Book Impression: The Millionaire Next Door

LENGTH: 272 pages
READING LEVEL: 4 (easy to read, a lot of stories mixed with facts, can be finished in a few days)

Let's suppose a man has a really high-paying job that he hates, but he stays because he needs the money to pay for his second home/private school for the kids/who knows what else.

BEFORE READING TMND: "How dare that man complain about being at a job he hates when he has so much stuff?! Let ME get a job making millions a year, I bet I wouldn't complain one day, no sirree. I tell you about these rich people having first world problems.....

AFTER READING TMND: "Well it's no wonder the poor man is miserable. He's a hyperconsumer and has to continue making a lot of money just to keep his head above water, while also trying to compete with his neighbors and 'appear' wealthy. He makes a lot more money than me but he also spends a lot more, and probably lives paycheck to paycheck just like I do. He'd be much less miserable if he learned to live below his means, because then he could afford to take a lower paying but much more satisfying job - and he'd likely gain more actual wealth in the process."

No, this book didn't necessarily make me more compassionate. It DID help me understand the difference between spending a lot of money to look wealthy, and actually being wealthy. As a result, I have a weird distrust of people in sharp business suits. And a fascination with normal, everyday looking people who I can't help but imagine must be hidden millionaires. You'll have to read the book to get why, but it's definitely a powerful shift in mindset.

The only reason this book isn't required reading is because too much commercialism and profit relies on people not knowing the truth about wealth accumulation and management. We'd never try to compete with the Joneses or admire celebrities and their lavish lifestyles. So, if you don't mind having everything you perceive about money, riches and wealth turned upside down, definitely check out this book. You won't regret it.

You can try out a sample or buy it here: The Millionaire Next Door: The Surprising Secrets of America's Wealthy

Has The Millionaire Next Door changed the way you think about money and the people who (do or don't) have it? If so, tell me your impressions in the comments!

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