7 rich people I admire and their money lessons

Inspiration is important. Everyone has times in their life when they feel down or everything is going wrong and you just don’t have the spark you think you need to be successful.

I remember being really down when I was working at the Apple Store and I approached my manager and asked to become a full-time employee. At the time I was just part-time. My manager said they just did not have the resources for me. I watched as my dream of working for Apple long-term was going down the drain. I felt like I hit a brick wall and success was slipping further and further away from me.

I started searching for successful people.

Did they go through rough times in their life? How did they become successful?

Everyone has rough times. No one is immune. Even if it seems like everything in life has been great. That is never the whole story. Everyone has demons they must overcome consistently.

It is easier to deal with rough times if you have inspiration. If you can see that someone else has been successful, you can know that is possible. If they were able to build their own empire, you can build your own empire.

Success is just a matter of education and actions.

When I worked for Starbucks, another one of my many jobs, I learned the Barista Repeatable Routine. It was process the barista used to make the drinks. The idea is that you learn a process to create a great product and then just repeat it over and over.

I feel that is a quality that these people all have in common. They found a formula of success that worked for them. A product, service or investment that was unique and great. And then they diligently expanded over and over. They persisted till they were successful.

  1. John C. Bogle – This man is the founder of Vanguard. He is one of my personal Hero’s and you should know his story. He was revolutionary in the financial world.

    He created a great business, but that is not why he is great. He went against financial professional creating the idea that you could get better investment gains owning the entire market rather than stock picking. Turns out he was right and more people are jumping on the index bandwagon. And he drastically lowered investing fees.

    Money Lesson: Challenge conventional wisdom if it is not right. Search for the lowest possible whenever possible.
  2. Warren Buffett – My inspiration for investing in the stock market. The Oracle of Omaha. Purchase assets below market value and hold them forever. Find business you love like Coca Cola and buy as much as possible and get dividends for life.

    You can be more than one thing in life. Berkshire Hathaway owns all kinds of businesses. You do not have to be just one thing in your lifetime. You can all different kinds of careers/jobs/passions. And different streams of income all contribute to the snowball of your investment portfolio.

    Money Lesson: Hold forever. Buy value and it will pay you forever.
  3. Charlie Munger – Warren Buffett’s right hand man. Charlie is not as aggressive an investor as Buffett. He loves COSTCO and so do I. You do not need to go down every road. You do not need to buy every investment. Find a great deal and put all of your eggs in that basket. And then have total confidence in your abilities. If you have done your homework, believe in your choice. And use common sense. He always talks about using commons sense and life and investments.

    Money Lesson: Use common sense. Invest what you do not spend. Be confident in yourself and your abilities.
  4. David Rubenstein – If your being run out of town, lead the parade. Founder of The Carlyle Group. He went from working in the White House to not having a job to creating one of the most successful businesses in the country.

    Money Lesson: Give back to society. We live in an amazing country that has freedom and you can pursue your dreams. Give back what you have been given.
  5. Sara Blakely – Nothing beats a great idea. Founder of Spanx. She had a great idea and started from the bottom and became an incredible entrepreneur. She always champions other women.

    Money Lesson: Great ideas win. If you have a great idea that solves a problem money will be attracted to you. Grow organically. Personally and professionally. Wealth takes time. Your job should be to add to the snowball.
  6. Ray Dalio – Principles – Founder of Bridgewater Associates. All Weather portfolio. He has made a lot of money, but it is the way he made the money that fascinates me. He took all different ideas and choose the best. What investments are you making? What if you could craft an asset allocation that gave you gains while protecting you against market downturns. That is his all weather portfolio has performed wonders for his investors.

    Money Lesson: Principles matter. The way to make money and create success matters. You want to make life better for all the stakeholders in your business: customers, employees, investors, society.
  7. Madam C.J. Walker – Determination. The first African American female millionaire. Creator of cosmetic and hair care products. Everyone should know her story. Her parents were slaves and she was orphaned as a child. Her business was developed because the African American market was being ignored. She created a product to fill a whole in the market and changed history.

    Money Lesson: Money flows to those who are determined. She had to overcome more obstacles than anyone. Starting and growing a business. Sexism, racism, poverty. Never give up. Especially if you believe in your product. And then use your voice to make society better. You are going to have to fight hard for what is right.

Life can be stressful. There are so many things that can wrong at any given time. What if you did not have to worry about money?

How would you feel if you had a fully funded emergency fund and healthcare fund. And were well on the path to retirement?

That sounds amazing to me. That sounds like success.

These people have achieved exactly that feeling. So they have time to deal all the other problems of their life. They get to deal with bigger problems.

Things rich people think about:
– What charity or cause am I going to give money to?
– Where am I going to go on vacation?
– How do I make this business even better than it already is?
– How do I make my life even better than it already is?
– What kind of car do I want to own?

You need to being thinking like a rich person. Do not think about all the things you are lacking. Think about all the tools and resources that you currently have at your disposal. Even if that is just your mind and a library card.

Get a mentor. Find someone that is more successful than you and learn lessons from them.

Ask for help. Find people that can have skills and ask them for help. People love to share their knowledge and help others. But you have to ask. No one is going to come knocking on your door.

Tell people NO

You are not available to help your friend move. Or walk their dog or help your parents mow their lawn. Your time is valuable and you do things on your schedule. When you make yourself unavailable people will stop asking you for things. The more you indulge, the more people will ask of you.

You do not have to have the perfect idea or the greatest product. Start where you are move forward. That is what I have learned from my career in software.

Develop your business and then work everyday to make it better.

Same with your money. Small amounts create mountains over time. Start consistently investing and then increase over time.

Being rich is truly state of mind.

If you are born in the USA your are most likely going to be wealthier than the majority of people on the planet.

What are your thoughts?

Leave a comment and connect with me


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