No, girdling has nothing to do with undergarments. My wife and I are planning on doing some landscaping. On our front lawn, we have a 28-year-old maple tree. Many years ago, I thought we would plant some flowers around the trunk, and to keep the topsoil from washing out when it rains, I would put some plastic edging around it. The flowers looked great every year. As the edging started to wear, I thought it’s time to replace it. When I started to remove the old edging, I noticed something strange. There were tree roots inter-tangled along the inside edge of the edging. I contacted the city arborist to have them look at it. There is a name for it – girdling, and it’s not good. Girdling roots restrict the movement of water and nutrients to the leaves as they put pressure on the trunk. The arborist said he had not seen girdling as severe and was amazed the tree was doing as well as it is. He did notice its leaves are small which could be a sign the end is near for this tree – or it could be they are still growing this spring.

Are you girdling – strangling yourself – and don’t even know you’re doing it? Do you restrict yourself from living life to the fullest? Do you pinch pennies because of fear of not having enough? I admit there was a time when I girdled. 

Pinching pennies is girdling. It usually starts with a belief there is a lack. Yes, we do need to be wise and spend wisely, not spend more than you have. However, is this mindset girdling you? I suggest it may be. 

We are here to create, not to drift along with the masses. Money is in abundance. Too often we sabotage ourselves by thinking otherwise.

Anyone who has done a study on the great thinkers, the great decision-makers, the achievers in history, will know they very rarely agreed on anything when it came to the study of human life. However, there was one point on which they were in complete and unanimous agreement and that was “we become what we think about.” 

There are two kinds of people – the majority who cut back on their wants to fit their incomes and those who are free spirits in the minority who make their incomes fit their wants. The first one is girdling if you are not looking for ways to grow you and your income.

Money is the harvest of our production and service to others. If you don’t like your income, we must devise ways and means of increasing our service. To want more of it requires us to decide we want more of it and what we are prepared to do to receive it.

The richer we are the more funds we have available to make a more meaningful impact on society, whether that is creating jobs for others by acquiring more products and services and providing a hand up for others in need.

One percent of people earn 96% of the wealth in the world. They think outside the box, learn, live with brand new rules, and follow a totally different strategy. They have the habit of always seeking more information and developing greater expertise. They seek out counsel from other 1 percenters.

These wealthy individuals multiply their time through the efforts of others and create multiple sources of income. They are among the 3% who make committed decisions how much they want to earn each year.

They make committed decisions that show up in two places – their calendar and how they allocate their money. They invest in themselves by registering to learn online or attend events.

The other 96% who earn 1% of the world’s wealth trade time for money. 

Studies show we are our own worst enemies when we girdle. Our rewards will always be in exact proportion to our service and will always be in direct ratio to the demand for what we do, our ability to do it and the difficulty in replacing us. We need to look for work where there is a high demand for what we do, and where our abilities are a good fit and get better at those abilities so we will be difficult to replace.

If we refuse to do more than we’re being paid for we’ll seldom be paid for more than we’re doing.

The only limit on our income is us. Our job is to find ways of increasing our service to others where there is a great demand for it.

I love the following quote “The good life is expensive. There is another way to live that does not cost as much—but it isn’t any good.” – Spanish Distiller

The good life does cost more – the opportunity lost by not growing or the cost of investing in growth. We can have it if we want it.

If you have the means, now is not the time to girdle. The economy needs you to create a demand for products and services – create a job. Do a renovation. Buy something you’ve been putting off. If you’re guilty of girdling, make a committed decision to take action to change!

Dave Otto B.B.A. CFP®️ CLU®️ CH.F.C.®️ EPC®️

Founder and President, DO FINANCIAL

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