Since time immemorial, the intellectual and maestro writers have made us acquainted with the truth through their stories. Be it Shakespeare’s plays or Hemingway’s novels, they all have compelled us to dive into the opulence of their narratives and scrabble around their depths before enlightening the truth inside of us.
It is really strange that throughout the history of mankind works of fiction have stood as the torchbearer in times of confusion and have often been held as the parameters of defining morality and establishing socially acceptable values, thus reshaping the society through influential stories.
One such work of fiction which amassed insane popularity in recent times is Game of Thrones. If you are not a GOT fan (or if you haven’t watched it yet for whatever reasons) then the above statement would have irritated the sh*t out of you. You haven’t been able to gulp in the fact that the whole world has gone berserk over a fictional TV series and that its fans are always high on enthusiasm.
But the cult followers of the series know that its plot and the portrayal of darkest human emotions, power tussle, thirst for glory and political conspiracies depicted in it cannot be explained in words. The emotion which you get after watching GOT is as strange as the experience itself.
We can brief you about GOT here but we can give you some wisdom about life’s choices which trickle down to everything and (of course) to personal finance as well.
The characters had to attain the wisdom the hard way or face gross repercussions for not following them but luckily enough, you aren’t inside of GOT (at least not now) and you can always benefit from the mistakes of others. Here are Personal Finance lessons which you can learn from GOT.
“I Have Seen It in The Fire”
Melissandre often referred to as the Red Lady was a chief advisor (self-proclaimed though for the most part) to Stannis Baratheon, who wanted to take the Iron Throne.
Stannis relied more on interpretations of visuals rather than logic the general wisdom of warfare and made his foray into territories much before his army was ready for the conflict, thus resulting in shameful and humiliating defeat for Stannis.
Now, if you grasp the essence of the above subplot, it tells you that you should never jump the gun and always looks one’s rationale and logic before committing something to someone.
From the Personal Finance perspective, it is very easy to blindly rely on someone say a credit repair firm and for that matter a loan waiver or debt mgmt. services without evaluating the alternatives.
In such cases, the collateral damage is such that the client has no room whatsoever for resorting to other strategy let alone covering up for the losses.
“I Will Go Beyond the Wall”
Jon Snow, the warden of the North was not complacent and he knew that somewhere down the line the white walkers would make an attempt to break the North Wall adjacent to Castle Black.
There were many legends doing rounds around White Walkers yet only a handful of people knew what they were actually made of.
Jon led an excursion beyond the wall to catch a White Walker so that Cersei could get convinced to brace herself and all of Westeros for the danger that was lurking over their heads.
In terms of Personal Finance, one must have a clear head regarding what his/her risk tolerance and what ratio of the investment portfolio suits best for them.
Besides, one must know exactly what his investments are exposed to and then make a prudent decision of withdrawing and investing from various retirement accounts.
“Winter is Coming”
The motto of the House of Stark, which was always vigilant and far-sighted warned that there are gloomy days ahead and that everyone should prepare for them. However, most houses defied their wisdom and warnings and had to face panic when things went sour.
As an individual, you must always remember that gloomy days are never too far and should not be enthralled in fun and amusements, lest we forget to build an emergency fund when things don’t work in our favor. Creating a provision for unexpected bills is always advisable as this doesn’t dismantle our budget.
“A Lannister Always Pays his Debt”
This phrase is peculiar to Tyrion Lannister and surely a good thing to brag about. The sigil of the House Of Lannisters was a Lion and ‘Hear me Roar’ was their motto, however, the phrase “A Lannister Always Pays his Debt” was wittingly used by the members of the clan to build upon the good rapport which their ancestors had established with other clans.
In fact, this widely held conviction was put to good use; forging new alliances, taking massive loans, giving ransoms and buying a guardsman etc. Long story short, Lannisters have sat pretty over the Iron Throne throughout the GOT series because they capitalized on their reputation.
In real world also, financial credibility gives you an edge in terms of potential to secure debt at first place and secondly, to be able to do it on a cheaper basis (lower interest rates than the usual).
The financial credibility is often denoted by credit score and there is a plenitude of self-help guides on the internet to help rebuild your credit score. However, some cases may require professional help because an individual cannot always get to the nitty-gritty of the matter.
“When the Dragons Would Grow”
The Mother of Dragons –Daenerys Targaryen nurtured her baby dragons and provided for them until they grew up to become fire-breathing dragons.
The dragons have turned the tables in favor of Khaleesi and now she has the strongest claim on the Iron Throne among all contenders.
In terms of Personal Finance, this would mean putting resources into great propensities, whatever those propensities are.
Believing in your small investments and hoping to see them develop into a very big asset someday over the period of time and taking all due precautions and care to incubate and save those tiny investments.
In GOT, bad decisions proved to be fatal for the Starks; they were displaced the whole time, slaughtered at the Red Wedding, help captives and what not? It was mostly because Starks took things at face value and they were reluctant to see the other side of the coin.
In Personal Finance, mistakes aren’t punishable by death, however, trusting wrong entities, fraudulent schemes and professional who don’t have a proven record can make you fall into an abyss.