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For my non-medical readers, in embryology the term zygote refers to the union of 2 gametes (an ovum from the female and a sperm from the male).
The fertilized egg, or zygote, is essentially the initial step in forming a complete human being.
It is remarkable that an organism that is composed of trillions of cells has its origin traced back to just these 2 cells that were able to fuse and form a zygote.
Imagine if you were one of these gametes and were told that the task of building an incredibly complex living, breathing, entity laid entirely on the shoulders of you and one other.
It would be quite daunting to say the least.
If I was told that I was responsible for forming the nervous, digestive, and circulatory systems, I admit that I would most likely suffer from analysis paralysis.
I would not know where to start and my task would likely fail even before it began.
But these 2 gametes, without the aid of a higher functioning (hopefully) brain like mine, accomplish this without a second thought.
We can learn a lot from the path the zygote takes from going from 2 cells to trillions and perhaps use it as a template when we are trying to create the financial organism that is our nest egg.
The perfect union.
As mentioned it takes 2 different gametes, an egg and a sperm cell to unite and create a zygote, the fundamental building block of the human being.
One without the other renders both to be ineffective.
A financial correlate to this phenomenon would be income and financial education.
You can have an incredible income but if you do not possess the financial education to capitalize on it there is a high probability that your net worth will never grow.
There is a reason the proverb, “A fool and his money are soon parted,” rings true.
One can only peruse the long list of former lottery winners or professional athletes that are now broke after the gravy train dried up.
Likewise, you can have the greatest educational financial training possible but without the income to capitalize on this knowledge you again find yourself not moving the net worth needle.
Much like when a sperm and an egg unite to form a zygote, your financial zygote net worth building block begins when both income and knowledge combine to form a symbiotic relationship.
Blasting off: The Blastula
The fertilized egg undergoes a rapid and remarkable transformation through the process of cleavage.
As each cell divides the number of cells grows exponentially.
One cell becomes 2, 2 cells become 4, and so forth.
When the total cell number reaches 128 the next early embryonic stage is entered, the blastula.
I liken this to the stage I underwent when I was paying down all my debt and finally became debt free.
The early part of my debt snowball plan (technically I used the debt avalanche method, but same principal) was akin to those early cells dividing and forming larger and larger structures.
As my debt decreased and my net worth finally crossed $0 (the lowest documented net worth I had was negative $850k around the time of my divorce), I truly was ready to blast off financially as my money was no longer being used to service debt but instead used to build something worthwhile, my nest egg.
Firmly planted: Implantation.
The blastula stage is a very fragile state.
The process of forming a human embryo cannot be accomplished without external help.
The nutrients required during this massive transformative period can only be supplied by the mother.
The nutrient bridge between mother and future fetus only occurs if there is implantation of the blastula within the uterine cavity.
When I became debt-free I had two paths ahead of me.
With all this “new-found” money that was no longer going to my lenders, I could revert to my old ways and undergo more lifestyle creep which would inevitably lead me down the path to being in debt again.
Fortunately something in my mind clicked and I chose instead to go down a path I have never stepped foot on before, the path to actual wealth.
The feeling of being debt free was incredible as I no longer made someone else money but instead made money for myself.
With the idea of creating a “Capital Snowball” implanted in my mind I knew I was on the right path to form a nest egg I could rely on.
Light at the end of the tunnel.
I have to admit that I chuckled a bit when I came up with this heading and its double entendre, but it really is fitting.
Eventually that zygote has progressed to the point that it has become a viable fetus and shortly thereafter ready to go through the birth canal and enter the world.
Much like a fledgling newborn, my financial journey started out in a sector of the world I had absolutely very little experience in.
And similar to an infant, I made mistakes, a lot of them, along the way.
But eventually I did find my financial legs and footing and the transformation to being a financial adult took place.
Having incurred a massive amount of debt right before turning 40, I have firsthand experience of the feelings of helplessness that start to crop up.
You almost want to throw your hands up in the air and give up as the amount of debt feels insurmountable.
But much like the Herculean task that the zygote faces at the very beginning of life, it is possible to not only pay off your debt but also create a nest egg that can support your retirement.
Two cells may seem trivial when you are talking about an organism composed of trillions of them.
But the right two cells make all the difference in the world.
Similarly when you have a lot of debt, it may seem like any money you allocate to pay it down seems trivial, but it does make a difference.
The Debt Snowball method by David Ramsey is a a tried and true method that can help you begin your journey to wealth.
If you are in search of financial help, please consider enlisting the service of any of the sponsors of this blog who I feel are part of the “good guys and gals of finance.”
Even a steadfast DIY’er can sometimes gain benefit from the occasional professional input.
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