Written by Singapore's youngest millionaire (26 yrs old). Almost Gandhian!!
By Adam Khoo
Some of you may already know that I travel around the region pretty
frequently, having to visit and conduct seminars at my offices in
Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and Suzhou (China).I am in the airport
almost every other week so I get to bump into many people who have
attended my seminars or have read my books.
Recently, someone came up to me on a plane to KL and looked rather
shocked. He asked, 'How come a millionaire like you is traveling
economy?'My reply was, 'That's why I am a millionaire.' He still
looked pretty confused.
This again confirms that greatest lie ever told about wealth (which I
wrote about in my latest book 'Secrets of Self-Made Millionaires').
Many people have been brainwashed to think that millionaires have to
wear Gucci, Hugo Boss, Rolex, and sit on first class in air travel.
This is why so many people never become rich because the moment that
earn more money, they think that it is only natural that they spend
more, putting them back to square one.
The truth is that most self-made millionaires are frugal and only
spend on what is necessary and of value. That is why they are able to
accumulate and multiply their wealth so much faster.
Over the last 7 years, I have saved about 80% of my income while today
I save only about 60% (because I have my wife, mother in law, 2 maids,
2 kids, etc. to support).Still, it is way above most people who save
10% of their income (if they are lucky).
I refuse to buy a first class ticket or to buy a $300 shirt because I
think that it is a complete waste of money. However, I happily pay
$1,300 to send my 2-year old daughter to Julia Gabriel Speech and D
ram a without thinking twice.
When I joined the YEO (Young Entrepreneur's Orgn)a few years back
(YEO) is an exclusive club open to those who are under 40 and make
over $1m a year in their own business) I discovered that those who
were self-made thought like me. Many of them with net worth well over
$5m, travelled economy class and some even drove Toyota 's and
Nissans, not Audis, Mercs, BMWs.. I noticed that it was only those who
never had to work hard to build their own wealth (there were also a
few ministers' and tycoons' sons in the club) who spent like there was
no tomorrow. Somehow, when you did not have to build everything from
scratch, you do not really value money. This is precisely the reason
why a family's wealth (no matter how much) rarely lasts past the third
Thank God my rich dad foresaw this terrible possibility and refused to
give me a cent to start my business.
Then some people ask me, 'What is the point in making so much money if
you don't enjoy it?' The thing is that I don't really find happiness
in buying branded clothes, jewellery or sitting first class. Even if
buying something makes me happy it is only for a while, it does not
Material happiness never lasts, it just give you a quick fix. After a
while you feel lousy again and have to buy the next thing which you
think will make you happy. I always think that if you need material
things to make you happy, then you live a pretty sad and unfulfilled
life.. Instead, what makes me happy is when I see my children laughing
and playing and learning so fast. What makes me happy is when I see my
companies and trainers reaching more and more people every year in so
many more countries.
What makes me really happy is when I read all the emails about how my
books and seminars have touched and inspired some one's life.
What makes me really happy is reading all your wonderful posts about
how this blog is inspiring you. This happiness makes me feel really
good for a long time, much more than what a Rolex would do for me.
I think the point I want to put across is that happiness must come
from doing your life's work (be it teaching, building homes,
Designing, trading, winning tournaments etc.) and the money that comes
is only a by-product. If you hate what you are doing and rely on the
money you earn to make you happy by buying stuff, then I think that
you are living a life of meaninglessness.