Not so long ago there used to be unquestionably three classes of citizens: the upper class (the rich), the middle class and the lower class (the poor). An article published on forbes.com early this year indicates some very startling statistics which include the fact that almost half of the world’s wealth is currently owned by just one percent of the world’s population and eighty-five richest people in the world have as much wealth as the poorest 3.5 billion people in the world. These are staggering figures and they clearly indicate the growth of a major class of citizens – the poor!
Research shows that the middle class are world citizens with the following features: being able to save for the future, being able to own your own home, car and afford higher education among other things not mentioned in this article. Unless you belong to the one percent who own half the world’s wealth you either belong to the middle class or even worse, the lower. From all indications, more and more people are relocating from the middle class downward and only a few are able to escape into the upper class. The fortunate few who belong to that top one percent only spread their tentacles and develop stronger roots, in other words, the rich will get richer and the rest will always take a dive. There are databases of factual analyses of how the world’s wealth is divided among the six billion humans on it and repeated study will most likely always reveal the fact that the gap between the upper class and the lower class is breaking its elastic limit, gradually drying out the middle class. Some school of thought already argue that the middle class is gone but given the features mentioned above I’d say, it’s still in the process.
So here’s why many will never join this top one percent:
- They keep doing the same things and expecting a different result: I have heard once that madness has been defined that way; doing the same thing repeatedly and expecting to get a different result! If you want to get the same results as the upper class, you need to stop and ask yourself what they do differently from the way you do yours. It’s logical, if someone gets the results you crave for but don’t get after several efforts, the right thing to do would be to check how they do it, isn’t it?
- They do not exercise the same level of discipline: it takes great discipline to get to the top and stay there. It takes discipline to save first and spend what is left rather than spend first and save what is left as advised by Warren Buffett. If you ever want to join that top one percent, you might have to ditch some of your old harmful habits and start acquiring new, useful ones.
- They do not learn: the rich consume knowledge like daily meals and this helps them understand the way the world’s systems work. They constantly equip themselves with the right knowledge are always learning.
- They swallow whatever they are given; hook, line and sinker: I love the slogan of EA Games – ‘Challenge Everything’. I find this inspiring. For a long time, I used to think that one of the keys to success in life is to go to school and get a job. Thanks to people like Robert Kiyosaki who learned to challenge this philosophy. Now this is an important aspect of belonging to that top one percent; ask questions, probe further, discover better ways to do everything. This is a habit of most successful people and unless you imbibe it too , you may never join them.
The simple fact remains that not everyone will be rich and not everyone who currently belongs to the middle class and reading this right now will apply the necessary change. I hope you are not one of them?
Note: this article was first published on LinkedIn Pulse by the same author.