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Return on Life

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Disarming the Noise
The world we live in is awash with discontent, anger and bitterness. In recent conversation with friends I had to admit my media consumption was becoming severely limited as every media encounter left me wanting to take a shower. I suspect most news is not news at all but noise whose primary objective is to sell advertising or worse. 

We know all is not well in the world. There are great social and economic injustices occurring and some of those I have personally entered into to offer hope and help. My concern is, in today’s negative media obsessed climate, it is easy to fall prey to the prevailing pessimism that feeds an attitude of ingratitude, discontent and bitterness.  It is currently unfashionable to defend capitalism and free markets and to be awestruck about anything. But count me grateful for our way of life and for something as seemingly insignificant as the glasses that make it possible for me to read … and type.

Perhaps I have a more optimistic world view but as I was recently reminded in 1900 few had running water, central heating or air, electric washing machines or refrigerators. Today, of those Americans officially designated as ‘poor’, 99% have electricity, running water, flush toilets and refrigerators. A lot has changed for the better in the last 100 years. There is good in our world.

“Over the last 60 years (since 1955) the world population has more than doubled. A scarcity mentality would suggest that such growth would lead to great shortages of goods and services, but the opposite has happened. The average human earned three times more money on an inflation-adjusted basis and ate one-third more calories of food. The average human is now more literate and educated and less likely to die as a result of war, famine, murder or childbirth.[1]

I’ve discovered a key to disarming the destructive power of this noise is to intentionally affirm the good in the world and to cultivate an attitude of gratitude for the most basic and most majestic of the blessings that surround us. Sometimes gratitude is born from recognizing that much of life is a gift, not something we deserved or were entitled to. It also fuels the freedom to be generous to others because anything we receive as a gift is much easier to share.

Bottom line: As consumers of all types of media we have the power to control what we ‘use’ and thereby ultimately influence what is available. Let’s improve our lives and the lives of others by choosing wisely.

[1] Ridley, Matt. The Rational Optimist: How Prosperity Evolves. New York: Harper Perennial; Reprint edition, 2011 from Hamilton, Chad.  Redefining Financial Freedom p.131

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Carroll Financial Associates

4201 Congress Street, Suite 210

Charlotte, NC 28209

Office: 704.553.8006

Direct: 704.247.2816

Fax: 704.553.9610


Registered Representative offering securities through Cetera Advisor Networks LLC, Member FINRA/SIPC. Advisory services offered through Carroll Financial Associates, Inc., a Registered Investment Advisor.  Carroll Financial and Cetera Advisor Networks LLC are not affiliated companies. 

Securities offered through Cetera Advisor Networks LLC, member FINRA/SIPC.  Advisory services offered through Carroll Financial Associates, Inc., a Registered Investment Advisor.  Carroll Financial and Cetera Advisor Networks are not affiliated. Additional risks are associated with international investing, such as currency fluctuations, political and economic stability, and differences in accounting standards. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Indices are unmanaged and cannot be invested in directly. The views are those of Michael Jette and Ben Ganson and should not be construed as investment advice. All information is believed to be from reliable sources: however, we make no representation as to its completeness or accuracy. All economic and performance information is historical and not indicative of future results. Consult your financial advisor for more information.



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