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You are wealthier than you think

Well that’s easy. We’re talking about money, right?

Yes, money is part of what we mean by capital. Having money helps make things happen. Cash, real-estate, stocks, bonds, boats, cars and other personal property and debts make up a person’s – or family’s - financial statement. But that is only one part of human capital.

Biological Capital
We think there are few truer statements than, the time you have left is your most valuable possession. That makes a young person quite wealthy. Young folks also have physical strength, stamina and a great potential for learning. Young people are a valuable addition to any line family. As people age, they develop physical skills that range from being fast on a computer keyboard to fine carpentry to martial arts – all physical endeavors that require time to cultivate.

Intellectual Capital or Knowledge
(formal and life experience)

What kind of knowledge could your line family use? Electrical wiring, plumbing, wine & beer making, gardening and the law are just some of the subjects that could be quite valuable. Diane Christian in her book Creating A Life Together puts it succinctly, “realize that your members’ skills and energy are equivalent to money.” Working for the family also has the benefit of increasing the “glue” that holds a family together.
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Track Record (accomplishments)
It takes determination to see a project through. Some people have a natural talent for organizing and inspiring people to work together. If your family has someone with a proven track record of accomplishment, perhaps a bank might be more inclined to loan your family the money to build that greenhouse with the hydroponics system you’ve been dreaming about.
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Social Capital
(It’s who you know that counts.)

Contacts, they’re good to have. Knowing someone at a local bank can help. Knowing people in the city or county planning commission is a help with zoning variances and building permits. Who do you know in local government? What family members have connections or can make connections. Do you know anyone who works at Adobe™ that will do a little shopping for you at the employee’s store? Even if your line family is off the grid and “self sufficient” there are always connections with the outside world. Connections like taxes, driver’s licenses, business licenses, road maintenance, the postal carrier, neighbors, building officials, loan officers and on and on… Knowing people in those worlds makes the inevitable interactions easier.
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Cultural Capital
(religious, racial and economic class)

So there’s your line family on 25 acres of mixed pasture, orchard and wetland or you’re in that grand old turn-of-the-last-century house with more bedrooms than you can count that is in an inner city community. Who are your neighbors? What is their culture? You should know, after all you moved into their neighborhood. Having family members with experience in various cultures helps everyone in the family understand and learn how to treat the people they meet. Your line family will be a challenge to almost any neighborhood you end up in. A sensitivity to people’s concerns will help you set their fears to rest.
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