When you hear self-reliance, what do you hear? To some people that means that they go their own way and they don’t have to depend on anybody else. Ok, that can be sort of true, but not entirely. Even a man who goes his own way has to rely on others from time to time.
To be self-reliant means quite a bit. To me to be self-reliant means to be free. The Idea of freedom and all the wins and losses that are associated with those choices I make. There are a few things that are needed for a man to be free. There are ways of thinking steps needed to be completed before you can call yourself reliant. There are several steps you need to be fully reliant on yourself. Those steps have nothing to do with turning your back on the world. If you are truly self-reliant and personally free, then you don’t want to turn your back on the world because you know the world is needing you.
A freeman is a man who can lead. That man who isn’t bound by any substance or self-imposed limitations is free. So what does a man need to be self-reliant? What is needed for you to be free?
The Freedom of Your Thoughts
How many times have you sat and paid attention to your thoughts? Have you ever asked yourself what is a thought? Why are thoughts important for a man to be free? Because if a man is strictly reacting to his environment he will never be able to control it. He has to be able to control his emotions and approach his world in a thinking state. He wants to be able to respond to what is going on around him but he isn’t able to if he is reacting to his emotional chaos.
There is a reason the stoic sought to domesticate their emotions. Yes, emotions are important, but they don’t have any place when there is a perceived emergency. So see to slow down your emotional reactions. Stop and think before reacting instead respond to the situation. Remember if you are being treated it is better to respond to drug treatment than to react to drug treatment.
A Free Man Needs to Depend on Himself.
If a man is always seeking approval from others he is essentially making himself a slave to the approval of others. If you can look past what others say about you and keep your eye on your goal. You are going to go far.
Yes, it is important to have the approval of your wife. But her approval shouldn’t dictate whether you follow your dream or not. You have to remember that that vision in your head is your vision, not your wives. So, though she says she supports your vision. That doesn’t mean that she understands the path you are on. Many times you have to show her the result before she gets it.
Therefore if you are truly committed to completing your goal and achieving your dream you will have at times to lead your family through what they don’t fully understand. To do that you will have to depend on your vision and yourself to get you through the tight parts.
Free from addictions
Interestingly, the word addiction came from the slave trade. An addict was the word for a person who becomes a slave through a court ruling. Nowadays the true slave of society is those who are slaves to their most cruel master. A master that doesn’t care for them at all. The slave wants to not have to feel a bad emotion. Yet they suffer even greater when they come down. So the drug of the addicts choosing only tricks them into feeling even worse than if they allowed themselves to feel the emotion they are trying to buffer against.
The addict is almost as bad as a people pleaser because they are also inherent liars. They may mean well yet because of their master they are not able to make the commitments they thought they could make. Addicts often will destroy all that is around them even when they believe they are in control.
Since an Addict is not willing to exercise his free will completely this holds him in the bonds of his addiction which doesn’t make him free. So to become free you have to make the physical and mental resolve that you are getting yourself clean and not ever going to touch that drug anymore.
Now, this last part is what holds many men back. Do you have financial freedom? Most people in 2020 realized they don’t have what is needed to survive off of their savings for 3 weeks let alone for 3 months. If you truly want to be free you have to build your wealth.
Now, many people will shy away from this fact. They claim they don’t want to get rich because wealth changes you. No wealth doesn’t change you, it does accentuate your personality. So if you are a dick while poor you will be an even bigger dick when you have money. If you are kind you will continue to be kind when you have money.
Yet you have seen people who have come into money who are nice yet they turn into huge jerks. There are reasons for this too. Many still have a scarcity mindset and they are sabotaging themselves. Yet if they were true to themselves they would stay kind, and hold the proper barriers so that they are good stewards of their money. If you give away all your money you don’t have any way to be financially independent.
SO you have to build wealth to be free. You have to have wealth so that you aren’t beholden to a paycheck if your boss tells you to do something that goes against your core values. You will become a slave to that paycheck unless you take the steps needed to become financially independent.
The biggest one is you have to save some money. How much? Dave Ramsey says 3-6 months’ worth of expenses, but I would work to have 6-12 months of expenses. You need to have a good bit of savings so that if a disaster occurs you can float for a bit, or if your boss tells you to do something you see as ethically wrong you can leave and not sweat it.
Being financially free also means getting rid of debt. Seeing your credit score as a symbol of how much you like debt so you work to get that puppy to zero. But what if I want a house? There is a thing that is tough to find but still around you can find people who will do manual underwriting. Then there are local banks that will be more likely to do business with you if they see your account is pretty big.
Yet the owner of a slave to the lender. So with every credit card you have, you are applying a limit to your freedom. So if you have debt. Get it paid off. Clean your financial house and get rid of the debt. The sooner you do the more money you can apply to your savings and allow it to grow.
Though these are a complete list of what it takes to be free they are a good indicator. Look at yourself and see where you can work to remove a bond that is holding you back. The more you work at it the freer you become.