Last week I spent 3 days in a room with the Mastermind that I am a part of.  On the very first day, as we were all arriving, when we were excited and nervous and eager to learn, we were handed an envelope with pretend cash in it and told nothing else.

Instead of starting the seminar when we were all seated, we were told that there was to be an auction, and we could only spend the “money” we had in the envelopes we were given.

The auction was for a whole bunch of random items, and no other info was given before we had to decide if we wanted to bid on the candle, the saucepan, the “mystery item”…

It turned out the game was in two parts, and next we were randomly split up into groups, and told that our plane had crashed and we were the only survivors. Some of us had our auction items, some of us only had the cash we hadn’t spent. As there was room for only 3 on the “island”, in our group we had to decide who would live, and who would die.

There were a heap of lessons in that game, and I won’t ruin it for those who will have the chance to experience this in the future.

The big lesson I got from this game, wasn’t actually from playing the game or in the debrief. It came to me last night, over a few glasses of champagne, as we were all winding down.

No matter what you sell in your business- service, a product, education- you will always, always come up against “I just don’t have that money right now”.

In this digital age, we actually rarely get to physically hold money. Think about it- out of everything that you spent last week on bills, invoices, wages, taxes, food shopping even, how much of that money did you actually hold as cash in your hand?

Money is not a physical thing. (Even when it IS a physical thing, that piece of paper is just a representation of its value)

Money is an energy.

Stay with me! Money is like breathing, right? You breathe in, the money comes in. You breathe out, you pay some bills. The money is always there, if you know where to find it. You need to respect it, nurture it.

What can happen when people start out in business, they get some money coming in and that’s great. Because it’s new, and they’re still finding their way, they’re not 100% sure that more will come, so they hang onto it desperately. They hoard it. They let opportunities go by because they are scared that if they invested that money, it won’t come back.

Then, when they work out the money keeps coming, they go the other extreme. They spend recklessly, they get careless, they treat the money with little respect. Often, this gets them into deep trouble, until they can realize this and work out a balance between the two.

Money is an energy. You know the saying “you need to spend money to make money”? It’s absolutely true. Money goes out, money comes in. It flows, almost like the waves at the beach.

Get this straight though- I am in no way suggesting you hock everything, go into massive debt and hope that it will all flow back. Your decisions need to be considered, need to be well informed. You need a plan. You need an idea of what you want to get back for your investment.

Your return on investment for no advertising will always be nothing.

Your return on investment for buying no stock to sell, will always be nothing.

Your return on investment on no education will always be ignorance.

The people in the group playing the game that had a thing- a candle, a pot, a packet of tim-tams- they had something tangible that they could use as they argued for their survival.

The people with the cash in their envelopes still, just had bits of useless paper that meant nothing to their survival on a desert island in the middle of the ocean.


Money is an energy. Don’t hoard it, don’t trap it. Let it flow. Let it help you grow.

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Written by Anita Marchesani
I've come to small business the long way round- but enjoyed and learned from every single step. I learned about the power of Media during a BA and while working in Film&TV. I learned about the hard graft while groom for an international eventer in the UK. I learned organisation and staff management from running hundreds of weddings both here and in the UK. I learned from the mistakes of my first business that failed, to create an e-commerce success story, and now I'm here to help you have even greater success in your business. Oh, and I dance to really loud music like a crazy bastard.