Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Financial Reconstruction-Part 1 of 3 (The Motivation)

In my opinion the misuse of finances is one of the greatest tragic novels written by young black America. Sadly, this is a behavior that is pass down from previous generations, learned from peers, and perpetuated by the media. It's like there is an entire army that is after your wallet. And it seems we have decided to just surrender instead of fight back.
I think our relationship with money is absolutely ludicrous. I say "our" because even tho I know the idiocy of living beyond my means, I have found myself falling victim to influence from time to time. This is a three part series because I believe it is THAT serious. And its about time we really talk about it.

It is no secret that we live in a time of instant gratification; The microwave generation. We rather spend our time looking like we are affluent rather than actually becoming affluent. Are we really not aware that the more time we spend portraying a certain lifestyle, the less of a chance that we will actually get to live it?

You always here the argument, "I am going to enjoy life because life is short" or "you can't take it with you" as a reason to throw money away. But who the hell are these people convincing you that blowing money is "living"? That spending every dime is more fun that saving it? When did it become a rule that buying an expensive suit, couch surfing, buying bottles that are marked up 300% because it comes with little sparklers was more fun than having a bunch of friends at the house with drinks and food, just wilding out and laughing? When did simple stuff become equivalent to "not living"?

In what twilight zone do we look to uneducated, frivolous, millionaire ex drug dealers (who are still pushing the idea of selling drugs as a viable income producer), that will be broke in a few years for our financial advice (Damn dude, how do you really feel!?). We buy the cars they say to buy, we pay for the liquor they deem to be the best, we aspire to the wear the clothes on their back. We wanna make it rain trick! This is insanity at it's best! When do we find the strength to stand up and think independently? (tell em why you mad son!)

So I decided to make that commitment to be that counter example. I loathe the thought of putting my finances out there but damnit somebody's got to keep it real in this city of posers. You will be surprised how many of your highly paid corporate friends driving luxury vehicles that stay fresh are actually broke! And you will be surprised how many of your unassuming friends driving old cars are actually balling. But what they both have in common is that they keep quite about there real financial situation (for obviously different reasons). So hear goes nothing... Today we change the game.

For 2011 a friend and I entered into a financial reconstruction challenge with each other. We both want to live lives like most people can't so we understand that means living life like most people wont. I refuse to live life paycheck to paycheck. I refuse to have to fake my wealth at the price of not being able to actually attain it. And I refuse to be stressed about money my entire life. Unless we change our relationship with money, we are not only going to pass down bad habits to our children but also mountains of debt. So I am going to layout my financial history, my current financial standing (it's not pretty so be prepared) and also my financial goals in this 3 part blog. And thru the year, I am going to post progress, fall backs (hopefully there are none), tough times and great triumphs. I am going to succeed at this money game, I just want others to win too. There is so much economic power that we are wasting. Lets get it back!

This is an interactive process and we need more people to speak on the subject. Please post comments and insight on the topic. Thanks!


  1. Your decision is admirable! Many need to read your blog because Black America...especially Young Black America is dying a FAST (not slow) financial death. The media's influence is astonishing and until people realize that the decisions made today affect tomorrow in ALL aspects of life, they will continue to be in the rat race heading to destination "no where."

    I applaud you, encourage you and can't wait to hear more about your financial journey. Why am I interested, you might ask. Well, because I am there myself. I felt myself falling into the trap society deem a young black female to be in. So I decided to take a stand in 2010 by educating myself through money management and investment courses and it has helped tremendously. By no means am I an expert, but I am much wiser and better prepared (financially) than I was this time last year. I think twice (or sometimes three times) now before making purchases. I know my bank account thanks me.

    Good luck and I can't wait to hear more!

    God's blessings,

    Kim Azille

  2. Alex,

    You hit a “Bulls eye” on the money issue. I concur with every word writing; it's all about the company you keep! If you hang around friends who are able to manage their paycheck or income affectively by put money in their saving acct, 401k and other areas of financial investment you would soon learn to do the same.

    Look at 50 cent for example, he talks all that hardcore sh*t but homie financial portfolio looks great (his peers would concur) and did I mention he owns Vitamin Water—smart investment!

    To make a long story short, have fun, enjoy some of your hard earned money but make sure majority of your money/income is out there working for you! Buy books on investing, saving and etc. Play money games with yourself and friends—like who can save $1000 in 4 months or who can pay off a few creditors before you go on a Vacay this summer. We can do this! Great article, let’s build wealth Alex!!!!


    Terrance B.

  3. WOW!
    This is a bold yet necessary blog. I am super impressed, and I want to say thank you for being man enough to say it. I absolutely agree with your analysis of our current frame of mind as it relates to finances, and I pray that you serve as some sort of example to many others. I have a similar mindset to yours in that I believe that individuality, self control, and discipline is crucial in order to maintain a healthy financial life.

    First of all we can’t be afraid to be different and think outside of the box. It’s our desires to be like others or put up a front for others (keeping up with the joneses) that gets us in trouble sometimes. Accepting yourself for who you are, what you want in life, and what you are capable is one of the first steps to creating a world of individual wealth; spiritually, mentally, physically, and financially. We should all be looking to ourselves for justification and validation, not anyone else. It’s not until we begin to value our individuality that we will learn the self-control and discipline that will motivate us to do better financially.
    Thanks for giving us the space to share and I hope that this blog has the opportunity to reach out to more people because it is truly inspirational. Good luck on your journey, and I can’t wait to see what comes of it.

    An old friend

  4. @ Kim I really appreciate you commenting. It's good for people to know that they are not alone in the struggle to break away from the spend fast culture. Hell, it's good for me to know. You make iteasier for me to do this...

  5. @Terrance- You brought up a great point about how much of an influence the company you keep is on your financial decisions. I didn't even explore that angle fully until I read your comment. But thanks to you, I go more into the impact of my friend circle in part 2

  6. @Ngozi.. your comment and feedback is much appreciated. You are right about not being afraid to be an individual as being one of the greatest factor of financial failure. It's another epidemic that we face that is driving all of our insecurity spending.

  7. This is a ballsy move, dude. You continue to wow me with your courage. This is what Jill Scott was talking about when she sang about "living my life like it's golden."

    I'm putting in the work to make necessary changes as well. Like you, some things aren't pretty, but I'm working on having a financial portfolio that represents my vision rather than my worst habits.


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