It’s a quote my first Lieutenant told me once. At the time I didn’t pay much attention to what he was saying, but eventually it always stuck in my mind.
What he tried to say was that it doesn’t matter how you really are, if people have another perception of you. Their perception becomes a reality. It’s not important if you are a hard worker or not, as long as people believe you’re a hard worker. Of course you do give some hints in your behaviour to allow other people to perceive you.
However, perception is often not fail-proof. I like this point. Even my friends don’t have the same perception of me. Most of them know I’m active on the stock market, but their perception of my life style can be completely different. To some I’m frugal, to others I’m more of a big spender. I like these different perceptions.
Truth is, both perceptions are right. The perception they create is mostly based on my reaction to their behaviour. Their behaviour is a trigger in the way I will let them perceive me. When I go out with friends at home, I don’t mind giving a round or paying for a hamburger. It feels good. These friends are still studying and don’t have an income, but more important, they return the favor as well. This ‘returning the favor’ thing is of major importance to me, as it is not a one-way street. It’s not really about the money, but about the gesture. So at the end of the night, if I paid a couple of euro’s more, that’s fine by me. I won’t reach out for a calculator to ask for a refund.
At the other hand, when I do go out with my employed friends, things change. I realized that when people start to earn money, they become more greedy. They want more. This ‘returning the favor’ gesture starts disappearing, however they are fully capable of doing it. I’m no saint either, but I will adapt to the situation and then decide to pay separately. It’s a bit sad and unpractical in my opinion, as the difference might be a matter of just a couple of cents.
Theoretically I could pay cash for this badass Maserati Ghibli and shiny golden Rolex Daytona and still have €50k in the bank.
Add a suit to this combo and I’d sure as hell look like a rich, succesful guy. Yes, look like it. I rather am in the situation I am in today because switching my precious assets for liabilities doesn’t make much sense. In fact, I don’t have the need to look rich now. Attracting people for the wrong reasons and always worrying about the appearance, no thank you.
Last week I’ve been watching golddiggers being caught on video on YouTube. It was really funny but sad to see how girls first say ‘no’ to a guy but then suddenly change their mind when he pulls up in a Lambo.
Do you have a different behaviour towards different friends? Would you make a personal choice solely based on money?