Dave Ramsey: Never Be Normal
Dave Ramsey – Change the Recipe
Businessman and author Dave Ramsey critiques the idea of “normal” in American society, and issues a passionate plea to defy “conventional” wisdom and find your own way.
“After going broke and losing everything, it made me stop. That was 25 years ago. It made me stop and look at what conventional wisdom says. I’ve decided conventional wisdom is an oxymoron. Conventional wisdom makes people typical, average, mediocre, and morons. I don’t want to be conventional in anything. I don’t want to be typical or average or mediocre in anything. If normal is good, then that’s okay, let’s be normal, but normal’s not good.
“Normal in America today is 70% of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck according to The Wall Street Journal. Normal in America today is bankruptcies increase almost every single year. Normal in America today is people work their whole lives and retire and say, ‘I sure hope the government, which is well known for its ability to handle money, will take care of me.’ Normal in America today is the number one cause of divorce in North America, your number one cause of divorce, is money fights and money problems. Normal in America today is this stupid-butt belief you can’t be a student without a student loan. Normal in America today is carrying so many credit cards in your hip pocket that it throws your back out of whack and you have to see a chiropractor. Normal in America today is a car with a payment and no idea that I’m ever going to live without a car payment. Normal in America today is I’m going to buy as much house as I can buy as soon as I can buy it regardless of how broke I am and then can’t figure out why I’m broke and why this house is a curse to me. Normal in America today is broke and it sucks.
“Looking good and no freaking money, big hat, no cattle, that’s normal. Don’t talk to me about normal. Normal sucks. I don’t want to be normal. I don’t want you to be normal and if you ask me questions about how you can be more normal, you’re not going to like the answers. Normal does not work. It’s not working. I’m so stupid, I started with nothing and I became a millionaire by the time I was 26 years old. I did it all on borrowed money. That’s how dumb I am. I had a million dollar net worth, but I was still broke. How dumb is that? The bank got sold to another bank that called the notes. I spent the next two and half years of my life losing everything I owned. I was 26 years old. I made $250,000 that year. Twenty-seven years old, I made $6,000, cash taxable income. Been there, done that, got the t-shirt. I know what stupid looks like up close and personal. I’ve seen him in my mirror. I know what stupid looks like. I know what it feels like to be so scared you can’t breathe.
“Continuing to do the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result is the definition of insanity, the 12-steppers say. They’re right, that’s stupid. If you keep doing what you’ve been doing, you’re going to keep getting what you’ve been getting. You don’t like where you are, you need to change the recipe that is your life. You got to change what you’re doing.”