A Liability Isn’t Always a Burden Weighed in Material, Here Are 15 Things We Might Not Notice but Are Indeed Limiting Us.
Hello Aluxers and welcome back to one of the last Sunday motivational articles in 2020. A discussion with a close friend prompted us to think about the liabilities that work against you in today’s world. Some things are basically handicapping and slowing down your progress in life.
With the technological growth we’re experiencing right now, these are more relevant than ever.
Initially, we wanted to focus on financial liabilities alone, but we quickly realised there’s more to the issue than meets the eye and we can’t wait to discuss these with you!
So here it is: the 15 biggest liabilities in the 21st century
As always, here’s the video version of this article:
With that out of the way, let’s get right back into the article.
Debt in all its forms is a crippling and enslaving liability for the society. Debt is the most common form of liability.
Nowhere is this more prevalent than in the United States of America.
From the moment you’re born to the moment you die, people are in a race to escape debt.
The US has commercialised absolutely everything. Calling an ambulance? That’s at least 1000 dollars. You want to hold your child after you give birth to her? That will be $50. – this is all shocking to anyone who lives in the developed world like Europe or the rest of the English speaking countries. We wish we were joking but if you get hurt in the US, people don’t call the ambulance, they call an UBER.
Take a moment to think about your youth. You’re in your 20s. This is the moment you’re supposed to go after it in life, the moment you finish your studies and ready to enter the marketplace.
Student debt is the biggest stress a person can take upon themselves at this stage apart from having an early child. Can you imagine being 22 years old and already 200,000 dollars in debt?
Sure.. you can pay it in time for the remaining of your working life, but you’re carrying it all on your shoulders. All this extra-stress is most definitely keeping you up at night.
Plus, a good portion of the population is carrying this debt way into retirement.
Let’s say you somehow manage to ignore the student debt and you’re still an optimist. You find the love of your life and are ready to start a family. Your debt merges and now you’re in debt collectively, but at least you’re happy. You’re both working and are ready to buy a house to live in, because everybody told you that renting is for losers.
You don’t have the capital to buy it cash, since you’re already in debt, so what do you do? You get even more in debt, in order to buy a property.
Society has become an economy of debt, of payment plans and subscriptions.
People get mortgages without realizing that you end up paying almost double the price of the house you bought.
People don’t know this but: The first 10 years on a 30 year mortgage you’re just paying off the interest on the loan, not even touching on the principle.
And God forbid you have an illness that requires more complex treatments for then it’s most definitely game over. Let’s hope that doesn’t happen.
55 years later when you finally pay off all your debt, Jr. is ready to start the cycle all over again.
Be very careful with bad debt Aluxers, for until you repay it, your time no longer belongs to you!
With this big one out of the way, we’ll try to keep the rest a bit shorter.
Not Speaking English
This might not be the case for you as you’re listening to this in English.. But because of how things worked out after wars and colonisation:
The bulk of human knowledge is stored and transferred in English.
The winning economies dictated this because of the economic incentive. The bulk of quality media content in the world is in english. The first language books are translated to if they’re not written in English is English. Why? Because that’s how you reach the most people… people who can afford to buy what you’re selling.
Everybody in the world knows who Michael Jordan or Arnold Swarzeneger are despite the local population being just 300 million.
How many Americans or Europeans do you think know who Shahrukh Khan or Sachin Tendulkar are? Case in point.
Countries like India and China have large enough populations to develop their own internal ecosystems, but this has already been won. The new medium of transfer of information is the internet and the internet was built in English. It is only the last couple of years local influencers have started to develop this local environment and we’re seeing a bit more dilution.
Back from this tangent: if you don’t speak English, you wouldn’t be able to get the quality information we and others like us provide, knowledge that compounds and applies directly into your daily life.
Everyday we get between 10 and 50 emails of people asking if they can translate our content into their local geographies and give us a portion of the earning. Some have already done it without our approval and we’ve had to take their content down for intellectual property infringement.
You see.. Content in English is economically valuable and investors are always looking to protect their investment, that’s how you end up with the local Russian version of the avengers with a bear-man instead of the hulk.
Lack of Internet
The internet is basically the news these days. Remember how people believed in wind-spirits before writing was invented? Yeah, that’s how modern people look at the amish community for example. These people don’t even know what the weather is gonna be like tomorrow!
Lack of internet translates to lack of education, lack of free speech, lack of ability to organise and address community issues. And that Aluxers, is a lot of liability.
Every major protest in the last 5 years has been organised online. Some of the biggest cultural movements have been accelerated by the ability to organise with the help of the internet.
When everybody has the possibility to broadcast into the interwebs, it’s easy to shine a light on injustice and call it out.
We spend most of our time online, thinking about just how dependent we are on the internet. Today we work online, we order food and shop online, we go to school online, we entertain ourselves online, we even find our partners online. Every aspect of your life is moving into the cloud one application at a time.
The internet is like the largest cultural marketplace in the world and we all have access to it through our screens.
Since the early days of commerce people knew that if you want to get the most bang for your products, you have to go to the city market.. That’s where the money is. Selling your stuff in your village market doesn’t have the same ROI.
Fast forward a couple millenia and the internet is the new marketplace.. The new university…and the new colosseum.
While internet is doing more good, it has also cost us sufficiently. Find out What’s happening to ART in the age of the internet.
Lack of Banking Infrastructure
Some geographies are performing better than others when it comes to money. See Switzerland and more recently the United Arab Emirates and Estonia.
In order for a country to be rich, it needs for money to flow. The more citizens have access to capital and the infrastructure to flow it through the marketplace the quicker the economy grows.
As of right now, globally, about 1.7 billion adults remain unbanked. [Source: WorldBank]
These people do not have a bank account, can not transfer money, can not borrow money safely or accrue interest.
In order to get money from one person to another they rely on services like WesternUnion and Moneygram. Anyone who’s ever used any of these knows just how expensive it is to send money over long distances.
The world has developed instruments that allow your money to grow like ETFs, IndexFunds, CDs or more simply, the stock market. To invest in any of these you will need a bank account.
Because of the lack of banking infrastructure, these people are unable to outgrow their condition or at least it’s substantially harder to do so. By the way, this is a problem that Bitcoin was initially supposed to solve.
Lack of Financial Education
Let’s say you have the banking infrastructure, you have the tools.. Now you need someone to teach you how to use these tools so you don’t hurt yourself.
Most people fall prey to multi-level-marketing schemes or get scammed out of their money especially because of their inability to understand how money works. They sign contracts they don’t understand, they borrow money with extremely high interest, or they believe someone will double their money for them in 3 years.
Every under educated country has fallen prey to a pyramid scheme in the last few decades. The same simple con has worked all around the world. See Sahara in India, Caritas in Romania, MMM in Russia to more recently Bernie Madoff or BITCONEEEEEECT.
How you doin’ Carlos?.. All good? Didn’t think so.
The problem is people associate education with school and although this was true in the past, you’re not taught financial education in school which now has become a liability for you.
While your mind could be one of your most valuable assets, for most people it’s a major liability. They don’t understand how money works, how you earn it or how things are valued.
Imagine playing Monopoly and instead of buying properties that earn you money, all you do is go around the board and collect the $200 when you pass go.
Sounds stupid right?
Well.. that’s how most people go through life.
Let’s say you didn’t get lucky and have someone give you financial education, you can still live a happy and fulfilling life if you’ve got the right guidance. The core values others instill in you will determine how you go through life.
The best place to get these values are within the family and in the early school years. Unfortunately, for a good portion of the population this isn’t the case.
Good teachers are protectors!
They protect the pupil from harm in every form harm takes.
Broken and struggling families have a difficult time keeping up with day to day survival, abuse is common and school doesn’t seem to be the key out of this situation for many. Bear in mind that we’re not talking about a single mom in Denmark, but about a little girl that gets raped when she’s 12 in Nepal and disregarded by the family for being “dirty”.
Good teachers protect you from harm and nudge you on a different path in life. Many of you at one point in your life have found a teacher who altered the course and got you where you are today.
Thinking Everything Is a Conspiracy
Structures are built from building blocks. You build one thing and then trust it enough to build something else on top of it.
The problem with conspiracy theorists is that they negate everything that’s being useful in the process of building. This is not only a liability limiting their own progress but also crippling the society as a whole.
These are the people who believe in the secret base on the darkside of the moon, that the world is flat, that the covid vaccine is actually a tracking chip or a measure for population control, that the banks are the devil, the government is watching them or that 5G is causing Covid for the Chinese.
Being Grounded in Outdated Beliefs
You know something else that holds you back? Thinking about the present in the same way you thought about it 100 years ago.
We are currently living in a culture of innovation.
This is why the old generation feels trapped and attacked all the time. Imagine growing up and interracial marriages were literally illegal until 1967. They grew up in a world where racism was ok. Discrimination against women was ok.
Anyone remember the stay-at-home mom phenomenon?
We sure do!
The more you hold onto old beliefs the more likely you are to be left behind.
You can’t swing forward if you don’t let go of the previous vine!
Ohh boy, this is where the Pray-Covid-Away army pulls out their 1997 keyboards and begin attacking us in the comments, but the argument stands.
In different forms, you’ll find the same idea in most religions. In Christianity you’ll find it under Mark 10:25
“It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God.”
It’s been an unusual years, so what the hell.. Let’s say it: Religion was designed for the poor so they can feel better about the misery they’re enduring in their everyday lives.
Every religion rewards the poor and the frail with an eternity of bliss in paradise, be it reconnecting you with your long lost relatives, reincarnating you as a price – like we’ve got many of those left around – or showering you with virgins.
Growth and prosperity come from embracing innovation. The fact that we’re not 20 years ahead on Gene-Editing because your religion doesn’t want us playing God is where things get a bit blurry for us.
It used to be that back in the day God would either heal your disease or have you come to heaven. Back in those days, life expectancy was under 40 years. Since we dropped the God knows better than science routine of the 1800, child mortality has halved and now every country in the world is getting better at keeping children alive thanks to vaccines developed by the same people you would’ve burned at the stake not too many years ago.
There are many valuable principles scattered around all different religious beliefs, but the goal is to be critical enough to realise what is valuable and what is actually nonsense.
Marketing That Works Against You
Unfortunately, we’ve moved from an economy of utility to an economy of desire. This kind of marketing is a destructive liability.
Most of our problems are no problems of what we’re lacking, but actually problems of excess. We eat too much, we work too much, we buy too much.
The marketplace has tricked everyone into playing status games. Ironically: For a person to be successful in life, the longer one disregards status games the higher the status they’ll gain in the end.. But this doesn’t mean the marketplace won’t tempt you.
Nobody NEEDS anything anymore.. If you really think about it, most of our essential problems are solved: things like food and shelter, even health to some degree is taken care of.
We have this thing as humans where we need other humans to think that we are doing well, that we have status.. And it becomes a liability.
The pursuit of looking rich in the short term is actually making you poor over the long term!
Having Kids Too Early
You have no idea how expensive of a liability it is to have kids, until you do have kids.
And you better realise is not just money expensive, but time, attention, emotion and yes of course money.
Children raised right require your input constantly and as much as we’d like to think of ourselves as multi-tasking machines, we are not.
Having kids too early requires you to sacrifice something in return and it’s one of those situations where you get to sacrifice the long term for short term compromises.
Nobody teaches you how to be a great parent, so we decided to do something about this. Go to alux.com/newparents and subscribe. We built this channel as the Alux for parenting.
Inability to Market Yourself
Earlier this week we had content on introverts and extroverts which you guys loved.
Marketing yourself doesn’t mean you have to become a daily vlogger, instead it focuses on standing out in a crowd of mediocrity.
For one to be successful in life, one needs to learn to set themselves apart.
You might be the most skilled worker in the world, if nobody knows about you, you will not become successful.
Playing It Safe Gets Killed by Automation
The idea of playing it safe in the world that we’re living in right now is emotional and mental liability. Nobody wants to spend their lives working unfulfilling jobs that barely keep’m alive.
Even more so, technology is coming after the unfulfilling, the repetitive, the boring jobs.
We like to say that:
Unless you work in the software industry, it’s just a matter of time until software enters your industry!
Because we believe it’s the truth. One of the biggest liabilities you can experience right now is seeing this big storm approaching and not taking your umbrella when you’re going out.
Can’t Follow Through: What’s in Your Mind Isn’t in Your Reality
You know what’s holding you back? Yourself.
You lack discipline, you lack the ability to focus your decisions.
You love to judge yourself by your intent instead of your actions. Every one of you think that they’re special, yes, we’re talking about YOU! You think you’re destined for greatness, that you can’t wait to show the world your potential, but this is one of the biggest traps there is:
Potential isn’t worth anything unless it’s executed!
Time will go by and one day you’ll realise that all those dreams and goals you’ve been lying to yourself that are going to happen for you, never will.
You will grow frustrated, envious and disappointed because you believe that you could’ve done more when in reality, we are what we do, not what we say we’ll do!
Human Connection & Emotional Intelligence
In a world that’s as technology driven and socially connected as the one we live in, human connection and emotional intelligence aren’t as common as you’d expect.
Nobody knows how to connect with other humans anymore.
Nobody knows how to be empathic.
And this is a liability holding you back.
Those who do know how to connect, have gotten rich in the past decade because of just how valuable this skill has become.
Ironically, the exact skills you wish you had are the ones they use to keep you coming back to these social networks that we love to hate so much.
We as individuals are a combination of all the ingredients we build ourselves with and the things mentioned on this list can certainly hold you back in your pursuit of being more than what you currently are.
What is one liability you would add to this list? We can’t wait to hear what you’d bring to the table! As always we’ll be in the comments joining the conversation.