THESE MOVERS AND SHAKERS TOOK BIG RISKS TO GET WHERE THEY ARE TODAY. HERE ARE SOME WORDS OF WISDOM FROM THEIR JOURNEYS.
What does it mean to be “financially fearless”?
LearnVest C.E.O. Alexa von Tobel defines it as taking control of your money, so it doesn’t control you. That’s one reason why she named her new book Financially Fearless–she wanted her advice to inspire people to go from feeling anxious about money to feeling amazing about it.
We were curious to know what types of answers we’d get from other business leaders if we asked them to define financial fearlessness in their own words. So we reached out to everyone from successful entrepreneurs to intrepid investors and found that their points of view didn’t just apply to their financial lives–they also seemed to reflect a mantra from these bold leaders’ personal lives.
1. DON’T LET THE UNKNOWN THROW YOU OFF YOUR GAME.
–David Daneshgar, cofounder of BloomNation
This former World Series of Poker champion left the world of high-stakes card games to become an entrepreneur, cofounding BloomNation after his friend complained that his aunt’s florist business was being hurt by competition from online floral websites.
2. MAKE SURE YOUR PASSIONS PAY OFF.
–Ruth Zukerman, cofounder and creative director of Flywheel Sports
Her fearless key to success? Making sure that her zeal for group fitness could fulfill her personally–and financially.
3. IT’S OKAY TO TAKE A RISK–IT JUST MIGHT BE WORTH IT.
–Bruce Poon Tip, founder of G Adventures
Getting fired from his job at McDonald’s as a young man was the best thing that ever happened to Poon Tip because it made him realize that he’d only be happy if he worked for himself. So in 1990 he maxed out two credit cards (which, by the way, we wouldn’t recommend!) to start an adventure-travel company, G Adventures. In his case, the risk paid off–he now runs tours on seven continents for over 100,000 travelers a year.
4. NEVER MAKE UNINFORMED DECISIONS.
–Angela Lee, founder of 37 Angels
When Lee, an adjunct assistant professor at Columbia Business School and a former marketer, launched her angel-investing network, only 13% of such investors were women. Lee wanted to boost that number to 50%–and thus found inspiration in the number 37, the percentage difference that women would have to make up to reach that goal.
5. PLAN EARLY SO YOU CAN PURSUE YOUR FUTURE WITH CONFIDENCE.
–Kate White, former Cosmopolitan Editor
“I’m always inspired by the quote: ‘We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.’”
6.GIVING BACK SHOULD BE PART OF YOUR PLAN.
–Mayer Dahan, C.E.O. of Dahan Properties
“I know to be successful at a young age is an incredible accomplishment, but to be charitable shows the amount of financial fearlessness you truly have. I’m always inspired by the quote: ‘We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.’”
BY JULIA CHANG