Kobe Bryant’s letter to his 17-year-old self

26 July 2016

Last week Kobe Bryant published a letter to his younger self. It’s about money and relationships.

It’s a moving piece, hinting at some of his experiences relating to sudden wealth. 

Bryant explains that you need to invest in your loved ones. Not give to them.

This involves making “tough choices, even if your siblings and friends do not understand them at the time”. 

You need to do this immediately:

so that you don’t have to deal with the hurt and struggle of weaning them off of the addiction that you facilitated. That addiction only leads to anger, resentment and jealousy from everybody involved, including yourself.

Bryant is fortunate for having had such a long and prosperous career. It is likely he was able to recover from many of his early missteps. Many others who experience “sudden wealth” (whether they be in professional sports or entertainment; having won the lottery or received an inheritance) will not get the same second changes that Bryant had.

When Bryant says:

Trust me, setting things up right from the beginning will avoid a ton of tears and heartache, some of which remains to this day.

I’m inclined to believe him.



Kobe Bryant, sports

About the author 

Sonnie Bailey

In his spare time, Sonnie likes telling people that he’s a former Olympic power walker, a lion tamer, or that he is an orthodontist. He is none of those things. In reality, Sonnie is a financial planner based in Christchurch. Through his business, Fairhaven Wealth (www.fairhavenwealth.co.nz), he provides independent, advice-only, fixed-fee financial planning services. Sonnie is a “recovering lawyer”: he has specialised in trusts and personal client work. He has also worked as a financial services lawyer for many years.

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