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Basic Rules for Financial Freedom: Make Wealth Happen

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Control Spending Impulses

The surest way to defeat your wealth creation is to go out and spend everything you earn or receive (and a bit more just for good measure). This particular addiction is very strong in me. I blame it all on giving up smoking. I have nothing to do now with my hands, so fiddling with a credit card seems to satisfy some deeply buried addictive urge. But you have to resist if you are going to turn what little you have into a bigger something. Forget notions of new cars and holidays in the sun. You are going to turn into a bit of a Scrooge for a while, hanging on to what you've got to prepare for the future when you will have so much more. This means you have to control your urges.

Look, I'm going to let you into a secret. Prosperity is a race, a prize, a winning line. We all set out wanting to race toward it, claim it. Some can't be bothered to even make it to the starting line because they are so weighed down with unhelpful beliefs that floor them before they start. And a whole lot of people fall by the wayside from laziness early on. A whole lot more fail to make the grade because they get daunted by the hard work needed. Still more, at this point, where you are now, stumble because they give into temptation and spend, spend, spend like there is no tomorrow.

Well, there is a tomorrow, and it comes quickly enough. And that shiny new car now looks sad and rusty, the holiday is gone with only a few photos of people and places you can't even remember, and the new clothes are outgrown and unworn.

The simple truth is that the rich know how to control their spending urges--that's why they're rich. When they need to tighten their belts, they can do it.

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From The Rules of Money Copyright © 2007, FT Press. Used by permission of FT Press, and Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

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