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3 Practical Tips for Changing the Way You Think About Money
It’s no secret that the super-wealthy think about money in a much different way than the rest of us.
Money is something they have plenty of, have seemingly little problems acquiring, and aren’t afraid to spend.
From the outside looking in, it’s real easy for us to say that their mindset of wealth is a by-product of the amount of money they have. But, what about before they became filthy rich?
While some of the super-rich were born into fortunes, many had to acquire their wealth on their own and battled countless setbacks. There’s a countless number of self-made millionaires in the world today. Many of whom started their stories in households whose average income was at, or below, the poverty level. One such person that immediately springs to my mind is Robert Herjavec.
Robert Herjavec immigrated from Yugoslavia with his family at the age of 8. Arriving in Halifax, Canada, it’s said that they arrived with $20, a suitcase, and no understanding of the English language. Robert’s ambition and determination lead him to becoming an extremely wealthy businessman who’s boasted business sales that reach as high as 9 figures. This determination and business savvy has allowed him to acquire a massive, personal fortune.
I’ve always had a keen interest in studying the mindset of the wealthy and, in this post, I’d like to share with you 3 tips that I’ve learned that will help you change the way you think about money, so you can get more of it.
1. Think of Money as a Tool, Not a Result
For many of us, money is viewed as a result. Something we gain for going to work. Something we lose when it’s spent.
We use it to pay our bills and maintain our lifestyles, but rarely do we actually think of money as a tool. It’s simply something we have to acquire in exchange for our time and energy. To the average person, the acquisition of money is a zero-sum game.
One of the most prominent differences between the mindset of the wealthy and the rest of us, is that they simply do not view money in this way.
Pretty much every successful person that I’ve ever studied has had a mindset that views money as nothing more than a tool. A tool to be used to acquire and do more of what they really want. The best venture capitalists in the world understand this concept better than most. Their success is dependent on their ability to view and use money as a tool for investments.
Here’s a quick example to better illustrate this idea:
Let’s say you have an extra million dollars lying around and you decide you want to finance a new car. The car payments average out to be about $800 per month.
Most people would simply buy the car outright or just start making the payments out of the extra million they have lying around.
But, those with a mindset for wealth, who view money as a tool, might do something as simple as this: Place the million dollars in a savings account that yields a 1% return and then use the $833 per month accumulated interest to pay for the car.
Instead of spending money on the car and taking away from that extra million, the wealthy get to keep their million dollars and get the car too.
While a very crude example, it effectively illustrates the difference in how money is viewed and used by those with a focus on wealth. When we start to view money as a tool, that allows us to grow our wealth and do more of what we want in life, we’ve come one step closer to having a mindset of prosperity.
2. Focus on Prosperity – Not Debt
This goes back to a basic principle of personal development. Focus on the solution, not the problem.
Many people get stuck focusing on paying off their bills and debt. It’s such a powerful theme in their lives that all their attention, in regards to money accumulation, is centered around paying bills and reducing their debt.
While it’s great to pay your bills on time and reduce your debt, you can’t let it distract you from creating wealth. This is why you hear so many financial advisers tell people to set up an automatic debt payment plan and to just start focusing on savings, prosperity and growth.
I think Bob Proctor, from The Secret, said it best:
“Most people have a goal of getting out of debt. That will keep you in debt forever. Whatever you’re thinking about, you will attract. You say, “But it’s get out of debt.” I don’t care if it’s get out or get in, if you’re thinking debt, you’re attracting debt. Set up an automatic debt repayment program and then start to focus on prosperity.”
Law of Attraction aside, that is great advice. Simply for the fact that it emphasizes taking your focus away from the problem and on to the solution. Your bills still get paid, but your mind is now free to focus on prosperity and growth.
3. Don’t Put Money on an Emotional Pedestal
If any of you are like me, and have grown up without a lot of money, you may have developed some pretty strong negative emotional stances concerning money.
Money was always viewed as a source of stress. Something that directly dictated whether or not I was going to have a good day. I used to feel strongly (and still do, at times – it’s a work in progress) that my personal self-worth was directly related to what kind of clothes I was wearing, what kind of car I was driving, and how nice my apartment was. All of this pointed right back to how much money I had in my bank account.
Money should not be such a major thing in our life that it is able to dictate our emotional state or determine our own self-worth.
This closely relates to the first tip that I listed. If we’re able to view money as nothing more than a tool for us to wield, we become the ones in charge of our lives – not the money.
If we’re emotional about money and allow it to dictate our mood, how can we ever begin to use it effectively as a tool? I mean, you don’t get emotional over a vacuum cleaner, do you? Emotions will cloud our judgement and cause us to make poor choices with our money.
The wealthiest people in the world will tell you, “Don’t get emotional about money.” While this is sometimes easier said than done, it’s very solid advice. Learning to take money down from that emotional pedestal and put it in our hands, where a good tool should be, is a key step for moving our mindset towards that of wealth creation. And that puts us in the driver’s seat.
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