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The Last 3 Things I’ve Learned


Every day, like most people, I absorb information. Most simply informs me or reconfirms a belief I hold (aka confirmation bias). But sometimes it changes a belief or creates a new one. Being open to change, the hallmark of a growth mindset, is essential for continuous self-improvement. So every now and then I stop and think to myself how has my thinking changed recently?

My 3 Most Recent Things I’ve Learned

  1. Happiness is about wanting more. Contentment is being satisfied with having enough. Happiness is transitory because things that make me happy come and go as does the feeling of happiness that they bring. So in order to feel happy, I need more – more experiences or more stuff. The things that bring me contentment are more permanent – my relationships, activities and things I value. Contentment is accepting I have enough. What I realize is that I’m content all the time and happy some times. What changed? Reading Vicki Robbins classic Your Money or Your Life.
  2. Recently my Twitter personal finance community, which I believe is a refuge from politics, hate speech and judgment, was rocked when a finance blogger tweeted a lengthy harangue on race.  I’m like “what are you thinking”? A personal finance blog is not the right forum regardless of what you think about freedom of speech. It’s like those teenage horror movies. Don’t open that door! Or in this case “doesn’t press send”! But some people just can’t help themselves. They’re compelled to spread the virus of divisiveness.  Maybe I was naive in my belief, but thanks to that bloggers insensitivity and poor judgment, I now believe that the virus is in our community.
  3. I’ve held a long-standing belief that Americans who retire to Mexico stay for economic reasons, i.e. they can’t afford to live in the US. But when asked whether they would return to the US if money wasn’t a consideration, only 8% said yes. Wow! It turns out that American ex-pats stay in Mexico because they’re alienated by the prevalence of ageism in the US, can’t relate to consumerism and because they find more authentic community in Mexico. I discovered this when interviewing an upcoming podcast guest, Travis Luther, author of The Fun Side of the Wall. A quick side note on Travis. Travis grew up in poverty and fatherless. He didn’t finish high school. His two brothers found their way to prison but Travis found his way to success. An inspiring story. To make sure you don’t miss his appearance on our podcast, Later2FIRE, you can  subscribe.

So that’s how my growth mindset has changed my beliefs. How about you?

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