On the journey to prosperity, there are many life-changing transitions, some of which can be wrenching or difficult to appreciate in the moment. As a friend used to say, "Oh no, it's an AFGO - Another Fudging Growth Opportunity!" But, if we can take time to be grateful about new habits that lead to wealth and prosperity, the journey to prosperity becomes much more enjoyable, not to mention much faster!
At Thanksgiving, popular author Robert Kiyosaki wrote that he was grateful that he was able to NOT spend money on things he didn't need. Now that's quite different than what most people are grateful for at Thanksgiving. Most people are grateful for what they have or what they can spend. Kiyosaki was grateful for the ability not to spend. What a difference!
When you feel confined or restricted by new wealth building habits, which often require you to want, need and spend less, try this simple exercise:
- Pick one wealth building habit that you've been working on, such as buying a company's stock rather than their profits, or spending less on eating out.
- Add up what you are saving every month from this wealth building habit. Let's say you save $50 a month by eating out less frequently and buying fewer unnecessary "doodads."
- Multiply this figure by 12 to get your annual savings from this wealth building habit. Twelve months at $50 per month yields $600 a year.
- Now subtract your age from 80, the new average life expectancy. Multiply this number of years (how many more years you are likely to live) by your annual savings number. Let's say conservatively you still have 30 years to go. Thirty years at $600 per year produces $18,000 of savings over the rest of your life. Now, if that doesn't catch your attention, this should: investing $600 a year, compounded annually at 6%, results in a total sum of $44,449.64 over 30 years!
- Keep in mind that the $18,000 in savings is the result of only ONE wealth building habit. If you added 4 to 8 wealth building habits to your life every year, imagine how much you could save (to spend on the things you really want) over a lifetime. Four wealth building habits over the rest of your life could yield $72,000! That's just based on implementing only 4 wealth building habits in the first year. What could you do with $72,000? What if you saved that amount 30 times over by introducing 4 new wealth building habits each year for the rest of your life?
So, if you feel progress on the road to wealth and prosperity is slow going, just do the math. Take the long view and really savor and appreciate all you are achieving by just doing one small thing at a time. Every time you feel deprived when you don't get to go out to eat, think about $18,000. Extend your vision and think about $72,000. It will help you feel joyful about your journey rather than restricted. Sometimes, even a little math can help you go a long way!