Something interesting happened....(LONG) - Posted by Steve-NYC

Posted by Steve-NYC on May 02, 2000 at 08:35:03:


Thanks for the feedback…

I may have not have made my point clear enough, but I was not making a statement directly about high salaries (obviously the point here is to make money), long hours (necessary for just about everything one wants to excel at).

The statement I made of “high salaries dictate a lifestyle that necessitates a high salary” was only to add some context and background to my experience on Wall Street…one in which more money, for most of the people I’ve met, does not equate into financial security…only into more expenses.

The prevailing attitude I’ve encountered is one of excess and poor planning: managing directors making thousands and thousands of dollars every year and spend beyond their capability to the point where they HAVE to make a good bonus to pay their debts.

The other aspect of my experience has been the culture. Anyone who has worked on Wall Street I’m sure has directly or indirectly experienced the excess of the corporate finance/trader worlds. Worlds in which I’ve experienced extreme spending and first hand how money can corrupt an individual without focus: bankers/traders spending hundreds and thousands of dollars on lavish meals, strippers, private jets, drugs, gambling, extreme vacations, etc. or just literally destroying money for the fun of it - because they can.

If my point isn’t clear by now, I apologize, I’m not the best writer. I was trying to say that on Wall Street, in my experience, getting promoted means getting closer to world of excess that doesn’t match my personal or financial values.

I’m not sure what your point was about Carleton Sheets…if I didn’t mention to you previously, I am most definately a NEWBIE. My resources and myself have been thoroughly assessed and I’m right on track- stick around and see, I’ll keep everyone posted! :slight_smile:


Something interesting happened…(LONG) - Posted by Steve-NYC

Posted by Steve-NYC on May 01, 2000 at 09:07:39:

Something interesting has just happened in my life that I’d like to share…

I’ve been obsessed with Real Estate since I was a little boy and now, at 25, have just recently realized that I could truly become financially free as an investor.

Although I make a good living working on Wall Street
($-wise), I regularly work 90 to 110 hours per week, with no time for self, family, social life, etc… Literally none. The extremes of the work lifestyle here, translate into extreme in all the other aspects of life to the point where the high salaries dictate a lifestyle that necessitates a high salary. It’s a destructive cycle to say the least and it hasn’t taken me long to figure out that I want out.

Six months ago, I decided to make my transition out with Real Estate. I’ve been reading books, a CS course, and everything I can digest on this website. As others have recommended here, I have also starting acting “as if”. I talk to everyone I can “as if” I were a very successful, independent, full-time real estate investor. Doing so serves as a form of visualization.

Here’s where it gets interesting…the visualization went too far…

Last week, I sat down for a promotion review (the way to make money on Wall Street along with jumping to a new bank) with my boss…he told me directly that if I wanted, they were going to promote me…

I looked him straight in the eye and without even realizing what I was doing, I said no. Very calmly, “No thank you, I don’t wish to be promoted. A promotion will only equal more work, more money, but I’ll still be working for someone else and not myself, with a lifestyle that doesn’t match my personal or financial values.”

Without even thinking, it just came out of my mouth!

It gets better…Not only did I deny a promotion, in a haze of revelation, I negotiated BACKWARDS! I asked for a DEMOTION!!!

I obviously know that being an employee wherever one works makes it difficult to be financial independent…but I didn’t even think about if this were an appropriate time. I have a vague plan for getting out…but as of now, it’s just a dream- literally.

What I did scared me. It did so because I know that I’m being counter-cultural…I don’t believe a lot of Americans would turn down a promotion. It also scared me because I felt as if something in my core being rose up and challenged my socialized brain. It said, “No! I’ve had enough of this job, the way you get treated, and the misleading belief that it will ever make you financially secure…the only promotion you get is to ‘bigger fool’…”

In evaluating what happened, last week’s event, for better or worse, has left me with a challenge. I’ve been in dreamland for a long time without the time to make real estate a reality. As of today, I have plenty of time! I have new job! I know that I need to turn dreamland into action steps and make it happen (I’ve even banned myself from reading success stories, because I get soooo caught up in what it “could be” that I don’t work on “what it is”)

So anyway folks, sorry for my rambling, but I made a big change in my life that I thought some people here could appreciate and offer some support.



Contrarian view - Posted by Bud Branstetter

Posted by Bud Branstetter on May 01, 2000 at 21:45:47:

I think I will take you to task on your “high salaries dictate a lifestyle that necessitates a high salary” statement. You can spend 90-110 hours doing real estate if you want and need to do a lot of investing, ala Legrand, to make the big money. The question is can you scale back the expenses and invest more time in your family and yourself. The one advantage of the real estate investor is that they are more directly working for themselves. As big as that may be it can be likened to “making markets” in the stock world. Not until you have your own funds and don’t need to borrow are you truly working for yourself.

I don’ mean to knock CS since I have not go through his material but there is more to RE investing that what I hear from CS’s material. I think if you are going to make it you need to assess your resoures as well as yourself.

A similar story - Posted by Ben (NJ)

Posted by Ben (NJ) on May 01, 2000 at 10:43:09:

a friend of mine was a Wall Street analyst working
abominable hours (7 am to 2 AM consistently). He had an infant who he rarely saw until he tried what he thought was a solution. He would sneak home for a quick dinner, tuck the baby in and go back to work for another 5 hours. One day his boss called him in and said “I hear you like to go home for dinner, well, nobody else here does that!”. That was his epiphany,
he left and started his own business, now has more money, more free time (and another baby)! Congratulations!

Re: Something interesting happened…(LONG) - Posted by Steve-Atl

Posted by Steve-Atl on May 01, 2000 at 09:41:17:

Congratulations on having the guts to ask for a demotion. I can relate to that myself.

I had a good job with a good salary, but that came with lots of stress and little time for my family. Then at 44 years old, I suffered a heart attack that changed my life. Fortunately, I made it to the hospital in time, but I decided then that I would spend the rest of my life enjoying it.

I could have easily stepped back into the same job, but instead I told them I wanted a demotion or I would quit. I offered to work fewer hours for a reduced salary and reduced responsiblility. Afterward, I wondered how often an employee “negotiates” for less pay and less responsibiltiy.

That action gave me the time to build my experience and knowledge in REI. I love this business and feel very lucky. In a strange way, the heart attack empowered me to do what I might not have done otherwise.