If I had a dollar for every person who told me they wanted to be rich I’d be a rich man myself. The unfortunate truth is that Hollywood and media in general portray the persona that everyone is well off except you. When the actual truth is that very few people are “rich.” In order to make my point clear I will define “rich” as households that make over 250k a year.
Based on information from the IRS, fewer than 3% of tax returns (3.924 million returns out of 140+ million total returns) claimed more than $200,000 in adjusted gross income (AGI) in tax year 2009 (more current data is not available). Therefore the number of people making more than $250,000 must be less than 3%.
Less than 3 people out of 100 make over $250,000 a year. Some people may consider that rich but you can hardly have your own private jet and beach houses making $250,000 a year.
The fact is in America absolutely anyone can become rich! The variable which varies from person to person is how hard they are willing to work for it. Some people have a head start against others based on their education, financial situation, and connections. However I am convinced that anyone who is willing to work hard and sacrifice can become rich.
But please let me point out there are much more important things in life than becoming rich. After all when we die we cannot take money with us and let’s face it, the government is making it harder and harder for us to pass on wealth.
What should you do?
Sit down and make a list of priorities you have in life. Here are mine.
- Devotion to God
- Be a good and dependable father
- Be a loving husband
- Help maintain the security of my community
- Absolutely debt free
- Become rich
- Stay in shape
- Strive to become a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu blue belt
As you grow older and wiser your priorities will certainly change. An 18 year old doesn’t have the same responsibilities as a 30 year old who is a father and a husband. I can tell you being rich use to be my number one priority but as you can see it has tumbled on my list of priorities.
I can tell you with absolute certainty that if being rich isn’t your top priority then your chances severely diminish the farther down you have it on your list.
But think about it for a minute. How many filthy rich CEOs, sports stars, and celebrities have what the “average person” would consider a happy and full life. Sure it’s awesome to have private jets, dine at 5 star restaurants, and be able to purchase basically anything you want but chances are they sacrificed 15-30 years of their life acquiring that skill or building that business. Most of us are not willing to make these sacrifices.
- Why do you want to be rich?
- What do you plan to do with that money?
- How will you benefit the world?
You only have so many hours in a day and very little time in this life. If you can’t answer those 3 questions above clearly and concisely you should rethink your aspirations to become rich. The fact is if something isn’t in your top priority chances are it is going to be a lot harder for you to accomplish it.
There is absolutely nothing wrong with being an employee, raising a family, and going on vacation once a year. It is very easy, stay out of debt and not consume beyond your means.