The book Rich Dad, Poor Dad changed my life. Interestingly enough it was my then girlfriend (Lindsay), now wife, who bought me the book when we were still in college. Little did she know that this gift would inspire me to move from Pittsburgh to Orlando and aggressively pursue my journey of becoming an entrepreneur and getting “out of the rat race”. (You get out of the rat race when your passive income exceeds all of your expenses).
Fast forward eight years. After graduating college Lindsay moved down and we eventually got married in 2011. My wife and I made a great deal in 2010 and purchased a duplex that has been a great investment. I started a few ventures that have done fairly well including a marketing agency that has generated over a million dollars in sales after starting it only four years ago. Currently my wife and I live outside of Orlando with our dog, cat and horse who is boarded close by.
Yes, we have a horse. His name is Toby.
Last year my wife and I transported Toby down from Pittsburgh to live in a barn about half a mile away from our home outside Orlando. My wife loves spending time with her horse and goes to the barn almost every day. It brings her great joy, but is quite an expensive hobby.
Over the last month or so my wife has expressed her strong desires for us to purchase a horse trailer. Since Toby arrived in Orlando we’ve rarely transported him anywhere, but when we did we had to rely on friends who own a horse trailer. This meant having to depend on others if she wants to go to a horse show, trail ride, etc.
Last Saturday there was a horse show that she was very excited to go to, but we found on on Wednesday that her ride fell through. She was very disappointed. She asked again about purchasing a horse trailer, which is quite a big expense (think purchasing a nice used car).
Balancing my wife’s happiness with my strong desire to continue down the path to financial freedom I decided that I’d make her a deal.
I even created a contract…
As the contract states Lindsay would have to play 3 games of online “CashFlow” with me before we looked into buying a horse trailer. After purchasing the horse trailer she would have to continue to play “CashFlow” once per month along with sit in a financial meeting with me to discuss our status and plans.
I wanted her to understand the game that I am seeking to play in real life so we can be on the same page and work together to win.
Lindsay was game!
I started off by having us write down everything that we want (Kids, boat, cars, free time, vacations, etc). I then explained that I want to have all of these things as well, but we need to work diligently and invest wisely to get them. I then drew diagrams illustrating:
- The difference between assets and liabilities
- How assets and liabilities affect income and expenses
- The cash-flow patterns of the poor, middle class and wealthy
- Where exactly we are on our journey to get out of the rat race
It was now time to play CashFlow (you can play it too for free by signing up for an account at www.RichDad.com)
We decided to play on the same team…because in real life we are also on the same team.
In the game you are assigned a profession that has a certain income. You also have a base set of expenses / liabilities. You roll the dice and land on deal cards, market cards and DooDad (Expense) cards. The choices you make can either help or hurt you on your journey to get out of “The Rat Race”.
One of my favorite highlights of the game was when Lindsay got frustrated in the game and said “Man, how do we get out of this circle” referring to “The Rate Race”. I said “Welcome to my life! You now understand…haha”.
Another powerful moment was when we came across a DooDad, or expense card. We had to purchase a boat for $8,000. We could buy it cash, or use a credit card. The credit card would increase our monthly expenses and put us in more debt so we paid cash. Well, a few turns later we came across a great deal that would have generated great passive income. Unfortunately due to purchasing the boat we didn’t have enough cash available for the down payment and had to pass on the great investment.
Lindsay caught on very quickly and we ended up playing and winning 3 games of CashFlow on Wednesday and Thursday. On Friday I held up my end of the bargain and went to purchase a horse trailer with Lindsay.
On Saturday we took Toby to a horse show in our new trailer and Lindsay walked away with two first place ribbons, one second place and one fourth. She and Toby did great!
They say a happy wife = a happy life.
My wife is very happy
I am thankful that Lindsay and I have an open, honest relationship and that we are each able to understand one another’s perspective and compromise. I am also very happy that we are on the same page and both committed to reaching our financial and life goals.
I hope that you enjoyed this post and encourage you to read the book Rich Dad, Poor Dad if you haven’t. If you’re seeking to reach financial independence I also suggest that you play CashFlow online. If you have a spouse, boyfriend or girlfriend request that they play with you as well. The game does a very great job in training you how to think about wealth building and actually inspired me to purchase our duplex three years ago.
Good luck on your journey to financial freedom and independence!
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