There’s no time quite as enjoyable for the typical Jamaican as mango season. Every sense is stimulated as the sight, smell, feel and taste of a delicious mango will herald an enjoyable experience.
Even hearing the words, ‘would you like a mango?’ can bring a heady anticipation of coming delights.
It may not be immediately obvious how eating a juicy mango could lead me to reflect about money.
However, because I’m immersed in money issues – coaching people with money problems, reading material from money experts and developing resources to teach others about money – then anything and everything becomes an opportunity to find out something new about money.
Everyday occurrences continue to enlighten me about basic financial principles. If you have a desire to discover the secrets to financial success, then even the simple realities of life will supply you with useful insights.
Here are some of the lessons that I learned from observing the mango tree and its fruit:
Wealth is abundant
There is nothing quite as bountiful as a tree overflowing with mangoes. Overburdened with hanging fruit, it’s really a marvel that its limbs don’t break from the weight of their delicious cargo. You could strip the tree of all its ripened mangoes today, yet return tomorrow to find an equal or greater harvest.
Many people believe that money is in scarce supply, because they have a shortage of it in their pockets. The truth is, just like a mango tree’s ample produce, wealth is abundantly available to those who put the time and effort into reaping it.
If you are financially distressed, it’s because you probably don’t know how to plant and harvest the rewards from your own money tree.
Big goals take time
Once a mango tree has started to bear, the act of gathering its fruit is relatively simple. However, the initial process of planting, watering and nurturing a tree takes years of effort and dedication.
After you first sow the seed, if you don’t have persistence and patience, you could easily get discouraged and give up before the time to reap arrives.
A farmer understands that he must wait to see the results of his hard work. Similarly, it will take time for you to realise your financial goals, as your success will not be achieved overnight.
After you create a vision for your desired lifestyle, plant your seeds by setting clear goals and designing a realistic action plan to achieve them. Then, be patient and persistent until your harvest comes.
All that glitters is not gold
There is a very good reason why old timers will warn you never to eat mangoes in the dark. People are not the only ones that find the fruit irresistible, as worms are also fond of eating mangoes.
You can pick a beautifully ripened specimen, seemingly unblemished and perfect on the outside, only to discover that insects have already devoured some of the fruit on the inside.
In the same way that you should take care before biting into a mango, you should also approach your investing plans with caution. Even though an opportunity looks enticing and promises to give you a tantalising return, it is important to investigate it thoroughly for possible pitfalls that may lie within.
Take the time to check before you invest, so that you don’t regret your hasty decisions.
Everything has a season
Despite the surplus of fruit that a mango tree will supply, there comes a time when its season must end. Mango trees do not bear all year round; nature has designed a period where they can rest and recover until the next season arrives.
Many people expect that their financial life will only bring fruitful periods. The saying ‘what goes up must come down,’ is a key factor of investing. Like mango trees, investments will perform well for a time, and then at another time they will diminish.
Smart investors ensure that their ‘fields’ are planted with various ‘trees’ that will provide positive returns at different times.
Greed is bad, giving is good
You can eat just so many mangoes and no more, before this tasty treat becomes cloying to consume. Those who greedily eat an excess amount of the fruit will eventually regret their overindulgence.
It’s really impossible for one person to eat all the fruit from a mango tree, so most people are happy to share their bounty with others.
Once the season is in full swing, a mango tree will continue to provide fruit even if you give away some of what you have. Life rewards those who focus on charitable giving in a similar way.
Like mangoes, you have already been blessed with enough money or time to share with those in need; and giving back is one way to show appreciation for what you have received.
You to take a deeper look at other lessons about the principles of money success in my eBook, The 3 M’s of Money: How to Manage, Multiply and Maintain Your Money, available now online.