Lex Luthor is an icon for wealth, greed, and evil. I don’t know who he was designed after, but I have a few ideas for who it could be. Unfortunately, all too often this is the image that is evoked for wealth and success. Somehow, the idea came up that you have to be cold and heartless in order to be successful. It’s a real shame, because it’s just not true.

I’ve often noticed that when doing something solely for myself, I don’t do as good a job as I do when someone else benefits. I’m sure that psychologists would go crazy with that statement, and would ascribe all sorts of feelings of low self-worth and such, but the truth is, when I do something where I am the only beneficiary, I am satisfied with less, and when I do something for someone else, I try to make sure I do at least as well as they would do, and better if I can. Sometimes it gets to the point where I have to structure my actions in such a way that someone else benefits, or risk a less than excellent result.

In order to be truly successful, I suggest that you have to act in a selfless manner. I think part of it is karma coming back, and part of it is just that you also feel the need to be liked and appreciated for what you do, but whatever the reason, once you make everything you do all about you, you will do worse than normal.

Let’s look at the workforce. I’ve seen several times when someone is asked to do something that is not part of their normal job duties, but would help others. While there is nothing technically wrong with saying no, those that do are also saying that they are clearly in the game for their own benefit, and won’t go outside of that little bubble of comfort for a company. Others, who look at others’ needs above their own, give off an aura of good will and wind up going further. My wife fits in this category, as does my mother, and as do I. When we are at work, we look for ways to help out our coworkers and our clients. My wife is always doing way more than her job description to help those that either can’t or won’t, and she often reaps benefits for doing so. I’ve told you about my car buying EXPERIENCE, and how I feel that her being such a good co-worker has helped the process. Of course, I’ve also seen the DOWNSIDE to being overly helpful, but I think there is a net benefit for her.

When dealing with finances, I’ve found that it also helps to have an eye towards helping others. This type of thing seems to have a snowball effect as it comes back. Practically, I could easily talk about tax implications, but I want to keep this in a tone that most young people can understand: When you do good things for others, others will do good things for you. When you only do for yourself, don’t count on anybody else doing for you.

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Comments
  1. Nivek says:

    The majority of very sucessful people I have known were not the cutthroat types. They were generous, honest, and considerate. Those qualities are what helped them build a loyal workforce and a loyal customer base.

  2. Wil says:

    N-

    You are absolutely correct! That was the point here, that at the end of the game, the users or takers are never going to be ahead of those who are builders or helpers.

    Thanks for the comment, and for reading!

    -W

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