How to Identify Your Secret Wealth

Vijai P. Sharma, Ph.D

Like the "Gold Rush" of the American West, there was once a "Diamond Rush" in South Africa.  A landlord in South Africa, who we will refer to as "Ignoramus," sold his land and joined thousands of people who were romping the country looking for undiscovered diamond mines.  The man who bought the land from Ignoramus, who we will refer to as "Explorer" hired a geo-engineer to survey the land.  To his surprise and fortune, the land he bought for mere pittance had diamonds of incredible value.  Let's look at how Explorer discovered the wealth of diamonds.
 While exploring and surveying his land, Explorer went over to the other side of the lake and saw diamonds strewn all over the land.  It wasn't just a patch, diamonds were strewn over acres of land.  See, Ignoramus, never walked over to the other side of the lake to see what riches were on his own land.  He never fully surveyed his own "property."  In many ways we are like the Ignoramus of this story.  We are always looking outside for diamonds, when there are "acres of diamond," in our own backyard.  We don't fully examine our own land but instead covet the far and remote land of illusions.  

 More valuable than any external possessions, our personal wealth is often unbeknown to us.  Being internal and intangible, personal wealth illudes our sight.  But all of us have a personal wealth that remains largely untapped.  This is not a motivational talk.  It is science of the first order.  Once you identify your unique assets and figure out how you can apply them in your business, job, or profession, you can derive an enormous material value from them.  

 Jay Abraham, a highly successful management consultant has helped over ten thousand individuals to achieve financial success.  All he does is to help people discover what they have.    Nightingale-Conant company, a pioneer in self-development tapes, pointed out to him that he has discovered the principle of secret wealth.  The principle is simply this, "your personal assets are your secret wealth."   Begin having greater returns on your personal wealth.  Create a "Personal Assets List."  Personal Assets List may be divided into three categories:  Skills, Knowledge and Relationships.   

  Take one whole week to work on a most complete and exhaustive Personal Assets List . Don't rush through the process thinking, "I know what I have."  Write everything on paper. Don't just review the list in your mind.  Take at least 5 or 6 blank pages for each list, namely, the Personal Skills List, the Specialized Knowledge List, and the Personal Relationship List.  Keep these papers on hand.  Whenever you think of something new, mark it in the appropriate list. 

 Be very specific in naming and describing each item on a list.  You'll find you have more than what you thought you had and then you'll find some more.  Be ready to work several hours a day for every day of the week.  Keep refining and revising each list.  Do not omit any items thinking they are unimportant or irrelevant for professional or business purposes.  Decide later what you can use to your advantage.  Finally, ask others what they think you are good at.  Here are a few examples of each list.

 In the Personal Skills List, include everything that you do well, for example, "talking to strangers and putting them at ease skill," "breaking the ice in a meeting skill," "cracking everybody up including the tight-lipped boss skill," "coaching dumbest people skill," "selling Hudson Bridge to Missourians skill," communication skill, general writing skill, business correspondence skill, negotiation skill, people skill, computer skill, persuasion skill, etc.  Do not undermine any skill as each one has the potential for giving you an edge over the others.  

 In the Specialized Knowledge List, include everything you know, even if, on the surface, it appears unrelated.  For example, the value of a specialized knowledge of fish, ant, and Himalayas to a restaurant business.  Such topics  may make "small talk" engaging with customers of unusual interests.  Knowledge of machines, aircrafts, cars, geography, science, sports, academic subjects, fiction, arts, authors, farming, horses, and myriad other subjects may help you to stand out in your work. 

 In the relationship list, include everyone you have known both past and present.  Our greatest power is people.  F.O. B. (Friends of Bill) was a rolodex of ten thousand people Clinton had known, including friends, school mates, colleagues, relatives, club members, etc.  Harvey Mckay considers his rolodex as the most important tool of his business success.  So, list everyone who has contributed to who you are today.  Include your school/college mates, fellow-workers,  friends, relatives, members of your church, club, etc.   
 After completing your Personal Assets List, analyze how you may use your unique set of skills, knowledge, and contacts that will set your work/business apart from everyone else's. 

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Copyright 1996, Mind Publications 



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