The American middle class is shrinking.
And it has been for decades.
In its place is a new, lower middle class.
And this new middle class is a dead end.
When the 2012 Census data was released, it showed a bleak picture for the middle class. Stats for the middle class such as median income, income growth, and share of the national income have all continued to decline.
There’s something else happening that’s even more startling…
About one third of people born into the middle class today will actually fall out of that category as adults, according to research from the Pew Center.
The idea that children will grow up to be better off than their parents has always been key to the American dream. Now people are waking up to the fact that just being born into the middle class doesn’t guarantee you will stay there.
I realize it’s hard.
I realize it’s hard to come home after a long day’s work and make yourself spend three hours each night studying the finance and success habits that will make you financially free. It’s much easier to just watch TV and be comfortable.
I realize it takes discipline to save, savings that can be later invested and that put you on the path to wealth. It’s much easier to neglect to save and just be comfortable in the moment.
I realize it takes strength to break from the crowd, the crowd that just wants to look wealthy, not be wealthy. It’s much easier to go into debt and be comfortable buying material things.
But there’s a problem with just wanting to be comfortable and it’s this – there’s a great sorting out that’s going on, with people either moving up or moving down.
And I believe that if you are not constantly moving up, you are in fact…moving down.
Life is like a parade passing by, and if you’re not in the parade that means you’re left to watch the parade. Either way, the parade keeps moving. With you or without you.
So, what can you do to be in the parade instead of just watching it? Here are 3 steps to ensure you keep moving up:
Step 1. You must take control of your financial future. Your only hope, the only way of escaping the new dead-end middle-class, lies with you. The way you will become wealthy is by taking full responsibility for every aspect of your wealth. Here’s why-with responsibility comes empowerment – the power to get into action and reach your goals. A person that doesn’t take responsibility for their financial future is basically telling themselves that they have no power to change their position. You must build your wealth like an entrepreneur builds a business. “If it’s got to be, then it is got to be me.” Remember this quote from George Bernard Shaw, “Liberty means responsibility. That is why most men dread it.”
Step 2. You must start today. Every day you delay your savings plan or delay becoming more educated on personal finance and investing is a day where opportunity is thrown away. Do you know what kills more dreams of financial freedom than all factors combined? It’s procrastination. It is wealth suicide. Don’t let the procrastination thief rob your dreams of retiring early and becoming wealthy. As they say, “Procrastination is the grave in which opportunity is buried.” What are you going to do today about your financial freedom?
Step 3. You must get educated. Many people say they feel uncomfortable making financial decisions. They feel ignorant or that the subject seems complicated. Get over it my friends. Nobody is born a financial genius. I wasn’t. Everyone has to start somewhere so just get started. Do what I did – read every single book in the library on the subjects of personal finance, investing and success. The education you will get from doing this alone will pay dividends for a lifetime. Remember this, actions taken to ensure your financial freedom are some of the most important decisions you will make in your life. Given that, why would you make million dollar decisions about your life with only five dollars’ worth of financial knowledge?
If you want the peace that financial freedom brings…
If you want to decide what you do with your time…
If you want a better life…
…then it comes down to one choice. You can be proactive or you can be reactive. You can either decide how your life is going to be (proactive), or you can leave it up to someone else to make that decision for you (reactive).
Which option will you choose?
Are you moving up or moving down?
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