Why I’m Obsessed With Rich Habits

There’s a new blog that I’ve been OBSESSED with this week called RichHabits.net (you see what I did there? ;)). It’s written by best selling author, Tom Corley, who has published a book (obviously) named the same: Rich Habits.

Now every dang time I sit down to blog about something he just put out, he goes and writes another amazing post and I go dizzy trying to figure out which one I want to share with you guys!

So instead of focusing on just one main topic for today, I thought I’d freakin’ just mush all of ’em together and then you can ponder the portions you like the most yourself ;) And I’m going to do that right now before he puts out something new again!! Haha…

It all started with this tweet:

tom corley tweet

Article #1: Dad’s savings advice to his child

Here Tom gives financial advice he wishes someone had given HIM when he was 23 – the same age as his son right now, check it out:

  1. Live below your means – Make sure you set aside 20% of every paycheck and live off 80%.
  2. Don’t spend more than 25% of your monthly net pay on housing. Whether you own or rent.
  3. Don’t spend more than 10% of your monthly net pay on entertainment. We’re Irish, so by entertainment I mean bars.
  4. Don’t spend more than 5% of your monthly net pay on auto loans, and never lease. Leasing is one of those Poverty Habits you’ve heard me talk about over the years.
  5. Stay away from accumulating credit card debt. If you are doing this it means you are living beyond your means and you need to cut back on something.
  6. Always invest your savings prudently. Never gamble your savings on get rich quick schemes. There’s no such thing.
  7. Max out your contributions to the company retirement plan. If the company matches your contributions, great. That’s free money. Always take free money when you can get it.
  8. Know what you spend every month. Create a monthly budget and track what you spend.

Pretty good stuff so far, right? We’ve heard a lot of this before – minus the % breakdowns which are the parts I like – solid, actionable advice – but it’s always good to be reminded of the rest too.

Article #2: What the rich do every day that the poor don’t

rich habits bookUsually these types of posts are based on theories and ways of thinking, etc, which helps this list stand out even more. Because again – they’re ACTIONABLE items. Stuff any one of us can take up at any given point in our lives, and apparently what the rich already do!

[FYI – all of these findings come from Tom’s research over 5 years when working on his book, Rich Habits. And no, this is not any kind of sponsored post or book review/etc/etc, haha… I really am just obsessed with it this week ;)]

  • 6% of wealthy say what’s on their mind vs. 69% for poor.
  • 79% of wealthy network 5 hours or more each month vs. 16% for poor.
  • 80% of wealthy are focused on accomplishing some single goal. Only 12% of the poor do this.
  • 88% of wealthy read 30 minutes or more each day for education or career reasons vs 2% for poor.
  • 76% of wealthy exercise aerobically 4 days a week. 23% of poor do this.
  • 81% of wealthy maintain a to-do list vs. 19% for poor.
  • 67% of wealthy write down their goals vs. 17% for poor
  • 44% of wealthy wake up 3 hours before work starts vs. 3% for poor.
  • 6% of wealthy watch reality TV vs. 78% for poor.

You can read the other 12 of them here: So what do the rich do every day that the poor don’t do?

Article #3: Why you should never quit on a dream

This one just took the cake for me. Absolutely astonishing that anyone would put THAT much time and effort into their dreams after failing over and over and over and over again. It’s almost unbelievable, actually. But he kept at it, and now has people like me raving about him and sharing his message even farther. I love it.

This all comes from Why you should never quit on a dream:

Tonight, November 6, 2013, CBS will air it’s interview about me and my book Rich Habits. The interview will air across the entire United States and portions of Canada. It will be part of the CBS Nightly News segment that airs at 11pm.  This is my first nationwide network T.V. interview. It took 9 years for me to get here. And I almost gave up in 2011.

Here’s why:

  • I sent Query Letters to 149 agents who specialized in Self-Help. Not one agent was interested.
  • I sent Query Letters to nearly 200 publishers. One responded yes.
  • I mailed out 1,000 books to newspaper and magazine book review editors.
  • I followed up with phone calls to those same book review editors. No one returned my calls. And not one reviewed my book.
  • I spoke to over 2,000 High School and college students, teachers and parents about the Rich Habits at schools across the country and gave as many books away. This took 18 months. I was hoping this would create some buzz. It didn’t.
  • I created a scholarship program to elicit interest in Rich Habits. I offered 3 scholarships totaling $5,000. The $5,000 was all the profits I had made from book sales. I sent out 2,000 letters to guidance counselors in NJ and then followed up with each one of them, by phone, over a 2 month period. I received 2 incomplete scholarship applications.
  • I spent 18 months calling over 2,000 radio stations across the nation. I got 150 radio interviews. I sold very few books.
  • I spent 1 year emailing over 2,500 newspaper editors about Rich Habits.
  • I Tweeted for 5 years to people in the media about Rich Habits. To date I have 16,418 Tweets.
  • In 2013, one person, Farnoosh Torabi [My friend!!!!] of Yahoo Financially Fit, Tweeted me that she would like to interview me.
  • On July 16, 2013 Yahoo Finance runs the interview. It goes viral with over 2 million hits.
  • Dave Ramsey sees the interview and spends 3 days talking about Rich Habits on his radio show.
  • On July 19, 2013 I am interviewed by Dave Ramsey for 30 minutes.
  • Rich Habits goes from #35,650 on Amazon to #1 in Personal Finance for 8 straight days. Rich Habits also hits #10, #12 & #14 during the same week on Amazon. On Amazon, Rich Habits was ranked ahead of J.K. Rowling and the #1 New York Times Bestseller, Lean In. I achieve #1 Bestseller status, Best Book of the Month and Most Wished for Book of the Month on Amazon.
  • I receive an email from CBS during late July, 2013. They wanted to interview me on my book, Rich Habits. I drove to Boston for the interview in October 2013.
  • On November 6th, 2013 CBS airs the interview nationwide.

DANGGGG! And I took out a handful of bullet points too. The paragraph that follows is my favorite:

If you were to add up all of the failures I’ve had, it would number close to 30,000 over the years. 30,000 failed attempts and four successes (NJ Star Ledger, Yahoo, Dave Ramsey and CBS). 4 for 30,000. Yet, I’m doing it. I’m succeeding. I’m making it happen.

Pretty incredible. I don’t know anything about the publishing world, but obviously it’s not easy. And this guy is a beast. You can read the entire story, and bullet points, here.

Can you tell why I’m so obsessed? :) This guy inspires the pants off of me. And I hope this resonates with you all too. The finance tips, the daily wealthy habits, and the pursuit of your dream. It’s not easy stuff, but it’s DO-ABLE!!! And I hope this motivates you just a tad bit more to continue on.

Have a blessed weekend, everyone. Love ya’ll.

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  1. Scott @ HomeBuyer Nation November 8, 2013 at 6:36 AM

    Seems like all rich people enjoy either throwing or diving into huge piles of money like Scrooge McDuck :-) We need a statistic on that one.

    That “why you should never quit on a dream” piece is GOLD! Thanks for sharing.

    1. J. Money November 8, 2013 at 12:13 PM

      I freakin’ got goosebumps the more I read that part – I’m such a nerd!

  2. dojo November 8, 2013 at 7:54 AM

    Really good stories. And a great inspiration in the last one to never give up your dreams, you never know when ‘luck’ will finally appear.

  3. Tara @ Streets Ahead Living November 8, 2013 at 8:11 AM

    I just love self-made millionaires in general, like the story of how JK Rowling wasn’t too well off before she sold Harry Potter or how the woman who invented Spanx used her life savings of $5,000 to get started and is now crazy rich.

    1. J. Money November 8, 2013 at 12:15 PM

      Right? After all that failing over and over and over again too – just amazing. You really need a lot of courage AND belief in yourself/product to keep pushing like that. Really admirable.

  4. John S @ Frugal Rules November 8, 2013 at 8:11 AM

    That’s awesome J$! I can see why you’re obsessed. :) Beyond the living wisely in terms of finances, I think a lot of it goes back to always be hustlin’ and looking for ways to grow yourself. Not a bad way to live in my opinion. :)

  5. Joel @ SaveOutsideTheBox November 8, 2013 at 8:49 AM

    This guy is pretty dang cool. I’m going to have to check out more of his stuff. That reality TV stat is my favorite! It is certainly a ridiculous way to spend your time.

    1. J. Money November 8, 2013 at 12:15 PM

      You could probably swap out it out with Facebook too – though it would even be worse! ;)

  6. Jane Savers @ Solving The Money Puzzle November 8, 2013 at 9:48 AM

    J. Money do you right down your goals? Do you show it to anyone? Do the rich people share their goals?

    I am very afraid of failing. If I write the goals down, instead of keeping them secretly in my mind, then I have failed if I don’t accomplish the goal.

    Does Mr. Corley explain how to deal with the fear of failure?

    1. J. Money November 8, 2013 at 12:19 PM

      I don’t know if he does or not, but you should ask him through his contact form page and see :) It’s definitely normal to be afraid, but to succeed you NEED to fail so really no way around it unfortunately. Unless you’re cool with reaching success in like 100 years by doing only the small things you KNOW you’ll win at, haha…

      To answer your questions:

      1) Yes, I write down my goals. Either on this blog, or in a notebook. But really more so my *action items* as those motivate me/get me to DO SOMETHING more than my goals – that’s how I’m wired.

      2) I show everyone parts on this blog, but no – I don’t show off my notebook. I wouldn’t mind doing so though, just not around a lot of people who are interested/care in the real world. I talk about them to everyone though whether they want to listen or not ;)

      3) Yes, I believe rich people share their goals. Probably with other rich people or those they admire to help keep them motivated and keep pushing forward. A lot of them have mastermind groups which I think is smart. Some of us bloggers have them too to help everyone out.

  7. Stefanie @ The Broke and Beautiful Life November 8, 2013 at 10:41 AM

    I loved the never giving up on a dream article. Incredibly inspiring particularly at a point in my life where I feel I’m constantly spinning my wheels and making very little progress.

    I’m surprised by the percentages of the “say what’s on your mind” habit. I figured it’d be the other way around with the wealthy being the blunt ones.

    1. J. Money November 8, 2013 at 12:20 PM

      That was my favorite line of that research too :) My guess is that the wealthy could care less about what others are doing, so they just concentrate on their own stuff.

  8. Walunt November 8, 2013 at 11:02 AM

    I wonder where the line is drawn in pushing for something you believe in because you think it’s gold and continuing to chase a dream that is legitimately going nowhere? How do you know that what you’re chasing isn’t just a delusion? I have always pursued avenues where I know I have a natural talent that I can pair up with work ethic and hustle, but how do you know you’re doing it right? Just something I’m trying to figure out for myself.

    On another topic, I noticed that your 2nd mortgage is starting to creap down into, “Holy crap, I could just pay this mofo off” territory. I know that your ability to sleep at night rests heavily on your emergency fund, but what do you think the tipping point would be to just be done with that loan? How much cash flow would you save each month if you weren’t making the payment? If business suddenly picked up and remained steady for a few months, how would that change your perspective?

    1. J. Money November 8, 2013 at 12:25 PM

      That’s a GREAT point about not knowing when to stop and go a different direction with your dreams. I don’t know how others deal with it, but for me things change when i lose passion or excitement, or I literally need money to survive and so I have to put my family first and hit pause on the dreaming. Usually you REALLY have to love and believe in what you’re putting out into the world, so the second that wanes I bet the quitting is closely around the corner.

      RE: 2nd mortgage – good eye indeed! I think about that often – though only for just a few seconds ;) Business would REALLY have to take off a lot for me to nix it completely at this point, but, it’s certainly in the back of my mind. The interest is SO LOW on it (like 2-something %?) so it would literally only save me like $70 a month once paid off. Or really, $200 since that’s what I apply towards it every month right now to help get it down faster. $200 is still $200, but not enough for me to part with almost $30,000 just yet. We’re getting there though :)

  9. Budget and the Beach November 8, 2013 at 11:24 AM

    Great stuff J! I’m glad to know that I’d doing a majority of the rich habits bullet points. Maybe with the exception of networking. Often times when we see someone else’s success on TV, we have no idea what went on behind the scenes. What it took to get there. We just think, “oh lucky them!” But it’s nice to see how someone had to go through a lot of failures to get where they are, meaning no one is immune to them. It’s not how many times you fall…it’s how many times you get back up.

  10. Ben @ The Wealth Gospel November 8, 2013 at 11:26 AM

    Dang. Makes me feel like a fool a little, haha. I’m way to impatient sometimes with the blogging business stuff. I’m planning on writing a book one of these days, though, so I guess I better get used to being persistent!

    Now put your pants back on ;)

    1. J. Money November 8, 2013 at 12:29 PM

      No way! That’s the perk of being a full-time blogger – I can write to you in my underwear!

      1. Ben @ The Wealth Gospel November 8, 2013 at 1:24 PM

        lol that’s a perk I’m looking forward to!

  11. moneystepper.com November 8, 2013 at 11:41 AM

    Brilliant – I can see why you are obsessed. I’m going to have to favorite this, and the site, to re-review later. His story is truly inspirational!

  12. Kyle | Rather-Be-Shopping.com November 8, 2013 at 11:45 AM

    Dang, that is incredible. What an amazing story of dedication and believing in your message. Going to go order the book! Just listened to the Dave Ramsey interview. Looks like a fascinating read.

    1. J. Money November 8, 2013 at 12:32 PM

      Someone on twitter told me she’s read it *4 times* already – hah! Guess it’s pretty addicting too!

  13. Brian November 8, 2013 at 12:03 PM

    That was gold. Thanks for sharing.

    If checked my numbers compared to his, and it is crazy, far off. If that is the blueprint for being financially successful than it is no wonder I have sleepless nights.

    Actually the numbers were not too brutal when I figure in if we still had two incomes.

    1. J. Money November 8, 2013 at 12:34 PM

      Which numbers are you comparing? Net worth stuff, or those at the top of the article? I wonder how much his worth is :)

      1. Brian November 8, 2013 at 8:47 PM

        I was talking percentages. Auto only 5%?? I am far off that, but that is why I am not an expert.

        My house is almost 50% of income.

        Shit my cell phone bills are more than 5% of my income lol. I have a long way to go.

        1. Brian November 8, 2013 at 9:55 PM

          Lovin’ the turkey in the header btw :-)

          1. J. Money November 10, 2013 at 12:00 PM

            thanks :) I do it every year and maybe only 1 person ever notices, haha… or at least comments.

  14. Michelle November 8, 2013 at 1:15 PM

    I currently have his book and have read it quickly 4 times! I also love the blog. But, missed the post about the number of times he failed before succeeding. I needed to read that post!!! Mr. Corley also seems like a nice, authentic guy and I appreciate him and the work that he has done to help people succeed.

    1. J. Money November 10, 2013 at 12:01 PM

      Wow, really? I mean, I’m not surprised – he’s freakin’ brilliant – but 4 times? Haha… that’s one helluva testimonial right there :)

  15. Broke Millennial November 8, 2013 at 2:01 PM

    Going to disagree with the 25% of your net income on housing rule, just purely for others living in NYC with a low-income. If I could, I would obviously spend less percentage of my income on rent, but that just isn’t practical for me while I live in New York.

    And like we chatted about on Twitter, the not giving up on a dream post is fantastic but really shows how many people don’t take advantage of free money!

    1. Ruby November 9, 2013 at 2:20 AM

      Thank you!!! My rent is currently 37.5% of my income, which is too high. I live in Santa Barbara, California though. Studios are about 1,000 here. I bike to work (no parking) so I have to stay close by. I took this job for a 16% increase in salary + benefits (government job) but rent ate up all my cash gains- still, I am contributing towards retirement finally! At 26 years old.

    2. J. Money November 10, 2013 at 12:04 PM

      Yeah I guess one would just argue that your priorities in this case is the location you want to live over building wealth. Which of course is totally cool. In these cases we just have to hustle even harder to get down below that 25% or whatever line :)

  16. Sherrian C November 8, 2013 at 2:37 PM

    This was awesome J! Not only do i have to check the guy out, but that section on never giving up on a dream really gave me goosebumps as well. Very inspiring.

  17. Mel @ brokeGIRLrich November 8, 2013 at 3:39 PM

    This statistic is interesting to me:
    “6% of wealthy say what’s on their mind vs. 69% for poor.”

    I sort of wonder what that translates to? Poor people spend a lot of time talking? Wealthy people keep their issues to themselves? I do feel like most successful people I know aren’t complainers – they really only acknowledge roadblocks to the point where speaking about it will help get rid of it.

    1. J. Money November 10, 2013 at 12:04 PM

      I’m going with “Wealthy people keep their issues to themselves?”

  18. Micro November 8, 2013 at 6:08 PM

    The huge one that stuck out to me was 88% spending 30 minutes a day reading to educate themselves. So often I think people have this idea that if you get a college degree, that’s all you need to do and you will make it. What isn’t stressed enough is that education should never stop. The world changes everyday and if you want to stay relevant, you always need to be learning something new. You can’t just rely on a college degree to carry you for the next 40+ years. Even if you are planning on retiring in 10 years, you should still be working to expand your skill set.

    1. J. Money November 10, 2013 at 12:05 PM

      Yes, and depending on what you studied in college vs what you do in “real life,” I’m willing to bet the % of stuff learned you actually use is 1.5% haha… so even MORE important to continue to learn and soak in knowledge! Esp in your field :)

  19. Prudence Debtfree November 8, 2013 at 7:40 PM

    I don’t know what I find more inspiring – the advice, the habits, or the story of Corley’s perseverance despite so many discouraging obstacles. But I do know that his book is going on my Christmas list! Thanks for sharing your obsession : )

    1. J. Money November 10, 2013 at 12:06 PM

      So glad to hear :) It’s on my list to buy too!!

  20. Christine @ ThePursuitofGreen November 8, 2013 at 11:06 PM

    Amazing story! He kept at it after so main setbacks and failures. Wow…going to have to check out his stuff. Good inspiration for the weekend!

  21. Katrina S November 9, 2013 at 11:49 AM

    GRACIOUS this is inspiring for someone chasing the music dream like myself. I identify with sending email after email but if he can succeed at 4 for 30,000 who am I to quit!

  22. Natalie November 9, 2013 at 12:11 PM

    Hmmm why has his Twitter account been suspended???? I was looking forward to following!

    1. J. Money November 10, 2013 at 12:07 PM

      I know, it went down a little before I posted this up :( He says it happens all the time cuz he “tweets too much” but who knows… Regardless his stuff is dead-on. And he tells me he just moves over to Facebook when Twitter goes down for him, so maybe connect with him there for now?

  23. My Favorite Wallet November 10, 2013 at 12:56 AM

    Wow! The last part was just wow! Eventually someone will say yes. That just nudged me to go a little more harder in my hustle. Love it!

  24. SuburbanFinance November 10, 2013 at 5:12 PM

    Interesting stats – I love reality TV, but I don’t fit into the “poor” category! I also read a ton, though I could step up my networking.

    1. J. Money November 11, 2013 at 10:54 AM

      Perhaps your reading evens it out ;)

  25. Anna November 10, 2013 at 9:34 PM

    WOW!! Thanks for sharing this, J. Money. I’ve been feeling burnt out about my dreams and feeling close to giving up. Talk about the right timing with this post;) I’m getting this book ASAP!

    1. J. Money November 11, 2013 at 10:55 AM

      DO IT!!!

  26. Connie @ Savvy With Saving November 10, 2013 at 11:33 PM

    Damn, I almost missed that tweet if you didn’t point it out. I can see why you’re obsessed! I LOVE the article about pursuing your dreams.

    1. J. Money November 11, 2013 at 10:57 AM

      Hey! You were on my list to thank today :) I’m pretty sure he found me through YOUR twitter account, so thanks!! I’m gonna be so much smarter now cuz of you! Haha…

  27. maria@moneyprinciple November 11, 2013 at 2:05 AM

    I can see why you are obsessed. I have his book on my desk and am looking forward to reading it (although, thanks to my blogger-friends this can wait – I already know what is in the book). Just a word of caution: the link between these habits and wealth is one of correlation, not necessarily causality. This means that wealthy people share some habits but they are not wealthy because of this habits (or there is no clear evidence of the ‘because’).

    Btw, I have them all except the one about ‘speaking your mind’. I do that; always have and probably always will….

    1. J. Money November 11, 2013 at 10:58 AM

      Yeah, good to think about for sure. But for motivational reasons, I like to assume if I do all those traits (or don’t do the bad ones), that I’ll become wealthy too :) So no harm no foul!

  28. Fig November 11, 2013 at 1:49 PM

    I love that site too! so glad I found it!

  29. Candy June 21, 2016 at 11:13 PM

    What does this mean – they’re more political saavy?
    6% of wealthy say what’s on their mind vs. 69% for poor.

    1. J. Money June 22, 2016 at 12:59 PM

      I took it that they’re much more careful of “brain dumping” than others, which includes watching what – and how – they say things, yeah. I.E. they don’t really care to gossip much or get into random arguments with no real point :)