The RFR Principle

 
The RFR Principle says that three elements are necessary for success and they are, in this order, Risk, Failure, and Reward. The RFR Process is the continual movement of these three elements.

RFRTo quote Yoda “Do or do not. There is no try.” Doing however takes risk. Staying in bed never making an effort has no risk but also no reward. Starting a business, applying for a new job, asking someone out, all involve risk. Some risks have a high price tag and it’s those that some avoid, others rush into, and still others plan and approach sensibly.

Failure is a an option, it’s also unavoidable. Failure is not the opposite of success in spite of everything you’ve probably been told. Failure is merely a setback. You’ve taken the risk, asked the love of your life out on a date and when you try to pay your credit card is denied. You think it’s over, that she’ll never go out with you again – it feels devastating in the moment but it’s unlikely to be your last date.

Finally the last part of the RFR Principle is reward but rewards are not permanent. If you’ve taken the risk, had setbacks, failures that you thought would end it all, and still came through, then you’ve reaped the reward but it won’t last unless the process is repeated. Too many people look at the success of a reward as an end, a goal to be achieved, but it’s really just a rest stop on the hike of life.

All three elements of success revolve around each other. If one stops the whole process breaks down. Keeping those elements in motion is the willingness to ask What Next, the ambition to overcome complacency, the strength to face obstacles head on.


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Too Honest to Succeed

 
PullingHairLabel this a rant. It’s one of many examples of people being clueless, overconfident, and criminal but landing on their feet and doing better than all of us who are honest, smart, and careful.

Today I’m adding Fabrice Tourre, also known as The Fabulous Fab, to my list of people who succeed in spite of being wrong or outright criminals in Tourre’s case. Mr. Fab was convicted of six counts of securites fraud in his role in the subprime mortgage mess that caused so much damage to the economy. Since this was a civil case brought by the SEC there will be no prison time but Tourre faces a fine of one million dollars and a lifetime ban from the securities industry.

So why is The Fabulous Fab on my list? Because the University of Chicago rewarded this guy with a job as an economics professor. His first class should be “how to defraud investors and land on your feet.”

What is wrong with us? Why do we keep rewarding people who aren’t worthy? The list I’ve compiled is pathetic: a financial advisor who lost his home but got a book deal anyway, a New York Times financial reporter also lost his house due to bad decisions and also got a book deal, a financial expert who called for major defaults in municipal bonds and couldn’t have been more wrong gets a book deal and starts a hedge fund. The list goes on but the honest, smart, financially successful among us continue to write blogs, self publish books, and otherwise struggle in obscurity because…because why?

Seriously why? Please add your comments below with your opinion of why it seems only screw-ups do well.


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