Truth be told, if you are reading this article, then chances are you have a deep desire to begin the journey towards building wealth. There is also a good possibility that your desire goes well beyond yourself, and it includes the longing to build a financial legacy for your family for generations to come. There may have been a few traps in the past that sprung up on you that caused you to fall off course. As a result, you have not been able to build the wealth that you have so desperately aspired to do.
With that thought in mind, we wanted to take some time and outline what those traps are, and also help you think a little bit different in how to overcome and avoid those traps moving forward.
5 Traps That Are Preventing You from Building Wealth
The first wealth-building trap that people often fall for is the comparison trap. You are always looking to the left, to the right, to the front, and looking around at everybody else, and what everybody else has. You do this to the point, that you begin to desire what they have. As a result, you end up getting trapped and unable to achieve your own financial goals, because you are so busy trying to chase after those things you see that others possess. You have to realize that what they have, is for them, and not necessarily for you.
That doesn’t mean that you need it, or that you should want it. For example, just because your friend has a new car or your cousin is getting married and you’re not, doesn’t mean that you should place yourself in hot pursuit of these same things. You have one life to live, and that one is yours. Don’t fall into the comparison trap that has you looking on TV, looking at your neighbors, looking at your co-workers, looking at other family members and trying to be them. Be the best you that you can be.
The Bible tells us that,
But Godliness with Contentment is Great Gain (1 Timothy 6:6)
Instead of focusing on the comparison and looking at other people and trying to aspire to be them, just look at the things that you have in your life currently, and begin to practice gratefulness. In that moment, you’ll begin to gain greatly.
How many times have you heard someone say, “Well, this is what it is,” “I will always have a student loan debt,” or “Everybody has a car loan, it’s just a part of life.” You absolutely must stop being complacent. The Bible says,
For as a man thinketh in his heart, so is he… (Proverbs 23:7)
So what are you thinking? Are you saying, “This is me and this is all I’m going to do.” You have to start thinking differently. No matter what other people are saying about their financial situation, you should always push yourself to strive for better. Strive to get out of debt; strive to build long-lasting wealth for yourself and your family.
The third trap that many people fall for, which in turn stops them from building wealth, is consumerism. In our country, especially here in the USA, people love to buy and spend every dollar that comes in. Research shows that 3 out of 4 American households are living paycheck to paycheck. Why is that? It’s because of our love for new and shiny things! Hence, most have more month than they have money, and are left with little to no income to invest.
People are constantly bombarded with advertisements on TV, their phones, and the radio. In just a swipe or click of a button, you can purchase just about anything you want with ease. The number one wealth-building tool that you have right now in your possession is your income. If you are using your income to buy more stuff you don’t need, you’re not using your top weapon to build long-term wealth.
How many of you know someone who is very intelligent, and very knowledgeable about a subject or a topic but they don’t put any action behind what they know? They in no way, practice what they preach. It is very contradictory if you read all the personal finance books, or you went to all the budgeting seminars, and yet put none of the information that you gathered into action. That is going to hold you back from attaining and building the wealth that you desire and need, in order to leave a legacy for your family.
Many don’t have the knowledge base to know how to build wealth. The sad reality, though, is that there is tons of information available for anyone who wants to obtain it. There are countless books, podcasts, and blogs being written on the topic of building wealth and it costs you nothing to acquire this knowledge. If you have not taken the time to invest in your knowledge base, you prohibit yourself from having the ability to build wealth, because you don’t know what to do. You need to change that by seeking knowledge and information on what you need to do long-term to build wealth for your family.
Now is the time for you to do some real deal self-evaluation. Where do you stand in comparison to these five traps that we have outlined? Are you currently in the midst of them? Do you see them as being potential traps in the future?
Whatever it is, you need to make the proper adjustments to avoid these traps at all cost. The goal here is not just to teach you how to be good stewards of your finances and how to be good money managers alone. We want to move you into the realm of building long-term generational wealth. You have to put in the work and you will start to see the results!