Brian Tracy, the world-renowned author, trainer and speaker created a video titled, ‘The 5 Reasons Why Most People Don’t Become Wealthy.’ Here are the highlights.
1. It never occurs to them to become wealthy
Most people do not realize what is possible. We are not led to believe that we can obtain massive wealth. I know that I had no idea what was realistic, or what was even a potential option. The general population is not exposed to the people and real stories that share how to create and build our wealth. Our educational system does not teach us what is possible, or what wealth even really is.
It takes some external source to give you that “aha” moment, when you realize that you seriously can have anything you want financially. For me, that moment was provided from reading books and more books. I was in my early 20’s when it occurred to me that I can, and should, become wealthy. Previously, I know that I had no idea what I could do, or how much money I could make. I grew up in a small town in the Midwest, and a 6 figure income early in my career wasn’t even a realistic dream… only because I didn’t know! I had not been told that this was possible, and I surely didn’t know anyone that had accomplished this. Now, I’m still learning all of the things that are possible and the possible ways to achieve my dreams. You can’t fix what you don’t know, so unless you realize you can truly be wealthy, you won’t become so.
If you are so lucky to see just how financially successful you can become, how anything is within our grasp, then it opens up the world of opportunity for you. Once you recognize this, you can take action to achieve the previously “impossible.” Read, listen to podcasts and audiobooks, and reach out to people with similar interests. Realize that you can have anything that you want if you put your mind to it. Seriously.
2. People don’t decide to be successful
The first step towards success is always to DECIDE to be successful. As I always say, financial success is a decision; it is a process. YoPro Wealth is here to help you through this process, but you have to first make the decision and commitment to obtain what you want. Once you do this, truly decide and commit, you will not let anything get in your way. Nothing can stop you. You build momentum, everything seems to begin to flow and the compound effect repeatedly takes place getting you closer and closer to your dreams. But most people cannot or do not make that decision. You can’t get to your goal without that first step, so take it. It isn’t easy, but it is worth it. Commit. Decide. And you will realize true financial success.
There is always, “I’ll do this tomorrow,” or “it isn’t the right time” or “once this happens, I’ll start to get serious about it”… You know when you hear those phrases that they’re not true. The time is never exactly right! You have to start right now. The longer you delay, the easier it becomes to delay even more. The time is now. Start before it is too late.
I am a recovering perfectionist, so my excuse used to be that it wasn’t good enough yet. I started this blog before I’m happy with everything, and I’ll start the podcast before I’m a pro. But by starting, and not procrastinating, I will make more progress and more improvements in a shorter time period, and thus, reaching my goals quicker. Don’t delay. Take control of your financial destiny starting today.
In addition, the way that I fight procrastination is by putting a deadline with every single goal or task that I have. A goal without a deadline is only a wish. Larry Stevens, CEO of the great efficiency/productivity hub Opus Workspace, told me that, “87% of millionaires have a consistency, and that consistency is that they have a to-do list with a ‘by when’ date assigned to each item.” Adding a deadline makes it more competitive and adds an element of accountability. Help yourself be more productive. Since I’ve added this extra element to my to-do list habits, my productivity has shot up immensely.
4. Inability to delay gratification
I know many people that cannot stop themselves. As soon as money comes in, it is gone. As soon as they have $500, they have a new iPad. Never mind that they have $55,000 in student loan debt. One of the top characteristics in building financial freedom is DISCIPLINE. You must make a financial plan and stick to it. It is hard to delay that instant gratification at first, but it is absolutely necessary. As Brian Tracy says in the video, “If you cannot achieve budgeting as a habit, it’ll be impossible for you to achieve financial independence.” So, prepare a budget and start to build your wealth today (mint.com is a great place to start!).
I built a way to handle impulse purchases that is quite easy to follow. For any purchase over $100, I use what I call “The Honeymoon Rule”. If anything costs over that amount (or whatever value you set for yourself), do the following:
A. Decide if it is a good purchase (but don’t buy it yet).
B. Then, wait 30 days and re-evaluate the potential purchase.
C. If it is still a good decision to buy it after the emotions of the moment are gone, then you should buy it.
We often hear of “buyer’s remorse”, which is just the opposite of this principle. People buy something during the “honeymoon” phase when emotions are high, and we think we cannot live without the item! Then, we come back down to earth and realize that this was merely an “impulse”, and thus stupid, decision. Implement ‘The Honeymoon Rule’ and practice discipline today. It is a sure way to get you on the path towards wealth!
5. Lack of time perspective
How do I say this?… There is no such thing as “get-rich-quick”! There are no overnight successes. Again, financial success is a decision and a process. It takes some time and some effort. That is hard to hear for most young professionals, but it is true. We want to get things NOW, but we have to realize these truths if we want financial freedom.
As young professionals, we have the most valuable resource for wealth on our side – time! With time, we can utilize what Albert Einstein calls, “The most powerful force in the universe,” and “the greatest mathematical invention of all time” – compound interest. Compound interest is one of the key ways to wealth. If you invest $10,000 now and it is compounded at 10% per year, in 25 years that $10,000 turns into $108,347! If you buy a $35,000 car (and assume you could have made the same 10% per year), it is the equivalent of $379,000 in 25 years. Would you pay that much in your 40’s for a car today? I didn’t think so. From a financial perspective, keep a view of the big picture.
Compound interest only makes sense if you have a long-term view of wealth. People know that it is wise to have a big picture mindset, but few actually make their decisions this way. You are one of those people that do! You are the future millionaire and you now know that it takes a bit of time to get there. Plan now, understand this, and wealth will be yours.
- Evaluate, how do you stack up for these 5 reasons? What is holding you back?
- Realize that the world, and your financial future, is in your hands. And that anything is possible!
- Dream big.
- Write down your ambitious goals. (I use Evernote to record these.)
- With your finances, think big. Think long term.
- Implement ‘the honeymoon rule’.
- Remove impulse buys from your life, and prove that you have financial discipline (a key characteristic to wealth!).
- Decide to be wealthy. Seriously, make the decision, and do not look back!
- Take one single action that will help you improve one of these 5 things today.