Monday, September 19, 2011

NBA Players Welcome to the Real World

NBA Players make more than 90% of the U.S. population. They get to travel across the country for free by the NBA. You get paid for doing a job you love. Most Americans work a job that they hate and have no other options.

Many times players are lured into the NBA and believe that their lifestyle will last forever so they aren’t concerned with how much money they spend – but nothing lasts forever. Americans learned the hard lesson that nothing in life is guaranteed and that life can be hard.

NBA Players suffer from the Instant Gratification Syndrome, you want everything right now. You spend money that you earn in the future to buy things in the present. You have no right to complain that you can’t pay your bills. No one made you buy a multi-millionaire dollar home; spend money on partying, women, designer clothes, jewelry, and things that have no value. You made those choices.

You decided that living that lifestyle was what you wanted and more important than planning for your future. Don’t be like Chris McAlister of the Ravens.

Immigrants that were brought to this country or migrated to this country knew the value of hard work; they did whatever they had to do to make a living even if it meant making sacrifices or working multiple jobs. Americans are spoiled and have forgotten how to survive. If one option stops working, find another option.

Yes you should be treated fairly by your employer but you should always look for other options. You can use your celebrity status to create a radio show, a television show, a clothing line, a sneaker line, sunglasses, hats, become a speaker, become a board member or advisory committee member for a national company or start a business. So many options are available to you and are easier for you to attain because of your celebrity status and the people you have at your disposal.

NBA owners are denying players adequate pension plans and requesting stricter salary caps. You can’t have it both ways. You have to provide one option or other. This will continue to lead to future lockouts until owners realize they are nothing without the players. Here are 7 tips to plan for your future.

1. Save. Save. Save. Save at least 30-50% of your income each month.
2. Retirement. Sign up for the NBA Retirement Association. You only get a small amount of income but if you combine it with additional steams of income through endorsements or businesses you should be able to retire comfortably.
3. Downsize. Downsize your lifestyle. Who are you trying to impress with your ferrari, maybach, diamond watches, and millionaire dollar home. People may be fascinated by the things you have but no one really cares. When you retire what do you want people to remember about you, that you lived in a million dollar home that you couldn’t afford or that you helped your community.
4. Think About Tomorrow. You can get traded, released or hurt at any time. Plan for your future so that you don’t have to file for bankruptcy or foreclosure.
5. Role Model. Be the best person you can be and serve as a role model for youth and younger players to prevent them from making the mistakes you made.
6. Give. Donate to charities or start your own foundation. This helps to reduce your tax liability and provides greatly needed assistance to social organizations that have been affected by the recession.
7. Say No. Learn how to say no to friends, strangers, relatives who ask to borrow money or ask you to buy something. If you always lend money you only enable that person to be dependent on you forever. Show them how to earn their own money so they don’t have to ask you for money.

You determined your self-worth by the things you own instead of realizing that your self-worth comes from within. No matter how much money you have it cannot make you happy and cannot fill a void in your life.

Think how different your life would be during the lockout if you saved at least one year’s salary, if you only bought one car or if you lived in smaller house. When you experience a financial crisis, your true character is tested. You either become a winner or loser.

Determine that you will always be a winner. Don’t let anyone determine your destiny, determine your own destiny. Money can generate wealth or generate debt you make the choice.

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