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I recently did an experiment asking people to see What it takes to live like a millionaire and found the results fascinating. Most view a millionaire lifestyle as private jets, champagne on yachts and luxurious homes. At least, that’s what I found when I did a search on the internet. I have found that most people are wearing themselves out to be rich and to have a lifestyle of luxury. Even more, people are using this end game and lifestyle as the goal of their success and ambition for living. Dreams and aspirations are filled with trips, luxurious items and material possessions. Having been a self starter in business at age 16 I can testify that I fully understand the desire for providing for one’s self, providing for your family and hopefully living a life that you enjoy. If your “lucky” you’ll even get to do what you love and earn some money doing it. What it takes to live like a millionaire is easier to achieve than you think.
The most amazing thing happens when I sit with people and ask them what would they do if they won the lottery. They explain how they would take a trip somewhere in the world that is fancy and exotic. It seems that most of us live vicariously through the lives of those on instagram and social media. These people we follow are living the life we want and they are doing the things we wish we could. I took things a step further in my experiment to see what they would do with their life once they returned from the trip. I asked how they would spend their time in the rest of their life. Most answered they had no idea. Meaning, they didn’t know what they would do with their life if they had all the time and money they needed. I think this is a great exercise for us to do to help move us closer to the life of our calling. It’s a great first step in discovery. However, today is about living like a millionaire. Let’s back up and look at our approach today.
Do you feel as if life’s mission has been to acquire enough income to provide for your needs? Meaning, is the majority of your thinking wrapped up in how much money is in your account? How much saved? It’s one thing to work for company and an entirely other challenge to work for yourself. As an employee there is a false identity that things are “secure”. Meaning, the steady paycheck. Progress, promotion and power are contingent on what other’s “allow” you to do. As an entrepreneur there is a challenge making sure your identity doesn’t become wrapped up in being a provider for your family and employees. Life might be on your terms but the unknowns and inconsistencies will have you looking for security all the time: more money, longer contracts, more clients.
I completely understand these challenges as I have lived a majority of my life getting these challenges understood and in their proper perspective. My hope, with this writing today would be to help you get free in your thinking and a healthy approach to your time, talent and your money. Bottomline, a healthier approach to your life. What if you could live with what is priceless: Peace of mind. I’ve provided a checklist to help you gain a different approach.
I use an amazing exercise I use with people I consult: If you have $50,000,00.00 in the bank, how do you approach life? What is fascinating is that most people I ask don’t have a clue. They have long pauses with smiles and then fear overtakes them and they say, “It’s a crazy idea but I could never get paid to do that or make a life doing that”. I ask people to dream what their authentic self would do to spend time on this earth but they come up empty.
Back to the exotic trip. Most people have an oasis in their head of what the dream life would look like and its often an exotic trip around the world. Really? That’s it? The whole meaning of life is to one day take a trip or have nice things?
Here’s how I became millionaire, actually a billionaire overnight:
Mind set: Flip the switch – I realized it’s all in my head. When it came to luxurious experiences I realized they could be rented. You can fly the world first class for next to nothing, you can stay in luxurious hotels for a fraction of what you think. Private jets now can be acquired for a few hundred dollars on a co-op empty seat. It’s all temporary and fleeting so don’t wear yourself out trying to own possessions. The greater concern is: Do the items you’ve worked so hard for own you? Possessions don’t bring fulfillment and happiness. Memories with loved one, friends and living your calling will provide a joy and fulfillment that is everlasting. It never gets old or wears out.
Scarcity vs. Abundance – Being, acting and living as a millionaire doesn’t have to do with an amount of money as the definition. It has to do with your attitude. I spent my early years living under the stereotype that all artist’s are starving and living day to day as one of the lowest figures in society. That way of thinking will keep you under the yolk of depression, self doubt and a scarcity mentality. This way of thinking is dangerous and a version of self hate. It is the victim mentality. People who live with this outlook on themselves put ceilings of complexity on themselves that are false identities and myths.Scarcity also says you live according to what other’s dictate to you. Abundance says, you have value, produce value and deserve value. Living like a millionaire isn’t an amount of money. It’s a mindset that you already have everything you need and more. It’s really about freedom.
It’s not about a million dollars. It’s about the lifestyle it provides. Freedom is what everyone wants. What I find astounding is that no one knows what to do with the freedom they get.
I know millionaires and billionaires who don’t have any time. That’s really the currency we are talking about here. Time not money. The mis-belief that people have about being a millionaire is that they are going to have all the time in the world. I’ve met happy people that have all the time in the world but they don’t have a million dollars. Their life is being lived below their means and they have all the time in the world. The question is, “If you had all the time you wanted, how would you invest it?” We can spend time or invest time.
Here’s a great check list to help:
1. Can I answer the $50 million dollar question of what I would do with the rest of my life if I had those kind of resources?
2. Does the idea of unlimited free time scare me or excite me?
3. Do I feel that my current job or career is keeping me from my true calling and passion?
4. Can I honestly say I am living my calling and what I love most?
5. Am I in the business of underwriting my dreams and family memories?
6. Are my thoughts mostly about acquiring the next possession thinking it will provide comfort, reward or identity?
7. Am I aimed at the right target? Have I forsaken my family for advancement in career thinking that I am being a great “provider”?
8. Is there anywhere I can cut expenses to give myself an immediate raise so I can work less and make memories with family and loved ones?
Living as a millionaire is a mindset, an approach and the willingness to hack life. It’s not about dollars and “stuff” as the definition, it’s about time freedom and living your calling.
As a husband, father, entrepreneur and creative, my job is to assess my time, talent and money to be leveraged for impact. If the target is income I become overworked, overstressed and my family gets the left overs. Those days are over. Lead with impact and income follows. Fight everything the culture advertises as to what “success” looks like. Significance is in knowing who you are, why you are here, what you are supposed to do and how you are supposed to do it. That’s the sweet spot of calling, which is PRICELESS.
So this takes me to these verses that has shaped my worldview in regards to time, talent and money. This is the very foundation we must all answer as it is the basis to what life we are building:
“Don’t hoard treasure down here where it gets eaten by moths and corroded by rust or—worse!—stolen by burglars. Stockpile treasure in heaven, where it’s safe from moth and rust and burglars. It’s obvious, isn’t it? The place where your treasure is, is the place you will most want to be, and end up being. Matthew 16:19-21 MSG
“If God gives such attention to the appearance of wildflowers—most of which are never even seen—don’t you think he’ll attend to you, take pride in you, do his best for you? What I’m trying to do here is to get you to relax, to not be so preoccupied with getting, so you can respond to God’s giving. People who don’t know God and the way he works fuss over these things, but you know both God and how he works. Steep your life in God-reality, God-initiative, God-provisions. Don’t worry about missing out. You’ll find all your everyday human concerns will be met. Matthew 6:33 MSG
10 According to the grace of God which was given to me, like a wise master builder I laid a foundation, and another is building on it. But each man must be careful how he builds on it.11 For no man can lay a foundation other than the one which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.12 Now if any man builds on the foundation with gold, silver, [d]precious stones, wood, hay, straw, 13 each man’s work will become evident; for the day will show it because it is to berevealed with fire, and the fire itself will test [e]the quality of each man’s work. 14 If any man’s work which he has built on it remains, he will receive a reward. 15 If any man’s work is burned up, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire. 1 Cor 3:10-15
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