Boo! Let’s crawl deep inside the minds of millionaires and get to the scary stuff …
Fear itself is not necessarily a bad thing, and no one is 100 percent free of it. Many wealthy people who raised themselves from poverty with difficulty fear a fall from grace. Such a fear can paralyze against all risk or endeavor, or it can be a motivational force for prudent money management, informed investment, and for marketing, so there is constant filling of whatever pipeline brings you money.
Most fears can be enemies or allies, harmful or helpful as you make and manage them. If you could go inside the minds of most from-scratch millionaires and multimillionaires, you would find the opposite of the fearful or anxious or timid mindset. You find: confidence. But confidence is different than certainty. Beware the certain person. Certainty
is the devil. This is one of the reasons that Trump hasn’t been forthcoming with detailed 19-point plans for fixing the deficit or ISIS or trade with China. He doesn’t have certainty about any of it, and may God save us from those who do. But he has confidence (for good reason) that he can assemble the information, ideas and people needed to conquer such problems, given the opportunity. He tried explaining this in an interview, unsuccessfully – because you have to be successful at creating solutions for complex problems to grasp his answer. You have to believe in your superiority.
Andrew Carnegie said that the secret to power and wealth was, in your secret reveries, seeing yourself as superior to all other men. But you can’t believe in your certainty, or in others’ certainty – people, institutions, places. I am telling you how hugely successful entrepreneurs and investors actually operate – sure of themselves but never certain they know it all or are right about anything but an iron-clad, documented, proven fact. Confident in their abilities, but unconfident in any status quo and, really, in anyone else (that’s why they create systems).
One of the chief activities in the mind of the millionaire, quite different from others’ minds, is the constant separation of reliable fact from opinion, belief, dogma, wishful thinking, preference. This is what drives direct marketing, that does not drive other kinds of advertising and marketing you see all around you. In my work with clients, as a consultant, marketing advisor and especially as a copywriter, I rarely express certainty, nor act as if I possess it, even in situations that are déjà vu. Instead, I construct tests and split-tests, and initiatives with multiple ways to win, and I prepare my client to be flexible as we move forward toward a set objective.
This is why I so strongly counsel against “ONE” in business – a kind of certainty. Bad idea for Disney to release only one movie a year. The number ONE should scare the crap out of you. Being certain about any ONE should scare you even more. You can be confident and cautious at the same time.
If you want to know what bogeymen that millionaires look for ’neath their beds, it’s the “certain” person. If you want to know what steals their sleep, it is nightmares about a ONE.