We’ve discussed multiple pillars of wealth, but we haven’t explicitly acknowledged where these pillars actually come from.
Money doesn’t magically appear in your retirement accounts; a home doesn’t build and pay for itself; your medical practice isn’t established by divine edict.
With the exception of an inheritance or winning the lottery, all your pillars of wealth are enabled by your human capital—everything is made possible by your education, expertise, and hard work.
As a young professional, it may seem difficult to quantify the value of this human capital, but there is real value there. It depends on your ability to realize your earning potential. That is, your ability to monetize your hard-won education and expertise.
It should be clear that you must protect your human capital, as your pillars will never come into being if disability or death disrupts your career. Carefully selected disability and life insurance policies can be used to safe-guard human capital value. Insurance policies are discussed in greater detail in the insurance chapter.