Billion Dollar Life Lessons

March 12, 2012  |

For those of us who aspire to become billionaires, there are a few life lessons to hold onto. If you’re wondering about some of the secrets behind some of the top money-makers in the nation, Savvy Sugar is willing to share the lessons that helped grow their wealth.

First lesson: live below your means. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has certainly learned the art of living below his means. While so many of us are obsessed with the idea that we must own property as soon as possible, even Zuckerberg has only recently made a move to buy a house. Although his home costs a whopping $7 million, it is only 0.04 percent of his estimated $17.5 billion worth.

Give back to society. This is a lesson that Bill Gates takes to heart. Saavy Sugar reports he gave away so much of his money, he would’ve been the richest man in the world last year with $88 billion had he not donated so much to his charities. Gates understands that generosity does not hurt your standard of living.

Next on the list, think long term. Start saving now because the earlier you start saving, the more you’ll make in compounding interest. It’s a lesson Warren Buffet is committed to following. He is known for making long term investments with big time payoffs.

Make sure you do what you love. Oprah Winfrey acknowledges that when you don’t do what you love, you die a little every day. So in order to live longer and to make the most out of all the time you spend working, make sure you enjoy what you do.

Keep in mind that practice makes perfect. Most things don’t come to you without taking the time to perfect them. Steve Jobs knew how to market and advertise his latest Apple product because he spent hours practicing how to present it and even longer working on his company’s brand.

Don’t be afraid to take risks. Billionaires understand the importance of making full use of each day and each opportunity. If you spend your life in doubt or fear of whether or not a career move or venture is the right thing to do, you will never move forward. Billionare Sarah Blakeley, the founder of Spanx, saw her best friend hit and killed by a car at age 16. She says that from then on she held a sense of urgency about life that propelled her to get the most out of the life she had left.

Lastly, trust your instincts. Make sure that you’re doing things that make you happy and not other people. Success will come when you have followed your heart–not others. In an interview with Oprah, Ralph Lauren notes that, “a person’s genius is her realness, her gut—not her college degree.”

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