I didn’t know much about Steve Siebold before I received his book, How Rich People Think , but he’s a “mental toughness” couch who has written books about mental toughness, weight loss, and other “mind over body” type of subjects. After doing some research on him, he did have a bit of that “information product” salesman type of look, the ones you see on late night infomercials telling you that your inability to succeed was entirely mental (some of it is, but all of it?). He has a “no holds barred” type of approach in his directness and I can see why some people would be turned off by him. However, other than the lack of mainstream recognition and pedigree, he’s really not much different than Larry Winget .
That being said, how was the book? It contained a hundred ways that the thinking of the “middle class” differed from the “world class.” The basic premise is that the approach of most Americans, the non-world class category, is fundamentally different than that of the world class category. Siebold illustrates a hundred different ways this is so and then discusses how you might want to change your thinking. He follows each brief “chapter” up with a book you should read, an enlightening quote, a critical thinking question followed by an action item.
Here are a few of the chapter titles:
- Middle class focuses on saving. World class focuses on earning.
- Middle class operates from a fear based consciousness. World class operates in a consciousness of abundance and freedom.
- Middle class believes money is earned through labor. World class believes money is earned through thought.
As you can see, these are all plausible. While I’m not a fan of these types of books, as they’re not really actionable, I thought that his ideas were very good. There is a fundamental difference in the way the wealth think about money and how the rest of us do. When you have millions of dollars in the bank, you can afford to take risks, focus on leveraging your wealth, and “think” differently about money. When you don’t, the calculus is different. The problem is getting from one group to the next and I don’t think this book addresses that transition.
Overall, it’s a good book if you enjoy philosophical personal finance books. Siebold is a good writer who gets his points out quickly and doesn’t waste your time filling the book up with fluff.