I Share Hope

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Story. Action. Hope.

Stories about hope and ways to share hope

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Douglas Goldstein

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Goldstein on Gelt

BuildingWealth: Israel

BuildingWealth: Stocks

Rich as a King

“There’s a very famous quote that I like that I’ll say in English, but it comes from the philosophies of the rabbis of the bible from thousands of years ago and it says: ‘It’s not up to you to finish the job, but you’re not allowed to walk away from it.’ I think it’s such an important concept that we’re not all going to be the most successful or the be the richest or the best looking or have the greatest this or the greatest that and we’re not going to live in a world that’s perfect. That’s just the way it is, right? There’s all sorts of problems everyday and there always will be, but it’s our job to work on improving the situation and by seeing how you can make things better. the show.” — Doug Goldstein

Douglas Goldstein, CFP® Founder, Owner, Director

Doug began his career on Wall Street in 1992 at Dean Witter. After developing a successful practice in New York, Doug moved with his wife and family to Israel.

Doug is accredited by the Israel Securities Authority (ISA) as a licensed Israeli advisor and is also a licensed U.S. advisor. He holds the designations of Certified Financial Planner™, Registered Investment Advisor, and Trust and Estate Practitioner. He is a member of both the Financial Planning Association and of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners.

Doug is frequently invited to give lectures as well as teach college courses on investing. He is often invited to comment on financial affairs on radio and TV and in local and international newspapers. He also serves as a trainer and consultant to banks in Israel.

Doug’s advice appears weekly in The Jerusalem Post, and he hosts a weekly radio show, Goldstein on Gelt, about business and investing. He is the author of the book Building Wealth in Israel: A Guide to International Investments and Financial Planning, and newly published Building Wealth: Investing in Stocks.



 

10: Doug Goldstein – Staying Focused on the Journey – I Share Hope

“What I really think mostly about hope is the concept that people have of making things better. What are you hoping for? It’s always the hope to make something better. There’s a very famous quote that I like that I’ll say in English, but it comes from the philosophies of the rabbis of the bible from thousands of years ago and it says: ‘It’s not up to you to finish the job, but you’re not allowed to walk away from it.’ I think it’s such an important concept that we’re not all going to be the most successful or the be the richest or the best looking or have the greatest this or the greatest that and we’re not going to live in a world that’s perfect. That’s just the way it is, right, there’s all sorts of problems everyday and there always will be, but it’s our job to work on improving the situation and by seeing how you can make things better, I think that’s what hope is all about and don’t ever run away from the task of trying to make things better. I am Doug Goldstein, a fan or I Share Hope and enjoy the show. – Doug Goldstein

Intro:

Welcome to I Share Hope! The podcast where world leaders share their real stories of hope and how you can use actionable hope to start changing your life today and now here’s your host, Chris Williams.

Chris Williams:

Doug Goldstein joining us today. I am thrilled with this because I have a financial background. I used to be a certified financial planner which Doug is also. Doug is way more qualified than I ever was and licensed all over the place, here in the US and overseas. He is currently in Israel and does a lot of work with ex-patriots from the US helping them navigate that crazy world of finance and taxes and etc. overseas.

He’s written several books, his new one, Rich As A King is interesting because it’s financial and strategy and he’s co-authored with Susan Polgar who was and still is one of the best champion chess players in the world.

Doug is on I Share Hope today because he delivers hope everyday to clients, but we’ll hear a little more about his personal life as well as we go. So Doug, a little more about you.

Doug Goldstein:

Chris, wow, thanks so much for the introduction. I’m sure you were a fabulous CFP in your day as well. About me, I started actually on Wall Street about 20 years ago. I was partners then and my partner was my mother. My mother was vice president at a company called Dean Witter which now subsequently became Morgan Stanley and then there was just Morgan Stanley. So, we were partners there together and it was great because one of the things that I think I learned most from working with her was the importance of educating people. Everyone likes to believe that you go and work on Wall Street that somehow all of a sudden you get prophecy, but I’m telling you even though when I went to work with the bible, it didn’t help. I have no idea what the market was going to do and no one can predict that, but educating people was really critical and one day I asked my mother, mom, where did you get this model of dealing with clients? Then she smiled and she reminded me that her mother, my grandmother was one of the first women to be licensed as a stock broker in America, so it definitely runs in the family.

I’ve been doing this now, working the same thing that I started over 20 years ago which is educating clients about how to handle their money and helping them to take care of it.

Chris Williams:

Wow. That’s great. So personally and books author, you got a lot going on besides just financial practice. You got huge YouTube following and a podcast that’s new note-worthy right now called Rich As A King, you’re a busy guy.

Doug Goldstein:

That’s right. I really like the teaching thing. I do the financial stuff because that pays the bills, but I really put the two of them together and I enjoy writing. I probably also got that from my mother who was a published author as well. I like to try and bring new ideas together. The most recent book that I wrote called Rich As A King, how the wisdom of chess can make you a grandmaster of investing is a book that I wrote with a co-author, fascinating woman, maybe we’ll get to talk about her a little bit. But, it’s really about teaching people not about chess, but about bringing strategy into all the ways that they think. In the same way, I like to think about – I don’t know if you know Tim Ferriss, he wrote a number of great books and he wrote The Four-Hour Chef and I heard an interview of this. They said, “Why’d you write about being a chef?” and he laughed because the book’s not about being a chef, the book is about deconstructing ideas and realizing how you can learn. I think that’s so important. You can learn a lot of new ideas by taking old ideas and bringing them together.

Chris Williams:

I think that’s so true. I read a lot as I’m sure you do and I hear things, read things all day long that I’ve heard a million times for about one new person putting in a new way and explaining it differently makes it stick, so I’m glad you’re doing all this. Thanks for your time.

Doug Goldstein:

Alright. Thank you.

Chris Williams:

You know how the interview works. We have five questions about hope and you can answer them however you would like. This is about you and your version here, not mine, not anybody else.

Question 1: Your definition of hope or your favorite quote about hope.

Doug Goldstein:

Chris, what I really think mostly about hope is the concept that people have of making things better. What are you hoping for? It’s always the hope to make something better. There’s a very famous quote that I like that I’ll say in English, but it comes from the philosophies of the rabbis of the bible from thousands of years ago and it says: “It’s not up to you to finish the job, but you’re not allowed to walk away from it.” I think it’s such an important concept that we’re not all going to be the most successful or the be the richest or the best looking or have the greatest this or the greatest that and we’re not going to live in a world that’s perfect. That’s just the way it is, right, there’s all sorts of problems everyday and there always will be, but it’s our job to work on improving the situation and by seeing how you can make things better, I think that’s what hope is all about and don’t ever run away from the task of trying to make things better.

Chris Williams:

Wow. That’s a great perspective, it really is because it takes into account the reality. It’s not going to be the best day always. We hope we get a lot more of them, but you really have to take this thing by the horns and wrestle it down and do good for somebody else and for yourself. That’s great.

Question 2 : Who has been the strongest leader of hope in your life? Who’s impacted you the most with hope?

Doug Goldstein :

I have said before I would talk to you a little bit about my co-authors. I’m going to tell a story that actually happened to her because it really had an impact when I heard her talk about it. Just recently, she and I were in Switzerland, we were doing our book tour and it’s very exciting. We got invited to a money management conference in a beautiful town overlooking Lake Geneva and I was speaking about behavioral finance, but she told her story which is amazing. I just want to tell you one little bit of the story which I think maybe will answer the question.

Susan Polgar was born in communist Hungary and for guys like you and me, we’re so used to just doing the things the way we want to do and freedom and our parents could school us wherever and however they wanted, but we take so much for granted. Her father was a radical psychologist of the day and he had this theory that genius could be learned. It wasn’t just that you were naturally or genetically a genius. He wanted to prove it with his own kids. He wanted to home school his children. Imagine you go to the communist government who has one way of doing things which is their way and you say, you know I’ve decided not to send my kids to your school. I’m going to teach them at home and I’m going to teach them whatever I feel like and it didn’t go so well for them in the beginning, but he was so insistent. He really had the drive and the hope to see this through and he did.

Ultimately, his three daughters became super world champions. They became the Polgar sisters because of his dedication. When I hear a story about that, about a parent who doesn’t stop until he gets what he wants for his kids – I don’t mean being nasty, I just mean being dedicated to your children. When I heard that story, I thought back of the story with one of my own kids when she was in school and a great student, the sweetest, sweetest kid. I know all parents say that, but she’s really, really sweet. She was crying every night about school and it just didn’t make any sense. For the first few nights, we just said “It will get better” and “Don’t worry” and “Just listen to the teacher” and after a while my wife and I looked at each other and said, you know, let’s listen a little more closely. It turned out that the teacher was kind of a nut and my daughter was really suffering and she didn’t know how to express it because she was little at the time. She couldn’t quite express it, but at that point we took her out of class and solved the problem, but we realized you have to go forth with your kids because your kids – the whole point of today’s discussion is about hope, where are they going to learn that unless they see that their parents and their family structure is the one that’s going to give them hope.

Chris Williams:

You’re right. That’s great stuff. That’s really powerful, thanks for sharing that.

Question 3:  In your world, in your life, tell us a story when hope has been something really all you had to fall back on. Tell us the story, give us the time, set us the stage, how does this look?

Doug Goldstein:

Chris, I got to tell you, I think you’re not going to be happy with my answer because I spent a long time thinking of this one. It was driving me a little bit crazy because I was thinking – it’s like when people tell me, how did you get through really awful times in your business? When things totally collapsed, major failure.

I was on this great show which I really loved called EntrepreneurOnFire.

Chris Williams:

That is a great show.

Doug Goldstein:

That’s hosted by a guy named John Lee Dumas. I love him and I love his show and I had the honor to be a guest. When he asked that question, I had to go back to when I was 15 years old to find a major failure. Not because I didn’t have problems, but because I always try to really plan things out. I’m a big planner. I’m not just a financial planner, but I plan everything. I couldn’t give him an answer to his question, well like 9 months ago, we had this major failure because we try to set things up, we’re always thinking of the failures and try to avoid them.

To answer your question about when was that the things were so fallen apart that the only thing I had was hope, I was beginning to think why I couldn’t answer it. I think the answer is – the point of encouragement here especially for parents and friends is, if you circle with either good friends or you have someone in the family or your rabbi or your priest or your God and you say, “I’ve got someone here with me”, then you’re not alone. You need the hope, that’s the only thing you can hold on to, you got to hold on tight, right, you got to hold on to your brother, whoever it is. It’s building those relationships which is what we should all be doing, not always investing money and these are the most in relationships, so that when we do need the help, when you take a little withdrawal from that account, there’s still plenty there.

Chris Williams:

I love it. It keeps coming up as a them with people we’re interviewing. Even if you don’t have this heartbreak story and your car flipped over the same day you lost your job and then your house burned down when you got home and a squirrel killed your dog, whatever it may be, the relationships are what comes back to you. Every time, it’s always the relationships – every stinking time. It’s the strength that you build either today, even if today’s a hard day, or decades in advance that we take for granted before we have a hard time. Those relationships are so important. I think that’s a great answer.

Doug Goldstein:

If you said that I was really concerned that I’d fail – I’m sorry, don’t you say all that on the podcast, you didn’t give us a good answer.

Chris Williams:

There you go, now you have a good failure story, right? No, that was a perfect answer. That’s what I’m looking for, the real deal. It’s not a fake show.

Question 4: How are you sharing hope to others today? You’re reaching a large audience on a lot of different platforms in probably ways that none of us even know that you might have just said “Hi” and given a smile to a guy walking down the street today. How are you sharing hope to people around you?

Doug Goldstein:

First of all, I do hope that I give smiles to people. I do try. I’ll bring it to the business side of it because I just spend a lot of time in my business both in writing as well as actually just talking. I think what really people need to have is the feeling that they’re going to be able to succeed and we can talk on all levels, but let’s just talk – the most common thing that I deal with as a financial planner is, will I be able to retire one day? That’s a huge fear. Frankly, a lot of people are not able to do and certainly not the way that they expected they would, but I think that the way that anybody would help them is by giving them the education they need to understand where they are now and where they’re going to be. Sometimes you do that by putting together a financial plan which – I do a lot of work to make the plan for clients, but frankly I think it’s more for me than for them, so that I can explain to them not only that they’ll be alright, but how they’ll be alright.

When you show someone a path, they still have to follow the path. I can’t do it for them. They have to set their budget and do their investing right then and I can help them along the way, but they’ve got to do it themselves. But then, you’ve given someone the path to follow and he knows it’s going to be okay. That kind of education, again it goes back to what my mother showed me about the way she took care of her clients and whether I do it in writing or in podcast or face to face, I really do hope I’m able to help people that way.

Chris Williams:

I think you are and you’re setting yourself up man, you better be able to answer question number five really well. I am a big fan of action when it comes to anything in life. If I can’t take action on it, I can’t figure out what to do with it and hope is way more important to me than most things in life right now. I want to know how I can take action on hope.

Question 5: What are the steps, the a, b, c, the 1,2,3 that you say Chris, if you want to start using hopeful passion influence in yourself or others, what do I do? Where do I start today if I am getting started in this journey?

Doug Goldstein:

I don’t have 1, 2, 3, I have 1. I have one thing. I’m going to make it simple, but I got to give you a little background because otherwise maybe you won’t – I need to get a little buy-in from you before I tell it to you.

About 15 or 16 years ago, I was at a conference for a big company called IDT, which is a telecommunications company. The fellow who ran the company was a guy named Howard Jonas. He gave a long speech and frankly I don’t remember anything about the speech except one thing. He said – and by the way he wasn’t a really dynamic speaker, he just stood there and set it out. It really stuck, he said “My wife and I, we give to charity 20% of everything we earn.” and I’m like, 20%, wow. I said, I want to be like him. This was when I was a lot younger and I didn’t quite have as big an enterprise as I have now. I went home to my wife that day and I said, I heard this guy Howard Jones, he seems pretty cool and let’s do what he does.

We started giving 20% of what we earned to charity. That’s huge. The average in America is settling down on 1% and in Europe it’s fraction of a percent. The people in Europe are not big into charity. There’s a whole philosophy behind why that is, but not relevant. This is like a huge change. A lot of people tithe and they give 10%, but this was a big step up. I’ll tell you why I think this is so important, it’s sort of funny for me to say because I’m in the money business, but money really messes people up, right? The richest people, when they do it the right way, they’re messed up, their kids are messed up, their grand kids are messed up, everything is messed up. The most successful people I’ve met are people who also give 20%. I began noticing that in my ultra-high net worth clients. These guys were giving 20% or more and they always would say to me “When things go bad, I always increase my charity and it gets better” and they would quote me, there’s a passage in the bible that talks about this.

You’re not allowed to test God, right, you’re not allowed to run in front of a truck and say “God if you love me, you’ll save me”, right? But superficially, it says in the bible God says, listen, give charity and you’ll get back more and he says test me on this. That’s very interesting, right, and I don’t really – I’m no biblical scholar and I don’t know what this really means, but –

Chris Williams:

But you’ve seen a trend? You got the data in front of you.

Doug Goldstein :

You know what’s even more important than that? If I’m wrong, what’s the worst case? The worst case is you gave other people hope and I always imagine, If you have food on the table everyday and you have a roof over your head, there’s a billion people in the planet who don’t have that. You’ve made the bare minimum and now it’s time to help other people. It bugs me when people say, I can’t afford it and they’re driving and they have a car and they have an 80-inch TV. You got to give back and I’ve never ever met someone who said “Geez, I gave too much money on charity and now I’m having financial problems”. I’ve never seen that.

Chris Williams:

That’s a great step for sharing hope. I love that. Nobody’s mentioned that yet. Thank you very much. Really good one. 20% of your income, that would put a cramp on just about anybody’s style. Give us a little bit of help there. Practically, how would somebody go about looking at their finances, pulling the checkbook out and figuring out how in the world to carve 20% out?

Doug Goldstein :

I know people who make $64,000 a year, I know people who make $640, 000 a year and most of the time, they’re spending everything that they earn, right? Either one and you wonder, how is it that you guys are spending it? The answer to your question is, you just have to decide to do it.

There’s a great study by many people, but a great guy is named Shawn Achor, he was a guest on my radio show on Goldstein on Gelt. He is a professor, I think, at Harvard at Divinity School and he talks about happiness. They discovered that people who earn something like $70,000 a year, anything from $70,000 a year up, there’s no difference in the amount of happiness. Meaning, we tell you money can’t buy happiness, which I believe, but if you’re broke and really, really broke, then things are tough. But, once you make it basic, no need to be a millionaire, you just have a decent salary, you’re not going to be more or less happier than the guy who’s earning 10 times what you’re earning. However, the amount you spend is totally up to you. That’s something you can control and just decide that you’re going to do.

First, you got to pay your taxes, then you pay your 20% to charity, then you start all the other stuff like saving.

Chris Williams:

Amazing. That’s a great challenge. I like the challenge.

Doug Goldstein:

It changes your behavior and it builds your character.

Chris Williams:

Changes your behavior and builds your character.

Doug Goldstein :

As my father once said to me, this sort of relates here, he said, I was working pretty hard so make sure you go home for dinner because he said he never – my father was a doctor, he said I never spoke to someone on his death bed who said “Oh, I wish I spent more time at the office”. In the same way, I’ve never met anyone who said “I wish I gave less charity”.

Chris Williams:

You are so on the mark. Great advice on sharing hope. Doug, the last question which is not one of the five that we ask, I love asking this, it’s when you’re in a funk and you need something fun to listen to on the way home, turn the iPod in or whatever, what are you going to listen to?

Doug Goldstein:

Well, music, because I’m kind of an old jazz fan, I’ll often listen to Duke Ellington. My favorite song is Satin Doll. It cheers me up and a few years ago, I even wrote some music on my own.

Chris Williams:

No way. Really?

Doug Goldstein:

It didn’t make platinum.

Chris Williams:

Did you publish it?

Doug Goldstein:

Yes. We published a few hundred CDs and mostly given out, but the fun part was just doing it.

Chris Williams:

Absolutely. Doug, if we want to find out more about you, about your book, Rich As A King, your other projects, how can we find you and keep up with you?

Doug Goldstein:

Chris I really appreciate that. I had a great time being on this show. The best way to find out about the book is we have the world greatest URL for the book which is richasaking.com which is the title of the book. Our Twitter handle is @RichAsAKing and I’d be honored if people would reach out to me there, we have the contact us page of Rich As A King. I’d be thrilled if people would check out the book and say hello.

Chris Williams:

Wonderful. I’m sure we will. I’ll put a lot of this in the show notes on our website as well, so people can find you really quickly. Doug, thanks again. enjoy your time.

Doug Goldstein:

It was a real pleasure. Thank you.

Chris Williams:

Going back to the beginning of the interview when Doug mentions the quote from the rabbis not worrying about completing or finishing the job as much as staying focused on going forward, not giving up, that is critical. To somebody who’s been through quite a bit of depression and suicidal tendencies and dark, dark days that so many people have experienced, but I’m finding hope in knowing that there are reasons to go forward and there are so many situations, so many relationships, so many things that you’re adding value to and others are adding value into your life that you don’t even realize.

I’m growing in hope quite a bit just being involved in the I Share Hope Project because there’s so much engagement from you. Every time the show goes out, there’s a lot of people in the social media just saying thanks, just supporting me. I really appreciate that. It’s not about the perfect ending, it’s about going forward in this journey.

You can find me at ChrisWilliamsHQ on Twitter and Facebook and a few other social media platforms. I would love to engage in a conversation with here. Also, isharehope.com, a great place to find show notes about Doug Goldstein. Doug has a lot going on, so there’s a lot there to look at, a lot of good links and ways to really see how he’s doing what he’s doing.

Thanks for coming along with me on my journey. I’m so glad you’re here. Talk to you soon.

You’ve just listened to I Share Hope. If you’re ready to make a change, head to our website at isharehope.com and claim your free copy of the Top Ten Actions of Hope from World Leaders to use hope in your own life. Thanks for listening and we’ll talk to you next time.

Doug Goldstein:

Hey, how are you doing?

Chris Williams:

Good sir. How are you doing?

Doug Goldstein:

Doing well.

Chris Williams:

I’m impressed at your world and your marketing, your presence and the people you’ve interviewed. Just all the stuff you’re doing financially is impressive, I know it’s a lot of work and you’re doing a killer job.

Doug Goldstein:

Thanks. I’m working hard. How did you get involved in your show? How did you decide to do this show?

Chris Williams:

For me, a lot of past abuse and trauma growing up, had a really crazy childhood and I guess a lot of folks have that story and really, I wanted to take charge of some things. This is a process of getting hope back for me. Just recently, I really said I’d be a person that had any hope at all. I was surviving and I’ve got five kids and a great wife and want to make sure that their life was doing okay. But, maybe there’s so much more than that. I’m sick and tired of being a “survivor”. I want to thrive. I want to live. I think this project is more for me than anybody else. I’m reaching out to a thousand great leaders in the world to find out how they’re doing it, what they’re doing, not that everybody has a background just like mine, but everybody’s had a crappy day.

Doug Goldstein:

Yes.

Chris Williams:

So, I want to make sure that I’m capturing that, passing it to my kids. Then people said there’s like a million people out there who want to hear about this, so do something public. Took me a while to get my guts up for that, but I’m enjoying it so far and then it will take, I think, three or four years to get through all of this.

Doug Goldstein:

Your target is a thousand interviews?

Chris Williams:

A thousand interviews. Yes.

Doug Goldstein:

Nice. That’s fantastic.

Chris Williams:

You’re not a story that came to me because you’re some guy with a crazy survival story. I don’t know what you got back there. but you’re a guy who’s able to deliver a lot of hope and I know in your industry, hope is something you have to deliver. I don’t want to burn too much of your day, Let’s kick this thing off!

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