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The Middle Class Mind / The Wealthy Mind

post #1 of 188
Thread Starter 
Middle class family man sees money as something to save, to place in safe investments. He reduces risk, is cautious, does not spend on luxury items.

Rich man sees money as a means to an end, not the end. A tool. You win some, you lose some. It takes money to make money. Risk is opportunity.

Throw into the mix, The Millionaire Next Door (middle class value system) vs. the hustler MLM Ponzi get rich quick guy, some of whom actually get rich.

Probability-wise, is the road to wealth built on adding value to the equation and thrift, on adding value to the equation and spending a lot of money in the process, or in creating a pet rock?

I tend to be more the conservative middle class type, but I wonder whether this is holding me back or whether its a virtue.

With the knowledge that there are a good deal of wealthy folk here (making, say, $500,000 per year plus), and probably a good deal of formerly wealthy folk, I would appreciate your thoughts on this question.
post #2 of 188
You're going to get a lot of argument by saying people making 500k are "wealthy"
post #3 of 188
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by munchausen View Post
You're going to get a lot of argument by saying people making 500k are "wealthy"

I guess I would be pretty comfortable at that stage, in terms of vacations, college for kids, nice car, maybe a jet ski or two, and good steaks to grill.
post #4 of 188
Yeah me too, but a lot of people here won't even say you are "rich" until you're making millions.
post #5 of 188
I thought middle class was just a euphemism for working class with too many credit cards.
post #6 of 188
A former titan of my particular industry put it this way: "Nobody ever got rich off a salary. No matter how high the salary."

If you want to get rich -- I mean fuck-you-money rich -- then you need to own something. That can be real property, it can be intellectual property, it can be a company, it can be a monetized idea, it can be patents, it can be a personal brand, it can be privileged access to something desirable and in short supply, or whatever the case may be. But ownership confers wealth. More specifically: ownership of something others want to buy* from you confers wealth.

In this sense, no, trying to maximize a corporate salary and squirrel away as much money as you can save over 30+ years is not going to make you wealthy. If you want to become really wealthy, you need to take risk and work your ass off to realize the return on that risk.



*Whether literally or figuratively.
post #7 of 188
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by bringusingoodale View Post
I thought middle class was just a euphemism for working class with too many credit cards.

Good point. But let's assume that its the pre-2005 middle class. No credit card debt, buys cars rather than lease, changes own oil, no hired help, buys store brands, maxes 401K.

I often wonder whether such concern over conserving what I do earn is preventing me from a whole new level of prosperity. I like nice clothes, particularly shoes, but prosperity would make me happy because of the increased independence, and not so much the pursuit of material things or status among peers.
post #8 of 188
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Carlos View Post
A former titan of my particular industry put it this way: "Nobody ever got rich off a salary. No matter how high the salary."

If you want to get rich -- I mean fuck-you-money rich -- then you need to own something. That can be real property, it can be intellectual property, it can be a company, it can be a monetized idea, it can be patents, it can be a personal brand, it can be privileged access to something desirable and in short supply, or whatever the case may be. But ownership confers wealth. More specifically: ownership of something others want to buy* from you confers wealth.

In this sense, no, trying to maximize a corporate salary and squirrel away as much money as you can save over 30+ years is not going to make you wealthy. If you want to become really wealthy, you need to take risk and work your ass off to realize the return on that risk.



*Whether literally or figuratively.

Professionals sell their time. Aside from, say, personal injury lawyers, I get the impression that the inherent restraint of time is a, well, a restraint on one's wealth potential.
post #9 of 188
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lighthouse View Post
Good point. But let's assume that its the pre-2005 middle class. No credit card debt, buys cars rather than lease, changes own oil, no hired help, buys store brands, maxes 401K.

I often wonder whether such concern over conserving what I do earn is preventing me from a whole new level of prosperity. I like nice clothes, particularly shoes, but prosperity would make me happy because of the increased independence, and not so much the pursuit of material things or status among peers.

Spend less. Invest more.

Most people get tripped up on the "invest" part, though. Get-rich investing is not socking it all diligently into a 401k. Get-rich investing means strategically investing that money into something like a startup business.
post #10 of 188
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Carlos View Post
In this sense, no, trying to maximize a corporate salary and squirrel away as much money as you can save over 30+ years is not going to make you wealthy. If you want to become really wealthy, you need to take risk and work your ass off to realize the return on that risk.

OK. This is what I am kind of driving at. Is "Get Rich Quick" a fool's errand?
post #11 of 188
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lighthouse View Post
Professionals sell their time. Aside from, say, personal injury lawyers, I get the impression that the inherent restraint of time is a, well, a restraint on one's wealth potential.

That's just the thing though: "professionals" don't get rich. If you're renting out your time to a big company, you're going to get what the big company thinks that time is worth -- and it's usually a lot less than what you think it's worth.

The only way to prove them wrong is to go out and make it worth more.

Again: I'm not knocking the middle-class mentality, because it saves a lot of people from the poor house. And it's certainly better to be prudent and middle-class-safe than to be a consumerist spendthrift. But it's not a path to riches.
post #12 of 188
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lighthouse View Post
OK. This is what I am kind of driving at. Is "Get Rich Quick" a fool's errand?

Yes. The lottery is the only way to get rich quickly.

Even the "overnight success" stories you hear about involved many years of backbreaking work getting up to that fateful "night."
post #13 of 188
Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Carlos View Post
A former titan of my particular industry put it this way: "Nobody ever got rich off a salary. No matter how high the salary."

If you want to get rich -- I mean fuck-you-money rich -- then you need to own something. That can be real property, it can be intellectual property, it can be a company, it can be a monetized idea, it can be patents, it can be a personal brand, it can be privileged access to something desirable and in short supply, or whatever the case may be. But ownership confers wealth. More specifically: ownership of something others want to buy* from you confers wealth.

In this sense, no, trying to maximize a corporate salary and squirrel away as much money as you can save over 30+ years is not going to make you wealthy. If you want to become really wealthy, you need to take risk and work your ass off to realize the return on that risk.



*Whether literally or figuratively.


that is a very good point. thanks dc
post #14 of 188
Quote:
Originally Posted by acidboy View Post
that is a very good point. thanks dc
+1.
post #15 of 188
Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Carlos View Post
That's just the thing though: "professionals" don't get rich. If you're renting out your time to a big company, you're going to get what the big company thinks that time is worth -- and it's usually a lot less than what you think it's worth.

The only way to prove them wrong is to go out and make it worth more.

Again: I'm not knocking the middle-class mentality, because it saves a lot of people from the poor house. And it's certainly better to be prudent and middle-class-safe than to be a consumerist spendthrift. But it's not a path to riches.

i'm assuming you mean "fuck you rich" ie. >$10M
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