Chellie Campbell loves money. She is a money magnet who knows how to attract money, earn money, invest money, and make her money work for her. She writes books about wealth building and developed a class on "Financial Stress Reduction" which she taught for many years. But she had to learn some lessons herself before she was ready to teach others about getting what they want out of life. I interviewed Chellie recently and she told me a great story about one of those important life lessons.
"Years ago, I enrolled in Roger Lane's 'The Finance Course,'" Chellie said. "As part of the pre-work for the seminar, I had to fill out a form listing the things I wanted. Then Roger called to find out what I had put on my list. I told him one of the things I wanted was a brand new Mercedes Benz. He said, 'Great! What model?' I said, 'I don't know.' Then he asked, 'What color?' I said, 'I don't know.' 'How much does it cost?' 'I don't know.' At this point Roger got upset with me.
'Well, you'd better find out exactly what you want because that's what we're going to do in the class -- get you the things you want. You can't get anything if you don't know what it is.'
"What did you do when he said that?" I asked.
"Well, it was interesting," Chellie replied. "At this point in my life, my business was going very well and I was making good money. But I still didn't think I could afford a Mercedes. I somehow thought that those cars were driven by rich people and movie stars. I wasn't rich and I wasn't a movie star, so I 'just knew' that I couldn't afford the kind of car I really wanted. I was figuring I'd have to settle for a medium-priced car.
"But as luck would have it, a couple days after that conversation with Roger, I went to a networking group and met a woman who worked at a Mercedes dealership. She told the group that she was currently offering special savings on car leases. I made an appointment to see her the next day.
"When I went to the dealership, the first car I saw was a gorgeous metallic teal green Mercedes sedan with gold pin-striping. It was sitting there in the middle of the showroom floor, sparkling in the sunlight. I was in love.
"Barbara, the woman from my networking group, crossed the showroom to meet me. I turned to her and said, 'I want this one.' She replied, 'You can have that one.' 'Yeah, right,' I responded, disbelieving. 'Show me the money.'
"We walked over to her desk and sat down to put a pencil to the numbers. She gave me a great deal and it wasn't anywhere near as expensive as I had thought it would be. In fact, the monthly payment was just $32 more than the medium-priced car I had planned to buy."
"What a happy surprise that was!" I said.
"You can say that again," Chellie responded. "It made me think about how many times I've stopped myself from having things I wanted merely because of mistaken beliefs.
"Goal getting is knowing what you want, investigating what it will take to have it, and then taking the action steps to have it. What often happens is that you get it a lot sooner than you expect."
"That's so true, Chellie," I nodded. "Your Mercedes is a great example of that."
"Yes," she agreed. "I bought the car that day and drove it home. The next weekend I drove it to Roger Lane's workshop. I told him I knew what color of car I wanted and he said, 'Good! What color?' I smiled and said, 'Green. Want to see it?' And I took him to the parking lot and showed him."
"That's perfect," I laughed. "You're such a good student, you got the lesson before the class even started!
"Thanks," Chellie chuckled.
"Based on your experience, what advice do you have for others?" I asked.
"Get clear about what you want," Chellie answered. "Be specific. If you want to make a change in your life, you have to have a clear picture before you can go for it.
"Second, get rid of any preconceived ideas or assumptions. Don't rule things out as 'impossible' before you even check it out. Don't reject your desires without investigating what might be do-able.
"And finally, start the change process. Do some research; do your homework. Explore options and possibilities. Talk to other people and see what you can learn from them. Get the ball rolling. Stir something up. Do something different. Take the initiative. Positive change starts with the first step."