Financially Real

6 Habits of the Wealthy

6 Habits of the Wealthy | www.TheHeavyPurse.comWe are often fascinated by wealthy people and their lifestyle. We imagine their lives to be very different from our own and likely much better living in their plush mansions and driving their high-performance vehicles. We dream about trading places with them and enjoying their opulent and wild lives that we see play out on reality shows, where they supposedly show us the glamorous day-to-day lives of the wealthy.

I’ve worked with many wealthy and successful people and they are nothing like what you see on TV. They aren’t afraid to enjoy their money on the things that matter, but they don’t spend mindlessly either. Even when they are being extravagant in comparison to our lives, it is often relative to their wealth and not in excess. In many ways, we are more alike than you may think, but the wealthy do have some very specific habits that we can easily emulate.

Habits of Affluent and Successful People to Mimic

We can learn a lot from how successful people spend their time and energy. We may not ever be able to match their wealth but mimicking their habits can help us enrich our personal and financial lives.

They Take Care of Themselves

Successful people are busy. They need a lot of energy to power through their day, so they take their health and well-being very seriously. While they likely have good support people who can step-in and run the business efficiently in their absence, they also realize that they are the person everyone looks to lead. In fact, even a whisper of illness can negatively affect their stock price. Their health is a priority, not an after-thought. They get enough sleep, eat healthy foods and exercise. They don’t skip annuals check-ups and give their bodies and minds time to rest. They are not afraid to invest their time and money in their overall well-being, so they can enjoy the fruits of their labor.

They Set Specific Goals

Wealthy people know what they want. They set specific, high-value goals and take action to achieve them. They are laser-focused, building careful, actionable plans and use their goals to guide their decisions and actions. Unlike many, they also don’t procrastinate or allow themselves to be distracted, which is why they tend to achieve their goals more frequently than most people. Many assume it is because they have the means to accomplish goals that leads to success. While it doesn’t hurt, it is their intense focus that makes their dreams become reality. And finally, when they achieve their goals, they celebrate their accomplishment, then set a new goal to tackle. They don’t become complacent.

They Ask for Help

One thing wealthy people realize quite quickly is they cannot do everything themselves; they need help to succeed. They also cannot be experts in everything either. They are not afraid to seek help or feel that doing so represents failure. This is a key difference. Too many people think needing help is a sign of weakness. It’s not. The wealthy know what activities they must do and what activities can be handled by others. This allows them to accomplish more, not less.

They Take Deliberate Risks

Many people fear taking risks and sometimes for good reasons. That pit in your stomach can actually be a good warning signal of danger and one you shouldn’t ignore. At the same time, you need to be able to differentiate between true danger and fear. The wealthy aren’t afraid to believe in the impossible and take careful, calculated risks to make the impossible become possible. They don’t leap without looking; they do their homework first, but they are not afraid to take the leap when the time comes to do so.

They Are Service-Minded

Wealthy people are often portrayed as being selfish and only concerned about themselves. While certainly some fit that mold, most are very service-minded. They constantly examine what problems exist and look for solutions. Their go-to mindset is figuring out how they can help and be of service. They want to leave the world a better place and have that stand as their legacy. They appreciate the wealth their success have given them and don’t take it for granted. They are grateful and generous with their time and money to help organizations and causes they care deeply about. They don’t have a scarcity mindset, but an abundant one.

They Don’t DIY their Finances

This again goes back to not doing everything themselves. They seek out help, including managing their finances. One popular false perception is that financial advisors, CPAs and attorneys are only for the wealthy. This is simply not true. Everyone, whether they have a little or a lot, can benefit from some assistance.

We All Have Blind Spots

It’s not that we are incapable of managing our own finances and handling our own investments. We certainly should own our financial lives. We do, however, all have blind spots when it comes to our personal finances, myself included. Money is emotional and life is often complicated and chaotic. When you mix all these things together, you have a recipe for making emotional decisions that don’t always align with your goals and values. Some days my role is more emotional therapist than financial advisor. Other times, money emotions are not the problem, but you cannot see the gaps in your financial life, which unintentionally leaves you and your family exposed to risk that could threaten your ability to create your ideal life. Savvy, wealthy investors know that they are not infallible and seek expert help.

We Still Must Remain In Charge of Our Financial Well-Being

Building a team to support your financial well-being does not mean letting go of your financial power and turning it over to others. You should never do that. In truth, you should actually become more engaged in your financial lives, not less involved. The wealthy are financially literate and very familiar with their financial situation. They act as captain of their team and and expect to be provided solutions and recommendations based upon their team’s experience and expertise, but they ultimately determine what actions to take.

Live a Better Life

These habits won’t necessarily make you rich beyond your imagination, but they can help enrich your life. To help ensure, you’re spending your time, money and energy on the things that bring you joy while also helping improve your financial life. I follow these habits and know firsthand the difference they make.

What habits of the rich do you think is the most important or mimic?


July 27, 2015  •  19 Comments  •  Financially Real

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  1. Monday, July 27th, 2015
    I probably emulate the first two right now: health and setting goals. Risks are still something that freak me out a bit. I never know which ones will truly pay off so I've always been hesitant to make decisions.
    • Shannon Ryan
      Thursday, July 30th, 2015
      Risk can be difficult because everyone has a different risk tolerance too. Some people have very little fear taking risk while others need to do a lot of due diligence before they feel comfortable, which is absolutely fine. What's most important is once you know the risk is worth taking - that you take it.
  2. Monday, July 27th, 2015
    I've definitely moved much closer to emulating #1 since losing weight and love seeing the benefits that are coming out of that. The one I've struggled with quite often, though working through improving in this area, is asking for help. I've always viewed it as a weakness or that I can do everything on my own. But, it's not and I can't. :) The more I seek out help the more I wonder why I waited so long to do it.
    • Shannon Ryan
      Thursday, July 30th, 2015
      Asking for help is something many people struggle with because they do view it as a weakness on their part and it's not. It's actually a strength to be able to seek help and/or advice when needed. Like you said, you also wonder why you waited and I find most people want to help and share knowledge.
  3. Monday, July 27th, 2015
    #1 and #2 for me are important in my life right now. I am trying to eat more healthfully and have started meditating. I've also always been a goal-setter so that really resonates with me :) Like Tonya stated above, risks freak me out too; probably why I haven't really learned about or have gotten into investing ;)
    • Shannon Ryan
      Thursday, July 30th, 2015
      Good for you for taking care of your health, Mackenzie. It's so important to do and many of us are guilty of letting that be one of the first things we let slide when life gets crazy. Risk is tough because it really does tap into our fears of "what if". But I always find when I take the time to educate myself that I feel more confident moving forward.
  4. Monday, July 27th, 2015
    I think setting specific goals is really important for being successful. I used to be afraid of setting goals because I feared failure, but I didn't realize that my lack of goal setting was actually creating it's own form of failure. Now I set big goals for myself and even if I fall short, I know that I have achieved something just in my approach toward making the goal a reality.
    • Shannon Ryan
      Thursday, July 30th, 2015
      Very true, Shannon. Lots of people avoid setting goals because they don't want to fail but as you discovered that is a form of failure. I agree that setting big goals and falling short is much better in the long run and brings that much closer to achieving something you truly want!
  5. Monday, July 27th, 2015
    I LOVE discussing "rich people habits" - it's absolutely one of my favorite topics. I often wonder whether the wealthy came first, though, or the habit. That is to say, did the habit help the person get wealthy or not. Either way, I usually think the habits are agreeable with what I want for myself so I tend to be a typical "rich person habit" follower and get up really early, exercise daily, set goals (and write them down), etc.
    • Shannon Ryan
      Thursday, July 30th, 2015
      I think it really depends. Some people are born into wealth and follow these habits naturally because it is what they observe and are taught. While self-made affluent individuals adopted these habits and traits on their way to becoming wealthy, which I find very heartening. You don't have to be born into wealth to create wealth.
  6. Monday, July 27th, 2015
    I love the "they take deliberate risks" habit. That's a habit I can relate to, and in all honesty I could take even more risks. I've always been fascinated by the habits of the wealthy so this post was great.
    • Shannon Ryan
      Thursday, July 30th, 2015
      Thanks, DC! I think their taking of deliberate risks plays a big part in their overall success because many people dream but don't follow through, in large part because of risk.
  7. Tuesday, July 28th, 2015
    These are all habits I practice so hopefully that means I will be extremely wealthy one day. Great list, Shannon! I think the most obvious habit is that the rich "take care of themselves" physically. You can almost tell when someone is wealthy based on their outward appearance of health. Not all the time, but a lot of the time.
    • Shannon Ryan
      Thursday, July 30th, 2015
      It's true - it's rare to see a wealthy person in poor health and not just because they have access to good healthcare. They know to maintain success that their overall health needs to be strong too, so they don't neglect it. Whereas taking care of themselves is something many people let go of or de-prioritize when they get busy.
  8. Thursday, July 30th, 2015
    Wealthy people are goal-oriented and they know what they're really doing and the purpose of doing it. These are just some of the traits/habits I want to practice in my own life as I know these would also bring me to achieving my goals and one day to being a wealthy man.
    • Shannon Ryan
      Thursday, July 30th, 2015
      Wealthy people are very goal-focused and absolutely know the "why" behind their goals. They are not iffy about them at all and it shows!
  9. Thursday, July 30th, 2015
    For me, the most important one to note is that "They set specific goals." Whenever I have succeeded at something - most recently in finishing off the $102,000 in non-mortgage debt that we had - it's because I give it the laser focus you mention. When I go at things in a more casual way, nothing gets accomplished. "Laser-focus": That's what I need for the goals that are important to me.
    • Shannon Ryan
      Thursday, July 30th, 2015
      Congratulations, Prudence, on eliminating $102K in non-mortgage debt! That is an amazing achievement!! You are very correct that when we are casual about goals, it is very easy to get distracted and forget about them. Goals have to be a priority and if they are not - then you need to consider whether it's a real goal. Many of us are guilty of setting goals that aren't true goals. They are something we desire but not necessarily enough to save money and/or change habits.
  10. Friday, August 21st, 2015
    I embrace some elements of these habits, but I think in order to fully embrace them I have to completely eliminate debt. Working on that as we speak.
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    "As a Certified Financial Planner, it is my passion to help individuals and families build a healthy relationship with money. I look forward to helping you raise financially confident kids.” - Shannon Ryan