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There might be a million and one ways to get rich, but believe it or not, most people that do it have a lot of the same characteristics - and habits. If you're looking to increase the size of your fortune, or just live a little more comfortably than your current situation, try adopting the habits of the uber-wealthy.
They don't save money
A wise man once said that a dollar saved is a dollar earned, but guess what? Benjamin Franklin might have been missing the mark when it came to his hard-earned dollars. Rich people tend to invest their money wisely, rather than stowing it away to make scraps of interest in a savings account. Yes, smart people save money. But wealthy people make their money work for them - by investing it.
They relax with a good book
If you thought all rich people spend all their time working, think again. Many are spending a fair amount of their precious time reading. In fact, according to Business Insider, one study profiling 1,200 wealthy people found that a common favorite pastime wasn't golf or country clubs or sailing. It was good, old-fashioned (free!) reading. Successful people use reading as a way to self-educate on becoming more successful, with self-improvement books being a favorite among the rich, according to yet another study.
They live on the cheap
The wealthier a person is, the flashier his or her lifestyle, right? Not so much. In fact, some of the wealthiest Americans live like, well, normal people. For example, Warren Buffet, chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway (and one of the country's richest men), lives in the same home he bought in 1958 for just over $31,000. If you're looking to become rich, practice wise spending habits (thrift-store trip, anyone?).
They wait for bargains
Just because you have the money in the bank, that doesn't mean you have to spend it. That's the idea behind waiting for bargains and sales when it comes to buying life's necessities. Unfortunately, most people just aren't wired to wait for the best value. According to a Princeton study, people were more likely to take $10 today over $11 tomorrow, simply because short-term rewards are more powerful to the human brain. That said, learning to hold out for the best value -even if it means putting off what you want now - can reap rewards down the line.
Like most people, you might think of retirement as the reward after a hard-working career. But really wealthy people tend to skip early retirement - simply because they feel an ingrained need to stay busy. When you're successful, you focus on the work at hand - not the rest that comes after. Changing this mindset might help you actually achieve that wealth by retirement age (whether that's 65 or 105).
They stick to a budget
One perk of success is freedom, but most wealthy people are trained and accustomed to not only building a budget - but becoming a slave to it. Like any endeavor, becoming wealthy requires a plan, and often, that plan is a strict budget. Making yourself stick to it will help you achieve your financial goals - however lofty they might be.
They give it away
It might seem counterproductive, but the fact remains: The richest people give lots of money away. According to Time, 91 percent of people with a net worth of $1 million or more, give money to charity. Giving doesn't have to be a burden. For example, Ziphub allows you to buy items you use every day, while donating a portion of the cost to a charity or organization of your choice. For more info, or to start giving back today, visit www.ziphub.com.
Kristen has a journalism degree and has experience writing in a variety of fields, including art and culture, health and fitness and financial and real estate services. Kristen has written for USA Today, SFGate and the Knot.