I periodically listen to Dave Ramsey's podcast. A while back he mentioned a book called Rich Habits by Tom Corley. Tom looked at the habits of the extremely rich and the extremely poor. Not shockingly, there were differences. I haven't yet read the book, but Dave gives us 20 of the daily habits Tom outlines.
- 70% of wealthy eat less than 300 junk food calories per day. 97% of poor people eat more than 300 junk food calories per day.
- 23% of wealthy gamble. 52% of poor people gamble.
- 80% of wealthy are focused on accomplishing some single goal. Only 12% of the poor do this.
- 76% of wealthy exercise aerobically four days a week. 23% of poor do this.
- 63% of wealthy listen to audio books during commute to work vs. 5% of poor people.
- 81% of wealthy maintain a to-do list vs. 19% of poor.
- 63% of wealthy parents make their children read two or more non-fiction books a month vs. 3% of poor.
- 70% of wealthy parents make their children volunteer 10 hours or more a month vs. 3% of poor.
- 80% of wealthy make Happy Birthday calls vs. 11% of poor.
- 67% of wealthy write down their goals vs. 17% of poor.
- 88% of wealthy read 30 minutes or more each day for education or career reasons vs. 2% of poor.
- 6% of wealthy say what’s on their mind vs. 69% of poor.
- 79% of wealthy network five hours or more each month vs. 16% of poor.
- 67% of wealthy watch one hour or less of TV every day vs. 23% of poor.
- 6% of wealthy watch reality TV vs. 78% of poor.
- 44% of wealthy wake up three hours before work starts vs. 3% of poor.
- 74% of wealthy teach good daily success habits to their children vs. 1% of poor.
- 84% of wealthy believe good habits create opportunity luck vs. 4% of poor.
- 76% of wealthy believe bad habits create detrimental luck vs. 9% of poor.
- 86% of wealthy believe in lifelong educational self-improvement vs. 5% of poor.
- 86% of wealthy love to read vs. 26% of poor.
Notice what you don't see? Golf 18 holes. Wash the Maserati. Log flight hours in private jet. In fact, none of the items on the list require money! If you boil the whole list down it basically comes down to the wealthy knowing what they want and being purposeful with their time to get their, while the rest of the world prioritizes eating McDonalds, watching the Bachelor, and running their mouths off. Interesting...
Wealth isn't the goal. There's a contractor on my current client who "only worships one god: the greenback." While I definitely don't agree with his philosophy, I'm not working 45 hours a week to become poor. I want to be successful in my career and handle well the resources given to me. So, in that vain, I've chosen two of the above habits to implement in my life: #5 and #6. I currently have a nice 45 minute drive to the client, plenty of time to crank through some good audiobooks or podcasts. I also don't really maintain a to-do list. I have in the past and always benefited from it, but it never became a habit. The plan is to implement and then reassess.
In 90 days I'll update. Wish me luck.
EDIT: Here is the follow up article.