I don’t know for sure, but I have a strong feeling that there are a million blogs, seminars and books dealing with this issue but I wanted to put my spin on it…
A friend and I often talk about the difference between being rich and having wealth. I have written about it occasionally because it’s an integral component of living a young, fabulous and successful life. Having a millionaire mindset, in my opinion, deals primarily with how you value yourself.
First, you have to value your time. Most wealthy people that I know understand that their most valuable asset is not in a financial account but it’s their time. They are very selective about who they spend their time with and what they spend their time doing. Once you begin to place a premium on your time, you will notice other people doing so also. Initially, the time free loaders in your life **you know the people who have no problem sucking up your time as long as you are helping them** will not be happy but I assure you… You will feel very extremely liberated when you stop feeling like you owe your time to other people.
Next, you must have a financial plan. At some point, a million dollars will probably pass through your hands (if you work from 22 to 62 making an average of$25,000 per year, you will earn $1,000,000). For some of us, it could be a lot more but the point isn’t how much you make but what are you doing with your money? Have you considered how you will spend your time during retirement and how much that lifestyle will cost? Do you have a financial plan for your children and their education? Are you and your mate on one accord when it comes to spending and saving? Money matters are often taboo because we don’t want anyone in our business and a lot of times, we don’t even want to dive too deeply into our own business so we avoid budgeting and tracking our finances thinking that if we just make more money then everything will be ok. Sorry… it doesn’t work like that. If you are a spender then you will probably spend regardless of how much you make, the difference will be what you are spending money on. You have to get your mind right so you can get your money right.
Once you have learned to value your time and save your money, consider how you can give back. Many Americans can not effect change because we have no influence. No one listens to us because we don’t have the time to invest in the causes that are important to us nor do we have the financial resources to contribute to them. Think for a second about the people who are regularly featured on the Forbes’ wealth lists. Most of them use their wealth to give back and to have an influence on the things that are important to them. They embody the saying, “don’t talk about it, be about it.”
Now, you have to let go of your fear of change. That is hard for most of us but think about this… in order to grow from a child into an adult, we had to change. We had to get taller, most of our attitudes developed and we increased our vocabularies. If you don’t change then you stay the same. Unless you are happy where you are, you need to think about what changes need to happen in your life to get you where you want to go.
At this point, you have to realize that without taking a risk, you probably won’t get the reward. I know… another tough pill to swallow but think about the successful people that you know. Very few of them made it to the top without taking some risks. Some of their gambles paid off and a few of them didn’t but they kept pushing forward. Some times when I face setbacks, I feel like giving up but those moments are fleeting because I want to live a life that has meaning and I can’t do that sitting on the sidelines. I have to understand my value, consider how I spend my time and money and not be afraid of the changes that must be made in my life. Many of us have become so beat down by other people’s opinions and circumstances in our lives that we have forgotten to dream. We have forgotten the innermost desires of our heart. We focus so much on the impossible that we forget “I’m Possible”. No one said that it would be easy because if it was easy, everyone would do it. There is a reason that some succeed while most fail. You have to check your ego at the door and focus on doing the work to make your dreams a reality.
Finally, don’t be afraid to get professional help. Hire a financial planner to help you manage your money, consult with an organizational expert to help you manage your time, retain an accountant to do your taxes… Figure out areas in your life that you can afford to get assistance AND that you feel comfortable delegating tasks so that you can spend your time on the things that are most important to you while having some free time for fun.
Remember this… we all have the same twenty-fours in each day. You can’t change that but you can change your mindset about how you spend your time and then you won’t be focused on getting rich because you will have uncovered the true meaning of wealth and success.