Discover the top 5 misconceptions about millionaires and how having a false perception of millionaires can negatively impact your personal financial life.
1. Millionaires are Workaholics
Although millionaires do have a steady work schedule, they’re not workaholics. In fact, they tend to lead a very balanced lifestyle because an unbalanced life would completely undermine economic progress. Your physical, mental, and spiritual wellbeing and your family and work life, need to be in balance. When they are out of balance it leads major financial setbacks such as divorce and burnout. Whereas when all these things are balanced it creates the highest productivity, and productivity is a key ingredient in wealth building.
You have probably heard it said that the richest person in the world and you have the same number of hours in a day. So why are you financially struggling and they’re a millionaire? It’s because they are so productive. On the other hand, a workaholic is extremely active but unproductive. There is a massive difference between activity and productivity, especially in real estate. So, you do not need to become a workaholic to be a millionaire. It’s a balanced lifestyle that is the time management program of millionaires.
2. Millionaires Inherited their Money
The most comprehensive study I have found on American millionaires was done by a man named Dr. Thomas J. Stanley. He wrote two books, The Millionaire Mind and The Millionaire Next Door. His research revealed that more than 90% of millionaires created their wealth and didn’t inherit a single penny. Most people who inherit money squander it because they didn’t have to earn it. Whereas millionaires had to work hard to earn their millions, so they tend to handle it wisely. So, don’t make assumptions and recognize that most millionaires created their wealth.
3. Millionaires are Dishonest
My own personal experience doing deals with millionaires has been quite the opposite. They tend to be brutally honest, and that’s helpful in doing real estate deals. The reality is honesty is a key component of wealth building. You simply can’t lie your way to the top and then expect to stay there. Eventually you will fall and, on the way down you will have to deal with the people you cheated on the way up.
So, if honesty is important to wealth building, it stands to reason that dishonesty would set you back. Therefore, the golden rule, “do unto others as you would have them do unto you”, is a very productive wealth building strategy.
4. Millionaires are Greedy
I rarely meet millionaires who are greedy. Most I have met are extremely generous people. And it might surprise you that I believe generosity is the most important finance principle. The truth is, over the long-haul greedy people end up with less. Money is like manure. If you let it pile up, it stinks. But if you spread it around, it fertilizes.
Remember, becoming a millionaire is a long-term process. To become a millionaire, you need to build bridges along the way. Which makes being greedy completely unsustainable because you end up burning those bridges. So, if you think that becoming a millionaire means that you must be greedy, you couldn’t be more wrong. Most millionaires are generous because it is an important factor to the process of becoming wealthy.
5. Millionaires are Self-Made
The phrase “self-made millionaire” is an arrogant oxymoron. Millionaires aren’t self-made, they learn from their experiences, environment, their formative years, and from both good and bad examples. Many learn from others through reading books, watching videos, and then from a mentor. After that, even when they’ve been mentored, they now need the help and cooperation of others to get things done. So, wealth building is about cooperation with others, not about being self-made. And the shortcut to becoming a millionaire faster is to be mentored by one.
What About You?
Do you believe any of the 5 misconceptions broke people have about millionaires? And why is it dangerous to have a false perception of a millionaire? Well, if you think millionaires are greedy, dishonest, self-important swindlers you won’t want to become one. If you believe becoming a millionaire will turn you into a person you don’t want to be you will end up sabotaging your own success. It won’t matter how hard you work or how much you invest in trying to become a millionaire, if deep down you associate pain with it, you will never get there.
Fear of More Money
In fact, I have a great teaching called The Fear of More Money that explores this fascinating psychological phenomenon. And it could be that having any of these false perceptions is one reason why you’re not a millionaire yet.
What can add to the confusion is the reality that there is a small percentage of millionaires who do confirm some of these misconceptions. And it doesn’t help that the media and movies stereotype all millionaires as the small percentage. This gives people a reason to justify why they want to stay broke, arguing that they don’t want to become one of those people. But we’ve busted those myths or misconceptions. Sure, there will be some exceptions, but most millionaires:
- Are not Workaholics
- Didn’t Inherit their Money
- Are not Dishonest
- They’re not Greedy
- Aren’t Self-made
That means you don’t have to turn into an awful person to become a millionaire! Quite the contrary, though you may need to shore up some of your own weaknesses on your way to becoming a millionaire. And you just might become a better person too.