Michael and I met at the 10 X sales execution workshop in Miami a few weeks ago at Grant Cardone’s office. He’s genuinely a good and real expert on finances.
Michael enjoys knocking down the walls of financial challenges and helping people understand what it means to step into entrepreneurship and business owners in life. Michael shares his financial wisdom with us; you’ll love what he has to say, so read on!
Meet Michael Anthony
Growing up in Indianapolis, Michael’s mother was a drug addict and alcoholic. “She actually cut off my right index finger when I was only four years old. So that kind of gives you a baseline.”
His birth father was spending the majority of his childhood homeless or impoverished. His family was impoverished, and by the time he was 13, Michael was getting high and drunk. Finally, at 15, he was expelled from school.
“I was running with drugs and selling guns.” The solution to poverty was money. “This is what happens when you grow up in an environment that is not conducive to livelihood.” By his late teens, he wanted to figure out a way to make money legally, as many of his best friends had been murdered. “I just knew like if I kept down this path, it was not going to end well. So I said, by the time I’m 21, I want to make a hundred thousand dollars a year – legally.”
He landed a job with a Fortune 10 company with no high school education. They handed him his high school diploma. His first paycheck was for $10,000. Fast forward several years, he’s built his second legal business. Several years later, he found himself at 350 pounds and smoking two packs of cigarettes a day and drinking. “I put a gun in my mouth because I didn’t understand the impact of the abuse that I went through.”
Even though there’s been so much chaos in his life, he’s also experienced good things, which leads to his why. “What I do now is about impacting people’s lives, helping them understand that they can be the hero of their own story.”
How Trauma Plays Into Decision-Making
Trauma can motivate you because you’re trying to move through the bad experiences into a new life. Many want to make a ton of money to climb out of a hole, and they find themselves broke.
Michael says, “The thing about trauma that you have to understand is it’s not only just that the way that we understand money and finances. The money mindset embedded and ingrained in us from youth and society tells us that money is something we should be ashamed of.”
Adding the layers of trauma where we are in this fight or flight response and cortisol state in the sympathetic nervous system to the societal beliefs creates a survival and poverty mentality. “Tell me how someone can be successful with money when you’re battling both of those things?”
Changing His Money Mindset
Michael now has a healthier view of money. He understands that money is a resource and tool. Money can be used to serve, help and build your platform. You can also invest in yourself and use money as a conduit for self-growth.
Although you can use the money to serve yourself and others, you also want to be safe and protect yourself by having a cushion of savings in the bank. Outside of your expenses, use your “extra” money that is prime for investing. “You take your resources and invest in yourself and you’ll never lose.” Michael invests more money in himself than those who have Ivy League degrees. He understands the value of reciprocity with spending money and bets on himself first.
Steps to Overcoming Trauma
From his experience, Michael says the first step to overcoming trauma is acknowledgment. Since we can’t hide from the truth, you have to deal with your trauma, or you will most likely go down a negative path of harmful, dangerous, and unhealthy habits.
With acknowledgment comes freedom. “For the first time I was able to release myself from the constructs and handcuffs of the past. Even though I was freely moving about the world, it’s like my leg was still chained to the blockaid,” which for Michael is the reason why he didn’t make progress because he was too afraid to be vulnerable with himself.
“You have to be able to look in the mirror and recognize that bad things happened and that it’s not your fault.”
However, you need to understand from this moment forward; you have to do the work to take yourself out of the cycle of trauma and emotional chains that prevents you from moving forward on the path of life and achieving who you genuinely are and are meant to be in life. “Once you’ve acknowledged your past, you’ll need to learn, grow, change, and heal. Support yourself by building community, finding your tribe, and educating yourself.”
He remembers the moment of truth, standing in front of the bathroom mirror. He asked himself, “What are you willing to do? Your life is a fucking disaster. What are you going to do about this?” Twelve years later, Michael is here talking to us and advising on finances. “I’ve built multimillion dollar businesses. I can always learn something else. And the moment you think, you know, everything it’s game over.”
Attract People Who Love Change
Whatever you’re doing, there’s going to be people who want to pull you down. There are going to be people who want you to take them on your journey. You can’t do that. It’s the crab in the bucket mentality.
It would be best if you pruned the people who pull you down in life. People are going to try to pull you down, get in your way. You can’t rescue anybody, so don’t waste your time trying. If someone wants a different lifestyle, they need to invest the time and money into themselves and want to change for their life to turn around effectively.
You Can Only Make Your Tribe Happy
Michael realizes that you can’t make everyone happy all the time. “I’m not here for the people that don’t want my message. But, I will still serve and show up. You have to serve people who are here. Remember every day that you’re not living up to your power and what you have to offer to the world because you’re scared of what a motherfucker on Instagram has to say or the friend wanting to pull you down.
Put Action Behind Your Words
“Your financial success starts with action. What you think becomes what you speak, what you speak becomes your action. Your action becomes your reality. This process starts in your head. You tell yourself you are capable.”
I am strong. I am capable. I am good enough. I am the kind of person who shows up for myself. I’m the kind of person that serves the world. I’m the kind of person that leads with love. The action starts with the way you’re thinking. Change only happens when you make change happen.
Finding Your Clarity, Mission & Purpose
You have to understand why you are doing something, start with your why, and let your community know why you may not be available. Michael’s why? “I want to end generational trauma in my lifetime and empower people to be the hero of their own story, whether that’s in the trauma side of coaching or in the business side of coaching.” The purpose is essential because your purpose should evolve as you grow.
“You have to start putting yourself in those positions, in which you’re learning and changing the narrative of understanding that you have about who it is that you are and what you’re capable of.” However, make sure you hold yourself accountable for yourself first before bringing your purpose and why into the world.
Commitment to Your Purpose
Commitment is also key to your success.
“You have got to decide, are you in or are you out?”
Nobody’s going to do the work to make your dreams come true. You have to be committed because on days that aren’t going so well; you need to remind yourself and recommit to your why.
Work and Life Balance
Even though you have a why make sure you are balancing your work and life so as not to burnout.
“You have to be honest with yourself.”
Ensure that you take a break when you need to and get out of emotionally intensive environments to avoid overload.
Resources that are mentioned or add value to this episode: