When one thinks of acquiring wealth, the tendency is to find a way to accomplish this in the least amount of time possible. For a few, this may actually happen. There are those who believe that they can only achieve wealth through such low-probability methods like a lottery, and there are those who simply “hope” for wealth. Hope is a wonderful emotion, but it can put the control of your future in other people’s hands. Some people “hope” to win the lottery. Some “hope” that their employer will give them a raise; others even more tragically will hope that the government will solve their individual problems. The U.S. Congress controls the purse strings of America, and they are over $13 Trillion in debt. Do you really want to put your hope for financial wealth in a body of politicians? To those I say “he that lives on hope will die fasting”.
In her MarketWatch article on 9 January 2006, Andrea Coombs reported that “A majority of Americans are pessimistic about their ability to save $200,000 in net wealth in their lifetimes, and more than one-fifth say the lottery is the most practical way for them to reach that type of goal, according to a new survey. Just 26% of adults surveyed think they could accumulate $200,000 in net wealth in their lifetime, and 9% believe they could collect $1 million, according to the survey of about 1,000 Americans by Opinion Research Corporation for the Consumer Federation of America and the Financial Planning Association.
Start with a 24 year old that earns an initial starting salary of $42,000 (an average between a liberal arts degree and a technical degree), and invest 20% of their salary through 401K, IRA, and savings/brokerage accounts. Let us also assume the following: A rate of return of 8%; A retirement age of 65; A 3.1% rate of inflation; An expected average salary increase of 4% annually; 30 years of post retirement life and income.
The result of this plan provides our subject with $3.9 million at age 65. At age 95 that person will have accumulated almost $9.5 million even after an annual post retirement expense of $181,000 per year. Since the S&P 500 has averaged 10.33% over the past 50 years, applying that percentage means that our millionaire retiree will have $6.3 million at retirement and will accumulate $38 million by age 95 at a lower 8% rate of return and after retirement expenses. What a great legacy to leave to children or philanthropic endeavors. The only thing required to become wealthy is to change the way you think. Establishing guides for the way you live and think as well as increasing your knowledge of money and finances are your best means of acquiring wealth.
Let the virtues of Mr. Benjamin Franklin be a great starting point. His 13 virtues are as follows:
1. TEMPERANCE: Eat not to dullness, drink not to Elevation
2. SILENCE: Speak not but what may benefit others or yourself; avoid trifling conversation.
3. ORDER: Let all your things have their places; let each part of your business have it’s time.
4. RESOLUTION: Resolve to perform what you ought; perform without fail what you resolve.
5. FRUGALITY: Make no expense but to do good to others or yourself; i.e., waste nothing.
6. INDUSTRY: Lose no time; be always employ’d in something useful; cut off all unnecessary actions.
7. SINCERITY: Use no hurtful deceit; think innocently and justly; and, if you speak, speak accordingly.
8. JUSTICE: Wrong none by doing injuries, or omitting the benefits that are your duty.
9. MODERATION: Avoid extremes; forebear resenting injuries so much as you think they deserve.
10. CLEANLINESS: Tolerate no uncleanliness in body, clothes, or habitation.
11. TRANQUILITY: Be not disturbed at trifles, or at accidents common or unavoidable.
12. CHASTITY: Rarely use venery but for health or offspring, never to dullness, weakness, or the injury of your own or another’s peace or reputation.
13. HUMILITY: Imitate Jesus and Socrates
Benjamin Franklin was one of America’s Founding Fathers as well as an inventor, statesman, printer, author, and creator of his own personal wealth. He sought no political office, yet provided the roots for a democratic republic to grow and flourish. His success can be attributed to many things, but include his practice of Thirteen Virtues. Your practice of these same virtues to allow you successfully navigate the Cycle of Positive Wealth© will allow you to achieve James Ward’s redefinition of Wealth as the ability to acquire more money than you spend, and to save more money than you owe.
WEALTH VIRTUES by James Ward can be found online at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, as well as other online outlets including the Resource Store at http://WealthVirtues.com.
Ten percent of the author’s earnings will be donated to First Book, an organization that provides new books to children in need.
Written by James Ward
Category: Personal Finance
Publisher: Dog Ear Publishing
Paperback 160 pages
Retail Price: $11.95
Visit http://WealthVirtues.com for more information on the book, as well as useful tools and other recommended reading.
About the Author:
James Ward is wealthy. Not “John D. Rockefeller wealthy”, but rather has more money flowing in than flowing out. He is or has been a successful computer scientist, Coast Guardsman, Army Officer, analyst, musician, graphic designer, skier, manager for a defense contractor, business owner, and a writer. He is also a successful investor, but lives well within his means. As the owner of Poor Richard Web Press, he helps businesses, non-profits, and individuals succeed with their Internet marketing goals. He also helps other writers with free online marketing tools at BiblioScribe.com, and is a contributor to First Book, an organization that provides new books to children in need. Although his savings and investments continue to grow from the continual practice of Dr. Benjamin Franklin’s Thirteen Virtues while following the Cycle of Positive Wealth©, he realizes that his only true and most valuable treasure is his family.
Inquiries about the book can be sent to WealthVirtues@PRWP.com.