Fifteen Habits of the Rich That You Can Learn From

As a business attorney since 2005, I’ve represented thousands of wealthy clients and business people. I’ve identified t some of the top habits of the rich people. While you might not emulate all of these, knowing about them could help you work harder and more efficiently. If you apply yourself, maybe your business dreams can become a reality.

By: Brad Nakase, Attorney

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Many of you are on your way to achieving financial success, and we wanted to compile a comprehensive list of important behaviors and beliefs of the rich. These are habits that help push successful people forward, as opposed to holding them back. Obviously, these are generalizations since every successful businessperson is a unique individual. But perhaps these ideas will help you to think of ways to improve not only your lifestyle or your work ethic but yourself.

1) Wealthy People Watch Very little Television

Most Television is meaningless. There, we said it. Do you remember many of the “news” talking heads or TV series you’ve seen?

We are not just saying that because cable TV is a moot point now, and everyone tunes into Netflix and Hulu, and Apple TV. We are saying that rich, successful people do not have time to sit down and watch TV.

If you are up on all the celebrity gossip, or you cannot stop binging “Ozark” or “The Big Bang Theory,” then you are wasting a lot of time. If you watch cable news every night for hours, then you are not putting enough time into your career and the pursuit of your personal goals.

We know what you might be thinking: There’s nothing wrong with unwinding in front of a few funny episodes of The Office on a stressful Monday night. However, what you are doing is disconnecting from everything instead of working hard to solve your problems and improve your station in life.

Yes, every once in a while, it is nice to watch a movie or take a walk to clear your head. But if your idea of escape is sitting on the couch with a bag of chips and a repeat episode, then you may be missing something.

Time is important, and it slips away every day. If you take time off from work, don’t you want it to be worthwhile? You could be traveling, starting a new business, even learning a language instead of watching “Top Chef” for the 100th time.

Wait, but what about the news: isn’t it a good thing to stay updated on current affairs? Well, yes, but we are living in a time of increased cable news bias. Instead of dealing with questionable opinions and commercials, tune into your local public radio for the headlines, or punch it into the internet.

We understand the passion that sports play in peoples’ lives. Often, allegiance to teams is passed down from generation to generation. If you must, watch the highlights of your favorite team. Better yet, instead of watching every game, attend one game per season. It’ll be a nice tradeoff, and you will have more time to pursue your goals.

2) Wealthy People Know the Importance of Diet

Many of us underestimate the importance of our health. Many of us also underestimate how important our diets are to our overall health. You will find that many wealthy people know exactly what goes into their bodies each day and exactly what goes into the food that they eat.

Many of us do not pay attention to what we wat. We are stressed and busy, so we grab a cheeseburger or frozen pizza and promise that the next day, we will do better. But it is easy to become addicted to the large amounts of fat and sugar in processed food, and the next day, we are tired and stressed out again.

Rich people are aware that a diet high in salt, fat, cholesterol, and sugar can not only ruin their bodies but slow brain activity and inhibit sleep. When you are not putting fresh, diverse foods into your body, it does not run well. It’s similar to making sure your car has the right type of gas. If your body is full of cheap, trashy food, you will not only suffer physically but mentally and psychologically as well. A poor diet creates a chain reaction, and even your romantic life can suffer.

Even during those late nights at the office, do not pick up the pizza or burger. Get something organic and fresh that will give your body and mind the fuel it needs to keep achieving. Yes, many rich people have personal chefs that allow them not to worry about their diet while they continue to strive. But, if you are aware of food’s dramatic impact on your life and keep working hard, you might have your own chef soon!

3) The Rich Rise to Greet the Morning

We know that sometimes it is hard to get out of bed in the morning. But think about this: while you are under the covers hitting the snooze button, thousands of people are making gains.

Rich people know that there is no room for laziness in the business world. Especially in their earlier years, rich people rise and shine and get to work while many people are still sleeping. Successful people also do not just throw away their weekends to escape from their long work weeks. While they might enjoy a lavish dinner out one night, you will find wealthy, successful people holding it down in the office on Saturday and even Sunday morning.

Those who worked hard from a young age know that the days are short. They know that if you are up before the dawn, striving to be better, your career will flourish. This is a skill that is best learned early, so if you are reading this and you are in your 20s or 30s, consider this: the harder you work now, the more you will have time to enjoy yourself when you are older.

Bill Gates. Warren Buffet. Elon Musk. What ties these uber-successful visionaries together? You guessed: they all endorse an early wake-up. What are you waiting for? Give it a try.

4) The Rich Pay Full Price—Because it’s Worth It

One fashion rule we hear expressed often is that buying clothing on sale is a smart move. This is a myth.

When you look at successful people, they aren’t wearing last year’s fashion line. They aren’t looking to save $20-30 dollars per outfit. Instead, they pay full price while staying focused on the big picture. The big picture is often landing the million-dollar deal, growing their company, or making the smart investment that wins big.

Clothes go on sale because no one wanted them, right? So why buy the clothes that no one wanted? Pay full price. Do something nice for yourself, and then expect more from yourself.

If you are working day and night on a proposal that could change your life, buy a new suit or pants suit for the big day. When you skimp on yourself, people think you do not believe in yourself. Give them the right impression and buy that brand-new suit at full price. Just make sure that you can afford it!

5) Wealthy People Believe in Grooming

Making a good first impression can mean the difference between a six-figure deal and a big zero in your bank account. We know you are busy day in and day out, but hygiene is crucial. Rich people show up to work or social engagements looking like well-oiled machines.

Pay top dollar for that salon appointment, and then make sure you are cleanly showered, looking good, and smelling fresh. From your creased clothing to your skin, in the high-profile world of the rich and famous, everything is on display.

In order to oversee agreements and make sales, people need to trust you. Poor hygiene can ruin this trust before you can say anything. Rushing into the office looking like a mess because you were up all night working is not a testament to your work ethic. Instead, it will make your co-workers avoid you.

6) Rich People Don’t Let Sports Dictate Their Happiness

Sports are an indispensable part of American culture, as well as a way to bond with friends and family. However, fanatic sports fans, regardless of the team, spend hundreds of hours and thousands of dollars pursuing their teams.

This is not a position that you want to be in. It is also not a position that rich people find themselves in. Yes, they might visit the owner’s box on NFL Sunday, and you might see some wealthy, successful people sitting courtside during the NBA playoffs. But we will bet that they worked hard all day, might leave the game early, and are sacrificing some extra weekend hours to attend the game.

There are reasons to watch sports, but there is no reason to watch your favorite major league baseball team play all 162 games. You are not a professional athlete, coach, or owner. The game doesn’t depend on you. The team doesn’t depend on you. Transform those hours of wasted time into productive time for you. Don’t lose track of your goals.

7) Wealthy People Save Money

Whereas you might hear people who are struggling complaining that they have no money in the bank, wealthy people will never worry about this. Rich, successful people keep their eyes on the future. They are prepared for everything, and that means that they have money set aside to deal with adversity.

With no money to back you up, you are not prepared for the ups and downs of the financial world. You are also not ready to expand and grow. The old cliché holds true: it takes money to make money. Wealthy people have various accounts and investments that serve to back them up when dealing with a volatile market or a business opportunity that did not pan out. They are ready and willing to use some of their saved money to stay afloat, and more importantly, they have the confidence that they will make more.

Let’s say something unexpectedly bad happens: an injury or sickness, or a car accident. If you put some money aside, you will be able to cope with the negatives and persevere as opposed to being paralyzed with no way out. The key here is to be ready to succeed but aware that failure is always possible.

Rich people keep a lot of money in their savings to absorb any possible fallout from the risks they take. You should do this too.

8) Successful People Understand How to Use Credit Cards

Many people rely on credit cards to purchase things that they not only cannot afford but do not need. Then, the bills pile up, they are unable to pay, and high-interest rates lead to financial ruin. So, was that new TV or iPhone or stereo really worth it?

Successful, well-off people are aware that making correct credit use is an important skill. If you are considering a loan that will not produce more money later on, then do not take it. Loan and credit are tools that can add to your success, not take away from it.

You might see wealthy people driving the hottest cars, using the newest gadgets, and wearing the hottest, priciest clothing, but chances are they didn’t use loans or credit cards for these luxuries. Think of credit as an investment that should pay you back.

9) Rich People Take Full Responsibility for their Lives

We live in a society where many people blame others for their misfortunes. However, successful people take control of their lives. Remember, 99% of the life you live is based on your decisions. Rich people are fully aware that if they want to change things, they can.

The key is this: successful people know that playing the victim will only lead to more problems. Instead of dwelling on the negatives, rich people will learn from their problems. If a business deal goes wrong, they might ask themselves what they did wrong and what they can improve next time.

Successful people are learning and growing all the time, and they’ve learned to turn a bump in the road into a ladder.

10) Rich People Know Good Health is Essential

Wealthy people owe part of their longevity to the fact that they get checked out regularly. Successful people know that you cannot accomplish anything at all without their health. They have top doctors who they can trust, and even though they are supremely busy, they visit them regularly.

Why is this so important? Everyone struggles with diseases and disorders. If you are sick, a regular doctor’s visit can catch things early. This will make treatment easier and more cost-effective. It will also mean that you and your family will have a better chance of making it through a difficult time. Looking ahead and prioritizing what is important are two things successful people do well.

The point here is to focus on what is important and not keep putting off doctor’s visits because you are too “busy.” Now it’s time to prioritize your health because if you do not, you might lose your life. When you aren’t here anymore, it will be hard to make your millions.

11) Rich People Wait to Start Families

Having a family is a beautiful thing. However, research tells us that unsuccessful people have more children earlier in their lives. Why?

Kids are expensive. Really expensive. How expensive, you ask? One child can run you approximately $250,000 from his/her exciting birth to his/her 18th birthday. That’s a lot of money!

Rich people usually wait a few more years as opposed to many average Americans. This way, their standard of living is up to par and ready for a child. Wealthy people want to create an environment where their children can flourish, as opposed to just popping out a few kids and then saying, “now what?” After all, the rich know that their children will probably be taking over their businesses someday. They do not want to regret what should be a beautiful and rewarding life experience.

12) Rich People Surround Themselves with the Right People

You should surround yourself with people who achieve great things and inspire you. You should not even hang out with people who have no vision or confidence and who do not aspire to great things.

You will often see wildly successful people spending time with people that at first glance are very unlike them. Why does this happen? Because rich people have a certain intrinsic nature that brings them together, even when people seem like they are at opposite ends of the spectrum. Drive and a desire for success are tangible qualities that wealthy people pick up on.

Spend time with people who motivate you, who push you forward to the next level. If you are spending time with the same old people and they are holding you back, then it might be time for a break. Stay true to the great potential that you have, and do not let other people steal it from you.

13) Wealthy People Do Not Spend Prematurely

There is a reason that people who are unsuccessful financially stay that way: they simply cannot hold onto their hard-earned money! One of the largest financial pitfalls is planning to spend before you even deposit it in your account.

Rich people understand the negative cycle that occurs when you cannot afford something, you buy it anyway, and then you acquire more and more expenses. Soon, you will have exhausted all your funds. The point here is that if you cannot afford something, no matter how large or how small, then you should not buy it. If you cannot pay upfront for that new car, house, or iPad, then simply wait until you can afford it.

If you work hard, take our advice, and make smart financial decisions, you will have the money you have dreamed about. But in order to hold onto it, you can’t pay for something you can’t afford.

14) Rich, Successful People Know that No One Owes You a Thing

We live in a culture where many people believe that they need help to scale the top. Many believe that the world owes them this helping hand. Here is the thing: the world does not owe you anything.

Successful people go it on their own and believe in themselves, and when they fail, they do not look for someone to pull them back up. When you succeed, you reap the benefits. When you fail, you alone must deal with it. This is one of the most important things to remember.

Many of us let society and reality knock us down a few times and give up. Successful people who become wealthy never allow themselves to think this way. They might give up on one idea, but it is only because they have a better idea in the pipeline. They adapt to adversity and learn from challenges. Some even emulate the people who beat them.

Your problems are yours alone, and your successes are yours to own as well. Make sure to remember that.

15) Wealthy People Pursue their Potential

You may have heard the saying, “ideas are everything.” When people wonder why they were never successful, it usually has to do with two things: ideas and potential.

We can’t control who our family is, where we were born, or how we are treated by society. What can we control? How hard we work, how dynamic our ideas are, and how our ideas improve and evolve until they hit home and net us a new job or bigger deal.

Each person has the same 24 hours daily. If you view work as an awful slog, you will not want to work every hour that you can. But, if you are passionate about what you are doing, it will not seem like work. Your passion is linked to your potential. 9/10 companies fail in three years, but consider this: how many companies fail because they’ve never been started up?

Constant growth is more important than anything else. Growth is fueled by newer and better ideas, hard work, and fulfillment of potential.

Believe in your limitless potential. This is how success works, and rich people know that.

This brings us to the end of our list. Remember: rich, successful people started out just like you.

We hope this article will improve your self-awareness and give you a little more confidence and knowledge. At Nakase Law Firm, we want you to succeed, and we believe in you. Much of this is all about perspective. How do you see yourself now, and how do you want to be seen?

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