8 ways to prepare to become a millionaire

8 ways to prepare to become a millionaireToday I went to lunch with a very wealthy person. I don’t know exactly how wealthy , but based on his frequent trips to Maui, the fact that he earns a free plane ticket every month through his frequent flier points, and the fact that the other day he decided to go out and buy a truck just because he’s never had one before, there’s good reason to believe he’s close to a seven-digit earner. As I talked with him, it raised a lot of questions in my mind about how managing my finances will change as my wealth grows. If I were a millionaire would I still need to budget? Would I still want to track all my spending? Would I still need to negotiate with my wife about finances? It seems logical that with an income over $1,000,000 a year you wouldn’t need to plan as vigorously. But in the end thats a lie. Millionaires that manage their money irresponsibly can quickly lose it all and fall from grace (MC Hammer comes to mind).

Financial management principles are the same for millionaires and low-income-earners alike. Certainly the numbers your dealing with will change, but the basic principles and processes are still the same. In fact, by following sound financial management principles and optimizing your frame of mind, you can accelerate the process of building wealth and know how to keep it when you arrive. Here are 7 ideas that will help you think about and manage money like a millionaire, regardless of your income.

1. Be who you want to be. Earning more money amplifies who you are.

I’m going to borrow my first idea directly from my lunch partner who said “earning more money really just amplifies who you are.” While that might seem initially like a good thing, it really is a double-edged sword. For some, becoming a millionaire leads to a life of over-indulgence and decay. We catch glimpses of this in the popular media and entertainment world; drug addiction, abuse, and infidelity. Blemishes in your character will still be there if you become wealthy. Don’t fool yourself into thinking that having more money will solve your problems. It could make them worse.

On the other hand, if you have a mindset of serving and making a postitive contribution to your family and community now, you will be able to manifest those contributions with even greater power and effectiveness when you’re rich. By focusing on the positive contribution you want to make in your life, you will be prepared to expand and amplify your contribution as you earn more money.

2. Build your relationships. Earning more money amplifies your relationship dynamics.

Let me tell you a secret: earning more money does not solve your relationship problems. Even though my income has increased significantly over our 10 years of marriage, we still tend to argue about the exact same financial issues. If you have bad arguments over $100, just think of the how intense they will get arguing over $10,000 or $100,000. Working out your finances as a couple isn’t about the dollars, it’s about your values. By making all your spending and budgeting explicit, and by working as a team, you can address those values differences before they get out of control. As you become more wealthy, you’ll have a trusted, agreed-upon system in place to manage your increase.

3. Spend money consciously, but on a macro level.

Even as a millionaire you should know where every dollar is spent, but you don’t necessarily need to know line-item detail. Rather, you need to know how much is spent within broad, macro-level categories. Millionaire’s still need to decide how many thousands of dollars they’re going to spend on the “blow” category every month in relation to other expenses. Their blow category may be able to fund a new truck while mine funds a new book, but the decision is the same.

I recently read an article at StevePavlina.com where he talked about his goal of becoming a millionaire. He mentioned that to get in the mindset of a millionaire he would carry hundreds of dollars in cash in his wallet and not fret over $100 purchases. At first glance, it seemed that he was spending his money irresponsibly. But the fact is you can spend some of your money frivolously and still have total control over your finances. The trick is to simply decide how much you’re willing to blow in relation to the rest of your finances.

If I were a millionaire I may very well give myself and my wife $1,000 in personal money every month. That leaves a lot of room for spending money any way I want, anytime I want. But looking at my finances as a whole, there will be some limit as to how much I’m really willing to spend this way.

4. Be generous regardless of your income.

If you want to become a millionaire, be generous now. Charitable giving seems to be a universal law that attracts abundance into your life. Scriptures have taught this principle for ages and even T.V. shows like My Name is Earl jokingly acknowledge the effect of good karma and the golden rule.

Many people deceive themselves thinking “once I have a lot of money, I will give generously to charities,” but don’t make even small charitable contributions today. If you have a hard time giving away $10 now, what makes you think you’ll be able to easily give away $10,000 when you’re wealthy?

Upon recieving some windfall money recently, my wife and I decided to allocate a few hundred dollars to “random charitable acts.” We already donate to our church regularly but felt that we’d like to be able to give to specific people as we felt inspired to do so. We hope this will put us in a mindset of giving. We can actively be aware of the needs around us and feel empowered to help others financially as needed.

How cool would it be to do this on a large scale? I’ve been inspired by Billion-dollar donations from Bill Gates and Warren Buffet to charitable causes and think it’s a great example of a person’s character amplified. I recently read about someone who just decided one day to go out in public and start handing out $20 bills to random people. It seems counter-intuitive, but the stronger you grasp money, the harder it is to attract it into your life. In contrast, the more generous you are, the more it will flow into your life.

5. Provide enourmous value at work (self-employed or not)

One characteristic most wealthy people I know have in common is that they are totally invested in their business. Whether they earned their wealth by starting their own business or by working for another business, they all are focused on adding enormous value.

Sometimes it’s easy to kick back and waste time when working for an employer. It’s easy to not feel personally invested. But by doing so you’re only hurting yourself. In every job there are possibilities to contribute above and beyond what’s expected. Those who do tend to expand their influence and are promoted faster. Treat your job like it’s your own business and you’ll find a level of enthusiasm you didn’t know existed. Looking at work through the lens of business ownership, you also may just find yourself aching to start your own business. Either way, you’ll be a happier person and will find that opportunities for advancement and wealth come to you more effortlessly.

6. Plan a “millionaire lifestyle” day.

Imagine what your day-to-day life would be like as a millionaire. Would you get up and go play tennis? Or would you sleep in as late as your want? How would you interact with family and friends? Would you still work but only on projects you love? Once you have a clear picture in mind, find a day you can take off work and do those activities. Of course, there may be restrictions on how much you can spend, but do as much as you can afford.

By actually doing what you think you’d do as a millionaire, you can take one small step towards turning your thoughts into reality. Some people may find that they don’t really enjoy the activities as much as they thought. If the reality doesn’t live up to your expectations, re-think things and try again. If you think you’d spend your time running a business, you could use your millionaire day as a way to take massive action towards starting that business. Don’t just do this once. Schedule a “millionaire lifestyle” day 2 or 3 times a year. Have fun and get a taste of the millionaire life.

7. Build a strong foundation and get ready for your finances to explode.

It’s easy for people to get overwhelmed by the enormity of the task of getting out of debt, paying off your house, and saving for retirement. But what most people don’t think about is that with a focused budget and a debt-reduction plan, there comes a point at which your debt and house are paid off and you’re already saving enough for a comfortable retirement. All of a sudden you’re in a position with no debt, no payments, and possibly thousands of dollars a month of disposable income. Overnight, your famine turns into a feast. That’s when life gets really fun.

While we’re still working on paying off our house, we have already started experiencing this shift. It used to be that we struggled to fund luxury categories like gifts and vacation. Bonuses and cash gifts were used to fund categories that we knew we wanted to budget for but didn’t have enough month-to-month income to fund. Over the past couple years, we’ve been able to fully fund these categories and windfall money now goes mostly straight to debt reduction. Soon our second mortgage will be paid off and we’ll be putting that several hundred dollars a month (our payment plus snowball) into our first mortgage. Once the first mortgage is paid off, we should have over $2,000 a month to play with. And that isn’t even taking into consideration any income increases I may have over time. $1,000 a month in personal money doesn’t sound all that far off after all. And I won’t even need to be a millionaire to get it.

8. Recognize your wealth now to attract more into your life.

If you’re reading this blog, chances are you’re more wealthy than the vast majority of the world. Sometimes it’s easy to forget that simple fact. You are wealthy. I recently listened to an audio program by Dr. Wayne Dyer where he mentioned that if you were to compare the population of the earth to a village of 100 people and apply the same statistics you would see that 6 of the people (all from the United States) have 59% of all the wealth of the world and that only 1 person would own a computer. If you have food in the refrigerator, clothes on your back, a roof over your head, and a place to sleep, you are better off than 75% of the world’s population.

By focusing on the wealth you already have in your life, you will attract more of it. If you only think about scarcity and what you don’t have, that’s exactly what you’ll attract. To create wealth, you have to think creatively.

Be a millionaire is a frame of mind. If you’re only after money, you’ll always want more and will never have enough. If you’re after happiness, you can find it at any moment by changing your focus. By following these guidelines you’ll be able to experience just as much joy and satisfaction as any millionaire. “Money can’t buy me love” nor can it buy happiness.

Posted in Budgeting, Couples, Finances, Money, Personal Finance, Relationships, Saving, Spending | 24 Comments »

24 Comments to “8 ways to prepare to become a millionaire”

  1. Chris Brooks Says:

    There are very good points in this post, but I found the first two sentences interesting, and even a bit disturbing. Not that I doubt that your friend is rich, but the behaviors demonstrated are more what I’m used to seeing from high income / low net worth people than the wealthy.

  2. sjpeer Says:

    Good point. He does seem to be living it up. Hopefully he won’t be an example of a quick rise and quick fall. He didn’t seem overly enthusiastic about life and when he mentioned that money makes you more of who you are, I almost read a tinge dissatisfaction. Don’t get me wrong, he is a great guy and very easy going, but it’s clear to me that money alone doesn’t bring happiness.

  3. links for 2007-01-17 » Personal Finance - Save Money at Binary Dollar Says:

    […] 8 ways to prepare to become a millionaire Earning more money amplifies who you are. When you have more money, you can do what you want. That’s when the “real” you comes out… (tags: money finance wealth) […]

  4. Lynn Says:

    I love #6. Scheduling days to practice dwelling in the reality we want to create is such a good idea!

  5. Financial Planning Says:

    8 ways to prepare to become a millionaire

    Author: roth401k-articles
    Subject: Why Having a Budget Is the First Step to Getting Out of Debt
    Posted: Wed Feb 07, 2007 12:00 am (GMT 7)
    Topic Replies: 0
    Many people constantly complain about being in debt but when you ask do you have a budget, do you…

  6. Dr. Artfredo C. Abella-Commission on Audit-Philippines-UB Says:

    8 ways to prepare to become a millionaire is a more realistic way that the author has made regarding attaining the concept of becoming a millionaire. I would like to suggest other ways to contribute to the existing ones and prepare a person to become rich and millionaire:
    The never ending desire to earn more money and the never ending tendency to spend money uncontrollably would spell poverty or wealth to an individual. We have seen for the nth times that persons or individuals in possession of huge amounts and then a year or two that very same person is back to square one, that means he is financially incapable again. Money as they say is neutral more so like a lightning bolt, if we do not know how to use and harness money then it will turn out to be a useless thing. However, if used in the proper way it could increase both in its value and monetary counts. Money invested coupled with time could spell wealth to an individual. Money primarily is like a lifeblood of a person, it has to be circulated or it stays dormant unable to nourish the different organs of the body. Just imagine if your blood is not circulating in the mainstreams of your body then your body stipples and become numb. Money should be circulated so that the wheels of business will function. Money like current should flow freely to earn more and be a part of the whole business cycles and activities.
    2. HE WHO DREAMS WITH A BRIGHTER FUTURE AND PUTS THAT FAITH INTO ACTION WILL BECOME RICH. As the Bible defines faith that it is the substance of things hope for and the evidence of things not seen. He who can dream and put that dream into action would propel a greater chance of achieving financial success. Name it, whether it is the Skycraper’s building, the newest stealth jet planes, the Queen Victoria’s Ship they all started with a dream and that dream is translated into paper works and plans and finally put into action and the rest is financial success story.
    3. THE ACQUISITION OF WEALTH AND ITS LUSTER IS HIGHLY DEPENDENT ON THE MODE WE ACQUIRED IT. People who acquire money and become millionaires by cheating, misbranding or by illegal means would make wealth cheap and its luster short lived. We must realize that the real value of wealth and money is highly dependent on how we acquired it. If we acquire $1,000 in the most honest way then that will be more valuable to the millions of dollars acquired illegally. Business firms realize the value of acquiring wealth that they really work for because they know that wealth acquired in business disregarding good principles and concepts would not last long.
    4. THE BEST WAY TO PREPARE TO BECOME RICH IS TO KNOW AND UNDERSTAND THE NATURE AND CYCLES OF BUSINESS. During profitable times save in the banks so that when depression starts to creep in you have something to cling to. We must also realize that when operating a business, it is expected that a negative profits shall be incurred during the first three years of its business operations. To operate a business it must be customer centered. We must please the needs of the customers and adopt to their changing needs and styles. Business who could please and address the needs and wants of the stakeholders will surely succeed.
    5. THE ACQUISITION OF WEALTH BY THE MILLIONS ENTAILS HUGE RESPONSIBILITY AND DEFINITELY ATTRACTED TO PERSONS WHO ARE INNOVATIVE, RESOURCEFUL AND HARD WORKING. To acquire wealth entails detailed understanding on how to manage money and wealth. It is the ability to understand the language of accounting, the balance sheet, the cash flows, the income statement, statement of operations, statement of changes in financial operations so that like a skipper he knows the financial status of his business. This is the reason why it says that 80% of the millionaires are college graduates. It takes knowledge and hard work to become rich and wealthy.

  7. Ammar Ijaz Says:

    Great post. I especially liked your last point.

    I would also like to add a reply to the first comment:

    It is not wrong at all to enjoy the fruits of your labour, as long as they are the fruits of your labour and not the…trees of it. Ok, so that’s not a great analogy, the point is this. If you’re smart with your money and just have tons of it around, you can afford to enjoy more of it because you’re already set. And while many people do act rich before they get rich, there are people who act rich after becoming rich. 🙂

  8. sjpeer Says:

    I certainly agree that you can enjoy your wealth as you obtain it as long as you always consider your values and the big picture. If you have $10,000 of income left after paying for living expenses vs $100, go ahead and buy a motorcycle instead of a book. But only do so if you are sure a motorcycle is what you value most compared with other possible goals.

    I thought it was interesting the distinction the first commenter made between the wealthy vs the rich. My interpretation is this: The “rich” are those who make a lot of money but spend it all or even more than they make. The “wealthy” are those who wisely manage and accumulate money according to their goals and values. They still may spend a lot of money for fun things, but it is because they choose to, not because they are out of control.

  9. danny Says:

    Some very useful points.

  10. Frank Says:

    This is one of the best articles I have read so far. I like all the input and the consistency as well as emphasis on how to manage money. I also like the comments of every indiviual especially on #6 who makes it more meaningful and well put. I’m pretty sure that I can apply this into my life and become a millionaire someday in a good way. Thank you all.

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  12. rugs Says:

    Ok, so now I know how to prepare to become a millionaire. Now how about something about how to get the money to become a millionaire! I do not think I would need to learn how to be one. I am pretty sure I know how to spend my money and buy things. So, how about some sure ways of making the money to spend! I hear all these commercials that tell you the get rich quick schemes. I want to find one that works. I don’t even care if it takes some time and not so quick. As long as I get the money in the end, I am willing to put some work into getting it. So once you know how to make the money, please write about that on here so we can all know about it. I know a lot of people would thank you.

  13. Dr. Art Says:

    Hi Frank,

    Thanks for appreciating my comments, you see I was so inspired upon reading this article that out of the blues I was able to just come up something like putting an icing on the cake on how to become affluent in life. As advocated in the Science of Getting Rich – it is sinful to have lack in life as it is contrary to God’s wishes on us. God is bountiful and rich since He created the beautiful stars, heavens, solar systems, sun, stars and earth ,and therefore He wants us to be rich and bountiful too. The other point mentioned was, you have to be rich so that you will not be burden to society but instead be a part of the solution to the lingering problems beseeching most of our people that is poverty. A million thanks again for the appreciation.

  14. Edmond Lee Says:

    In response to rugs statement. In order to become a millionaire you must surround yourself with them. You are the top 5 friends you hang around and spend the most time with. You must also take action, so many people read info about becoming a millionaire but they don’t take any action. Many people are busy being busy and just getting ready to get ready. I actually do have the pleasure of being mentored by a millioniare. I work closely with him and some other individuals to help people becoming rich in the areas of health, wealth, and wisdom. We help people get rid of debt, improve credit, become involved with investments that yield over a 50% return and truely get the chance to life life how they want and dream of. Rugs, I understand that there are plenty of get rich schemes and before having a millionaire mentor, I got burned by a few! I have found what you are looking for and all you have to do is go to wmitoday.com/elee That is the ticket and the great part about it is that it has info on how to become wealthy. There is an opportunity to become a consultant and that can be done by viewing the marketing system we use at ttomarketing.net

  15. Elenor Says:


    the simplest and fastest way to become rich is still to inherit from a family member.
    Sure, not everyone has the “rich uncle” in America. Or maybe some just don t know that they have one. A good way to find out is to register at http://www.famillion.com (it s free) amd let the system merge your tree with related trees!

  16. iarenoob Says:

    These are all very good points into preparing to become a millionaire. Not many look at it from your point of view and I’m glad you got it out there because it’s not all about making money.

  17. Abbie Says:

    I really enjoyed reading your post on 8 ways to prepare to become a millionaire. Offering these 8 ways to prepare to become a millionaire can be helpful to many that are looking for ways to become a millionaire. However, if you would, please add a #9, “Become Financial Literate”. In my opinion “Becoming Financial Literate” should be included on any list that talks about preparing to make money, becoming rich, becoming a millionaire, managing money, saving money, investing money, and any topic concerning money.

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  19. Why “I want to have enough” is a Bad Money Goal | Mind-Manual Says:

    […] “I want enough so I don’t have to worry about money” is a goal I personally thought was a worthy one until I realized what that meant. Basically, I was willing to be disciplined about spending and making money and doing a broad budget for the hope of some point at which I did not have to be disciplined at all and I could spend money however I wanted. I didn’t notice the problem with that for a long time, but it was that I will always have to be disciplined with money, and I may have to deny myself things because I don’t have the money at any income level. The thing is, while today I may have to deny myself a 5 dollar item, when I’m making much more than that, I may have to deny myself a plasma screen TV or a new car. I will still need to be disciplined, probably in broad strokes, while still giving me enough to enjoy life and indulge every once in a while. That is, say I put aside 10% of my income as play money, which I can do anything with, as my income grows, this amount will grow, but I will always have to stay within it. You can read more about it under the number 3 tip in “8 ways to prepare to be a millionaire” at Getting Finances Done. […]

  20. Alison Says:

    very good points….. I have the mindset of a millionaire and I will be there hopefully in ten years or less. I am teaching my children the value of saving and investing.

  21. Millionaire Acts Says:

    think the ultimate way to become a millionaire is to EARN MORE and DESIRE LESS. Earning more increases your income i.e. (taking a second job, investing your money, buying assets that provide passive income, etc.) while desiring less lessens your spending (i.e. budgeting, frugality, etc.)

    Make it a habit and definitely, you would become a millionaire someday

  22. Dani Says:

    So I need to remember to put others before me when I have a lot of money. And not do what the others do, what most do; and look after no.1.

    Im scared of me as a millionare. But I still want to be one:)

  23. Dani Says:

    Contibuting and giving earns you the money.
    putting others first and resisting your greed will give you the reward of being wealthy. Ironic.

  24. How to make Passive Income through Your Blog Says:

    […] 8 ways to prepare to become a millionaire – today i went to lunch with a very wealthy person. i don’t know exactly how wealthy , but based on his frequent trips to maui, the fact that he earns a free plane ticket every month through his frequent flier points, and the fact that … […]

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