This week, we are exploring Dan Brown’s hidden formula for wealth (as interpreted by me) in his Best Selling book The Lost Symbol (you can read this week’s post to get caught up).
First, we explored the progression we uncovered that says: P→P→P→W
Then, we thought about the equation P+P+P=W
Today, is the most fun! And the most difficult to imagine mastering.
Today, we are considering that the real hidden formula for Wealth is: P3 = W
Yep! It’s geometric and exponential and takes into account multiple expressions of each of the three P’s. Of course it would!
Wealth is a complex thing – otherwise, everybody would have it!
The First “P” and its many forms – Productivity
- The internal life: It is rare for us to examine what is going on internally when we talk about productivity. Mostly, we look at the actions we are taking and the results we are getting and we call that productivity.
However, in this complicated formula, one that few ever crack,is the most important place to look first: What is going on in your head?
Are you saying productive things to yourself? Or are you doubting your every move and criticizing yourself mercilessly?
You will need to do the hardest thing possible, MANAGE YOUR MIND. (Consider reading the book What to Say When You Talk To Yourself.)
If you can’t be a productive thinker, you can’t be truly productive.
- The external life: The next most important piece to being productive is PLANNING. Most of us have a weak muscle for planning and we fool ourselves into thinking that we can be productive without it. Planning requires hard mental work. It requires focus, imagination, curiosity, and study.
Popular culture says it like this: “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail” (Ick! Warmed over porridge, I think).
More my favorite is The Art of War quote: “Victorious warriors win first and then go to war, while defeated warriors go to war first and then seek to win”.
Start slowly or you will be discouraged. Mastery of planning will increase your productivity exponentially.
Then, comes DISCIPLINE. Once you have planned well, you must now execute. And you must do it without cutting corners and by doing every job completely, all-the-way-through. Period.
Imagine the person building a bridge from perfect plans with substandard materials and measurements and execution. I wouldn’t drive my Mack truck over that one!
Of course, prioritization, time management, and great delegation go into productivity, but the most compelling and almost always missed is MANAGING YOUR ENERGY.
My coach used to say: “If you owned a million-dollar race horse, how would you treat it? What would you feed it? Who would you let handle it? How would you exercise it?” A critical part of productivity is Self-Care. This is a hard one to face, but it is inescapable!
- The public life: When what you create in life helps OTHERS be more productive (think Edison and the light bulb, Guttenberg and the press, the list goes on and on), you are certainly on your way to great wealth.
Onto the Next “P” – Prosperity – the fun one!
- The internal life: If you are committed to mastering the formula for wealth, I invite you to spend time and actions for the three P’s. Surprisingly, the P in Prosperity can happen in many cool ways. We are starting with the internal life. In other words, the things you are feeding your brain.
When you are learning cool new stuff, reading a great book, laughing at a funny joke, having an imaginative conversation, solving a puzzle, meditating, watching an informative TV program (NOT Hardcore Pawn, for example), visualizing, praying – then your mind is enjoying Prosperity. (Read this great joke – you have now been Prosperous!)
- The external life: When you are earning great money for your work, when you are investing in assets (stocks, bonds, passive-income-generators), you are experiencing and expressing prosperity. It also happens when you buy that rockin’ car or house that you are clear you CAN afford. It happens when you are living debt-free.
Other ways to express prosperity are taking naps, going on vacation, enjoying an extra hour of sleep on Saturday morning, sipping a great glass of wine.
It is important to your mental and psychic health to experience Prosperity.
- The public life: When you give OTHERS access to prosperity, you give them access to their own prosperity. All around you become prosperous.
This includes having sumptuous parties on your yacht and inviting ALL of your friends. It includes putting a Profit Sharing Plan in place at work. It includes sending your sales assistant a luxurious gift or a gift card for their hard work. When you make sure those around you experience Prosperity, you amplify your own access to Wealth!
And the final “P” – Philanthropy – the most satisfying of all
I also like to call this one Contribution (but it messes up my “P” thing)
- The internal life: When we do things that contribute to others and to society, we actually experience mental health benefits. We feel great about ourselves, rejuvenated, IMPORTANT. Contribution, making a difference, and giving back are scientifically proven to increase our fulfillment and happiness.
Try it! You’ll like it!
- The external life: It is often said that you can’t give what you don’t have. I can’t give a dollar to a another person if I don’t have it myself.
Getting involved in a cause bigger than yourself is an outward expression of Philanthropy. You and those around you benefit.
The dog you adopt, the child you sponsor, the student you tutor…all of these express that you are wealthy and contribute to your life experience of Wealth. Remember, that even one small difference you make – even if no one ever knows – is the Starfish story.
- The public life: The public life is most likely the most obvious expression of Philanthropy. Bill and Melinda Gates are an excellent example of giving back. And it makes a difference for everyone they touch.
But, which came first, the chicken or the egg? Which came first, the desire and ability and act of giving back, or the wealth to do it? Things that make you go … Hmmmmmm!
When you do the work to make your communities stronger, you grow better friends, more expensive neighborhoods (which raises the value of your home), healthier employees, smarter children, and more affluent customers.
It is often said that what you give away will come back to you ten-fold. Of course, the more you have to give away (based on Productivity and Prosperity) will bring you even more Wealth.
Can you see how the formula builds and builds and builds on itself?
The more productive I am internally, makes me more productive externally, which makes me more productive in society!
The more prosperous I am internally, makes me more prosperous externally, which makes me more prosperous in society.
The more philanthropic I am internally, makes me more philanthropic externally, which makes a more philanthropic society – which turns around to benefit me.
So, P3=W is the most powerful Hidden Mystery for Wealth in the Dan Brown novel The Lost Symbol. And Peter Solomon said it in only one sentence: “The aim is that you use this money to build a life of productivity, prosperity, and philanthropy.”
This Dan Brown guy is quite a marvel!
Love your life UP!
The Irreverent Sales Girl