Colin Powell said, “A dream doesn’t become reality through magic; It takes sweat, determination and hard work.” For the most part, this is true. There are plenty of inspiring stories of individuals who have gone from rags to riches and overcome extraordinary obstacles. However, there are other factors that have to be fulfilled in order for those dreams to be realized. In fact, opportunity and privilege are largely a result of the following conditions and our abilities to overcome it.
Monetary IssuesThe biggest obstacle to our goal? Money. Without money there is only so far you can go. If it is a higher education opportunity then there is the prospect of a scholarship of a quick finance loan. If it is moving to a better location, then again, you need to think of a mortgage of some sort. In an economy dependent on cash flow, we have to be able to show equity in some form in order to be able to gain access to certain situations or positions in life. Think about all the trappings of status: a car, the perfect house, the clothes, the right schools… all of these take a lot of money.
Situation in LifeBeing in the right position can also help a lot. The way privilege and position works is that, think of getting car loans online; today, you can apply and as long as your credit report is solid and you have enough of an income to pay the instalment, the institutions will give it to you. However, in traditional banks even today, you cannot hope to even get an interview with the manager unless you are connected in some way or have an ‘in.’ You will be relegated to junior staffers who cannot authorize large pay-outs. To get around this ‘gentleman’s club’ mentality, cultivate as many connections as you can and/or go to alternative sources where your position in life is only measured by what you achieve.
Wrong TimingThere is no such thing as coincidence in life; the connections are there even if we can’t see them. You have to be at the right place at the right time for things to happen. You can also do this deliberately by making careful decisions after weighing all the options. For instance, you really want to invest in a home for you and the family, and your income is such that the banks will happily give you a mortgage. If, however, there is no prospect of a promotion or pay raise in the future, you will be spending a majority of your cheque paying off a mortgage and being in debt during the years that you can really enjoy life. So making a decision to postpone investing in something that concrete can save you a lot of money later.