Why do you want to be rich

For centuries, people have assumed that wealth would be a wonderful cure for all their unhappiness or problems. Why else would we work so hard for it? But when people actually acquired more money and status they wanted, they discovered that it wasn’t quite what they hoped.

I don’t mean to say that acquiring wealth is wrong or money wouldn’t solve all the problem. The important thing is that while we are making plans for getting filthy rich, we should also ask WHY we want to be rich.

What kind of persona will we become while acquiring wealth or chasing our dreams.


Seneca on books and wealth

Roman Stoic philosopher Seneca wrote this in one of his letters to his friend Lucilius:

Be careful, however, lest this reading of many authors and books of every sort may tend to make you discursive and unsteady. You must linger among a limited number of master thinkers, and digest their works, if you would derive ideas which shall win firm hold in your mind. Everywhere means nowhere.

The idea is to not be in perpetual locomotion and jump from one book or author to another…but to sit back, contemplate, and relate the facts you read to each other. But start reading if you haven’t already, and start now, or you would miss out on the huge compounding benefits of the same as years pass.

At the end of this very letter, Seneca also shared his thoughts on the limits of one’s wealth.

He says: “Contented poverty is an honorable estate.” Indeed, if it be contented, it is not poverty at all.

It is not the man who has too little, but the man who craves more, that is poor.

What does it matter how much a man has laid up in his safe, or in his warehouse, how large are his flocks and how fat his dividends, if he covets his neighbors property, and reckons, not his past gains, but his hopes of gains to come?

Do you ask what is the proper limit to wealth?

It is, first, to have what is necessary, and, second, to have what is enough.

Source: Letter 2: On Discursiveness in Reading

Following is the link to complete collection of letters from archive.org:

Rich people think differently

Fitzgerald and Hemingway

Quote from Fitzgerald and Hemingway

While going through the Quora thread “Do billionaires know something that normal people don’t? [1]”, I learned a new word called “billionaire mentality” and realized that Rich people think differently than the average person. Being able to maintain wealth over a long period of time is not something easy if you don’t have the right mentality.

How would you explain that a large number of lottery winners who go broke after a few years?

They don’t have the rich people mentality.

I think following story shows one of the the differences:

Paul has a job but complains he doesn’t have enough money. He is annoyed at all the yards in his neighborhood that aren’t well-kept. James lives in the same neighborhood. He wants to live a financially secure life. He notices the lawns, too.
What will Paul and James do about these yards?

Paul’s friend, Sam, is disabled and tells Paul: “I wish I could mow all these lawns and trim bushes, but I’m physically unable to. Why don’t you do it?” Paul says, “It will cost too much. It will take up my weekend.”

James says: “I think these owners need some help with their yards. I could make another $100 a week mowing these lawns. I will start right now to offer my services.”

After three decades of interviewing self-made rich people, Steve Siebold, author of “How Rich People Think,” has come to the conclusion that well-to-do people have views about money that are “polar opposite” to those that middle-class people hold. His book reveals 100 differences between middle-class people and self-made millionaires.

At the end of the day, getting rich is an inside job. “Let’s set the record straight once and for all: Anyone can become wealthy,” Siebold writes. “It has nothing to do with your education or where you come from. It’s not what you do that guarantees wealth, it’s what you are.”

“Some people say money is evil, but I don’t agree. If I manage it well and make good use of it, it’ll only make my life better.”

Books for further reading: