7 ½ lessons in personal finance from the superstar of the millennium
On 11th October 2017 is the 75th birthday of Superstar Amitabh Bachchan. On this day, we pay a tribute to the biggest entertainer and superstar of the screens – he started with films and is making waves on television through his popular show Kaun Banega Crorepati.
On his 75th birthday, we pay tributes to Mr. Bachchan by taking some clues from his many roles on screen. Here is a list of 7.5 lessons, one each for every decade of his life.
Lessons from his famous dialogues
- Deewar–Main aaj bhi phenke hue paise nahin uthata
Earn money with respect. Even when Amitabh’s role was played by a child artist, he tells Iftikhar Ahmed, “Mein pheke hue paise nahin uthata, saab.” Later, Amitabh Bachchan reminds him of the incident and repeats the same lines.
Whether he had money or not, he never picked up money that was thrown at him. He respected money and he expected the others to respect labour of anyone. Money must be earned in a respected way, and not otherwise.
- Kaalia–Hum jahan khade hotey hain, line wahin se shuru hoti hai
In a famous scene in the movie Kaalia, Amitabh Bachchan speaks these lines in a jail. Every time I have watched this movie in theatres, the audience goes wild when he says this. Now, let us understand very clearly. He is Amitabh Bachchan. He has the right to utter these lines. He is the superstar. How many of us can claim to be even good at investing? None. So we tweak this above dialogue and say “Jahan line hoti hai, hum wahan khade ho jaate hain.” So many investors queue up to buy (or sell) something only because all the others are doing it. We call it herd mentality. This is seen across centuries, across countries and across investment options – we have seen it happening in equity shares, IPOs, real estate, gold, and currently Bitcoins.
Standing is queue may be good in certain situations – man is a social animal, after all. However, in financial markets, those in queue may end up buying costly or selling cheap.
Learn about an investment and take independent decisions. If you cannot, take the help of wise experts.
- Satte pe Satta
Ek dost ki party mein gaya tha, wahan jabardasti chaar baatli pila diya
Many of us remember this scene for what follows next in the dialogue – “Daaru peeney se liver kharab hota hai”, but we are focusing on the above line for a specific reason.
There are so many instances when the investor says that someone came and sold a product. Well, that may be true, but it is exactly like saying what Amitabh said in the lines mentioned above. While someone may come and offer any product or service, it is our duty to always remember “Caveat Emptor” or “Buyer Beware”. Ask questions till you do not understand the pitch. There is no hurry.
Aaj aap ke paas aap ki saari daulat sahi, sab kuch sahi, lekin maine aap se jyaada garib aaj tak nahin dekha. Good-bye, Mr. R. K. Gupta.
Trishul was an epic battle between a father and the son of his discarded lover. After Sanjeev Kumar strains his relationship with his family and is left alone at his luxurious house, with all his wealth, Amitabh utters the above words.
Wealth is nothing if the family is not with one. After all, what do we earn the wealth for, if that does not make us happy and fulfilled in life?
Apun woh kutte ki dum hai, jo baara baras nalli ke andar daal ke, nalli tedi hoti, apun seedha nahin hota!
This is superb depiction of human nature. Our experiences have shaped the way we take decisions. It is not just one lifetime, but the cumulative experiences accumulated since the birth of the first humans that we have learnt how various things work and those lessons influence our decisions and actions.
Many of those actions, and biases are reflected in the way we deal with money – sometimes such biases protect us and on other occasions, put us into troubles. Very often, it is our limited abilities that we do not know which lessons to apply when.
Lessons from the movies
- Chupke Chupke
Dr. Parimal Tripathi, played Amitabh Bachchan was asked to pretend to be Dr. Sukumar Sinha in the movie. However, when he went in front of Vasudha, played by Jaya Bachchan, he fell in love and was in two minds: whether to play the role of Sukumar Sinha or that of Parimal Tripathi – his original self in the movie. This confusion lands him into trouble.
In the world of money, a large number of people are confused of their own role – whether they are investors or speculators. While they try to be investors in the beginning, the moment they see Vasudha – be it financial news; or any hot tip; or simply their own emotions of greed, hope or fear – they forget that they are supposed to be investors and start acting like speculators. This gets them into trouble.
The whole movie is around an old couple that spent their life and their life’s savings on their kids, only to find in their golden years that the kids were not in a position to help them at all.
Many parents have assigned a lower priority to their own retirement years and spent every bit of saving on education and marriage of their kids. The lesson in the movie is very powerful. You are on your own in your retirement years. Please plan properly.
And now the message # 7 ½:
It is a half message as it is taken from the small screen. This lesson is from the popular game show – Kaun Banega Crorepati.
As you know, the time allotted for each question is 45 seconds in the beginning. Once you cross the first “padaav”, the time available for each question goes up to 60 seconds. On crossing the second “padaav”, there is no time limit and in the words of Mr. Bachchan, “kaantaben shaant ho jayegi”. This is the real meaning of wealth – the significance of wealth in life. As you get wealthy, you should have more time available. If wealth is not releasing your time, you are living a life of bartering life for money – a really bad deal.
There are many more lessons that we can learn from Mr. Bachchan’s life on screen as well as his real life.
In the end, let us remember another great movie, where he played a second lead. “Anand” in the movie “Anand” tells Dr. Bhaskar, Amitabh Bachchan, “Babu Moshay, zindagi badi honi chahiye, lambi nahin.” We wish Mr. Bachchan a “badi” and “lambi” zindagi. Thank you Sir. We wish you many more years of happy, healthy and wealthy life.
This post was written by Mr. Amit Trivedi and first appeared on his blog on 11th October, 2017. It is reproduced here with his kind permission. You can find the original post here: http://karmayog-knowledge.blogspot.in/2017/10/7-lessons-in-personal-finance-from.html
Mr. Trivedi is a leading mutual fund investment trainer in India and author of the book “Riding The Roller Coaster: Lessons from financial market cycles we repeatedly forget”.
Image courtesy: http://www.koimoi.com