The Key to Building True Wealth

UPDATED: May 22, 2024
PUBLISHED: January 14, 2021

In this culture, people would rather look like they have money than actually have money in the bank account. And I can relate, because I used to be there. I’m going to be 100 with you.

I remember being young, 19 years old, in Oceanside, California, sitting at the beach with a good friend in a 1987 Nissan Maxima that could not even go into reverse, with 22-inch chromed wheels, spinning wheels, on it and two 12s in the back. My accessories in my car were actually worth more than the actual car. My friend and I see our peers pull up in Range Rovers, BMWs, Lexuses, Mercedes, with real nice wheels and sound systems, but we also quickly noticed that all of us either lived with our family, our parents or in a house with five other people. It was during that time that we noticed that we would rather look impressive than actually be impactful in our lives.

I believe that the true ingredient to really building true wealth, to building true success, when it comes to money, is to actually live below your means. Get on a budget and live below your means. Tell your money where it needs to go rather than wondering where it went. One of the things that my millionaire friends told me is that they actually know where every dollar of their money is going. Do you? Do you even know where you spent the last $5 at?

Related: Anthony ONeal Can Help You Get Out of Debt

You see, when you can get a clear vision for your money, which is a budget, you’re going to live below your means, and while you’re living below your means, you’re going to avoid debt. How many people are financing Gucci bags and Louis bags and nice things, and they really can’t even afford it?

I want you to pay cash for these things. I want you to have a solid foundation. I want you to have an emergency fund. I want you to have freedom to do whatever you wanna do, but it starts with having a solid foundation. It starts with building true wealth. It starts in our mind and understanding that we have to create a solid foundation, so tomorrow, we can go by the nice things, so the next day, we can go on this trip. But you have to avoid debt. You have to live below your means, and you have to have a budget.

Anthony ONeal is a Ramsey personality and the national best-selling author of The Graduate Survival Guide: 5 Mistakes You Can't Afford to Make in College. Anthony travels the country teaching people how to build true wealth and how to get out of debt.