How to Get Rich

I often sit and wonder how some people get super rich. I’m not stuck on getting rich myself. I’ve learned that being rich doesn’t really mean you’re happy or living out your purpose. Instead, I’m more just curious how, economically, people get rich.

Time is Money

We often hear the proverb “Time is Money”, but what does that really mean? When I look at rich people, I realize their days are just as long as mine yet somehow they bring in a thousand/million/billion dollars in the time I bring in a few. ¬†Are they really that much more valuable to the world? After some thinking, I have realized that getting rich really just means you have made the most of a lot of other people’s time and they all rewarded you for it.

Making the Most of Time

In an economy, people spend time making a product or providing a service and then get paid for it if someone else likes it. Based on how many you make and how valuable the product is you may see a high or low pay. A future rich person takes the next step by figuring out how to make more of that product in the same amount of time. They pay you the same wage you always got per hour but sell 10 times as much. Although they didn’t physically touch anything, they figured out how to turn 8 hours of your work into 80 and paid you for 10 hours keeping 70 for themselves despite creating nothing (except a fine process).

Here are some examples.

  • A good manager points subordinates in the right direction so that they provide more value to the company in less time and then the manager gets rewarded.
  • A musician records a song in a day and then uses technology to sell it to a million people the next day.
  • An investor loans a company money so that they can better utilize their time and then pays the investor back double.
  • A teacher teaches for 30 minutes to a hundred students who in return for the short lesson each pay a small fee that adds up to a big check.

Everyone Can Get Rich

In the end, time is the great equalizer. A poor man and a rich man each have 24 hours in their day, but the rich man just better utilizes his time. The key to getting rich (in money, relationships, adventures, etc.) is finding ways to make the most of your time. Here are some ideas.

  • Automate or remove tasks that are unnecessary for you to be doing.
  • Learn about ways to focus your time and energy better.
  • Teach or lead others to help them make more of their time.
  • Invest in ideas or people where you see potential.

Being Rich

Pointing out people with money is an easy way to get the idea of a rich person across to everyone, but for you being rich may mean something completely different. I like to encourage people to decide what being rich means to them and then focus on ways to get rich in that. I think most people would agree they would rather be rich in friends or even service than in money. Whatever it is, always consider how the time you have can be best utilized to make your goals happen. Understanding how to best do that is what it really means to be rich.

What does it mean to you to be rich? What other thoughts do you have on getting rich? Let me know in the comments.

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4 thoughts on “How to Get Rich”

  1. Dr Charles Stanley had a great sermon about being rich. He said that being rich is not a good goal, or a Godly goal. If being rich is your goal, you have the wrong goal!

    Now, if your goal is to be the best widget salesman on the west coast, and in achieving that goal you become wealthy, there is nothing wrong with that. Just don’t make being rich your primary focus in life.

  2. Thanks @FinancialBondage for the comment. It’s always great to hear from people who have learned to look past money as their goal.

    Similarly, the idea here really isn’t Getting Rich in money, but understanding that time is valuable and one’s ability to leverage their time and other people’s time will determine their ability to achieve their goal, whatever it is.

  3. Ryan – Excellent piece. Here’s some things I think about concerning this.

    Jim Rohn, one of the greatest business and life philosophers of the last century, speaks to this very point in his presentation, The Five Major Pieces of the Life Puzzle. He makes a couple of points: 1. Time is actually more valuable than money because once you use it, it can’t be replaced. 2. People get paid for the value they bring to the market, not for the time they spend working. 3. They bottom of the ladder is much more crowded and therefore competitive because there are many more people at that level who bring little value to the marketplace than those at the top who bring much value. 4. Increased value through better use of time and skills brings more income.

    He said, “When I realized that rich people and poor people both had 24 hours in a day, it would drive me crazy until I figured out what the difference was!”

    My personal philosophy as a Christian is that if we are not a preacher, missionary, or some other type of “ministry” worker then our ministry is to send, support, and supply those who are. Hence, why so many missionaries and pastors are struggling. Galatians 6:6-10 is the call to those in the pew to serve those in the pulpit!

    So, while our goal may not be to become “rich”, it certainly should be to “do good unto all men, especially to them who are of the household of faith.” We cannot do that if we are barely making ends meet ourselves. This is an outgrowth of utilizing our time well by combining our potential (skills & abilities), passions, and personality to create enterprises which allow us to fulfill our calling!

    This is how the greatest nation on Earth was built. It has been immortalized in our great national song, America the Beautiful:

    America, America
    May God thy gold refine
    ’till all success be nobleness
    and all thy gain, Divine

    Oh that we Christians would tenaciously hold to that attitude as we seek to serve.

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