Are you still living from paycheck to paycheck? Wondering how you can build a nest egg when you can’t even save 5% of your salary? Maybe you feel like your financial situation is out of your control—you weren’t born into a wealthy family; your salary just isn’t high enough; the cost of living in your city is just too high; the list goes on and on.
But you can’t hope to gain financial freedom if you keep blaming circumstances out of your control. What we all need to understand is that the difference between rich people and ourselves isn’t just the amount of money in our bank accounts, but our habits. Here are some things that rich people (in general) DON’T do.
Spending Habits Of The Rich
1. Rich people don’t watch too much TV
Watching TV in itself isn’t going to make you poor. It just depends on what you watch, and how much. If you regularly find yourself regularly binge-watching on Netflix (I’m guilty of this) instead of doing something productive, that could be a problem.
According to Thomas Corley, author of Rich Habits: The Daily Success Habits of Wealthy Individuals, rich people tend to make good use of their time. "They wealthy are not avoiding watching TV because they have some superior human discipline or willpower,” Corley tells Business Insider. “They just don't think about watching much TV because they are engaged in some other habitual daily behavior — reading."
2. Rich people don’t stop learning
As Corley points out, wealthy people don’t watch TV, but they do read—not for fun, but for learning. They make the most out of their free time by reading self-improvement books and learning new skills.
According to Jaime Tardy, who’s interviewed over 50 millionaires for his Pick the Brain podcast, some favourites are:
- Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill
- Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell
- The E-Myth Revisited by Michael E. Gerber
3. Rich people don’t cross their fingers and hope for the best
Fatalism just sets you up for failure. Rich people don’t wait around and hope for opportunities to fall into their lap. They grab life by the reins and take control of where their life is going.
Even if you weren’t born into a rich family or if you aren’t well-connected, that doesn’t mean you should settle for less. When tech billionaire Jack Ma started Alibaba in his Hangzhou apartment, he didn’t have the right connections either. “We don’t have a rich father or a powerful uncle,” he said. “We only have the customers that support us.”
4. Rich people don’t neglect their health
Your greatest asset is your health. Multiple studies support this, and rich people recognize this. They may work harder and longer than most people, but they also take care of their bodies by eating right and exercising.
iDiva reports that when Nita Ambani, who is said to be India’s wealthiest woman, gained weight after giving birth, she bounced back by exercising (dancing Bharatanatyam) one-and-a-half hours a day, as well as watching her diet.
5. Rich people don’t go on impulsive shopping sprees (even though they can afford to)
Ever since Parks & Rec taught us to “treat yo’ self” in 2011, this has been the mantra of every impulse shopper armed with a credit card. But rich people know better. For example, India’s wealthiest tech tycoon Azim Premji drives second-hand cars and still travels by auto rickshaw every now and then, as Business Insider reports.
According to a 2013 report by marketing professionals, rich professionals were more likely to make purchases online, which is said to significantly lower the probability of making an impulse buy, Huffington Post reports. Rich people also don’t visit the sites of luxury labels as much as mid-level brands. In other words, they appreciate a good deal, just like you and me.
6. Rich people don’t neglect investing in their future
You’d be hard-pressed to find a rich person who hasn’t made any investments, because getting rich is only half the battle. The difference between being rich and just having money is whether or not you’re actually making efforts to maintain and grow your wealth. What are some good investments to start with? Read this article for some ideas.
Not all of us will ever become multi-millionaires, but we can all make the most of what we have to make our lives better. Take action today and do as the wealthy do, because changing your habits is the first step to success.