This piece was inspired by new friends who shall remain nameless because I didn’t ask them for permission to publish their names. . From the minute we met, they quickly extracted a lot of personal information out of me that had remained private for the last 30+ years. I’m from the generation that viewed the display of excessive wealth as vulgar, foolish, even predatory.

Also, the specific path that led me to where I am today is unique to me, so the idea of teaching someone to walk in my shoes is equally foolish and unattainable. However, what my conversations with them made me realize is that, as I encountered different opportunities in life, there are certain first-order principles that are needed to make the right decisions at the right time.

In order to have the right frame of mind to see and exploit those economic opportunities that come in one’s way, there are certain ways you shouldn’t think. This is the first in a series of articles (10 of them, actually) on how the wrong mindset can eliminate any possibility of ever achieving economic freedom.

10 things Haitians do and think that keeps them poor

  • They don’t know the difference between wealth and money.
  • Keeping up with the Jean-Pierres: playing wealth-status games instead of wealth-creation ones.
  • Viewing time as a solid. Making a salary is a perfect example of someone who views time as a solid, not as a liquid they can bend and reshape; working a 9-5 job for 40+ years and hoping you’ll save piti piti.
  • Saving money in non-interest bearing vehicles, like “Sol” or “men”, just so you can buy interest-bearing ego-driven purchases, like a fancy car or home you can’t afford.
  • Not learning how to say no to friends and fam.
  • You pontificate about every freaking thing and yet have never really cracked a few books. You don’t think reading books is important because you falsely believe your personal experience is enough. It’s not.
  • Excluding those who truly can’t help themselves, you send money back home without any pre-conditions attached.
  • You follow the stupidity of the crowd. For example, do you have the word crypto in your social media bio? I rest my case.
  • You listen to charlatans on social media talking about “Multiple streams of income.”
  • You eat the crumbs and call it the cake. Unless you have insider info, if you’ve heard about an incredible-get-rich-overnight investment opportunity, it means it’s already too late. It means the barrier of entry is low enough now for you to fight for the crumbs; meanwhile, people like me, who got there first, made our bags and left the rest of you to fight over the crumbs.

In my next 10 articles, I will tackle each of the 10 items above. Stay tuned! Kenbe la!