We Are Millionaires – Here’s a Snapshot of Our Lives


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In my five year study of the rich I got to know the substance of their lives very well. They have a lot in common. Below is a snapshot of a typical millionaire from my study:

  • We’re really rich. We are worth at least $3.2 million. 16% of us are worth more than $5 million. We make at least $160,000 a year. Half of us make close to $500,000 a year.
  • We’re not young. 80% of us are 50 years of age or older.
  • It took us a long time to accumulate our wealth. On average, it took 32 years to get rich.
  • We like our jobs. 86% of us like what we do for a living. 61% of us pursued some dream or some thing we were passionate about. Those of us who did pursue some dream became millionaires in only 12 years and we have a net worth of $7.4 million.
  • The richest among us had success mentors who taught us what to do and what not to do.
  • We read every day to learn. 88% of us read every day to increase our knowledge for our job. 85% of us read a minimum of two books a month. 63% of us listen to audio books or podcasts while we’re commuting to work, exercising or working in our backyards. We don’t read for entertainment. We consider that a waste of time.
  • Most of us are self-made. We inherited nothing from our parents. 31% of us were raised in a poor home. 45% of us were raised in a middle-class home. Only 24% of us inherited money from our parents.
  • We have many good habits and few bad habits. 73% of us got our success habits from our parents.
  • We’re competitive. 63% of us played sports in high school.
  • We’re in good health. We exercise almost every day. 76% of us exercise at least 30 minutes a day, 4 days a week. We like to jog, run or bike. We watch what we eat every day. We don’t eat much junk food. We don’t go to fast food restaurants. We don’t eat candy. We don’t get drunk. We don’t do drugs. We floss every day. We sleep at least 7 hours a night. We don’t smoke.
  • We like to mentor others. We like to help others succeed in life.
  • We’re charitable with our time and money. 72% of us volunteer 5 hours or more a month at local non-profits. We also give money to these same charities.
  • We all have financial advisors. We bounce everything off our CPA. We also have attorneys. We like to pick our investments ourselves and then bounce them off our financial advisors.
  • We’re happy.
  • Same house, same wife and same car. 64% of us own modest homes. We’ve owned our home for at least 20 years. Very few of us get divorced. We drive old cars. Most of the time we buy good used cars. We hardly ever lease a car.
  • We plan our day. 81% of us keep a to-do list.
  • We vote. 83% of us vote at every election.
  • We don’t spend a lot of money on vacations. 96% of us spend less than $6,000 a year on vacations. 41% of us spend less than $3,000 a year.
  • We wake up early every day. 44% of us wake up at least 3 hours before our work day actually begins.
  • We’re the boss at work. 91% of us are decision makers. We’re one of these: small business owner, CEO, senior executive, CPA, attorney, doctor, financial advisor or salesman.
  • We’re frugal.
  • We went to college. 68% of us went to college. 56% of us worked our way through college. 25% of us went to graduate school.
  • We’re not afraid to take risks. 63% of us took a risk in order to become rich. 27% of us failed at least once in business.
  • We work a lot. 73% of us work an average of 58 hours a week.
  • We love to pursue goals. 80% of us are focused on one major goal at any given time.
  • We don’t get mad or angry.
  • We hang out with other successful people or people who are upbeat and optimistic and have something on the ball. We don’t hang out with negative people or people who complain all the time. We avoid them like the plague.
  • We hardly ever gamble. 84% of us never gamble.
  • We believe in the American Dream. Our parents instilled that in us. We are living the American Dream.
  • We obey the laws. 99% of us have never been arrested.
  • We built teams to help us succeed. 84% of us have a team of individuals we rely on every day.
  • We are savers. 94% of us have been saving 20% of our income from the first day we started working. All of us have retirement savings.
  • We have more than one source of income. 65% of us have 3 streams of income. 45% of us have 4 streams. 29% of us have 5 streams.
  • We don’t watch TV. 67% of us watch less than an hour of TV each day.
  • We’re optimists.
  • We don’t lie, we’re honest.
  • We weren’t exceptionally smart in school. 77% of us were either C students or B students in school. But we got smart after school. We self-educated ourselves. We never stopped learning our entire adult lives.
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Thomas C. Corley About Thomas C. Corley

Tom Corley is a bestselling author, speaker, and media contributor for Business Insider, CNBC and a few other national media outlets.

His Rich Habits research has been read, viewed or heard by over 50 million people in 25 countries around the world.

Besides being an author, Tom is also a CPA, CFP, holds a master’s degree in taxation and is President of Cerefice and Company, a CPA firm in New Jersey.
Phone Number: 732-382-3800 Ext. 103.
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