If you could change some simple habits and turn from an average person to a successful person, would you have to think about it first?
I’m going to give you 10 habits you probably didn’t think of, that you are possibly guilty of, and that are stopping you from building wealth. No matter if you want to become wealthy or if you just want to have a bit more money at your disposal: these 10 habits are keeping you poor.
Without further ado, these are the 10 habits that are keeping you poor.
1. Keeping A Job You Hate
Do you remember the story of Fight Club? In a few words it was about a guy, depressed by his job and by what consumerism makes him buy. But the difference between him and many others is that he decided to tell his boss he was quitting, in a “very kind way” (do you remember the famous office scene where the protagonist quits?), and found something that he enjoyed much much more.
Although the protagonist of this movie is not the best role model, he avoided something that most people do: Keeping a job they hate.
Last year we heard a lot about this “quiet quitting”:
Basically keeping a job and putting no more effort into it than absolutely necessary.
And look, there’s nothing wrong with feeling demotivated with your job. Damn, there’s nothing wrong with “quiet quitting” either, as long as in the meantime you’re doing everything possible to change your job.
You have all the rights to complain about your job or about your salary, but if you just complain and do nothing about it guess what, that’s the only job you have!
You won’t feel motivated, you won’t perform well, you won’t improve and therefore, also your financial situation will not improve. So think about your job and, if you’re not satisfied with it, do whatever you can to find something different.
The second habit is probably the thing that people do the most when they are not sleeping. Sometimes even when they’re working, in fact apparently it’s a trait also of some famous people like J. K. Rowling, the author of Harry Potter, Dalai Lama – when he was younger, Mozart, Bill Clinton, and even Steve Jobs.
I’m talking about procrastination and yes, apparently many people that worked with Steve Jobs said he procrastinated constantly, although I think it was more like “purposeful delay”.
Now, tell me the truth, how many times did you wish for something for yourself and in the end you did nothing for it? And I’m not just talking about scrolling TikTok videos instead of tidying up the room, but also more important things.
For example I don’t know about you but I have people that I admire and I look up to. In the past I always thought “How I’d like to have their life, their knowledge, their job”. But the thing is, you can wish for whatever you want, but if you don’t take action, you’re never going to move from where you’re standing now.
So if you desire having more and becoming more, don’t wait for something to fall from the sky and don’t give up to the idea that you’re never going to get anywhere. Whether you realize it or not, procrastination is a big reason why you are struggling financially in life.
3. Keeping Up With The Kardashians (or the Joneses)
Number 3 is “Keeping up with the Kardashians”, or as some people say, “keeping up with the Joneses”.
This is when you compare yourself to others and try to match their lifestyle because you want to feel like them.
The truth is, I said “Kardashians” but we guys are guilty of this just as much as women. Cars, watches, clothes, phones, every time we spend a lot of money on this stuff just because “that guy does so”, we get one step further away from wealth.
Warren Buffett still lives in the house he bought in 1958 for $31,000. And I know that some of you might say “come on, Warren, you’re a billionaire, you could buy something much bigger than that”.
But that’s the thing, he’s a billionaire, we are not.
So when you buy expensive stuff because you saw some actor wearing it or you buy a cool car because you’ve seen it in the city, ask yourself “is it really worth it to spend so much of my income on stuff, just so that I can pretend to be richer? Maybe not.
4. Being in a hurry
Number 4 is being in a hurry. And I don’t mean because you are Leonardo di Caprio in Catch me if you can and you are running away from the FBI, even though this movie is a good example of what I really mean.
Now, let’s say that you want to become rich and you watch youtube. If you watch finance videos, who is it that you always see and everybody knows? You probably know Graham Stephan. And probably Andrei Jihk. And what is it that they have in common? They’ve had incredibly fast growth.
So it’s easy to desire to grow as fast as them, but the truth is, getting rich is not a marathon.
So what happens is that wanting to make money fast is going to make you fall into a trap that, guess what, is going to make you poorer.
Just write something like getting rich with amazon fba and you’ll be thrown away by a river of videos of little babies promising easy millions and getting rich schemes:
Unfortunately, no matter if some people truly had a fast growth, like Jihk or Graham, or if they are just faking it, like all Amazon FBA gurus, the truth is that most likely this is not going to happen to you.
Are you worse than them or do you deserve less? No, but except in some rare, uncommon, lucky situations, there is no such thing as getting rich quick.
Financial success takes time, initiative, and effort. So don’t fall for any promise of quick money because the only person making quick money will be the one on the other side of the screen.
5. Not Saving For Emergencies
Did you know that 57% of Americans can’t cover a $1,000 emergency expense with savings?
Instead of having an emergency fund to use, many Americans would have to go into debt even to just pay an unexpected $1,000 bill, either by asking family and friends for a loan, taking a personal loan from a bank or charging a credit card.
So the problem is that, whatever money you have to lend from someone else, comes with a terrible price: the interest rate. And the interest rate is usually really high for short term debts. Credit cards for example come with a painful interest rate that this year was on average 24.1%. If you can’t catch how bad this interest rate is, let me show you something.
Let’s say you have a credit card balance of $3,000 and you are able to pay 100$ per month to reduce it, which is more than the typical minimum payment. Well, it’s going to take you almost 4 years to pay it back and in the end you’re going to have paid 1627$ only in interest:
And look, there is only one truth about unexpected expenses: you should expect them.
So do me a favor: open a high yield savings account. You’re going to find many that give you even 3-4% interest rate, but to you, not from you. Put aside some of your paycheck every time until you manage to save at least an amount equal to your expenses of 3 to 6 months. This is called an “emergency fund“.
6. Impulse buying
Number 6 is impulse buying. According to invespcro.com, 84% of all shoppers make impulse purchases and almost 40% of all the money spent in E-Commerce comes from impulse purchases. So this gives an idea of how easily we tend to buy things without really thinking it through.
Americans spend up to $5,400 irrationally each year. So now I ask you: Can you think of one time you bought something on an impulse and regretted it less than 24 hours later?
We all know that feeling when you walk through a store, or maybe you’re scrolling the amazon app, and you go – “holy ****, look at this!”.
It happens to everybody, but the curious thing is that most of the time we regret doing it. And if you invest in the stock market, I’m pretty sure that you made an impulse investment too.
At least once.
Or a couple more.
If you want to avoid impulse purchases, that can make you overspend or put you in debt, you should get the habit to always sleep on it when you are buying big things, and when you’re going shopping you could make a shopping list first, so that you just stick to what you wrote.
7. Getting in Debt
Number 7 is probably the worst habit and that is getting in debt. There are some debts that are kind of hard to avoid, for example, if you want to buy a house most likely you’re going to have to take a mortgage, or if you are starting a business you’re probably going to need a loan, but I’m talking about all the other small debts that we like to get into, like credit card debt or car loans.
I know some people don’t agree with me but I believe that you should never get into debt for whatever is not either a property or a business.
Personally I’ve never gotten into debt for anything else than that.
Credit cards in particular are a big money trap and most people think that banks with credit cards are doing them a favor, but, no. They aren’t.
Instead, credit card companies do everything they can to make you owe them money and pray that you mess up the payments. They give you freebies, reward points, cash back, discounts, everything to convince you to get into debt and pay them nice interest back.
So always pay your Credit Card Balance every month, and never buy what you can’t afford with cash.
8. No-Money-Down Plans
Number 8 is No-Money-Down Plans or buy now, pay later plans. In other words: “we know you don’t have enough money now, so let us suck your money little by little.”
Now the thing with No-Money-Down plans is that often they don’t have interest, so we use them because we think we’ve got nothing to lose. So why is this instead a big big mistake? Well, first of all, interests are not the only problem. The fact that you are paying for something little by little makes you think you can afford it more, but the yourself of the future is going to pay for it.
If I can’t afford a thousand dollar phone because I don’t have enough money, paying for it in 12 months didn’t make me richer, I’m still going to have to pay 1,000$ for it this year. Right? And every month, a chunk of my money is going to go away for something that I shouldn’t have bought in the first place.
The one and only solution to this is to just buy what you can afford to pay 100% upfront. And if you really want that phone so badly, try first to save up the whole money that you need before buying it. Only this way you are going to realize how hard it was to save all that sum and most likely you’re not going to want to spend it anymore.
9. HANGING OUT WITH THE WRONG PEOPLE
Nr. 9 is something that I’ve always underestimated and it’s one of the things you learn from successful people.
They say that you are only as good as the people you surround yourself with and this is also valid for your finances.
Hang out with people that spend all their salaries shopping every month, and most likely you will also tend to spend much more. But hang out with people that are creative, hard-working, goal oriented, and you will most likely do something good in your life because you will also do the same.
10. STICKING TO YOUR COMFORT ZONE
The last wrong habit that keeps you poor is sticking to your comfort zone.
Leaving the comfort zone for me was for example when I left Italy and moved to Germany without money or connections. It was when I was looking for a job and I was learning sentences by heart for the interviews because I couldn’t speak german. I left the comfort zone when I opened an E-Commerce business, as well as when I decided to start a youtube channel.
By the way, did you come by my youtube channel to check it out? 😊
Anyway, pushing yourself to the limit because you are in an uncomfortable situation is the best way to improve, and most likely will make you wealthier in the long term.
But keeping an easy job because you don’t like pressure, never taking new challenges because you’re afraid of failing, never starting investing because you’re afraid of losing money, all of this, sticking to your comfort zone is going to make you stay in the exact same situation.
And growing up, even your needs are going to grow, so staying in the same situation at some point is not going to be enough anymore.
So my tip is, try to get comfortable with being uncomfortable. Breaking a habit, trying something new, taking a risk, making new connections, or putting yourself in a totally new situation won’t be easy, but it’s worth it.
Let me know which habit you are guilty of and if you’ve come this far, thank you so much for reading the post or watching the video.
If you missed it, check out my blog post about the importance of looking poor or the video version on youtube, and if you are interested in personal finance and investing, subscribe to my channel and check out my other videos. I wish you a great day, or evening, and as always, I’ll see you in the next video. Ciao!