There is great positive benefit in simply eliminating
the negative.Physically, if you cut yourself badly, you don’t worry about all the blood you’ve lost and how to get it back. You stop the bleeding so you won’t lose any more blood. This applies both to small cuts and large cuts. Financial worth operates like blood. It should be increased but also preserved. We often forget that building financial worth is not just about acquiring assets and building savings but eliminating drains on our resources.

    Ongoing financial losses and costs that withdraw financial lifeblood from you a little at a time over a long period of time may feel less painful but they end up costing a lot more.Healing the small and large cuts that result in financial bleeding make a tremendous difference. Many people know that early saving and investments can pay off gigantically in net worth down the road. Few really grasp that stopping ongoing financial losses early can do the same.

    Both processes are exponential. Stopping the bleeding of your financial worth also provides long-term mental and emotional benefits by ridding you of leeches on your attention and peace of mind.So you gave the material American Dream a try and it didn’t work out. What now? If
you cannot gain from housing, switch your mentality. Limit your housing cost! It is most people’s greatest living expense. If you can save a thousand dollars a month by renting, building your own house, moving
in with another family, or paying for a smaller house in cash, you are a thousand dollars a month richer. Not only that, you have the satisfaction of a thousand dollars less per month going to some bank.Deeper values and sense. Your choice.

    Because people get emotionally attached to things, including rising expectations, they do not see that supporting a thing, i.e. holding on to properties for continuing financial losses, is diminishing their ability to care for and support actual people, to save for education, or to start a small business, to invest in something better. It is not that much different than people who hold on to a degrading job. In the end, it is “your money and your life”.


  Why not research and compare the relative long-term financial benefits of strategic default on an underwater mortgage to the negative credit consequences? Why not rebel against inflated expectations by de-expensing your lifestyle (Transforming Economy, pg. 245)? Why not reinvest the money and time you save into relationships,family, and community— the real American Dream?

    Here is a perfect practical example. How many of you have paid more for a storage locker than the stuff inside is worth? Honestly? Practically everyone. Is this rational? No. Why do we do it? We have an emotional attachment to “stuff.” We convince ourselves that “having” our stuff means “having” our feelings, experiences, and history attached to the stuff (even if it is basically junk that we never use anymore).Upon closer look, however, “stuff” is just another demand and expense that weighs on your mind. It is not a store of value.

   If you want a higher quality life, clear your economic and mental clutter. Get rid of what you don’t need. Empty your storage lockers. Getting rid of stuff will not only save you money but also free up resources for people you care about. If selling your stuff is too much hassle, give it away. Just think of it as a double bonus—a load off your mind and karma points. If trends continue, in a few years everyone will start selling their stuff out of necessity. Why not get a good price for yours now. It is personal decision time. Apply civil disobedience
to your value-draining financial habits. Once you start clearing things out, you will have more time, energy, and money to pursue the more important things in life instead of just thinking about them.
You are now ready for Step #4.

To Be Continued...come back to read all 5 steps! We would love to hear your thoughts on the third step below.

zeus.jpgZeus Yiamouyiannis, Ph.D. is an economics blogger, futurist, and author of Transforming Economy: From Corrupted Capitalism to Connected Communities. He has written regularly for top alternative economics blogs, including and He has appeared as a guest on “The Keiser Report” and “On the Edge with Max Keiser” on RT TV as well as the “Inside the Eye” radio program. Zeus is a “performance educator” with expertise in philosophy and cultural foundations of education. His own blog, Citizen Zeus (

Pick up a copy of the Transforming Economy e-book here. Visit Citizen Zeus to engage other essays on transforming yourself and your society. Contact Zeus at [email protected] to engage his "learn to transform" consulting services.


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