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From Stilettos to Construction Boots

Updated: Feb 1, 2023

I think about how my life has changed drastically. From sitting in an office, wearing high heeled shoes and power suits to recently looking for a pair of steel toed construction boots for myself. From pushing paper to now restoring an over 200 year old pyramid on an investment property with other unique features.

I tell younger people not to get too fixated on doing one thing. Life becomes more interesting and fun if you can figure out how to create multiple streams of income early and not be afraid of failure. Failure is the playground of learning. Focus on gaining experience and succeeding and it will happen. At a younger age one has the opportunity to try different things simply for experience or widening the scope of what is possible. I found myself wondering how to do exactly that in my 40's when I realized that my pension and methods of savings would not be sufficient to support my retirement. I always wondered about inflation and how people on a fixed income get by. These thoughts moved me in a very different direction. I had to leave the career I knew to learn new things and engage in life's lessons which would eventually teach me what I needed to know to keep taking my next steps.

By walking away from traditional thinking and savings, I began to invest in a larger venture by acquiring an old unique post and beam building which was built in 1907. I was stretched on every level because I was new at investing, business ownership, commercial property ownership, partnerships and financing requirements for the large venture. There are things I had never heard of in my financial life that were available to me because no one spoke about it. Learning what was possible allowed me to play in a much larger financial forum. Back then I had not read many business books about different strategies and concepts, so I learned through experience. This was not the smartest way because I was terrified of the unknown, even though the risk was calculated. Everything has turned out well and I gained a ton of experience.

This building became one of my greatest teachers. When I didn't know what my role would be, I started at the bottom. I cleaned the building and helped with the renovations. Eventually I would take over the administrative duties. It was a natural fit as in my former life I read income tax returns and financial statements all day long, so I knew what was required to keep things running. All of the hard work paid off and the value of the property increased by millions.

Fast forward 5 years, God wastes no experiences we have with Him. My next venture (or adventure) is with an even older property. It is about 220 years old. Having had the lessons from the 1907 building, this is different, yet I can relate to it.

Since leaving the stiletto life and being open to doing anything and whatever is required, I am having more fun on this project. This property has a unique structure on it, an old pyramid which needs some TLC. It has not been cleaned in a long time and there are all kinds of vines, trees and weeds growing on it. Instead of pen and paper, my work tools are currently an axe, a rake and a saw. I'm happy putting on my construction boots every day and doing whatever it takes to beautify the pyramid as we have plans for its restoration. While I am doing that, the land around it is being cleared for development. This is what I love about life. We have opportunities to do things that are not typical and to learn from it. I love meeting people like myself who are willing to do what it takes to get something distinctively special done. To me, that's how I leave an impression on the Earth. It's almost as if my footprint is left there as a part of my legacy when I do something unique that's pretty special to the community.

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3 comentários

Thank you Dear Risel. Definitely food for thought. 😘


31 de jan. de 2023

Now that's a real messy leap. How are you going to clean a 200 year old structure? Glad you found some work boots.

Risel Furtado
Risel Furtado
01 de fev. de 2023
Respondendo a

I'm cleaning it lovingly, one stone and one section at a time. It's physically hard work. Those vines are very thick and extremely long. Every day, we see progress in what we've done.

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