Living in a third world country, you can easily conjure up the steps to being unsuccessful by simply looking outside the your car when driving around, or when commuting. I will admit, i did not see these all at first, but it did become obvious when i began college.

Here’s a little background about my family. We used to be poor. My father was born in a poor family. Barely having enough to get through the day. From poverty, he rose like Batman did when he was in Bane’s prison. My mother’s side of the family came from a lineage of French Aristocrats who moved to the Philippines during the first world war who had fallen from grace when the second world war broke out. That alone could give you an idea of what and what not to do. These experiences my family combined with the things going on in this country daily could teach you a lot if you pay attention. So what are these things to know?

1. DO NOT GET MARRIED

No, this doesn’t mean to literally never get married. Although i admit i don’t want to think about marriage until i’ve made my first ten million, my father told me never to get married until we are self-sufficient. Which means we must own our own house and our own car and are not struggling with bills. I know a lot of people would say “Oh my God, what a cockblock!” or that he’s wrong and we should ‘follow our hearts’. Following our hearts is just another way of saying “Follow our cocks.” No, following your heart is stupid simply because emotions are VERY EASILY manipulated by circumstances and can easily cloud judgement, as compared to what your brains know you should or should not do. Also, if you get married when you’re not ready, you’ve just doomed your family to starvation. It’s like adding another sack to your back before getting your footing from the first. Think of what kind of family you will have with a father (or mother) who aren’t ready yet. Which brings me to another.

2. DO NOT HAVE CHILDREN

Similar to the first, it doesn’t mean to never have children. It means to not have children until you’re ready. Just because you and your wife are already self-sufficient does not mean you are ready to have children. Remember that being self-sufficient is not enough when building a family. You should be sufficient, not just for yourself.

3. PICK THE RIGHT PROFESSION

Another important point to ponder. It’s true you should do what you love, but what if what you love isn’t exactly the right thing? As we know, the appreciation of art isn’t as it was backin the Renaissance age when artists were revered and exalted. Growing up with a family of artists, let me tell you that that is a field to avoid. Even they themselves advise against it. I have a friend, Pau, who blogged about the world of Advertising. The field of art is actually a pretty intense field. With a shit-load of competition and not a lot of “importance” to offer (no offense to anyone in the field). Here’s a tip; if you’re a die-hard artist like me, channel that to a different profession like Architecture or Interior Design. You’ll have more chances of making it than in Multi-Media Arts or the simple Fine Arts department. Though, if you know the right people, you will always be successful, as my father said. Otherwise, you’ll be stuck at the bottom of the pyramid, without the knowledge of where the ladders are.

4. LEARN FROM THE MISTAKES OF OTHERS

I remembered hearing a Latin proverb that says, “A wise man learns from the mistakes of others.” That’s right, their mistakes. It’s good to talk to older people for they’ve got a lot of things to teach you in their stories. You’d do well to listen, otherwise, you’d make a fool of yourself and make the same mistakes. There are no people dumber than people who repeat mistakes.

5. DO NOT TAKE IT EASY

Just like in most horror movies, just when the protagonists think its over and let their guards down, another giant Flying Spaghetti Monster swoops down and devours them. Vigilance is one of the greatest traits knights and soldiers have, which is why you can never trick them into doing something stupid. Remember to take the time to smell the flowers, though. Otherwise, you’ll go insane. Just remember to bring a knife.

6. TAKE RISKS

Yes, you’ll never learn things if you don’t take risks. However, before gambling, always weigh your losses and gains. Just because this advise says to take risks doesn’t mean you should go all in with a shitty hand. If you’re rock bottom, taking risks would be the right thing since you don’t have anything else to lose. If you do have a lot to lose like say a family reputation, please think about it first. As they all say, “masturbate first before making the decision.” PLEASE DO NOT TAKE THAT STATEMENT LITERALLY.

7. DO NOT OVERESTIMATE YOURSELF, AS WELL US UNDERESTIMATE

This is related to #6. Don’t volunteer to build a house just because you’re a Fine Arts major in college. But don’t turn down the interior design when you’ve had a lot of ideas the past few years just because you didn’t take it up in college. Get where i’m going with this? Like i said before, don’t go all in with a shitty hand. But please do not fold when you’ve got a good one.

8. TEMPER

My father has a bad temper, but has just the right judgement to know when to show it. Anger is a good tool when you’re shepherding sheep, but not when talking to clients. Finally, we reach perhaps the most important piece of advice my dad has;

9. BE STREET SMART

This basically sums up everything. Knowing all the right people gives you that extra edge, whilst knowing the right places to build your business takes off the need for excessive advertising and inconvenience to your customers. Being street smart is also knowing when you’re in the wrong side of the neighborhood, and knowing how to get yourself out. The smartest people you’ll ever meet are not those who bury themselves with books and spend ages in libraries. They’re usually outside exploring.

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