10 Terrible Financial Mistakes to Avoid if You're Trying to Get Wealthy

By Chika


Last Updated: April 29, 2023


Most people confuse the words rich and wealth, with the terms being used interchangeably.

However, they are different. Many people may be rich, but they are far from being wealthy. Besides: you can get rich quickly, but you can never get wealthy quickly. 

Income is often used as a standard when measuring what it means to be a rich person. Net worth is the metric when it comes to measuring wealth.

Wealth is often defined in terms of net worth. This is the measurement of the difference between your assets and liabilities. Someone may be rich, but neck-deep in debt. The wealthy person is rich in assets and has few or no liabilities. 

Albeit when it comes to creating wealth, it is important to overlook the assumptions of being rich.

This means focusing on asset generating income.

This is not easy to attain and there are mistakes that can cost you the ability of becoming wealthy. Let's look at ten terrible financial mistakes you can make if you're trying to get wealthy.



10 Terrible Financial Mistakes to Avoid if You're Trying to Get Wealthy

1. Seeking comfort, not freedom.

Comfort is the enemy of abundance - and the most dangerous element of finances.

The entire middle class is built on seeking comfort. Comfort makes us slack, giving you a feeling that you have made it. Eventually, you become stagnant, lazy, and bored.  As a result, your earning potential plateaus, with less significant growth as the years go by. 

True wealth comes from being free to do whatever you want to do at any time. You are no longer dependent on a job or contract to make ends meet. 


2. Working for money.

True wealth comes from making your money work for you, not the other way around.

Albeit, the first ladder in wealth creation means working for money. You have to sacrifice your skills, labor, and time for some income. 

The problem is that many people get stuck in this cycle. When they work for money, they are blinded from opportunities for putting their money to work for them. This may be a result of fear, ignorance, procrastination, or comfort which robs them of such opportunity.

Making your money work for you is one of the best ways of creating wealth. It frees up your time to start other money-making ventures of engaging in things that you love, plus spending quality time with your family and loved ones.

You get to live a more fulfilling life rather than a one-sided life chasing jobs or income. 


3. Investing in trends. 

Investing in trends or popular assets because they are being promoted on social media or by financial experts could get you hurt in the long term.

Look at the recent happenings in crypto. If you want to build wealth, you should invest in assets that are financially sound. This entails carrying out due diligence and fundamental analyses.

Sure this may mean walking the path least chosen. But you can take comfort that you are making a choice based on a decision that is guided by facts, not the opinions of others or sentiments. You also get to learn more along the way, ultimately making you a better investor.


4. Not seeking knowledge.

Nobody builds wealth without actively seeking out information.

When you seek out information, you convert it to knowledge through practical use. Knowing how to convert riches to wealth comes from studying and learning. You learn about what assets to invest in, how to invest, or even read about the characteristics of wealthy people to apply their principles to your life.

In other words, the depth of your knowledge determines the probability of your wealth-making prowess. Investing in yourself is the most important investment you can make. It is one that can't be taken away no matter how much you give it away. 

Avoid making financial mistakes! Read this next: 10 Respected Financial Literacy Resources to Help You Learn About Money


5. Saving to save. 

Saving is important and is one of the basic steps to creating wealth.

But if you save for the sake of saving, you can be pretty sure that you won't create wealth. The eroding effects of inflation mean that the money you have saved will continually lose value over time. This means you have saved less than you initially started.

More importantly, money that sits around idle always seems to find an emergency to fund. This means even money itself recognizes its need to be active and be used.

The wealthy always put their money to work either through investments or by starting their business. By harnessing the power of compound interest, you can increase your savings exponentially and hit your financial milestones faster. 


6. Procrastinating.

One important element in wealth creation is time.

Even if you have money, its tendency to grow is still dependent on money. The principle of compound interest illustrates how money compounded over time grows. As such, if you feel the need to invest and you are procrastinating, you are not only wasting time but also wasting money.

One thing with time is that it can never be gotten back. Time lost is lost forever. As such, when you delay just know that you have foregone an irreplaceable opportunity to grow your wealth.


7. Over-spending.

If your expenses exceed your income, your upkeep will be your undoing.

Spending less than you earn is the first step to accumulating wealth; it is essential to making any financial progress. Therefore, excessive spending causes the most harm to your finances.

Overspending on the little things – the small amounts that leak out of your pockets here and there and ultimately add up to a significant amount. Overspending on large items such as residences, automobiles, and yachts can make for bad financial mistakes.

In the overwhelming majority of cases (probably at least 95%), the issue is not the income of these individuals, but the quantity they spend.

In some instances, it is true that people do not earn enough to save, invest, etc. Therefore, they must focus equally on increasing their income and controlling their expenditures.


8. Not having an emergency fund.

An emergency fund is your first line of defense against unforeseen financial difficulties. Frequently, unexpected financial problems arise. Washing machines fail, automobiles require repairs, children require braces, etc. It is a reality of existence.

If you do not have an emergency fund, you will likely need to borrow money in the event of one. And as we will shortly see, borrowing is an even greater financial error.

The rule of thumb is to have six months' worth of living expenses saved. Additionally, maintain your emergency fund in a secure location; you want it to be accessible when you need it. 

Do not be concerned with generating returns on your emergency savings. No one has ever become wealthy by profiting from their emergency fund; therefore, it is important to keep it secure and accessible.


9. Accumulating debt.

We have already explained that generating wealth means having more assets over liabilities.

We've also explained that it's possible to be rich and be neck-deep in debt. Avoiding debt is a sure strategy for generating wealth. The reason being you don't owe anyone and won't have to pay extra to erase the debt.

Over a lifetime, the average American will now pay over $600,000 in interest. Imagine if such an amount was put into investment compounded over time! We would have so many more millionaires.

Albeit it is not easy to fund some financial dreams, for example, starting a business or buying a house without borrowing. As such, if you must borrow this must be used constructively. Only borrow if such money would be used to create a stream of income.

Don't borrow to buy liabilities. You are only immersing yourself into a pool of debt that you may not come out of. 

If you are in debt, you can start a plan to get out of it. Start by paying those that have the most interest and work your way down. You can try debt avalanche or snowballing strategies to pay off your debt. 


10. Not considering your health.

The greatest wealth is your health.

What's the use of making so much money if you won't be alive to utilize or spend it to treat one type of disease or the other?

Taking care of your health means you increase your lifespan and the possibility to grow your wealth over time. This gives you the opportunity to learn from your earlier mistakes and correct them. You also get to spend less on medical expenses when you are older.

Photo by Donald Tong


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