • Referral Marketing (these 3 are ALL the same)
  • Real Estate Investment Training and Mentoring (by well known / mega-rich / real estate magnates)

You may proceed, but with extreme caution! These waters are chock full of sharks!

Yep, I’ve gone for a swim here too…All-in-all, I emerged “unscathed” — barely…

Would I do it again? NO! Am I glad that I did? Absolutely, YES, for two reasons:

  1. I learned a lot (more like a TON) – Especially from my experience in network marketing
  2. So that I can share my experiences to help others avoid the scars that can too easily be acquired

To be clear, I am NOT suggesting that these programs be avoided. In fact, if you read the post on my Boot Camp Experience, I’d consider that my time in network marketing served me quite well – as a solid business / entrepreneurial education! This resulted in dramatically accelerating my career (day job) as well as providing a foundation from which to launch my consulting business. All good!

However, we must be aware. These are NOT part-time endeavors, as much as the “pitch” would suggest. In order to succeed, they will require EVERY hour of EVERY day that you are not working your day job. This can be good, as it puts you through some SERIOUS training (which I happened to need, and am now reaping the rewards from).

And, you must be EXTREMELY careful, because where there is money (blood) flowing there are sharks!!!

For example…Some absolutely shocking advice my wife and I received was that you must give it all (your time, effort and money) to the business (read, your “up-line”) – to the point of personal bankruptcy. The stated reasoning: by doing so, you will be so desperate that you will do whatever it takes to make your (network marketing) business succeed.

If you’ve been reading this blog, you know that I’m all about DOING WHATEVER IT TAKES. But, not when it is STUPID!

Fortunately, when we heard this advice we gracefully left those shark infested waters and went along our way. My 10 +/- years in these marketing “programs” provided a significant education and I was able to exit without any permanent damage 🙂

Sadly, I cannot say the same for others…

There are other programs that will tantalize you with the promise of financial freedom, such as real estate investment training and mentoring offered by well-known / mega-millionaire / real estate magnates.

They draw you in as follows:

  1. Get you to place your toe into the water – We will give you a free book authored by (well known / mega-millionaire / real estate magnate) if you simply attend this FREE seminar. Who doesn’t like free?
  2. Seek the commitment of a limb – At the seminar they get the crowd all worked up in a frenzy with the potential of financial freedom and then float some bait: If you are TRULY serious about becoming financially independent you need to join our real estate investment program (a series of seminars to attend) — RIGHT NOW. A little blood (money) is drawn.
  3. They go for the torso – Now that you’ve attended these 3 seminars (on 3 consecutive weekends) it is time for you to step things up by enrolling in our ongoing mentorship program and the monthly subscription to the necessary support system. At this point they aren’t just seeking a few thousand dollars. But, MUCH more!

It was at this point, when they were going for our torso, we decided to (again) gracefully exit these shark infested waters.

The experience made me think of a quote by Ralph Waldo Emerson, in which he acknowledges that there are those who would seek to inspire us (get us all worked up into a frenzy about some “program”), but cautions that we must be careful…

[Don’t] be warped by its attraction clean out of our own orbit

Ralph Waldo Emerson

That is, you have dreams, goals and plans. When you see something that looks amazingly attractive (maybe even a bit too good to be true) study it, before making a quick decision. Does it fit into or augment your plans? It actually “may” be worthwhile; or, it could turn out to be a shark attack!

In closing, I can honestly say that I am glad to have had these experiences (my wife isn’t so convinced 🙂 ), because I learned a GREAT deal.

Just be aware of the simple, step-by-step tactics that sharks will use to draw you into the water.

And, when (not if) a shark calls upon you, I hope this helps to give you an understanding of what you “may” be getting yourself in to.

If you choose to proceed, do so with caution.

More to come!

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