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The Yin-Yang of success and why you should never set out to make money

Why a profit-at-all-cost attitude will end up killing your business

You should never set out to make money. Controversial I know, but hear me out.

I am a big believer in balance. We don’t know daylight until we’ve lived through the night (literally and figuratively). Individually and collectively, we are as strong as we are weak. We sense change only when life’s mundanity becomes too tiresome to bear. There is a duality that is inherent in most things in life to be grappled with.

Becoming successful is no different. Confucius said, ‘If you think in terms of a year, plant a seed; if in terms of ten years, plant trees; if in terms of 100 years, teach the people.’ There is a wholesomeness to the idea of success that money falls short at explaining. If you want to be immediately rewarded, then by all means, plant a seed and reap the rewards. Getting rich in one year is not hard but becoming wealthy quickly is almost impossible. If you plan for the medium to long term then you’ve got to put in the hard work to build and nurture your foundation before enjoying the fruits of your labour. If you want to build a lasting legacy then you have to think further than how you can enrich yourself and broaden your purpose out to how you can add positive meaning to others. The most prominent entrepreneurs in our times never set out to make money. They are often driven by a desire to add value by solving a problem.

Take the Chinese concept of the Yin and the Yang. Yin is darkness and negativity that takes while Yang is positive, strong, giving. If you base the entire premise of your business on making money, taking from others, the negativity that follows can overwhelm you and stop you from your goals. But if you choose to give by adding value, creating opportunity and solving problems for others, then you will attract the positive energy of Yang giving your business the balance it needs to become truly successful.

Now let’s apply all of that to the business rental property investment. In all my years helping other investors, I have never seen anyone become successful by following the profit-at-all-cost doctrine. Slumlords achieve nothing other than notoriety and public condemnation. The ones who become truly wealthy and financially free understand the relationship between good quality housing, long-term tenancies, steady rental cash-flow, and a symbiotic relationship with lenders. They are the ones bank managers call on to lend more money to. They have no high tenancy turnovers and their rentals eventually largely run themselves. If you focus on the Yang (giving, solving problems), the Yin will follow (taking, reaping rewards).

So, ask yourself this, do you want to just get rich? Or do you want to become successful?

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Lucia Xiao Finax

Finax founder, Lucia Xiao regularly publishes thoughtful articles sharing market insights as well as tips to help you succeed.

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