On Achieving Goals or How Much Is Enough

“Everything we see hides another thing, we always want to see what is hidden by what we see.” -René Magritte

What is your goal with regards to financial stability? Do you want to be “a millionaire”? Do you want to be considered one of the richest people in the world? Do you want to retire early and follow a passion, such as world travel or support a volunteer organization?

Or do you just want to get to the point of being able to live comfortably and not have to worry about worrying? (FYI, these are not rhetorical questions. I really would like to know your goals)

There seem to be several ways of looking at this and all seem to contradict each other in some way, shape, or form.

Having the goal of becoming “a millionaire” is either not a good idea (according to CNBC) or highly dependant on your goals and specific situation (according to Kiplingers). TL;DR – Lot’s of factors to consider.

If becoming one of the richest people in the world is your goal, there is a pretty good chance that you already are there. If you make more than $34, 200 per year in income, you are already in the top 1% of the world’s wealthy. If you are looking at Net Worth, you need to have a Net Worth of  $770,000 or better to be in the  top one percent of the wealthiest people in the world.

For those of you who want to retire early for travel or whatever, it is possible with a little effort and strategic thinking. Or, better yet, take the Tim Ferriss approach and set yourself up to take multiple mini-retirements starting now.

I kind of like the Tim Ferris approach and want to achieve that one day. And we are working towards that goal. In fact, I would venture to say that we are almost there.

I have worked most of my life with the goal of getting to this goal or that goal, then everything will be: easier, gravy, much simpler. But  this past year, we had a revelation…over the last 15 years or so, every change in situation at work or uncomfortable conditions to be endured were rationalized by saying “this is only temporary and when I achieve “X”, things will be much better!” The revelation was that every time “X” was achieved, a new “X” would take it’s place. It’s a continual cycle of expanding goals.

Not long after realizing that this was continually happening in my work life, a speaker at a REIA (Real Estate Investment Association) that I attend in Lafayette, Louisiana covered the topic “Freedom Number?…Check! Now What? Albert Pellissier basically pointed out that you don’t need to be on a continuous roller coaster of “Striving for ‘X'” and spend more time with your family, enjoying your life.

That is what I intend to do. I also want to share tips, tricks, and ideas, through this blog, with all of you, to help you achieve your goals.

Let me know what you think in the comments. Ask questions, tell your story.

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My History With Money, Pt. II

Last post, I talked about the examples of managing money that I grew up around. I thought I would go to school, then come back to work in the family business. While in college, I slowly realized that those techniques would not lead to success. I watched the family business decline and came to the conclusion that if I continued on the track I was on, the best I could hope for was a low-paying job with the state and that did not fit in with my goals of owning my business and becoming wealthy.
Oddly enough, these observations drove me to the oil and gas industry. When I started there, the old-timers would ask me why I got into it. My reply was “Because I wanted a steady paycheck.” Their response was to laugh & laugh! It was funny because at the  time, the industry was just coming out of one of the worst slumps it had ever seen (early ’90s) and “oilfield” + “steady paycheck” did not make sense to them.
So I began my oilfield career and also began contributing to a retirement fund. I mostly contributed the maximum amount allowable. I never really missed it due to those savings occurring via payroll deduction. That being said, the money I did take home, I felt entitled to spend, since I earned it. And spend I did! I bought a huge house, lots of electronics to fill it, decided to open a recording studio in the house, had to do repairs along the way, and a host of other debt accumulation.
I was roughly $100,000 in debt. So I decided to do something about it. I sold the house for a small profit, removing about 87% of my debt, and moved in with a fraternity brother as room mates to cut my expenses. After about 6 months I had paid off the remaining debt and began saving money to build a house once my fiance and I got married.
That was when my financial conservativeness training began. My wife taught me that unless we could pay cash for something, then we did not need it, in addition to just because you want something, doesn’t mean you need it.
Fast-forward 15 years and through saving, strategic investment, a little inheritance, and core principles of not spending frivolously, we are pretty much set for retirement.
I turn 50 this year and could probably retire now, but I am concerned about health insurance costs. So, for the time being, I continue to work to keep the health benefits, while growing real estate investments and helping guide the growth of a business investment along with my partners.
I think the key things that helped to get us here are as follows:
  • Learning to not spend, especially when I don’t have it
  • Learning to not spend just because I have it


Saving money to allow us to strategically take advantage of opportunities when they presented themselves.
Let me know what you think in the comments. Ask questions, tell your story.
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My History With Money, Pt. I

What I grew up seeing around me.
What I wanted to do.

Today I am going to relate my experiences with Money from when I was a child to present day, in a loose chronological order.


My parents split up when I was approximately 10 years old and I don’t really remember a whole lot about our finances prior to that. What I do remember is that after that point, things were not easy.


We moved in with my grandparents, away from friends and family, started a new school, and began a different life. At the end of that school year, I began an unwanted tradition of working every summer on one of my grandfather’s shrimp boats and later in my uncles’ seafood businesses. Whatever money was earned went to help cover costs for my mother, my sister, and me to survive. I would get a hundred dollars at the end of the summer to buy school clothes for the upcoming year and that was the about all I would see of what I made.


My cousins of a similar age were doing the same work as me, but they got to keep all of their money, spending it on nice stereos, toys, etc., because their parents were making money and running a business.


I started learning about the businesses because it seemed like the way to not be poor. What I learned, besides the mechanics of actual operations, were bad money management habits.

Things seemed to be all about making sure you got your share out of the revenue, to the detriment of everything else…spending the holidays at hunting camps, spending the last bit of money you have, with no guarantee of future revenue.

This is not a good model to follow, especially if you are trying to maintain a steady income, much less, grow your income. Eventually, within a few years, both uncles were out of money, with no business to support them, because they only focused on the “right now” and had trouble planning for the long haul.

The takeaway lesson from today’s post is to not spend everything you make. Practice restraint and plan for the future. Short of winning the lottery like a former co-worker, you will not get rich quick. BUT, if you practice this as a habit, it should allow you to prepare for retirement.

Let me know what you think in the comments. Ask questions, tell your story.

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Bayou Blue Dancing Lights – A Holiday Light Show Synchronized to Music

Dancing Lights!
Our light show running in the VERY VERY RARE snow day in South Louisiana!
About three years ago we got into animated Holiday lighting…it involves synchronizing you lights to music to put on a show. You can start with a basic AC controller (alternating current, for regular Christmas lights) and expand on up to where you can do the equivalent of a Jumbotron screen, displaying video and animation!
Now that New Year’s Day has passed, it is time to take down our Christmas show. The show ran from Thanksgiving night through 01-Jan-2018. Some of the elements of it were up since September, when we put up our Halloween show. I’ll touch on why that was in a later post.
The show starts out with designing a layout, then simulating that layout in the visualizer software. That involves a picture of the house and each string or group of lights on an individual channel to be drawn out in the visualizer and assigned to a channel on a controller.
What the LOR Visualizer layout looks like.
Once the show layout has been put together, it is on to selecting songs and sequencing the lights to the songs. This probably takes up most of the time involved in setting up the show. It may take me up to 10 hours to do a single song from scratch. We have some favorites and perennials, so it is easier to take some sequences from previous years and just add on the extra sequencing to cover new elements or additional channels added to the setup.
My basic setup uses Light-O-Rama (LOR) controllers. We started with one 16 channel AC controller the first year, then added a second 16 channel AC controller and a 24 channel “Dumb RGB” controller, (by “Dumb RGB, meaning that every light connected to a channel will be the same color, as opposed to a “Smart RGB” controller, which can address each individual pixel on a string of lights and turn it to a different color.), and last year during the off-season, we added a third 16 channel AC controller giving us a total of 72 channels. 48 of which are regular AC lights and the other 24 account for 7 RGB flood lights and the most recent addition to our show, a “dumb RGB” strip star, as  seen in the picture below.
Highlighting the RGB Star.
Overall we had a good run with very little problems this year. We were only shut down by rain twice.
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2018 Goals (A Hello World Post for this Blog)


If you do not know me already, my name is Clint Galliano. I live in Louisiana and have worked in the oil and gas industry for most of my career. But I also do other “stuff”. In addition to working in O & G, my wife and I invest in real estate and invested a door manufacturing business, which I sit on the board of.

I started this new blog because I wanted to start posting content mainly not related to my OFTAS Blog (Oilfield, Tech, And Stuff), and leaning more towards finance, business, and investing.

In addition, one of my partners challenged me to write more in 2018. I take it as a growth opportunity.

While 2017 was interesting for me and my family, I am ready to plow into 2018 and grow as a person and as an investor. I am going to set a goal of writing a post a week on this blog, minimum, for the whole year. I may post more, depending on current events.

Below is the list of topics I plan to cover:

  • Business Finance
  • Technology
  • Personal Finance
  • Automation
  • Current Events
  • Personal
  • Real Estate Investing
  • Holiday Lighting Displays
I hope You enjoy my posted and can benefit from them.
Leave me comment to let me know what you think about the topics!
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