How to Make $20K Quickly
Written by Kirsten Ahrendt
I’m not actually trying to give you financial advice. Just sharing an allegory I learned from discussing financial stuff with a client. I believe everything is everything. Same-same but different mentality. By that, I mean specifics can look different, but underlying principles interweave the fabric of our existence. Which is great, because if you zoom in and out, you can learn from and apply lessons to create success from any area of your life to any other – science can be art, fitness can teach you philosophy, success in finance can teach you success in a marriage.
TLWR (Too Long Won’t Read Summary)
- The formula for success, growth, or change, regardless of specific field, is primarily contingent on 3 variables: consistent effort, patience, and long-term commitment.
- We tend to see the absurdity of “instant success” in other arenas, but struggle to apply that to goals we are facing ourselves – especially in health and fitness.
- Consistency isn’t sexy or shiny. It is a requirement.
How to Make $20,000
Me: Hey Ruben, how do I get $10,000 to be $20,000? What should I invest in? I’m not asking to be a millionaire, but what can I do quickly?
Client Ruben: Ya, you turn 10K into 11k, then 11k into 12k, and so forth.
Me: Where have I heard this before?
This is an approximation of a conversation I had with an actual client recently. For context, Ruben (who’s name has been changed to a sandwich because I’m currently hungry) is a client I’ve worked with for years. He has decades of experience in the financial and real estate sectors, so I trusted him when I asked his opinion on this subject matter. On an existential level, I already knew the answer he would give, I guess I was throwing a “Hail Mary”. The light bulb moment was when I realized that he just gave me the same answer I give to him when he asks about achieving his weight loss goals. In fact, it’s the same answer I give to nearly every client I work with in my own industry of specialization – health and fitness.
How do I lose #30?
How do I get my first pull-up?
How do I get good enough to compete in CrossFit?
How do I prepare to hike Mt. Kilimanjaro?
How do I get out of back pain?
(All questions I’ve worked with people to achieve).
None of the requests are so astronomically absurd so as to lead us to conclude their attainment is impossible, but they all follow the same formula for success.
Get Incrementally Better Over Time
Regardless of goal or starting point, to achieve any of these benchmarks, you take small steps to improve and you choose to do so repeatedly over a long duration of time. In all likelihood, you won’t have noticeable change in a day, week or month; much like I won’t see a 2x return on my $10k investment in 90 days. In fact, I may see my hard fought financial gains suffer loss and setback during tough economic times, much like you may see a few pounds creep back on the scale or struggle to hit your PR lift after a few busy weeks with suboptimal training. But if you follow this formula for long enough, the overall trend will be UP. You will look back and see a drastic distance separating you from where you were to where you are. It makes common sense to us when we consider this process and timeline in regards to financial investment, skill acquisition, or professional advancement – so let’s get comfortable with this concept as it relates to our health and fitness goals.
The STRONG and URGENT desire for humans to see immediate and noticeable change and progress when they want something is UNIVERSAL (and completely understandable). Biologically, we are hardwired to want reassurance that increased effort or energy expenditure is going to pay off, otherwise it makes more sense to maintain the status quo and continue existing. But much like Darwin’s birds that evolved to be the fittest by creating small generational change, we must trust that small change leads to big results. Keep in mind, “change” requires the constant fuel of “effort” – so make sure you can sustain the effort you are giving – whether that’s a monthly financial contribution to your 401K, a daily caloric cut, a weekly running volume, or a daily amount of practice time to improve at the piano.
Shifting our perspective and evaluating how to create long term change, growth, or advancement in other areas of our lives can calibrate our expectations of the time and effort it will take to make health and fitness changes. Hopefully that perspective and understanding arms us with the most important skill of all…patience, consistency and a relentless commitment to put 1 foot in front of the other.
Consider the following statements:
How do I go from 200# to 150#? I’m not asking for overnight success, but I want to make some big change rather quickly.
Music or Hobby
How do I go from novice piano player to jamming my favorite Elton John song?
How do I advance professionally in this company? I don’t need to be CEO, but I want to be a team leader or manager.
It Could Happen…
You MIGHT get lucky and invest in the next “unicorn” company, becoming crazy wealthy!
You MIGHT go on an extreme weight loss plan and spark enough dedication to the result to commit to the process required to maintain it for years to come.
You MIGHT enroll in a 3-month immersive piano program and be the next Elton John.
I’m not trying to rain on anyone’s “instance success” parade, but all of those results seem kind of outlandish when considered in the context of their own respective fields. Consistency isn’t sexy or shiny, but it is a requirement. Trust me, this is my field of expertise.
Questions for your consideration…
How long do you think it will take to achieve your goals in the gym?
How does that process and timeline compare to how you approach other goals in your life – such as financial freedom, professional success, or a side hobby like growing a garden, learning an instrument, or making art?
How can you apply lessons from other areas in your life to your health and performance goals?