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April 30th, 2015

You will come to your own when you understand that those whom the world calls fortunate are really the most unfortunate of all – Seneca, Letters from a Stoic

By Ron Nakamoto

I witnessed an angry customer at the Verizon store yesterday. He was complaining about his new cellphone, speaking harshly to the store personnel, and generally acting pompously and rudely. Afterwards, I mentioned to the salesperson who was helping me that this man was unhappy and miserable in his life, even though he probably drives a nice car and lives in a nice house (I was in a neighborhood where it seems that most people have multiple fancy cars and a big, fancy house). What the salesperson said after that struck me.

He said that incidents like the one I had just witnessed occur many times daily and that Verizon has a difficult time getting people to work at this particular store because there are so many pompous, rude, entitled people in this particular community. This is a town that 50 years ago was an agricultural crossroads. It has been transformed into a major, upscale shopping and business center. The demographics of the area now tilt heavily towards newly wealthy "mass affluent", white collar professionals.

To me, the level of unproductive stress and lack of gratitude expressed in the behavior of the man in the Verizon store is sad. It does, however, suggest to me that there's strong purpose in the work that we're doing at Empowered Wealth.

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