Becoming a millionaire had always been a goal of mine in my early 20’s, and while it took me a few years to actually become one, there were many things I expected to change about how I looked at the world as well as how the world looked at me. It wasn’t until after I met my goal that I was shocked to see that everything I expected was actually the opposite of my original belief.
You see, when you are on your quest to becoming financially free, you tend to look at that goal as the ultimate barrier to success; meaning before you reach it, you have everything figured out from where you will live, how you will act, and of course all the doors that will open for you as a result of who you’ve become.
However, getting there was somewhat of a surprise for me, and I am sure it will be for you too. One of the biggest surprises that hit me hard was the fact that becoming a millionaire wasn’t the ending, but rather the beginning of the journey. It was only from here that the real challenges started, including staying a millionaire, as not only your appetite for financial victories grow, but your ability and comfort with risk taking increases.
This makes it very easy to lose everything you just gained, which is OK because the fear of not making it no longer crossed my mind. After I reached my goal, it felt like I was free from the fear of possibly not making it, and instead I focused my efforts on continuing to grow as a person rather than just grow financially.
As surprised as I was, I recently decided to ask seven self-made millionaires in my network about the biggest surprises they encountered once they made it, and their answers as you’ll see below are rather unique based on their characters.
Shawn Thomas: “Being new to wealth, I was surprised to learn about leverage debt. I had understood how it worked in business, but not to build income. Very surprising.”
Jordan Swerdloff: “More money, MORE responsibility. Don’t expect one without the other.”
Fabio Viviani: “I don’t have to make myself available all the time for everyone and their mother; now I have a system in place that filters bullshit before it gets to me, and if I have to hear about it I will hear it from someone on my team who is a pleasant person that is only delivering a bullshit for me to check and either say yes or no. Now I do things cause I want to, not because I have to.”
Nick Ruiz: “You don’t have to work as hard as you think. Now, what I mean by that is it isn’t linear in that “the harder you work, the more you make.” The problem is that many people have it engrained in their heads from teachers, parents, etc that you have to work hard, get good grades, and work your way up in the job world. Becoming a self-made millionaire does take hard work, don’t get me wrong, but it involved working very smart. This way, you will be able to take shortcuts. You start meeting and becoming friends with people who can open doors for you. You create leverage with employees and partnerships. This allows you to grow exponentially, instead of linearly.”
Brenton Hayden: “With more money comes more responsibility. If the public knows you are a millionaire, the pressure doubles.”
Dan Fleyshman: “How little would change in my work ethic. It’s like a game that I just keep beating levels and gaining experience on, and want to keep beating levels to eventually be an #EndBoss.”
Josh Elledge: “Everything that you read in the book The Millionaire Next Door is absolutely true. As I’ve been able to accumulate wealth and network with those who have become financially successful, I’ve seen first-hand that millionaires in real life are far from how millionaires are portrayed on TV and in movies. I’ve stayed absolutely sensible with my money, and I don’t think that that will ever change. It’s fun to spend money on the things you truly gain lots of value from, but I feel a great sense of stewardship with the income I’ve been able to produce.”
There you have it! Seven of my friends and I shared with you something that caught us by surprise once we had made it, but now the real question is: what do you think will shock you the most when you become a millionaire?