by Tom Butler-Bowdon
1. Paradoxically, wealth (and happiness) comes most easily to those who forget the self in the service to others. The law of giving infallibly returns more to the giver than what they contribute.
2. When you focus on other people and circumstances as the source of your prosperity, you tend to lose it. But when you recognize God, a Higher Power or ‘the Universe’ as the source of your supply, money begins to flow
3. Your job, employer, investments or spouse seem to be the source of our money, but these are just ‘externals’ that mask the metaphysical sources of abundance. Actual money does not make you secure; what does is a thorough knowledge of the universe’s power to provide.
4. To receive your ‘good’, you must first cleanse your mind of clutter and negative emotions. In forming a vacuum, you allow good things to rush in. When you hold in resentment, you are bound to that person or situation that you resent. In forgiving, you free yourself and allow the floodgates of prosperity to open.
5. The universe is perfectly ordered, therefore the person who makes their own affairs more orderly is attuned to universal riches. To receive more money, you must first demonstrate that you can manage well what you have now, however little.
6. The basic law of the universe is that things come into being which did not exist before. When you create mental pictures of health, wealth and happiness, you are not trying to change the laws of nature, but instead fulfilling your unique promise to bring these things into being.
7. According to the law of attraction, whatever you put your attention on through thought or desire becomes reality. You attract to yourself things or people that are the equivalent of your current state of being, or ‘vibration’.
8. The ‘creative process’ is the specific way we can use the law of attraction to obtain what we want. It involves: Asking the universe, and being very clear about what we want; Believing, acting and speaking as though you have already received what you have asked for; andReceiving – feeling great that it is coming to you, which sets up the necessary vibration to manifest the desire.
9. This process is summed up in the Bible: “All things whatsoever ye pray and ask for, believe that ye have received them and ye shall have them.”
10. Deciding to elevate your mood or feeling in each moment is vital for increasing your vibration, which in turn attracts things, people and feelings of a like vibration. To be both rich and happy, you must make a positive mental attitude a basic habit of living.
10. If low on funds, praise and bless whatever you have, and imagine it growing larger.
11. Blessing what we have and blessing what others have puts the law of increase into motion.
12. Gratitude is the key to an abundant life, because it puts us in a state of mind that attracts even more of what we are grateful for. Love, appreciation and thanks are the essence of prosperity. It is right to become a giver, but we must also learned to be good receivers.
WEALTH CREATION PRINCIPLES
13. The foundation of a prosperous life (combining material wealth, health and mental well being) is personal character, formed from self-control and cultivation of virtue. A person of integrity, trust and good character is ‘bankable’; their riches evolve out of who they are as much as what they do.
14. Definiteness of purpose is essential to the success of the wealth creator. A clear purpose enables you to see setbacks as temporary, banishes fear and doubt, and inspires the help of others.
15. Do more than is asked or expected of you, or ‘go the extra mile’. Putting in a extraordinary effort with no guarantee of gain is the basis of most great fortunes.
16. Whatever you do, provide or create, make sure you do it in an outstanding way. Remember the Latin dictum In excellentia lucrum – in excellence is profit.
17. The fear of failure or embarrassment is the greatest obstacle to achieving wealth. Fear puts a brake on action, yet if you are not willing to fail you will forever be bound in circumstances that involve little risk. With little risk there are only small rewards.
18. Learn, don’t blame. It is easy to blame people or events when things are not going smoothly, but the enlightened wealth creator seeks only to learn in every situation.
19. Don’t complain, look for opportunities.
20. Thinking big is the basis of all great enterprises and fortunes. We are constantly thinking, therefore it takes no more effort to think big instead of small.
21. Wealth flows to the person who has a high toleration for uncertainty or disappointment. Handle disappointment well, and you will make more attempts to achieve your goals. By the law of averages, where others have given up you will succeed.
22. Wealth-minded people do not try to avoid risk or complexity. They even embrace large problems because they know that solving them can produce great value.
23. It is not enough to want to be rich, you must commit to it. Providence moves all for the person who determines to stick it out, doing that they can to make a venture work. The half-hearted achieve half-success or failure.
24. Choose your vocation wisely. Love of your work sets up a ‘circle of excellence’ that cannot fail to deliver great gains over time. But along with love and talent, you must work.
25. The seed of entrepreneurship is a wish to be in control of our own destiny.
26. If you think you see the future, act on it. Hunches based on in-depth knowledge are usually right. If something captures your imagination, chances are it will capture that of others too.
27. Everything that you see around you, someone has made a fortune from it. All you need is one idea that can make you your fortune, and it is probably to be found in your own backyard.
28. Don’t be afraid to be different. On entering any new field or an industry, aim to really shake it up and provide new value.
29. The surest way to wealth is to create a product or service that increases the ease and speed of results.
30. Above all, it is customers that create wealth. Have customers before you even start your business.
31. The purpose of entrepreneurship is to deliver new satisfaction and value. It is built on ‘unexpected successes’ that are quickly capitalized upon.
32. Riches follow ownership. Own something, or at least a part of it.
33. Have many sources of income. Do not depend on a single wage for your financial security.
34. Wealthy people create money-producing systems. Middle class people work within and for these systems, and so never get rich
35. All wealth is created first in the mind. Therefore, a political-economic system that fosters and protects the freedom to think, innovate, create and prosper, with free and open markets to trade the product, is a moral system.
WEALTH MANAGEMENT PRINCIPLES
36. Live within your means. If you are not wealthy, do not have a wealthy lifestyle. You will get rich by imitating the mindsets of the wealthy, not by imitating their spending.
37. Poor people are focused on spending money; the wealthy are focused on creating it, saving it and investing it.
38. Most people see money as cash in their hands to be used and spent. Wealthy people understand money primarily as seeds to be planted that will grow into money trees.
39. Plan your spending. Never shop on impulse. The longer you plan a purchase, generally the more money you will save.
40. Document your spending. Write down everything you spend. It is the first step in getting control of your finances.
41. Become a habitual saver. Pay yourself the first ten per cent of what you earn, before tax, and invest it. The discipline of saving (given a certain amount of time) can you rich. Do not risk your peace of mind or relationships by chasing the quick dollar.
42. Use the magic of compound interest by reinvesting all interest or dividends earned.
43. Savings allow you to pick up bargains and take advantage of opportunities.
44. Earning more will not solve your debt problem (debts increase to match earnings). Learning how to manage money responsibly will.
45. The frugal enjoy what they have more, get more use out of what they own, and delight in the ability to make gifts when they wish.
46. Have an emergency fund that cover your living expenses for three to six months. If something happens, you will not have to go into debt or depend on the charity of others.
47. Resist invitations to own a credit card. Debit cards now perform all the functions that credit cards were once useful for, and will not lead you into a debt spiral.
48. Pay for most things with cash. You will spend less.
49. When borrowing money, make sure it is for an productive asset or one that is likely to appreciate, and pay off the loan as soon as you can.
50. Don’t be someone who ‘knows the price of everything and the value of nothing’. In stock investing, consider yourself part owner of a company, not a trader.
51. Don’t try to beat the market or speculate. Trust the long term ability of stock markets to overall deliver good returns.
52. With the power of leverage and modest price appreciation, plus a normal degree of patience, in two or three decades you can build a real estate fortune.
53. Too little or too much money magnifies personal deficiencies, or reveals the good character that was already there. Therefore, in relation to your financial life, work on yours personal qualities is never wasted.
SHARING AND CIRCULATION PRINCIPLES
54. Money is a kind of energy, always active. To bring the greatest benefit to the greatest number, it must flow and circulate.
55. Generating, using and spending money in a way that is consistent with our deepest values has a healing effect not only on ourselves but the world.
56. We never really possess wealth, but are stewards of it until we die. When a fortune is made, the creator has a duty to apply at least some of it to causes and projects that will assist and elevate others.
57. With clear goals and a focus on results, private wealth in the form of foundations can change the world.
58. Prosperity’s foundation is a healthy natural environment. Without clean air, water and a fertile earth we have nothing. Invest, spend or make money in a way that causes no harm and is good for the planet.
59. If given access to finance, the world’s poorest people will strive for, and achieve, self-reliance and prosperity.
Source: 50 Prosperity Classics: Attract It, Create It, Manage It, Share It by Tom Butler-Bowdon (London & Boston: Nicholas Brealey).
50 Prosperity Classics:
• Insightful commentaries on 50 key books.
• 320 pages of life-changing wisdom and profitable advice.
• Expanded features and profiles not on this site.
Praise for 50 Prosperity Classics:
"Butler-Bowdon is so good at distilling the essence of these books that you may feel you don't have to read them. But his infectious enthusiasm makes a good case that reading one or more books in each category can help any reader — no matter your current financial circumstances — become worthy of wealth."
Bruce Rosenstein, USA Today
"A terrific compendium of the best books ever written on the sources of prosperity, from famous classics to off-beat unknowns, distilled to the point of joyous clarity."
Richard Koch, author of The 80/20 Principle, The 80/20 Individual and Living the 80/20 Way
"Anyone interested in achieving an understanding of true prosperity and demonstrating a higher level of fulfillment should read this book...50 Prosperity Classics is a treasure chest of golden nuggets to use in realizing a life more abundant."
John Randolph Price, author ofThe 40 Day Prosperity Plan
"One of best books to read this summer on the sources of prosperity is 50 Prosperity Classics, an inspirational amalgamation of commentaries of the best books written on how to live an abundant life. It is a true jewel."
The Harbus - Harvard Business School Student Weekly
© COPYRIGHT TOM BUTLER-BOWDON, 2023
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