In Tom Corley’s five-year Rich Habits study of 233 rich people and 128 poor people he discovered that we adopt the beliefs of our parents, family, mentors, culture, and environment.
He shares some of those revelations and dispels the myths about the rich.
In this week’s video we discuss 4 more myths about the rich.
MYTH #1: THE RICH ARE BETTER EDUCATED
While 68% of the rich in my study obtained a college degree, 110, or 69%, went to a public institution.
32% of the wealthy did not even obtain a college degree.
And 36% of the self-made millionaires (57 of the 177 self-made millionaires) never obtained a college degree.
Of those 158 of the wealthy who got a college degree, 73, or 46%, paid their own way through college and 23% of them went to college part-time, while they worked.
MYTH #2: RICH PEOPLE ARE NOT CHARITABLE AND HATE POOR PEOPLE
Tom really struggled with this one because he believed from his upbringing that the wealthy were selfish and greedy with their money and despised poor people.
Boy was he wrong.
62% of the wealthy said they contributed 5-10% of their net income to charity.
Many of the charities they supported included the community food bank, homeless shelters, means-based scholarship programs and organizations that benefited poor children.
But they didn’t stop there.
72% volunteered five hours or more a month for some charity.
Their volunteer work included helping to run the charities, either through board membership, or as part of the various committees.
MYTH #3: MONEY DOES NOT BUY HAPPINESS
Tom must have heard my mom say this a thousand times growing up.
He just assumed that rich people were miserable saps.
Another erroneous belief.
82% of the wealthy in my study said they were happy.
94% of those who were happy, said they were happy because they liked or loved what they did for a living.
When he thought about the extravagant lifestyles of the wealthy he envisioned private jets, yachts, luxurious vacations, expensive cars, etc.
MYTH #4: RICH PEOPLE LIVE EXTRAVAGANT LIFESTYLES
Fortunately, Tom gathered a great deal of data on the spending habits of the rich.
Here’s some of that data:
* 67% said they were frugal with their money.
* 8% still shopped at goodwill stores.
* 30% clipped coupons.
* 92% never vacationed on a yacht.
* 55% of the wealthy spent less than $6,000 a year on their vacations. Only 23% admitted to spending $10,000 or more on their annual vacations. Most of those 23% were those who inherited their wealth.
* 87% said they never purchased a new luxury car in their lives.
* 44% said they purchase a used car every five years.
IT’S EASY TO HATE THE WEALTHY
Most in our country grew up poor or middle class and many of the poor and middle class were indoctrinated with beliefs that the wealthy are not good people.
Parents, the public school system and many politicians teach our children that the wealthy are corrupt, greedy, have too much wealth and that, for the good of society, this wealth should be redistributed.
What kind of a message do you think that sends to America’s future generation?
It is teaching them that seeking financial success is a bad thing.
The Occupy Wall Street movement was a manifestation of this “pursuing wealth is bad and wealth needs to be redistributed mindset.”
The fact is, the rich are rich for a lot of reasons.
And most of those reasons are hard work, persistence, good habits, good decision making, frugal living, living below their means and building strong, powerful relationships with other success-minded people.
We need to view self-made millionaires for what they are – American Dream achievers who should be
You can catch up with past episodes of this weekly webcast here – Rich Habit, Poor Habits – Tom Corley & Michael Yardney