Many people believe that getting wealthy is a matter of luck. It's true that luck plays some role, whether it's being born into a wealthy family or inventing the right product at the right time. Luck doesn't do everything, though. Without good habits, wealth can easily be squandered. You can also make your own luck at any time. Here's how wealthy people are doing it.
1. Always keep learning.
Much of Warren Buffett's success came from the fact that he was always learning. The common wisdom that it takes at least 10,000 hours to be an expert at something applies to business as well. Buffett didn't get lucky in his investments. He constantly learned what makes businesses grow, how to get struggling businesses out of trouble, and how to protect his investments.
This applies even if you hold a traditional office job. Yes, connections and politics can get some people ahead faster, but at the end of the day, you can't grow if you aren't good at what you do.
2. Live below your means.
Mark Cuban is always telling the story about how he spent much of his twenties living in a small apartment with multiple roommates. Frugal living isn't just about saving money.
When you have extra income and savings, you have more freedom to grow. Instead of taking a dead-end job that eats most of your time, you'll be able to take more risks and take advantage of opportunities that might not have an immediate payoff.
You'll also be better focused. Instead of worrying about your bills or if your car is impressive enough, you can simply focus on growing.
3. Don't be afraid to get dirty.
As you start to climb the ladder, don't start to think that certain tasks are beneath you. When Marcus Lemonis invests in a business on The Profit or privately, he gets hands-on and works side-by-side with the staff.
Lemonis cites this as the biggest reason he is able to quickly learn about so many different types of businesses. Working in the trenches creates a much faster learning curve than trying to learn from above. It also builds camaraderie and respect between leaders and employees.
4. Don't sleep so much.
Donald Trump has always been a controversial figure, but he almost always accomplishes his goals. He credits this to sleeping just three or four hours a night.That gives him almost a full additional working day each day compared with someone who is sleeping eight to ten hours.
Of course, you also need to keep healthy sleeping habits. Trump claims exhaustion doesn't affect him. If you need more sleep to function, don't keep yourself awake to the point of constant tiredness. It's about finding the right balance.
5. Seek forgiveness, not permission.
When Bill Gates was in middle school, computers were expensive to operate, and each student only had a limited amount of computer time. Gates found bugs that allowed him to stay on the computers even when his time had run out. When he was finally caught, he traded his ability to find flaws in the security systems for more computer time.
While you never want to outright break the law, many people become so caught up in the idea of needing permission that they never take risks.
6. Get organized.
Oprah Winfrey says that the secret shared by people who seem to have it all together is that they are organized. This includes all areas of life, from keeping your home and office free of clutter and distractions to how you go about your daily tasks. Plan out what you need to do each day, set time limits on things like answering emails, and budget your time so that you can work on your most important tasks when you are best able to focus.
7. Stay focused through failure.
Succeeding is easy. It's what you do when you inevitably fail that defines you. Part of Kevin O'Leary's "Mr. Wonderful" Shark Tank persona might come from the fact that he faced heavy opposition early in his career. His business partner told him he was unfocused, and the New York Times and Wall Street Journal openly criticized his business dealings in an effort to undermine him.
O'Leary took in feedback to the extent that it was constructive, but dismissed everything else as background noise. His laser focus led to him being able to sell his first company for $4.2 billion.
8. Keep personal feelings out of business.
Lori Greiner, Shark Tank's "Queen of QVC", tells her entrepreneurs to leave personal feelings out of business. You don't need to like someone to take their money or get a good deal on needed inventory. Simply focus on how much money you can put in the bank.
Of course, you shouldn't ignore your gut. There's a difference between someone being dislikeable and someone being dishonest. If you feel that someone is withholding information, not telling the truth, or not keeping their promises, reevaluate your relationship from a business perspective.
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