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The Intersection of Kaepernick and Financial Empowerment

Updated: Dec 16, 2021

Despite your stance, currently or historically, on Colin Kaepernick's legacy, he represents something that most of us wish we had - choice!

The choice to take a chance!

The choice to speak up!

The choice to say “No!” or walk away!

In fact, based on the zillionth Facebook post I’ve seen about someone’s job, I’m sensing that more than a few of us dislike our workplace environment.

And, despite the disdain for one’s boss or co-worker(s), most people are probably not going to do anything to compromise their employment status intentionally. To do so would result in experiencing a pretty severe financial shock like no longer being able to cover the mortgage/rent, car note, grocery bill, insurance, childcare, etc. If you believe highly paid professional athletes are not faced with the same dilemma, have you seen "Broke" the ESPN documentary?

Does Colin Kaepernick currently have a job?

Life gets complicated despite our socio-economic status. The more complicated it gets, the fewer choices we feel we have especially when it comes to our finances. Think about it. How many times have you said, “I would say something, but I do not want to lose my job or the social capital I’ve established.”?

Sadly, many of us find ourselves wanting to take a knee but can’t. Yet Colin Kaepernick, despite the possible repercussions, chose to kneel. This brings us to a critical point... Financial empowerment optimizes choice!

To optimize choice in our own lives, we must understand that financial empowerment is not the ability to amass more stuff. As we like to say, ‘It’s the ability to have anything you want but the wisdom not to.’ Financial empowerment should allow you to exercise choice - not limit it!

Consider this, sticking with the job theme here, how long can you currently go without your paycheck to pursue a career path you absolutely love? (You might be surprised to find that many doctors, lawyers, and engineers live paycheck to paycheck as well).

Financial empowerment is the ability to have anything you want but the wisdom not to.

Now let’s say you don’t have any bills. The house and car are paid for, student loans are taken care of, and you don’t have credit card debt. How long do you think you can go without your current paycheck to find the career path you love in this scenario?

Despite how much money you earn, the former lifestyle will more than likely limit your capacity for change. The latter opens up the possibility to explore opportunities that would not be feasible otherwise.

If we are honest with ourselves, we’ve all had a moment when we’ve wanted to take a chance but couldn’t. We’ve all had a moment when we’ve chosen to be silent when we should have spoken up. We’ve all had a moment when we’ve wanted to leave a toxic situation but decided against it because it placed food on the table.

We’ve all been there and will continue to be until we change the financial narrative from stuff to empowerment, from financial bondage to financial freedom, from the myopic lens of now to the expanded lens of endless possibilities.

Financial empowerment optimizes choice!

How might you live life differently if you focused on working towards building your capacity for financial empowerment? If you ask me, I think you might find the audacity to follow in Colin Kaepernick’s footsteps and take a knee.

- Until next time. You have more power than you think. Own it! -

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