Use Habits to Increase Wealth
“I never could have done what I have done without the habits of punctuality, order, and diligence, without the determination to concentrate myself on one subject at a time.” Charles Dickens
Who can argue with such an accomplished man as Charles Dickens? Dicken’s isn’t the only one to recommend developing habits. This article discusses the power of habits and how, with discipline and a plan, you to can achieve wealth and greater life contentment.
Growing wealthy is not a mystery. If you crave a wealthy life, you can learn to develop and practice habits which will build wealth.
The Power of Habit Leads to Wealth
Do you think it’s possible to build habits which lead to wealth?
It is widely believed that small changes, practiced regularly, lead to out-sized results. Many great accomplishments began with tiny actions, implemented again and again. There’s research supporting the financial and personal benefits of quite a few of these habits.
In an interview with Charles Duhigg, bestselling author The Power of Habit, he talks about his own habit changing wins. As a result of delving into the the study of habits he’s lost 30 pounds, runs most mornings, and is much more productive. He diagnosed his habit of eating a chocolate cookie every afternoon and uncovered that he was actually craving more socialization. Using that newly gained insight as a trigger he replaced eating the cookie with a walk around the office to talk with his co-workers. Not only is Dugigg thinner due to his habit changes, he is certainly wealthier as well, due to the success of his book.
My 96 year old father in law has a daily schedule. He plans when he eats, snacks, exercises, shops, and goes to bed. During his working life, he and my mother in law saved a part of every paycheck. Since he retired (with full retirement at age 80), he gets a juicy Social Security check and has built up savings to cover all his expenses, with some left over for emergencies. Oh, and did I mention, he’s lived on his own with no help for his entire life. I can’t help but conclude that his lifelong discipline and commitment to habit contributed to his longevity.
How Many of These Wealth Building Behaviors Do You Practice?
PRINT OUT THESE HABITS TO BUILD WEALTH
These wealth building habits were culled from a variety of sources, why not examine which one’s you possess and which one’s you’d like to develop. And add to the list in the comments.
- Get a college education
- Get to work early and stay late
- Do more than is expected at work and get promoted
- Have a side business
- Take risks
- Learn from your mistakes
- Try something new
- Contribute regularly to a ROTH IRA
- Contribute to a work retirement account
- Be patient
- Be disciplined
- Eat out infrequently
- Transfer money regularly into a savings account
- Invest regularly
- Order water only with meals out
- Drink alcohol infrequently
- Avoid extravagant and ostentatious people
- Live in a low cost region
- Buy a modest home
- Keep your vehicle 10 years or more
- Take the stairs
- Exercise regularly
- Bring lunch to work
- Maintain your possessions
- Spend more on needs-less on wants
- Drink water
- Eat more rice, beans, potatoes, and peanut butter
- Buy fruits and vegetables in season, canned, & frozen
- Trade walking for driving when you can
- Pay your credit card bill off in full every month
- Give your kids more time and fewer things
- Don’t equate net worth with self worth
- Use the library
- Compare prices
- Designate part of every paycheck to saving &/or investing
- Do not pay to have a check cashed
- Learn a new skill
- Get an advanced degree
- Give to charity
- Write down what you appreciate and value in life
- Enroll in a work retirement plan
- Put all investing dollars into unmanaged, low cost, index funds
- Start saving and investing NOW, no matter how old you are
- Take up low cost recreation and hobbies
- Want less
- Ask for a raise
- Eat less meat
- Think less about money and more about living
- Buy I Bonds and Treasury Inflation Protected Securities (TIPS)
- Never compare yourself with those above you
- Spend time with nature
- Own a pet
- Don’t pay full price
- Set goals
- Review your goals regularly
- Make time for fun and relaxation
- Get married
- Stay married
At first glance, many of these habits seem almost too simple. Even while I review this article, I’m struck with their simplicity. Isn’t building wealth supposed to be complicated? After years of inadvertently practicing most of these habits, I’m struck with how the discipline and sensible life habits lead to health and ultimately a wealthy life. So before you dismiss this list, take another moment to digest and try out the suggestions.Click here to learn How to Get Rich Without Winning the Lottery
- List several “new” wealth habits from the list to try this week.
- Add some of your own “wealth habits.”
- Spend time and money on what matters most to you.
Can’t Get Enough Wealth Habits?
Family Money Values writes Develop Healthy Wealth Habits
CNBC highlights The Highly Effective Habits of Millionaires
This is one of the most popular articles on this site. A version was previously published. (some prior comments remain)
What are your best habits? Which will you practice to wealth?