So, you want to be a millionaire. If so, you might be asking some of the following questions: How in the world can I make that happen? Isn’t it nearly impossible? Won’t it take way too long? Aren’t I too old to be thinking about this? Don’t I have to take a lot of risks? Don’t I have to deceive or cheat people? Don’t I need to have superior intelligence? Don’t I have to belong to the right family? Don’t I have to be lucky?
What if I told you the answer to every single one of these questions is an emphatic “no!”?
It is probably easier to become a millionaire today than it has ever been before. A big part of the reason for this is the abundance of information which is available online or in print. It’s easier than ever to start your own business, invest in existing businesses, or to tackle just about any new financial venture you have dreamed about. You can obtain a lot of knowledge, fairly simply, quickly and cost effectively from the comfort of your own chair, bed or even while sitting on the beach or grabbing a quick bite to eat. Facts and figures are able to be checked, verified and confirmed with other sources. You can quickly cross check facts and clarify conflicting statements, beliefs or styles of presentation. This simply couldn’t be done very efficiently or effectively in days gone by.
The First Step in Becoming a Happy Millionaire
The first thing you need to focus on when deciding to become a happy millionaire is developing the right mindset. A large part of being happy is deciding to be. It’s learning to appreciate what you have right now and positioning yourself to appreciate your financial and life success as it comes. Most millionaires will tell you that the journey they take to get there is the best part. Once they reach their goals—they create new ones that lead them further down the road, or onto a new one. Most people fail to recognize this, and as a result many achieve their millionaire status but they are not happy or satisfied. They continue to search for happiness but don’t realize that it’s already within them to decide to be happy right now, rather than waiting for “someday”.
Happiness has different meanings for each of us. Most likely, you define happiness or wealth much differently than I do. To some, happiness and wealth means having enough money to support their family, putting food on the table, and taking the weekends off. While others will picture it as living in a large house, driving the newest car, and staying in the finest hotels in the most exotic places of the world. The point is—you need to determine what will bring about your happiness, nobody else can decide that for you.
You should paint a clear picture in your mind as to what a truly satisfying, happy and blessed life will look like. This is not what will make your friends happy, or your parents, or anyone else. It does not mean trying to impress anybody but yourself. It means beginning to understand how important defining your own values and beliefs are. This is necessary in order to provide you with sustained happiness. You might be surprised as to how many of these attributes you already have once you choose to allow yourself to appreciate your current situation. This might seem overly simplistic, but it’s a basic principle in obtaining true wealth—financial or otherwise.
Find Your Baseline
Once you’ve decided to become a happy millionaire, you need to take inventory of where you are now—your total retirement funds and other investable assets. You also need to take a look at your debt. In most cases, it’s a good idea to first start paying down all of your debt other than the mortgage on your principal residence.
Now, there might be good reasons refrain from paying off some of your debt. Maybe you want to start a new cash-generating business that you have some sort of skill or expertise in. You might enjoy writing, baking, communicating or working with people—and have the desire to see where your skills could take you. Everybody has talents and abilities in certain areas…what’s yours? If you can create or partner in a business that generates enough cash for you to begin paying off your loans, then you’ll not only soon have your loans paid off, but you’ll also have more money coming in to invest in new ventures.
Another valid reason is if the interest rate on your debt is low enough to ensure that you can earn more from your investments than you are paying on your debt. This allows you to leverage your existing money to increase your income, and to begin paying off more of your debt as your cash flow permits. You need to have a clear picture as to where you are now in order to start developing your blueprint for the future. This might include figuring out when you want to reach this goal—within a specific number of months or years or perhaps at a certain age. Then calculate what rate of return will be necessary to get you there. Alternatively, you might start with the annual rate of return, and then calculate the number of months or years to reach your millionaire goal. Either way, by using our favorite calculator, the task is easy—allowing you to factor in hundreds of different assumptions very quickly.
You can continue to make these calculations using various inputs to help you with fully developing your goals. This process helps you to see the plausibility of each course of action. It helps to convince your subconscious mind that your goals are reasonable, or conversely that they are out of touch for you right now. It reveals the importance that both time and growth rates have when compounding your money.
Talk with us if you questions about these numbers, or would like help in using these numbers to establish attainable goals and to stay focused and accountable. Whether that’s through paper investments, real estate, or owning a business—we’ll do our best to guide you in the right direction. You must first be convinced you can do something—then go and accomplish it.
We hope you start becoming comfortable with using this calculator, and have fun with it. You will learn as you work with these calculations, what it takes to reach the levels you dream of. To summarize, discover where you are now, determine your financial blueprint, establish or rework your goals and decide to be happy now. The money will surely follow.
Live Your Dreams