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Steady wins the race

Steady wins the race


During a recent walk with my kids, my first-born was showing out on his roller blades and my daughter was rolling around on a three-wheeled scooter. As we were walking and talking, the story of the tortoise and the hare got brought up.


Now I don’t know about you, but when I think about that story I don’t see a book of Aesop’s Fables. Instead I picture a 1940’s Merrie Melodies episode with Bugs Bunny and Cecil the Turtle.


In that episode, Bugs and Cecil take on the roles from the Tortoise and The Hare story with a twist. Bugs announces to Cecil that no tortoise would never — no not ever — beat him. Cecil challenges Bugs to a race and bets him $10 that he will be beaten. The race goes on, and of course Bugs loses the race, but only after some trickery from Cecil and his friends. Bugs pays up, but realizes by the end of the episode that he has been had.


I’ll give you my interpretation of what the morale of the Looney Tunes episode was — of course, with a little literary license. But first, let’s remember the morale of the Aesop Fable — slow and steady wins the race.


The idea of slow and steady is a hard one for our society because we have instant everything. We can order something online and have it delivered the next day. You can order your groceries now and have them delivered to your house on the same day. And kids don’t even know how to wait through a commercial when streaming their shows, much less how to wait until the next episode airs. The next one just comes on immediately.


We are a society that has grown accustomed to instant gratification.


And the problem with that fact is that you don’t get the things that matter in life instantly. Most of the time, you don’t even get them quickly. Success is a time-intensive and methodical process.


And by success, I’m not referring to fame and fortune. True success is something obtained and should be sought in every facet of your life from your marriage and other meaningful relationships to your physical and spiritual health, and of then, of course, your business and finances.


Would-be real estate investors often get sucked in to online courses and TV ads that preach getting rich quick with no money and very little effort. That’s so alluring to our society, but in the end it’s just plain wrong.


In order to be successful in real estate investing, it has to be timed tested. You see you can have a lot of short-term success by making good profits in a market where values just keep going up and up. But what happens when a market crashes and the whole way of doing business changes? To be prepared for that scenario, you need to have been steadily learning other tactics before you have to shift. Not during or after. Unless your short-term success has been time tested, it’s not real success.


Remember, slow and steady wins the race.


But truthfully, I don’t think speed is the most important element to that statement. Steady is. You can creep along at a snail’s pace, or you can jump in headfirst and go as hard as you can. But the key is to constantly pursue whatever area you are wanting to achieve success in at a pace that you can sustain. And that is what wins the race.



You see, that’s what Cecil did. He went at a pace he could sustain. And when he realized he needed to go to the end quicker, he solicited help from his friends in return for a share of the profit. Is that not what real estate investors do when they partner up with financial friends?


To Bugs, it was trickery. And I will admit it really was in that episode. But if you keep buying a rental here and there as you are able, and once those houses are paid off and you have $30,000 coming in a month from free and clear houses, to all the other people who worked the same day job and had the same income as you, it will look like some form of trickery as to how you were able to amass that much passive income.


So whether you do it fast, or you do it slow doesn’t matter if you can sustain the pace. What really matters is that you do it steadily. And that is what will win the race.


Joe and Ashley English buy houses and mobile homes in Northwest Georgia. For more information or to ask a question, go to or call Joe at 678-986-6813.

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