Article By: Jim Porter – March 10, 2023
Wikipedia gave me this definition below and the origin dates to a Greek poet back around 700 BC.
No pain, no gain (or “No gain without pain”) is a proverb, used since the 1980s as an exercise motto that promises greater value rewards for the price of hard and even painful work. Under this conception, competitive professionals, such as athletes and artists, are required to endure pain (physical suffering) and stress (mental/emotional suffering) to achieve professional excellence.
I played competitive sports when I was a kid and still compete in golf tournaments today. I have been lucky to have many great coaches in my life. I played basketball and golf at Sacred Heart High School in San Francisco and for a couple of years and had retired Green Bay Packers coach Mike Holmgren as our golf coach. As an adult, I coached kids’ basketball for 15 years and tried to pass on what I learned from my athletic mentors as well as what I have learned from my business coaches over the years.
The one thing great coaches have in common is they all believe in the idea that practice makes perfect and there is no free lunch. Coach Holmgren was a terrible golfer and only coached alongside our head football coach Steve Ellison so they could play free golf with our team at the greatest courses in Northern California.
Holmgren never taught us anything about how to swing a golf club and as a matter of fact, our team rarely won matches because we were all middle-class city boys playing against teams made up of wealthier country club kids who had been professionally trained and golfing since they were in diapers. What we did learn from Holmgren was success requires consistent hard work and time. Holmgren played quarterback at Lincoln High in San Francisco and at USC for college. He coached football from 1971 to 2008, including a stint as offensive coordinator for his hometown Niners and then won a Super Bowl as head coach of the Packers in 1996. Holmgren was head coach for 296 NFL games, which if we count overtime was approximately 320 hours of official NFL game time. He spent 75,000 hours studying, training and practicing for these 320 hours and much of this painful practice was in 100-degree heat and below freezing temperatures.
Successful Realtors and loan officers do the things the average competitors don’t do because of the pain. The fun part of doing mortgage loans and selling real estate is the unbelievably rewarding feeling we get when a happy homebuyer is handed the keys to the house. Helping and coaching people to win the American Dream game is cool. The painful part of the job is the thousands of hours required in training, making sales calls, the stress of dealing with a person’s largest asset, the rejection and disappointments, the ups and downs in the market, and all the required paperwork and government compliance required to hand over the keys.
Successful homeowners in their 50s and older are people who paid the price and persevered over 30 to 50 years to achieve their success.
Very few people inherit large amounts of money. Most of our greatest local success stories are folks who worked hard for 30 to even 50 years practicing and training to become financially free as a senior. Police and firefighters must attend school and graduate from academies to get a job. Nurses must spend thousands of painful hours studying to become an RN. Refinery operators must be trained and often work as grunt laborers for years prior to making enough money to support a family.
There is just no free lunch. Go to school, get a good career, work hard and get promoted, invest in income producing assets, maximize a 401(k) or IRA, buy a house as soon as possible, maintain a 700 FICO score, pay your taxes, avoid substance abuse and gambling, study success and pursue coaching from great financial coaches, and after 30 to 40 years of pain and hard work, you have a great chance of retiring with financial freedom and personal victory.
Jim Porter, NMLS No. 276412, is the branch manager of Solano Mortgage, NMLS No. 1515497, a division of American Pacific Mortgage Corporation, NMLS No. 1850, licensed in California by the Department of Financial Protection and Innovation under the CRMLA / Equal Housing Opportunity. Jim can be reached at 707-449-4777.
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