Whether successful men like pretty young girls is a different matter from whether they should marry them. One way to look at this is through economics, which I find to be a useful lens for evaluating many important decisions.
A New York City woman once posted this personal ad for a wealthy husband:
I’m a beautiful (spectacularly beautiful) 25 year old girl. I’m articulate and classy. I’m looking to get married to a guy who makes at least half a million a year. I know how that sounds, but keep in mind that a million a year is middle class in New York City, so I don’t think I’m overreaching at all…
I am looking for MARRIAGE ONLY. Please hold your insults – I’m putting myself out there in an honest way. Most beautiful women are superficial; at least I’m being up front about it. I wouldn’t be searching for these kind of guys if I wasn’t able to match them – in looks, culture, sophistication, and keeping a nice home and hearth.
A wealthy Wall Street guy responded:
Your offer, from the prospective of a guy like me, is plain and simple a crappy business deal. Here’s why. Cutting through all the B.S., what you suggest is a simple trade: you bring your looks to the party and I bring my money. Fine, simple. But here’s the rub, your looks will fade and my money will likely continue into perpetuity…in fact, it is very likely that my income increases but it is an absolute certainty that you won’t be getting any more beautiful!
So, in economic terms you are a depreciating asset and I am an earning asset. Not only are you a depreciating asset, your depreciation accelerates! Let me explain, you’re 25 now and will likely stay pretty hot for the next 5 years, but less so each year. Then the fade begins in earnest. By 35 stick a fork in you!
So in Wall Street terms, we would call you a trading position, not a buy and hold…hence the rub…marriage. It doesn’t make good business sense to “buy you” (which is what you’re asking) so I’d rather lease. In case you think I’m being cruel, I would say the following. If my money were to go away, so would you, so when your beauty fades I need an out. It’s as simple as that. So a deal that makes sense is dating, not marriage.
Separately, I was taught early in my career about efficient markets. So, I wonder why a girl as “articulate, classy and spectacularly beautiful” as you has been unable to find your sugar daddy. I find it hard to believe that if you are as gorgeous as you say you are that the $500K hasn’t found you, if not only for a tryout.
By the way, you could always find a way to make your own money and then we wouldn’t need to have this difficult conversation.
I hope this is helpful, and if you want to enter into some sort of lease, let me know.
Fear of failure is one of the greatest fears people have. Fear of failure is closely related to fear of criticism and fear of rejection. Successful people overcome their fear of failure. Fear incapacitates unsuccessful people.
The Law of Feedback states: there is no failure; there is only feedback. Successful people look at mistakes as outcomes or results, not as failure. Unsuccessful people look at mistakes as permanent and personal.
Buckminster Fuller wrote, “Whatever humans have learned had to be learned as a consequence only of trial and error experience. Humans have learned only through mistakes.”
Most people self-limit themselves. Most people do not achieve a fraction of what they are capable of achieving because they are afraid to try—because they are afraid they will fail.
Take these steps to overcome your fear of failure and move yourself forward to getting the result you desire:
Step One: Take action. Bold, decisive action. Do something scary. Fear of failure immobilizes you. To overcome this fear, you must act. When you act, act boldly.
Action gives you the power to change the circumstances or the situation. You must overcome the inertia by doing something. Dr. Robert Schuller asks, “What would you do if you knew you could not fail?” What could you achieve? Be brave and just do it. If it doesn’t work out the way you want, then do something else. But DO SOMETHING NOW.
Step Two: Persist. Successful people just don’t give up. They keep trying different approaches to achieving their outcomes until they finally get the results they want. Unsuccessful people try one thing that doesn’t work and then give up. Often people give up when they are on the threshold of succeeding.
Step Three: Don’t take failure personally. Failure is about behavior, outcomes, and results. Failure is not a personality characteristic. Although what you do may not give you the result you wanted, it doesn’t mean you are a failure. Because you made a mistake, doesn’t mean that you are a failure.
Step Four: Do things differently. If what you are doing isn’t working, do something else. There is an old saying, “if you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you always got.” If you’re not getting the results you want, then you must do something different. Most people stop doing anything at all, and this guarantees they won’t be successful.
Step Five: Don’t be so hard on yourself. Hey, if nothing else, you know what doesn’t work. Failure is a judgement or evaluation of behavior. Look at failure as an event or a happening, not as a person.
Step Six: Treat the experience as an opportunity to learn. Think of failure as a learning experience. What did you learn from the experience that will help you in the future? How can you use the experience to improve yourself or your situation? Ask yourself these questions:
(1) What was the mistake?
(2) Why did it happen?
(3) How could it have been prevented?
(4) How can I do better next time?
Then use what you learned from the experience to do things differently so you get different results next time. Learn from the experience or ignore it.
Step Seven: Look for possible opportunities that result from the experience. Napoleon Hill, author of Think and Grow Rich, says “every adversity, every failure and every heartache carries with it the seed of an equivalent or a greater benefit.” Look for the opportunity and the benefit.
Step Eight: Fail forward fast. Tom Peters, the management guru, says that in today’s business world, companies must fail forward fast. What he means is that the way we learn is by making mistakes. So if we want to learn at a faster pace, we must make mistakes at a faster pace. The key is that you must learn from the mistakes so you make so you don’t repeat them.
Although we all make mistakes, fear of failure doesn’t have to cripple you. As self-help author Susan Jeffers says, “feel the fear and do it anyway.”
It is never a good time to talk about poverty.
With the economic contagion in Europe dominating headlines, it is no wonder that little attention is given to the millions across the world who fall below poverty lines.
Any global financial turmoil, however, will worsen the lot of the poor and those living precariously close to poverty, so it is worth remembering for a moment the plight of those struggling to survive in a world that is still undeniably affluent, despite its current economic woes.
Poverty is not some faceless entity; poverty is real. It is all around us, often, right in our backyards.
That is perhaps even more important for impressionable students like myself living Singapore, where poverty is not always acknowledged forthrightly by the government. Singapore’s former representative to the United Nations, Kishore Mahbubani, once declared that “there are no homeless, destitute or starving people in Singapore. Poverty has been eradicated.”
Yet poverty exists amidst the economic bustle of our small country. An elderly woman, back hunched over, trawls through dumpsters for cardboard to sell for a few measly dollars, barely enough to buy a simple meal or two.
A young mother who stays home to look after her children and ill husband is forced to put aside her dignity by living on the goodwill of relatives. A beggar who hides in inconspicuous corners outside malls to evade detection — begging is an offence here — depends on the charity of passing shoppers to get by each day.
Poverty may have been erased from official rhetoric, but it is far from being erased in society.
I am fortunate to have taken a course this past semester called “Development, Underdevelopment, and Poverty,” offered by Assistant Professor of Political Science John A. Donaldson of the School of Social Sciences at the Singapore Management University (SMU).
Together with 35 other students, I learnt that development and poverty issues are far more complex and multi-faceted than we have been conditioned to believe. They go beyond the simple economic dimensions that policy-makers are comfortable dealing with.
That this course is offered in a university whose primary focus is on the world of business and finance provides a beautiful contrast; it reminds us of the struggles of the impoverished, even as we engage in our often individualistic pursuits of good jobs with ever-higher salaries.
But the best lesson I learnt is that global poverty is not a hopeless situation. My classmates from India, China, Korea, Japan, the Netherlands, and of course, Singapore, shared their experiences with projects in their home country and region that have lifted the lives of the poor and destitute. Many of us are involved in such projects ourselves, in some cases even leading them.
While these certainly have not and will not solve the global poverty challenge on their own, it is difficult to deny the real impact these projects have had on individual communities. Small projects can have big impact. The class was a cosmopolitan forum of ideas looking to understand a cosmopolitan issue through grassroots perspectives.
The most important outcome of this course is not in the substantive theories and content on development and poverty. It is not in the grades, something students in Singapore are all too obsessed with. It is in inspiring us to make a difference to the lives of those suffering from the anguish of poverty, a class of 36 at a time.
And we do not need to look far to help. Curing the world of poverty may be a daunting task, but improving the lives of just one individual or household in our community is a victory in itself. Let’s not lose sight of the few, just because we cannot help the many. And what better time to start than during the proverbial Season of Giving — Christmas.
It is always a good time to talk about poverty.
By Tim Mou Hui from the Singapore Management University
Realistic optimistsbelieve they’ll succeed, but also that they have to make success happen, by choosing the right strategies, overcoming obstacles, and working hard. Because they believe the path will be hard, they take action.
Unrealistic optimists believe that success will happen to them, that the universe will simply reward them for all their positive thinking. If you raise concerns, they’ll accuse you of being negative. Because they focus only on what they want, their naïveté prevents them from achieving their goals.