Our habits define who we are. The things we do every day have a major influence on the different aspects of our lives, including our finances. Rich people have specific habits that drive them to gaining and retaining wealth. In fact, their impressive financial stature are a direct result of the habits they maintain. On the other hand, poor people also have habits, but their habits do the exact opposite. They keep them from gaining or retaining wealth. So what are these habits that keep people poor? Here are three that I believe are the most corrosive to your financial well-being!
Habit #1: Blaming Others
For everything you want to achieve in life, you will experience your fair share of failures. These failures come as a result of bad decisions, and they could be really demoralizing at best and devastating at worst. It is unfortunate that a lot of people do not realize that they are solely responsible for their destinies, and this causes them to point accusing fingers at everyone else but themselves.
Blaming others for your failures means you have subconsciously agreed that the key to your wealth lies in their hands. This is a terrible mindset to carry if you ever plan to be rich or maintain the wealth you already have. Some people blame the government and its policies for their financial troubles, while others blame family members, business partners, spouses, boyfriends/girlfriends etc.
There are so many facts that come with blaming other people for your financial shortcomings, and I would like to go over a few of them now.
First, blaming others still won’t make you rich — This is the most obvious fact about blaming others for your problems. I’ve never seen an instance where blaming another person will add a dollar to your pocket. It is a total waste of time and emotions, as it bears no good fruit. Guess what? The people you blame for your failures don’t care what you think, some of them may not even know you exist! For every failure you experience in life, there is only one person to be blamed, and that is you! Rich people carry a mindset of self-responsibility, they hold themselves accountable for their disappointments and work towards performing better.
It is up to you to choose the right business partner, the right staff, and plan your way to success. If you must partner with someone for a business, be sure he or she has the same goals as you. Also, investigate to find out more about the people you are having business dealings with. If you are to employ staff, interview them yourself, especially if you are running a small business. It is up to you to decide whether the person is qualified to work for you or not, and if that person will help the business grow, or run it into the ground.
Next, blame destroys relationships — When you blame others for your failures, you are automatically brewing some bad blood within you. When you believe a person, organization, or even the government is responsible for your poverty, you will have no other emotions towards them but hate. Bridges will be burned and you may lose some future opportunities that would have come from the same people you blame.
Finally, laying blame stops you from re-strategizing — Since you don’t believe you are responsible for your failures, you also won’t see the need to make new plans that will lead you to success. Unfortunately, the people you blame won’t make plans for you either! They have their own lives to live and businesses to run, so why would they? Know this for a fact, the people you blame don’t wake up every morning thinking about you. They are busy planning their lives and chasing their dreams, while you are there sulking over how it’s their fault that you are poor. The moment you stop blaming others is the moment you will start making plans by yourself, which will help you reach your goals.
Habit #2: Focusing On Low-Value Activities
This is one sure way to remain poor forever. As humans, we engage in so many activities on a daily basis. There are activities that better the quality of our lives, while there are activities that worsen the quality of our lives. Anything you do that adds value or is tangible, is considered a high-value activity. On the flip side, any activity that doesn’t add any value to your life is considered a low-value activity. For instance, spending 3 hours at work is more valuable than spending 3 hours at the bar. Sadly, it is very easy to focus on low-value activities, as they seem like fun things to do.
Now, you probably know a few examples of low-value activities but let me explain why they need to be avoided if you want to improve your financial situation.
First, they steal your time — Everything we do consumes time. The clock isn’t going to stop and wait for you to get your act together before it starts ticking again. Any time lost can never be gotten back, so it’s best to use your time for activities that will allow you to prosper.
Next, it steals your money — There are quite a number of low-value activities that would cost you decent sums of money. Some could even take as much as half your salary if you are not careful.
Such activities include spending too much time at bars or nightclubs. This is a pretty expensive habit, and it yields no profit, so why engage in it? This is not to say having a drink with friends is bad, I’m just saying you shouldn’t spend too much time, or money hanging out in bars. If you’re an upcoming entrepreneur, try and form a habit of going out for drinks only when you have something to celebrate, or you’ve reached a certain milestone. Other than that, it is best you save your money and invest it in other profitable activities.
Finally, low value activities deter you from reaching your goals — The more you engage in low-value activities, the further away from your goals you will be. The only way to achieve success is by engaging in activities that will drive you closer, rather than farther from the accomplishments you want to achieve. Do yourself a favor and ask, what high-value activities you can do to better the quality of your life. If you give yourself an honest answer, then you are a step closer to success.
Remember, high-value activities are those that push you to reach your goals, and not the opposite.
Some examples include:
Working on a business plan
Learning new skills through training programs or videos
Helping family members or colleagues achieve their goals
Formulating a plan of action at the beginning of each day
Spend time discussing business ideas with partners and
The examples I’ve just mentioned will certainly add value to your life, and not remove it. These are the kinds of activities you should engage in if you want to be rich. Now that you have an idea of what high-value activities are, let us take a look at some examples of low-value activities. Also remember, low-value activities are those activities that add no value to your life, neither do they drive you towards achieving your goals.
The first set of low value activities relate to actions and activities that produce negative outcomes for you or for others — Activities like gossiping in the office at a time you should be working will do two things.
It will slow down your work and reduce your efficiency and
It will destroy professional relationships
This will lead to a negative outcome for you, your employers, and co-workers.
Next there’s spending too much time watching television — Unless the show you are watching is of high value (maybe a financial or fitness program), then you shouldn’t spend too much time watching television, as there is nothing tangible to gain from it.
It is okay to watch a show for entertainment purposes, as that will help ease off the stress of the day, but be sure not to get carried away. Remember that you still have work to do the next day, and a good night’s rest is important. You need to wake up feeling refreshed and fit to accomplish your tasks for the day.
Then, there are video games — Just like watching television, playing video games can help you ease off stress after work, but you must not dedicate too much time to it. Video games can be addictive, so it’s up to you to remain disciplined and pull the plug when it’s time.
When it comes to consumables, you must steer clear of excessive drinking and drugs. I have mentioned this before about how they can steal your time and money. There is something else excessive drinking can steal from you, and that is your health. Not only will you lose money drinking, but you will also spend money on medical bills when your drinking habits start to put a dent in your health. The same goes for drugs. They take your money and stop you from focusing on your goals. Worst still, it could land you in prison! Quite frankly, this is one of the worst low-value activities you could ever engage yourself in.
Finally there is many people’s top culprit — social media. Social media is great for reconnecting with old friends, and it is an excellent platform for advertising your business to the rest of the world. However, if you spend long periods on social media, then make sure it is for business reasons, and not just for the sake of liking and commenting on hot pictures. As the former is more profitable than the latter.
Habit #3: Disrespecting Your Money
How does a person disrespect his or her money? Well, there are several ways that can be done.
First, there is failing to save money. When you earn money, it is important that you save at least 10% of it. Money saved can be used for important expenses in the future, as well as investing and re-investing.
When you don’t save and invest your money, it means you will keep working for more, as opposed to your money working for you.
Next, there is careless spending. This is one of the worst forms of disrespect you can show your money.
When you go out and buy everything you come across (even the things you don’t need), then know that you are on a path to remaining poor. Many people suffer from the need to impress others, and that is why they spend more than they can actually afford. This habit will not only leave your pockets empty, but it can also put you in debt.
Another way people disrespect their money is by investing blindly. This is another mistake many people make, and they almost always lose their money in the process.
It is wrong to go into a business or invest in a stock without first studying the key elements of the asset. Remember, this is hard-earned money we are talking about, and it would be sad to lose it just because you were too lazy to learn before investing.
Finally, there’s gambling. — This is also another form of disrespecting your money. People gamble with the hopes of scoring big winnings while putting in a very small investment. The problem with gambling is that it is 100% luck-based, as the outcomes are very unpredictable. So why put your money into something you cannot predict?
Many people have lost fortunes on gambling. These include jewelries, cars, homes, and physical cash! Gambling is also addictive, so stay far away from it. The more you lose, the more you gamble in a bid to recover your losses, and there are no guarantees whatsoever. You may manage to win a bet, but that would also be a problem, as this would lead you to gamble more. Also, winning a bet could push you to increase your stake, making your future losses even graver.
There you have it! Those are 3 habits you must avoid!