Ep. #40: Living Your Dream Part IV: Massive Ownership

Massive Ownership is a powerful tool in your wealth-building toolbox. It’s where you accept 100% responsibility for everything in your life—all of your thoughts, feelings, actions, and results. Why would you want to do this? Because it feels so much better than feeling like a victim, and it puts you in the driver’s seat of your own life. Listen to this episode to find out more.


Welcome to Rich & Thin™ Radio, the only podcast that helps you get more bank with less bulk. Today’s episode is the fourth in our series on living your dream in 2019. I’m Kelly Hollingsworth, and I’m very happy you’re here. In last week’s episode, we talked about the accountability myth, which is basically the largely unhelpful idea that if you want to make something happen, you must tell others so you can get some third-party accountability, and we discussed reasons that strategy often backfires. Third-party accountability is also antithetical to wealth, because whenever you’re doing things because other people expect you to do those things, you’re never really wealthy, because you’re never really free. Wealth = freedom. So what we started last week was debunking the idea that other people can be held responsible for your dream. Of course they can’t. They have no control over you, and they’re worried about their own dreams.

This week we’re going to take this idea of personal responsibility even further, and discuss a concept that I call “massive ownership.” I did a google search this morning on this phrase “massive ownership” and I don’t think anyone else is using it, and I’m not sure why because it’s a very powerful concept in wealth-building, perhaps it’s the most powerful concept in wealth-building that there is. Everyone talks about massive action, which is the idea that you keep taking action until you get the result you want, but in my mind, that’s not where you focus should be, at least not initially and maybe not ever, and today I’m going to discuss why. First, I’ll define what massive ownership is, and then, why people resist it, and how, once they embrace it, they realize how powerful it is and then they can’t get enough.

What is Massive Ownership?

To understand massive ownership, first let’s talk about ownership generally. To own something means that it’s yours free from any encumbrances or limitations.

When we think about ownership, most people think about ownership of capital assets. If you own a business, a rental house, a portfolio of stocks, a goose that lays golden eggs, then you have what I call a money tree. You plant some money into the ground, and just as a potato that you stick in the dirt grows more potatoes, money, properly planted, grows a tree that generates more money for you.

Ownership of money-producing assets is where most of us start and stop thinking about ownership in the context of wealth-building, but it’s truly only the beginning. Ownership of everything is where real wealth comes from, because what happens when you own something? When you own something, you control it. You’re no longer at the effect of things. You are in the driver’s seat. If you take ownership of everything, then you are in control of everything, and once you see this, you become an unstoppable wealth-generating machine.

So what can you control? What are all the things you can own in stocking your wealth-building toolbox?

The first thing you can own are your thoughts. You can decide what to think about any single thing that happens in your life. Why do you want to do this? Because this is where it all starts, of course.

For example, I once coached a woman who was struggling to earn money, because everything that happened she saw as a limitation. She used the hurricane that devastated coastal Texas as an example. She said basically, all of those poor people–their lives are ruined now. They’ll never get over this. They are financially devastated forever.

And I said, “Is there any other way to think about this?” And she insisted, “No, absolutely not.” But the truth is that some people will be in a circumstance like that, and think, this is an opportunity. So many people will need help. What a great time to start a business that provides it.

Every circumstance is neutral, and every thought is optional. So owning your thoughts, recognizing that every thought is a choice is a big important tool to put in your wealth-building toolbox.

Another thing you can own is your emotions. You can take ultimate responsibility for everything you feel, because none of it comes from what’s happening around you. It all comes from your thoughts, and you decide what those are.

You can also take ultimate responsibility for your actions. You can own every action that you take. We can talk all day long about Facebook and Netflix and our cell phones and how addictive they are, we can talk about sugar or chardonnay or any other substance we’re over-ingesting that isn’t serving us, and we can talk about how banks are handing out consumer debt like canapes at a cocktail party, but ultimately, we have ultimate volition. We are the ones who plunk ourselves down in front of the TV, the computer, we drink the wine and eat the cake, and we plunk down the plastic.

Another thing we can do is take ultimate responsibility for your current circumstances. Look around you right now. Every circumstance you are living in right now is the result of a thought, feeling, and action combination. The house or apartment you’re living in. Your current income. The amount of money in your bank account. The amount of debt you’re carrying. The amount of extra weight on your body. How much of it are you blaming on other people? How much of it are you owning as a result of your own thoughts, feelings, and actions?

Massive ownership is where you step out of blame and victimhood and you take responsibility for all of it, free from any encumbrances or limitations. When you’re in massive ownership, no one else is even the teensiest bit responsible for what you’re thinking, feeling, the actions that you take, and what you have or don’t have in your life.

Why people resist massive ownership

Once you understand massive ownership, it’s easy to see why most people resist it.

When you take responsibility for everything in your life, there’s no one to blame. It’s not your childhood, it’s not your parents, it’s not their divorce or their drug abuse or their alcoholism or what they did or didn’t teach you about money or nutrition or education or debt or anything else. It’s not your friends and what they want or don’t want or what they support or what they laugh about and don’t understand at all. It’s not where you were born or your gender or your age or your IQ or anything else. When you truly own that everything you think, feel, and do, and have in your life—when you own that all of that is 100% of your own making, it’s all on you, then what happens?

You can’t be a victim anymore. Never again can you blame other people or circumstances or fate or the universe for the adverse results and consequences in your life.

Most people don’t take massive ownership. Why not? It’s tempting to say that they don’t do it because they’d rather stay in victim status. They’d rather blame others for what’s happening.

Few people will blame you if you take this approach, but I don’t think this is actually why we live in victimhood. I think we live there because we don’t know how to get out of it, and we need to learn, because it’s a horrible place to live.

Blaming Others Leads to a Broke and Bulky Life

Let’s look at a couple of examples, one with debt and one with excess physical weight, to see why.

The first example, feeling victimhood around debt, is pretty common. I’ve coached many people who are legally responsible for debt that they blame on someone. After a divorce, for example, a judge declares one spouse responsible to pay off the debt incurred during a marriage, while the other spouse walks away, with no legal obligation to pay any of it.

The spouse who gets the debt has a choice—do they want to feel like a victim about this, or do they want to own the debt?

Those who feel like victims about the debt, who don’t want to take responsibility, tend to have a very hard time. They think, this debt isn’t my fault. I didn’t want to buy that boat. I didn’t want to remodel the house. I didn’t want those cars. I’m not the one who wanted any of this, but now I have to pay for it all.

What do they feel, when they think these thoughts? Two things. They feel helpless, and they feel rage.

What are the actions people take from a state of enraged helplessness? They create more of the same. They overspend. They create even more debt. They spin at work. They lose their jobs. Their businesses suffer. We create what we think, and if what you’re thinking is that you’re a victim of debt, you will feel the emotions of rage and helplessness or similar unproductive emotion that drive the actions of overspending and underearning and keeping you stuck right where you are—in debt that you feel powerless to pay off. This is so predictable you can set your watch by it. If you think you’re a victim of debt, you will continue that cycle and remain living under the weight of debt.

The same thing happens with physical weight. So many people attribute the extra pounds they carry to other people or an outside circumstance. The reason I overeat, the reason I carry this is excess weight, is my kids who are always acting up and causing trouble. It’s my job and the ridiculous demands and the stress and the deadlines. It’s the long hours in my business. It’s my spouse who doesn’t pay enough attention to me. It’s my parents who taught me to overeat. It’s my genes. I just love this fattening food. In other words, I was born this way. This can’t possibly be my fault.

I coached one woman who blamed her weight on her father, who sent her to a fat farm as a teenager. She thought that her metabolism was permanently screwed up from this event, and that’s why she viewed him as responsible. What did she feel? Enraged helplessness. And from that place, what did she do? She overate.

We create what we think, and if what you’re thinking is that you’re a victim of a fat farm that carved into stone a destiny of being overweight for the rest of your life, you will feel the emotions of rage and helplessness that drive the action of overeating, and you’ll remain stuck right where you are. Carrying extra weight that you feel powerless to lose. As with debt, this, too, is so predictable you can set your watch by it.

Victim status never, ever, ever gets you what you want

Are you noticing a recurring theme here? Victim status never gets you what you want. Never ever ever ever ever. Why not? Because when you’re a victim, by definition someone else is in control. When someone else is in control, what you want gets thrown under the bus. You don’t get what you want until you assume control, and to assume control, you have to take ownership of what’s going on. This is taking the steering wheel of your own life.

And you can’t do this if you’re confused. If you’re thinking, all of this debt, or all of this weight, just fell out of the sky and landed on me, then you’ll be hesitant. The world will seem scary, because you’re a powerless person in the world, and bad things happen to you.

To take ownership of something, you must take the opposite view. I chose this debt. I chose this weight. I made a decision to have this, and from that decision, I created it. Why must you do this? Why must you take ownership in this fashion? Because this is the only way to step into your power. To make the world seem not scary, but very predictable. The results in our lives are a series of thoughts, we make decisions, that lead to feelings that lead to actions which very predictably create the results you’re currently living with.

Now this is where people ask me, what are you talking about? I didn’t assign this debt to me. The judge did. I didn’t send myself to the fat farm. My father did.

To get into massive ownership, we have find the actual seed of the debt. The actual seed of the weight. I promise that it starts with you.

Every single time I coach someone who’s feeling victimized by debt they were assigned after a divorce, there is a seed. It’s in the thought, “Oh well, my spouse really wants this thing that we are borrowing money to buy, so it’s fine. I’ll just go along.”

This is a thought that creates debt, my friends. Another one is, “Oh well, I don’t really know what’s going on with the money. It seems like we’re living pretty high on the hog, but my spouse is telling me it’s all fine, so I’ll just go along with what is to any seeing person who hasn’t adopted willful blindness obviously too good to be true.”

Think these thoughts, and what happens? You experience the emotion of irresponsibility. When you’re feeling irresponsible, nothing is on you, and from this emotional place you take the action of acquiescence. Acquiescence doesn’t look like much. It can be as subtle as a shrug, and maybe it’s imperceptible to anyone else, but make no mistake, it is an action, and when you take it, you create the debt. You create it as predictably as if you are the spouse who’s speeding off to the bank because you’re the spouse who’s so gung-ho to borrow the money.

The same thing happens with weight. You can blame your father for a diet you went on at age sixteen, but what happened then isn’t what’s causing you to overeat today. Rage and powerlessness you feel in this moment, that causes you to overeat, isn’t created by something that happened decades ago. Something you thought decades ago can’t create a feeling today. Thinking a thought today is what creates the feeling today, and if you stop thinking the thought that creates helplessness and powerlessness, that creates these emotions in you, then what happens? You feel differently, and when you feel different, you do different. My client who blamed her weight on a summer at a fat farm when she was a teenager took responsibility for her own feelings. She shifted her thought from, this is all his fault to maybe I’m normal and I can achieve a normal weight, and she stopped feeling enraged helplessness and she began feeling curious. And from a place of curiosity, she took completely different actions with food that had her buying jeans outside of the plus-sized department, for the first time in her life.

The same thing happens with debt. When you stop blaming, when you take responsibility for the debt in every sense of the word, not just legal, an inner shift occurs. You own it. And from a place of ownership, you take the actions to clear it. Who would clear a debt they don’t own? No one. That would be crazy. It’s not until you own the debt that your brain will let you even begin thinking about how to clean it up.

Massive Ownership Leads to Wealth

This is why massive ownership matters. If you’re trapped under physical pounds or debt or any other kind of circumstance, owning it as 100% something you created is when you step into your power. You’re no longer a victim of it. It didn’t just fall out of the sky and land on your head. If it’s happening in your life, it’s because you created it with your thoughts.

Why does this feel so much better than victimhood? Because once you see that your thoughts created all of your current results, you really get on board with the notion that you can change your life by changing your thoughts. This is massive ownership.

It’s where you get out of the passenger seat, where you stop blaming others, and you take control of your future and you create everything you want for yourself. You can’t claim your future if you don’t own your current results, so start looking around and looking for the thoughts that got you here. By changing those, you can get anywhere. And that’s what I want for all of us in 2019. So thanks for joining me today, and I look forward to next week when we have the fifth installment of living your dream in 2019.

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