The Pursuit Of Wealth And Human Behavior


How you see wealth affects how wealth arrives at you. At its core, it is the human behavior that drives the kind of wealth we will have. In this episode, Patrick Donohoe talks about why wealth is in direct proportion to your human behavior. He discusses the importance of identifying your reasons for pursuing wealth, taking us into the results, the purpose, and the action plan. At the end of the day, everything is about how we understand ourselves. Follow Patrick as he explores the ways we manifest ourselves into the wealth we’re seeking after.

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The Pursuit Of Wealth And Human Behavior

Thank you for reading this episode. I’m grateful that you’re here. I hope you have enjoyed the last couple of shows. I’m excited to share it. There’s a lot on my mind and I feel it would be beneficial and helpful to you, readers. I’m going to get into my topic. My topic is, I would say a summary of a lot of the episodes that have been done and it speaks to the individual regardless of what stage of life you’re in. The topic is how your wealth is in direct proportion to your understanding of human behavior, starting with your own? I look at the pursuit of wealth and the reasons and purpose behind it, the actual results that are desired. Oftentimes it’s narrow, especially for me and the pursuits I’ve had in life.

The reason why I say that is an understanding of what it is you’re after first is paramount. What you’re after is a status or signaling, meaning you want to achieve wealth because of how it makes you look or how it positions you in the pecking order of the hierarchical order. I feel sometimes that’s a good igniter potentially at the same time, it’s not a lasting igniter and I’ll give you an example. I’ve had the opportunity and fortunate to have met, consulted, and advised hundreds from thousands of people. In conversations with a client of mine, he is successful in business. Investing incredibly well for himself and that was not necessarily the result that he wanted, but he didn’t realize that until it was too late. He achieved so much more than his parents and siblings. He got to a point where he had wealth that would last beyond his lifetime and his kids’ lifetime, but he lost his marriage and relationship with his kids. There was a huge concentration on achieving a financial and wealth outcome, concentrate on financial wealth. It was not until the end where he realized that the results he wanted were to have his money, provide a certain lifestyle, and experience with his family. It’s important to understand the results upfront. I feel that there’s always a drive behind what we’re after and identifying what that is will help us to better prepare.

The results are important first. The purpose of the results is second. Third, it’s the action plan behind it. Human behavior, as you can see, it’s the understanding starts with understanding yourself, being self-aware. I look at the lifestyle that we all get to live in the United States in this day and age and comparatively speaking to those that lived 200, 300, 400 years ago, we’re celebrating the 400th anniversary of the Mayflower landing on Plymouth Rock and the lifestyle that those individuals led are incomprehensible to us. If you’ll understand the history there they had an incredibly rough time coming across the ocean, as well as surviving in those first few months, the majority of the party died. I look at the lifestyle we live now and how things are progressing. We are fortunate. We have the technology, sustenance that continues to be cheaper and cheaper, communication, experiences, movies, entertainment that’s endless, and yet a lot of people are not satisfied. They want more and I include myself in that. The reason why I wanted to do this show is it helps me articulate and create some accountability for myself by understanding what I want.

Pursuing comfort will end up making us uncomfortable because it's in the uncomfortable situations that we grow and find meaning. Click To Tweet

Understanding the result that’s what I want. Is it signaling and status, or is it truly to live a lifestyle that is fulfilling and meaning? I get to number one, understanding of human behavior, your own, but then understanding human behavior, the others’ behavior. What makes them tick? Why did they act? I feel there are a couple of examples that are timely. Number one, it’s, what’s going on with the quarantine, with COVID, the divisiveness of our culture, politics, I would say also it’s demographic divisiveness, the young versus the old that’s going to grow as well potentially. I look at what’s being done to combat this and I’ll first talk about the government and their intervention into human behavior. Based on the quarantine, the shutdown, people not able to go to work, there was a Band-Aid of unemployment benefits and stimulus. I believe that Band-Aid stifled what I feel is one of the most incredible aspects of human behavior, which is figuring out solutions during difficult times, but when a safety net exists, that safety net prevents that innovation and growth. Although I understand why the government did what they did, I also understand that human behavior where we shine as a human was prevented and we’re not going to understand the opportunity costs of that.

At the same time, I look at the unintended consequences of keeping people at home and specifically the unemployment benefits that were spread almost equally throughout the entire country that gave some people more than they needed, some people less than they needed. Also, what it did is it provided a choice and the choice was to either accept those benefits and not go to work, or to not accept those benefits and to continue working. Those that had opportunities to continue to work did not in many cases. There was a financial incentive to not work and that is also something that is paradoxical where our natural tendency does not experience difficulty, challenge, hardship, and pursuing comfort. At the same time, pursuing comfort will end up making us uncomfortable because it’s in the uncomfortable situations that we grow and find meaning. It’s interesting to see what’s going on in markets and with employment. I look at the unintended consequence associated with a stimulus with unemployment benefits is companies are figuring out how to operate more efficiently. You have companies that are operating remotely now. I know Facebook announced that they will have 100% remote employment until the summer of 2021. Google, Twitter, and a lot of other companies are doing the same thing.

There are also companies that I would say do not have deep pockets like those tech companies that are understanding that they can operate, be more profitable without office space or less office space, as well as not hiring back. Employment is coming back. There was a jobs report that almost two million jobs were added back, so unemployment is at 10%. At the same time that is a healthy number. There are businesses that are gone for good. Looking at what’s to come, we don’t know, but I would say what gives you signals? What gives you signs? The identification of opportunity is by understanding human behavior, understanding what people are going to do. I look at the understanding of this, markets, freedom, and independence but my understanding is not the same as others. Looking at what’s going on with regards to divisiveness, I see capitalism being demonized. I understand why, at the same time I look at when it comes to those that have, and those that don’t have. There is an overwhelming influence to punish those that have, and to reward those that don’t have to create equality. Equality is not based on equal opportunities. Equality is based on outputs, and that is extremely unfair. Equality of input, I understand. Equality of output, that is where it goes sideways because in the end, financial wealth is a function of results and value if done honestly and ethically.

TWS 56 | Wealth And Human Behavior

Wealth And Human Behavior: One of the most incredible aspects of human behavior is figuring out solutions during difficult times, but when a safety net exists, that safety net prevents that innovation and growth.


All people are wired differently and some are motivated to do a lot of work. Some are brilliant and can work in teams. Others don’t do and therefore people want equality of output based on inequality of input. That’s destructive and harmful to a growing and innovative economy. If you want more information on that, you can go and read the episode I did, it was 2018, maybe 2019 about capitalism. I understand there’s a definition difference with people not understanding necessarily what capitalism truly means. They confuse it with other ideas but I look at now there’s a war going on. Those that understand the principle and the true nature of what a capitalist society brings are their voices is being drowned out and that’s unfortunate. At the same time, I’m hoping that it provides an opportunity through disruption for those too to understand at a different level. The youth now have that opportunity. It’s going to be interesting to see how things play out. The last thing I want to talk about is when you understand human behavior, when you understand how people respond to certain events and activities, what it does, it puts you in the position of opportunity.

Number one, it’s the opportunity to provide value to serve, to help. It’s the opportunity to purchase assets at discounts and make a profit. It’s an opportunity to start a business and merge with another business because in the end, all human beings have their short-sightedness and they make mistakes. During times of massive disruption, that’s more prevalent. I look at something that is important to me, which is trying to figure out what’s going to happen in the future. What are the likely outcomes so that I can understand what to do? On the video, you can see that Wayne Gretzky is above my right shoulder. I have that up there not for the reason I’m going to explain but I had that up there because Wayne Gretzky was an average build, speed, strength, yet he understood his environment better than anyone, and that’s what made him good. That’s a whole other episode, but he has a statement that is glib and over and used all the time, which is, “It’s not about where the puck is. It’s where the puck is going.” If you understand human behavior, you’re going to be able to identify where things are going and with regard to jobs, employment, and in college.

This is on my mind a lot because my kids are at home. I’m sympathetic to all of you out there. They’re trying to navigate kids being home, even more, their education, the experience they have keeping them occupied and productive. There are many distractions and I know it’s a full-time job to keep kids on point. I did a webinar with a good friend of mine, Tom Wheelwright. Tom and I talked about the drive parents have to provide for their kid’s futures. I look at the love and care I have for my children and also kids that are not my children, whether it’s good friends of mine, my niece and nephews. I have one niece and everyone else’s nephew, although those are boys. The care and love I have for them and their wellbeing instinctively makes me want to provide for them. Give them what they need, whether it’s shelter, gifts, or an awesome birthday or Christmas experience. On one part, I understand where that motivation comes from I feel I am putting my kids in a worse situation because they don’t experience much scarcity. They experience a lot of abundances. That’s the case with most children these days.

Life is not linear. It is volatile, and the volatility and the challenge allow people to rise to the occasion and figure their life out. Click To Tweet

The reason why I’m saying that is with regards to wanting what’s best for our kids, education-wise, we are following a cognitive bias of status quo. It’s what society says is the right thing to do. It’s what everybody else is doing. I look at our pursuit of education for our kids and this education continues to be less valuable, relevant and is essentially going to set our kids up for more unlearning in the future than learning. This is what I’ll end with and this comes to human behavior. If you know where the puck is going, what people trend too, and what they try to do collectively, then hopefully this will resonate. I’ll make that statement first, which is if you think about 400 years ago, the Mayflower landing on Plymouth Rock until now, all innovation and human behavior have been to the hierarchy of needs that I’ve spoken about in numerous episodes. It’s to figure out a way to provide for the most efficient way possible, food, shelter, clothing, your physiological needs, and that I would say, the expense as far as physiological needs are nil. You go to safety, providing a safe environment then you go to relationships. Look at the social media movement and how much people thrive on understanding the lives of someone else and how driven they are to spend enormous amounts of money and time being involved with other people’s lives, even strangers through social media and where that has gone.

The next level of the hierarchy of needs is the self-interest or ego, self-important, self-awareness, there are a lot of different subcategories to that. This is also prevalent in social media where it is a platform, so people can feel important. That is a natural drive that we all have. All of these areas are continuing to get less expensive. The future as far as our sustenance and our safety, there’s innovation, there’s money, resource, mind, and ideas going into energy, transportation, computing power, and robotics. The list is endless, which is going to drive down the cost of sustenance. What this does is it puts human beings in the position of the careers, jobs that no longer exist in the future. As Tom and I were talking on this webinar, as I prepared for it and thought about it, I identified some areas of employment and industry that are timeless. The pursuit of these, especially by children, kids, is going to be infinitely more valuable than any formal education will provide. The first thing I talked about which is leadership, understanding how to work in teams, especially how to work with people that are strangers that may have a different cultural background. That’s huge. Being able to do that effectively allows the leverage and maximization of individual gifts, abilities, and talents so that they all come together like a puzzle, individual pieces.

It’s profound when a team works together when they have a leader that is able to motivate, empathize, and give vision to an objective. The second thing is sales and communication. Being able to communicate a point, being able to find what a person wants and give them what they want. I would think within sales and communication, copywriting, creative writing storytelling is some of those subsections. Marketing is a fascinating science and it applies to everything and we’ll apply it to everything. I’m almost done with the book by Brian Kurtz, who is a marketer that started out in the ’70s and is still marketing now. He has gone through all the different platforms and mediums of marketing, yet teaches in his book Overdeliver timeless principles of marketing that have not changed even though technology and platforms have. Computer programming, everything is driven by computers yet there is rarely meaningful education and understanding by those that teach in the formal education system. It’s improving. At the same time, computer programming does not require elementary school, middle school, high school, or college. There are six-figure positions, both from a consulting, freelancer, self-employed standpoint and the demand and need is growing yet, the amount of education that goes into it in the formal sense is it’s nowhere.

TWS 56 | Wealth And Human Behavior

Wealth And Human Behavior: It’s profound when a team works together, and they have a leader that is able to motivate, empathize, and give vision to an objective.


A computer program, it could be application development. It could be UX and UI design, User Experience, User Interface design, which is essentially how we experience technology. Computers are essentially running everything whether it’s a website, it’s hardware or its software, computer programming in the future. I’m even going to take some fundamental courses because computer programming has to do with thinking models and understanding how a sequence of steps and events relate to certain outcomes. It’s a fascinating science that I’m going to dive into a little bit. I also believe that within marketing, within computer programming is the understanding of how relationships are formed, both professional relationships and friendships. There is something worth researching, which is the 12 Levels of Intimacy. Ryan Deiss who’s the Founder of sold me on something and it hit me smack dab in the middle of my forehead and it’s the 12 Levels of Intimacy. He didn’t come up with this. This is by someone that has long passed, but it talks about the steps and stages a relationship must go to, or else it’s considered harassment or assault if you skip steps.

Many people skip steps in relationship building. The 12 Levels of Intimacy is profound and it’s helped me to understand the relationship with my wife, better relationship with my children, and strangers, where relationships have to go through steps. If they don’t, then it’s considered a turnoff. It could even be harassment or assault. It’s fascinating to understand how people experience relationships in that degree of psychology. The final thing that I’ll say is social media. Social media is here to stay. It’s a part of business and relationship building. Although there is a lot of evil and bad things that happen on social media, there’s a lot of good that’s created. That is going to continue to be flushed out. Typically, the principle is what ends up being the equilibrium. At the same time, it’s going to oscillate back and forth into the evil, bad, to the good and profound but social media is part of the business. Branding, relationship building is here to stay yet it’s not taught in schools. It’s not taught in the formal sense. My charge to you through all of this is understanding human behavior at a different level is in direct proportion to the amount of wealth you’re going to have. It’s not financial wealth. It’s also your experience of life. We live in a blessed time. At the same time, we are experiencing challenges that have never been experienced in the past.

This is how life is where it is not linear. It is volatile and the volatility and the challenge allow people to rise to the occasion and figure their life out, figure problems out. I look at, what I’ve studied, what I’m intrigued by, what I’m fascinated by is our experience of life and what we wake up and do every day. How are our habits formed? How are our passions created? How did we start to identify what fulfills us and makes us happy? This is the last thing I’ll say and even though I say this, I’d be lying to say that I practice this all the time. It’s difficult to practice, but there are three degrees of relationship. The first degree is a selfish relationship. The second is horse-trading or exchange base. That means that you’re in a relationship as long as somebody gives you what you want, you’re willing to give them what they want.

The key to the ultimate fulfillment is being able to be motivated all the time by blessing the life of somebody else. Click To Tweet

The final, I would say the more enlightened level is unselfish. The others’ needs are your needs, but they come first. This is the key to the ultimate fulfillment, being able to be motivated all the time by blessing the life of somebody else, whether it’s a spouse, partner, friend, child or colleague where you put others’ interests before your own and try to serve them at the highest level possible. That ultimately seems counterintuitive, at the same time service always brings more fulfillment than self-service. It is the ultimate self-service if you think about it. Thanks for letting me riff. I appreciate it. I hope you learned something. It helped me to express myself and understand what I’ve been reading and thinking about. I appreciate those that have read and I would love to hear your feedback. Hit me up on social media, email at I’d love to hear from you. Continue to have a positive mindset. Look for opportunities to find ways in which you can help others. I know it’s going to improve your overall wealth, success, fulfillment, and happiness. That’s it. We’ll see you. Take care.

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