One of the first books that got me thinking differently about finances and helped me believe that becoming wealthy was within reach was “The Millionaire Next Door.” The impact of the book on my life is hard to describe and is one of the many reasons I invited Sarah Fallaw to be my guest on this episode. Sarah is President of DataPoints, an organization that provides behavioral science tools that enable advisors to impact client financial success and build wealth. But more to the point, she’s co-author of “The Next Millionaire Next Door,” a book that continues the study of wealth in America started by her father, Thomas J. Stanley, Ph.D., who penned the book that impacted me so deeply.

Sarah and I had a fun conversation that covers a variety of topics. Among them: Why should we study wealthy people? What are key behaviors that transcend time and lead to building wealth? What is the real truth behind common myths people believe about wealthy people? And if you take the time to listen to the very end you may be able to join Sarah by participating in her research. Sarah is a delightful guest, so I hope you take the time to listen.

Here’s how you can become #wealthy: By doing what wealthy people do. Join me for this intriguing conversation with @SarahFallaw, on this episode of #RetirementStartsToday. #retirement #RetirementPlanning #wealth Share on X

Outline of This Episode

  • [0:38] What was the first book that financially changed your life?
  • [2:53] Why would the average person care about the habits of wealthy people?
  • [7:39] Interesting stat #1: Most Millionaires do NOT inherit their wealth
  • [10:11] Interesting stat #2: Most Millionaires do NOT drive status motor vehicles
  • [11:55] 75% of Millionaires pay no attention to elections. So why do we?
  • [14:03] Do you know the best predictor of consumption (vs saving)?
  • [16:36] How does Sarah do her research? Could you be included?

Identify the path wealthy people took and you can take the same path

The most dramatic changes that come to the lives of everyday people happen because of changes to their financial status – both positive and negative. That means that just as a financial crisis can devastate a life, so also can a financial windfall or success enrich it.

Contrary to what many will tell you, it’s not greedy or bad to want to become wealthy. In fact, the stability and opportunity that comes from wealth are unmatched. In our conversation, Sarah shares that much of why she studies the behaviors and habits of the wealthy is to discover how everyday people like you and me can apply the principles they follow. Listen to this episode to get a taste of what sets the wealthy apart, enabling them to BE wealthy in the first place.

Identify the path #wealthy people took so that you can take the same path. Learn what @SarahFallaw advises, on this episode of #RetirementStartsToday. #retirement #RetirementPlanning #wealth Share on X

Key behaviors of wealthy people that transcend time

The original book that impacted me so much, “The Millionaire Next Door” was written in 1996. Given the amount of time that has passed between its creation and my conversation with Sarah for this episode, I suspected that many things within the original book are no longer true. So what I wanted to know was this: What was true then that is still true now? For those of us who want to become wealthy, that’s an important question because it reveals principles of behavior and thinking that are enduring.

Sarah shared two characteristics wealthy people exhibit that are very different than the average person. First, they practice what Sarah calls, “social indifference.” This simply means that wealthy people don’t worry about what others are doing or what others think about what they are doing. They are secure making their own decisions and standing alone if need be. A second characteristic they possess holds a lesson for us: Those who want to become wealthy need to become aware of their own financial health. Those who are wealthy are so intentionally, carefully keeping track of their financial status and working to see that it thrives. Listen to learn more.

If you want to become wealthy, ignore the myths

Many people believe that the majority of wealthy people inherited their wealth – you know, trust funds, stock portfolios, etc. But the fact is that it’s simply not true. Of those considered wealthy, most earned their wealth through diligent effort and hard work.

Why is it important to know the truth about this myth? Because believing it can suck the wind out of your sails. After all, if those who are wealty had their wealth handed to them on a silver platter, what hope do you have of becoming like them? Knowing the truth enables you to reject that notion and stay motivated. There’s hope that you can become wealthy like they have by applying the same principles and behaviors that made them financially successful.

If you want to become #wealthy, ignore the myths you hear about wealthy people. That’s sound advice from my guest, @SarahFallaw on this episode of #RetirementStartsToday. #retirement #RetirementPlanning #wealth Share on X

How do Millionaires use their cognitive and emotional energy?

It’s interesting to know that 75% of Millionaires surveyed report that they pay very little attention to elections. Why is that? Sarah says that people who build wealth to the degree that Millionaires have, invest their mental and emotional energy in places where they can control the impact they make. That doesn’t mean that wealthy people don’t vote, it simply means that they choose not to invest more time or energy in the political process than they can reasonably influence or impact.

The point I’m making is not about politics, it’s about where we choose to spend our cognitive and emotional energy. You and I can make the same kinds of choices wealthy people have. We can set boundaries that keep us from being sucked into meaningless drama and activity that in the end, we have little control over. If we want to become wealthy, we’d do well to mimic this habit of the wealthy.

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect with Sarah Fallaw

Connect with Benjamin Brandt

Subscribe to Retirement Starts Today on
Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, TuneIn, Podbean, Player FM, iHeart, or Spotify



Listen to this episode of #RetirementStartsToday to learn key behaviors of #wealthy people that transcend time. @SarahFallaw is my guest, on this episode. #retirement #RetirementPlanning #wealth Share on X How do #Millionaires use their cognitive and emotional energy? Listen to this episode of #RetirementStartsToday to learn the answer from my guest @SarahFallaw. #retirement #RetirementPlanning #wealth Share on X