When it comes to money, people want to have enough, or more than enough, to be able to pay the bills, take the occasional holiday and avoid needing to decide between heating and eating.
But what if you want to become rich? What if you want to live your bucket list now and secure future prosperity?
1. Decide to be rich:
Money is mostly about attitude and habit, determination and goals, making a decision and setting a target and remembering it’s going to be a lot of hard work. Define your outcomes and set clear, achievable results in advance. Know what “success” looks like! Have measurable, specific outcomes and determine that you will achieve them! Set a goal and a purpose – if you don’t know where you are aiming how will you get there?
2. Live below your means.
The first step to getting rich requires discipline. Rich people know this is the trick. Wealth is accumulated, re-invested, used wisely and given away. It is never spent unnecessarily! A 2010 study in America found that 37% of millionaires buy used cars rather than new. If you want to achieve wealth, don’t be a walking billboard for overpriced clothes, shoes or bling. Cut out the takeaways, make your own coffee and live simply, invest wisely, and enjoy it all!
3. Don’t fear debt:
Rich people have plenty of debt, but they know the difference between good debt and bad debt so use it to prosper. A good rule of thumb is this: if it will make you money or save you money then consider doing it with borrowed money. For example, if the train company you travel with to get home for the holidays is having a flash sale on, it makes sense to use your overdraft or credit card to buy the tickets, then pay it off with your next month’s budget rather than wait and have to pay full-price. Remember, as long as you pay off your credit card in full there will be no added interest to pay. Having said that…
4. Do fear credit cards:
If you can eat it or wear it, don’t put it on your credit card. If you really want to be rich, you need to find the discipline to avoid unnecessary credit. Let the athletes and lotto winners buy the fancy cars and flashy jewellery. Do you know that roughly 70% of all lottery winners are broke within a few years of receiving their jackpot? And sport stars and music stars don’t fare much better…be ‘money smarter’.
5. Pay your taxes:
Look at all the celebrities trying to be sneaky and not paying their taxes only to get massively thumped when HMRC catch up with them. If you can legally avoid tax then great, but evading tax is just plain stupid. If you aim to pay millions in tax, for example, that means you’ll be earning tens of millions as a salary!
6. Start your own business:
More than two-thirds of the Forbes rich list are self-made. Business creation is the No. 1 driver of wealth in the country and if you have an idea, some mentors and some money you should seriously consider creating your own job (and maybe jobs for others too!)
7. Find yourself a teacher:
Find some people to learn from and emulate. They can be people you have personal access to, our those you can only access through their Twitter or LinkedIn accounts. Any which way you learn from them be sure you do. And while you seek out those who can raise you up, minimise how much time you spend with those who bring you down – as Mark Twain once said, “Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions”.
8. Focus on your greatest asset.
Yourself. The greatest rate of return you will ever earn is when you invest in yourself. Invest in yourself because your career is the engine of your wealth. Getting employability skills and increasing your financial education is something the rich understand – train your mind, invest time in yourself and become knowledgeable about the business of money – as Barry Asmus likes to say, “leaders are readers.”
And remember, only idiots think they can get rich fast. Get rich slowly. The key to great wealth is to maximise income, minimise debt and maximise your assets. Create long-term wealth so you can live the life you want.