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What are you arguing for?

Every year Katie and I run the Rebel Finance School, which is our way of giving back. We give away a 10-week course all about financial freedom and thousands of people attend from all walks of life, 40 different countries and all backgrounds.

I spend the first few weeks trying to persuade the audience why it is possible for any of them to improve their financial situation. A large percentage of the audience spend their time trying to persuade me that it isn’t possible for them.

The classic reasons they give are:

  • It’s alright for you, you don’t have kids
  • It’s alright for you, you inherited money (not true, but it makes them feel better)
  • It’s alright for you, you’re well educated
  • Etc. etc. etc.

Nauseatingly middle class

This year there was a fascinating interchange on YouTube between one viewer, The Donegans, and the other people on the course. It started with this comment:

frameX: ​​”a couple who don’t have kids probably shouldn’t talk about surviving and finance”

Lots of people in the chat replied saying that the finance strategies we were talking about worked for people with kids too. Then came the next comment:

frameX: ​​”this entire thing is so geared towards the middle class, it’s nauseating

We moved on from good financial strategies don’t work for people with kids to they don’t work for anyone who isn’t middle class. This one caught my eye in the chat and I replied live:

“Good financial strategies work for anyone. It doesn’t matter what class you are in, you can improve your financial situation by working out where the money is going and the gap between your spending and income.”

I then added what I hoped would be a useful idea: “We become the people we are surrounded by. Can you get around people that think differently about money and who have a different approach to finances and money?”

We got a super quick reply:

frameX: “I​ don’t know anyone going out for coffee or meals or holidays”

frameX: “So the best advice you can give is go hang out with middle class people who by nature of their lifestyle spend way more money than me and are therefore inaccessible by that very fact? lol”

At this point I disengaged as this would have distracted me from the majority of people on the course working to improve their situation. But the conversation raged on in the chat.

Why is your situation as it is?

Why do you think you are where you are? Why are you trapped in the situation you are trapped in?

I could compare cases here and tell you that my dad went bankrupt and gambled away the family home. I could tell you we ended up doing car boot sales to be able to afford food that week. I could tell you I have never inherited a penny in my life. But I have learnt that rarely helps.

I have tried offering suggestions, try this, try that, this worked for me, this worked for someone else. I have so many ideas for how to improve one’s situation. Mainly because I spent so long learning and working to improve my situation.

What I have noticed though is that people will tell me why what I say doesn’t work:

  • “I tried that, didn’t work”
  • “I have kids, I can’t do that”
  • “I am working class, this advice doesn’t work for us”

I have recently started to change tack.

The people I am working to help, the people I am donating my time, my knowledge and energy to, want to tell me why it doesn’t work. I now simply tell them, “You are right, this will never work for you, you might as well give up.”

You get to keep the limitations you fight for

At this point their face normally changes and they shift to asking, “Why won’t this work for me?” Now there is a glimmer of light, a possibility that they might start to see how it might work for them.

If you fight to explain why things won’t work for you, why you are trapped, why you are different, then you strengthen and reinforce your limitations.

You are literally fighting to stay trapped. FrameX in the example above was fighting for their limitations. Instead of looking for ways that it might help, or figuring out how they might increase their income, they wanted to explain why it wasn’t possible.

They had kids, therefore anything we said was irrelevant. They were working class, therefore nothing we said would work for them. They had never met anyone who went out for a meal out of a coffee, therefore they were trapped.

They argued HARD to keep their limitations instead of thinking how might things improve.

They were on a livestream with 5000+ people all working to improve their finances from all different backgrounds. They were on a call with thousands of people that had been out for a coffee or meal. They were surrounded, virtually, by people that could help them change their life.

But they wanted to tell us why they were trapped, why we couldn’t help and how getting on top of your spending and increasing your income wouldn’t work for them.

I feel desperately sad as I want to help. I also know that the more I try to help, the more FrameX will argue that what I am saying is irrelevant, doesn’t work, and is impossible for them to implement.

You get to keep the limitations you fight for.

What are you fighting for?

How is this applicable to you?

In an area of your life, you are probably fighting for your limitations and to stay stuck. I want to help you see that area and get unstuck.

I believe that you can create any life you want to. Most of the time our biggest barrier to having the life we want is ourselves, our way of thinking.

Think of a goal you have in life that you are stuck on. What do you want but maybe you have given up getting?

What are the reasons why you can’t do it?

These are the limitations you have grown to accept, maybe even fight to keep.

What I want to challenge you to do is to change from “Why won’t this work for me?” to “How might this work for me?”

If you want to lose weight, get fit, earn more money, or get to financial independence, then let’s start to think about “how we might make progress!”

How to improve your situation

We’ve all had dark times, moments where it seems like things can never get better. It happens to all of us at one point or another.

The question is whether you are going to let this thing stop you from making progress. There is a super fast and easy way to to start to make progress and that is to change your focus.

Change your focus from explaining why this doesn’t work to starting to figure out how might this work. How do you do this? The simple power of a question and then directed action.

The question is, “How might I …………………….”

How might I improve my finances, how might I earn my first £10, how might I improve my health? Start asking the questions, searching for answers, and then testing things.

We have 10 ways to increase your income, we have how to live large for less, we have a workshop on how to win the money game. It is all available and all for free. There are hundreds of ideas for how you can improve your situation.

If you find me “nauseatingly middle class” then you can ask ChatGPT for ideas on how to make money, you can join entrepreneurial groups on Facebook, you can go on free courses in your area.

All you need to do is ask a positive question, start to find ideas, and then take action. You will be amazed at how far you will get if you start to do this and continue over time.

Your energy, efforts, and motion will start to take hold and you will make unbelievable progress.

Your mission, if you are willing to accept it, is to start asking a positive question, search for ideas, and then take action.

We want to help

There are people in life that genuinely want to help you make progress. There are people who have been through whatever you are going through at the moment and overcome it. These people have probably written blogs, produced podcasts, created YouTube videos to help you.

There has never been a time in history where more information about how to improve your situation has been free and readily available to anyone. Your library has books, audio books (if you don’t read, or prefer to listen) and classes free for you.

We give away courses on how to make more money, how to start a business without debt, and how to improve your finances.

There has never been a time in history where there are more possibilities and opportunities than right now. It might not feel like that to you but it is true.

The question is, are you going to open up and start to see if you can learn, take advantage of these opportunities and improve your situation?

Or are you going to continue to argue for the limitations you have?

FrameX from YouTube told us our help was irrelevant because we don’t have kids. I could reply saying that Mr Money Mustache, Mr 1500, The Escape Artist, Jillian Johnsrud, and so many more bloggers all have kids. But I know that wouldn’t help.

FrameX tells us that they don’t know anyone that has been out for a coffee or a meal and yet they were on a course with thousands of them all wanting them to win and help them. They could join the Facebook group where there are now 9000 people all working to improve their finances and willing to help.

FrameX, if you are reading this, I am happy to chat to you and support you. Our mission is to help people create their version of an extraordinary life. It is possible for anyone to do that with a little time and support.

I am offering you the support. Contact us: I would love to be able to help you.

Your choice

It is your choice what happens next. You can chose to continue to explain why you are where you are or you can do something about it and start to take action towards a brighter future.

Which would you like?

Nothing I say or write will help until you let go of the stories trapping you and decide to start trying things, and being open to a new future.

You get to keep the limitations you fight for.

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  1. Sally May June 22, 2024 at 5:21 pm - Reply

    Hi Alan and Katie, this blog is truly upsetting to believe that your gargantuan efforts are being looked upon by the negative person (FrameX). Why can’t they see the amazing work you have gone to for the likes of them and me. Perhaps they are not aware of the small steps individuals have taken to improve their lives on the teachings of your courses. I have been truly blessed by being able to take action required to make a massive difference to mine and Paul’s life. We are forever grateful to you both for everything you have helped us with. We remember when you said “What will you be thanking yourself for by taking action today, for yourselves in the future?” Well thanks to your courses we are debt free, have emergency funds and from implementations on the investment made to Vanguard, have increased our funds in 2 yrs by the sum of £23370.39 which is an absolute miracle. So yes, we can safely say that without your help this would not have been possible. Thanks a trillion does not cover it. We love you loads xxx so thanks for all your massive support xxxx

    • Alan Donegan June 22, 2024 at 7:32 pm - Reply

      Sally May your spirit and willingness just to do things is AMAZING. I love your energy and you truly are an example that this works for anyone at all. Thank you for commenting and sharing you story and I can only hope that your story inspires people to have a go. It is amazing what you have achieved and I feel so proud. You are a bright spark and we love seeing your smile and face and positivity on the course. You are an inspiration. Alan and katie

      • Sally May June 23, 2024 at 1:26 pm - Reply

        Hi Alan and Katie, Happy Sunday to you both. We love you loads. So looking forward to seeing you again on the course tomorrow night too. Hope you have a good day and thanks again for all your massive support this means the whole world to us both. Xxxx🍍🍍🍍🍍🙏👍🤗❤️🧚‍♂️

  2. Gayle June 24, 2024 at 9:34 am - Reply

    I am really enjoying your course and can’t wait to see you both Tuesday morning (on New Zealand time). Thank you for your generosity of time and effort which is obvious by the great content, delivered in such an uplifting way. We have lived on a budget and tracked our expenses for nearly 20 years so I did not expect to get too much from your first two weeks of the course but you motivated me to find some savings and we did – saving an extra $270 per month. We have a 2 year emergency fund already so I am going to keep saving that monthly $270 and put it to use where you tell me to invest later in the weeks to come. To be honest we are real estate people mainly and do have superannuation savings and a few individual shares – time to do our own index investing – woo hoo 🤑

    • Alan Donegan June 24, 2024 at 3:56 pm - Reply

      Wow Gayle that is HUGE. Congratulations on finding that extra $270. That is amazing. And it is exciting that you are open to thinking about different investment weeks. I think you are going to enjoy the investing weeks and then we have Ruth The Happy Saver on to show us how it all works in New Zealand which is AWESEOME. THank you so much for writing and commenting. it means a lot. Alan

  3. Marta Nastaj June 26, 2024 at 5:29 pm - Reply

    Wow, Alan ! What a powerful and passionate post! You should definitely highlight in on Thursday’s Q & A. So good that I will save in my Google doc, color code it and refer to it every time I need encouragement and motivation.
    I am grateful for Frame X venting out because without it we wouldn’t have your powerful response. And you responded with outmost patience, kindness and maturity; the most instinctive response would be to get irritated and frustrated. I applaud you.

    • Alan Donegan June 26, 2024 at 7:02 pm - Reply

      Marta, thank you for replying. I didn’t really hold off on my thoughts on this one but I did it from a place of anting to free people from the beliefs that trap them. I am so glad it helped you and I just wanted to write it to help people and unlock their thoughts and beliefs. Thank you for commenting.

      • Annabelle June 27, 2024 at 7:28 pm - Reply

        Hi Alan and Katie, I also was on the call last week and thought you did a fantastic job handling it and this article hits the spot. I’m really enjoying the course and learning every aspect. It’s made me excited about finances which I never thought was possible.

        • Alan Donegan June 28, 2024 at 4:57 pm - Reply

          Annabelle I am so glad you are excited and that you are working on your finances. That is AWESOME. I can’t wait to see what happens for you. Thank you for commenting. it means a lot. Alan

  4. RAJA July 1, 2024 at 8:56 am - Reply

    Dear Alan sir,

    This is Raja (From India) I learned so many finance lessons for my personal growth. it is very helpful every person to learn
    their financial matters. Thanks a lot Alan sir .

    • Alan Donegan July 3, 2024 at 4:25 pm - Reply

      Raja, thank you for commenting on the blog. I am so glad it helps! Are you coming to Rebel Finance School this year? Alan

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