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Ten Short Money Lessons from Rich Dad Poor Dad (That You Never Want to Forget)

by | Jan 30, 2023 | Money, Personal Finance

There’s a reason the book Rich Dad Poor Dad is a cult classic.

It’s certainly not because of the author Robert Kiyosaki who is one of the craziest conspiracy theorist weirdos you’ll ever encounter.

Just watch his Rich Dad radio hour for a taste of his special blend of insane. If you’re short on time, like me, there’s no need to read the whole book.

These short lessons from the book will change how you view money forever.


Poor Dad: I work for money.
Rich Dad: Money works for me.

Working for money is trading your time.

There’s only so much time you have. If time is the only way you earn money, you’re in trouble. What happens if work time is paused because you get sick or need to care for a loved one?

All of us need to be able to live when money stops coming in.

You have to work for money forever when it’s earnt and then spent in the same month. But money works for you when it’s earnt, invested, and allowed to make you more money.

It’s such a subtle shift but it changes your entire financial future.


Poor Dad: I can’t afford it.
Rich Dad: How can I afford it?

This is my favorite lesson from the book.

A fixed mindset thinks an income is fixed. Saying “I can’t afford it” solves nothing. You can afford it. The question is, how? What are you going to do to change the outcome and produce the results? Or better said…

What are you willing to give up?

What limiting belief are you willing to throw in the lake? What toxic friend or family member are you willing to block?

There’s always a path to afford a financial goal with enough resourcefulness and creativity. The problem is these traits are scarce.


Poor Dad: When it comes to money, play it safe, don’t take risks.
Rich Dad: Learn to manage risks.

The avoidance of risk keeps you poor.

It keeps you hooked to 9–5 comfort money. I find it odd how people think the average job comes with job security. Surely all the layoffs have shown you that a job isn’t an income guarantee.

4 weeks’ notice. That’s all a job gets you.

You’d be better off saving 4 weeks’ pay then you’ve got the same guarantee. Don’t get fooled by corporate HR ads. No job is safe.

The key with money isn’t to avoid risk. It’s to make small bets. It’s to do your research. It’s to expect failure and rejection as part of the process to generate long-term wealth.

Learn to get comfortable with risk. See risk as growth.

See stagnation as a financial death spiral.


Poor Dad: Paid his bills first
Rich Dad: Paid his bills last

I included this lesson because I disagree with it.

If you have commitments you should always meet them. Not paying people on time destroys your reputation.

A better way to look at this lesson is to put aside money for your investments first then only spend the money that’s left over. If there isn’t enough money left over then lower your expenses to lower the bills.


Poor Dad: The love of money is the root of all evils
Rich Dad: The lack of money is the root of all evils

Instead of thinking money is evil we should be told it is power — because it is. You can help a lot of people with money.

Give away a large amount of money to the homeless and you’ll experience a level of happiness you can never imagine.

Sure, there is toxic Lambo wealth. But you get to decide whether money is used for good or evil. Make a good decision and it’ll change your relationship with money.

Having money on the mind 24/7 because there isn’t enough is what rots the brain and turns people evil.


Poor Dad: I will never be rich.
Rich Dad: I’m a rich man and rich people don’t do this.

If you say you’ll never have money you’re right.

What you tell the mind eventually makes it happen. Anyone can be wealthy if they see options instead of dead ends. As cliche as it sounds, it’s why optimism matters so much.


Poor Dad: The reason I am not rich is because I have you kids.
Rich Dad: The reason I must be rich is because I have you kids.

I had a kid. It made it easy to get financially motivated.

Either I earn a good living or she lives on the street and starves. Easy decision for me. Now I learn and earn to support her little snot face.

Kids enrich your life, not make you poor.

The key is not to spoil them otherwise their relationship with money will be messed up.


Poor Dad: Our house is our largest investment.
Rich Dad: You are in trouble if your house is your largest investment.

A home you buy to live in isn’t an investment. LOL. It’s an expense.

It’s why many big homes force people to work jobs they hate and never have free time. They don’t have to live there but can’t bear to face the societal consequences of looking average.

Your biggest financial investment should be in yourself. It should be in your skills which are what determine how much money you make. Skills have an enormous ROI. A big home only boosts one’s ego.


Poor Dad: Money doesn’t matter.
Rich Dad: Money is power.

Money matters. As a former banker, trust me.

Without money life is infinitely harder than it needs to be. If you become moderately wealthy it turns into a source of power. You experience freedom, independence, and the choice to do whatever you want.


Poor Dad: Study hard so you can find a good company to work for.
Rich Dad: Study hard so you can find a good company to buy.

A job is a good place to start and learn for free.

But working for a company forever is unlikely to ever make you real money. It’s why online income streams have become important. It’s why many are starting one-person businesses or becoming investors.

If you don’t own either your own business or a piece of someone else’s business it’s near-impossible to become wealthy.

It’s why so many people complain about money. They hate the idea of owning a company. They hate capitalism. So they suffer as a result.

Learn the money game, or get controlled by it.

This article is for informational purposes only, it should not be considered financial, tax or legal advice. Consult a financial professional before making any major financial decisions.

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