★ Rich Habit #6: Living Every Day in Moderation
This is part of our Rich Habits series. Be sure to check out all previous habits we’ve covered.
To live in a state of moderation means to live a balanced life – no extremes. Successful people avoid excesses, wild emotional swings, addictions, obsessions, binging, starvation, extravagances and fanatical behavior. They keep their thoughts and emotions on a short leash. They understand the need to be on an even keel and in control of their lives.
Successful people understand that life is a marathon and not a sprint. They moderate their work hours, eating habits, exercise, alcohol intake, watching television, reading, internet use, phone conversations, emails, text messages, conversations, entertainment, sexual relations, and so on. Their personalities reflect this moderate mindset.
They do not become overly excited or excessively melancholy. They are even-tempered and slow to anger or excitement. Their moderate mindset puts family, friends, colleagues, and business partners at ease, which helps improve relationships. As a consequence, people enjoy being around them. There is a comfort level in dealing with them in all matters.
Successful people eat, drink, entertain and live moderate lifestyles. Contrary to what many believe, their homes, cars, personal effects, vacations, etc., are not extravagant. Warren Buffett, one of the wealthiest individuals in the world, lives in the same home that he was married in more than 55 years ago.
His home is modest with no fence or surrounding wall. While he owns a private jet business, he prefers to fly commercial airlines. He drives back and forth to work in his car every day. Warren Buffet lives this Rich Habit on a daily basis.
Unsuccessful People Live in Extremes
They eat too much and drink too much. They overreact to events. They permit their emotions to swing in extreme manners, which create great conflict and pain in their relationships. Emotions such as anger, happiness, love, hate, jealousy and envy are placed on a very long leash, perhaps reeled in momentarily when their most important relationships are placed in jeopardy. They obsess over food, drink, sex, drugs, gossip, personal possessions, their opinions, their thoughts and their actions.
Unsuccessful people have little control over their lives.
They have wild swings in their moods, which result in strained health, relationships and finances. They have a “keeping up with the Joneses” mindset. Their spending patterns are continuously influenced by others. If they fall into money somehow, they spend this money on big homes and expensive cars to impress others. Mortgages and loans stretch them financially. Many refinance their homes in an effort to maintain their lifestyles.
An unexpected event, such as a job loss, temporary disability or sudden decline in earnings, results in immediate financial catastrophe because unsuccessful people live pay day to pay day. They have no savings or financial safety net. Their priorities are misplaced. They are incapable of living moderate lifestyles, prioritizing their needs correctly or living within their means.
Maintaining a state of moderation will guide you much faster to success.