Thomas Stanley died – why his books matter

3rd March 2015

I found out this morning that Thomas Stanley died a couple of days ago in a car crash.

His book, The Millionaire Next Door, was a best-seller all over the place, and you could really do yourself a favour by reading it.

It sounds like some sort of get-rich-quick nonsense, but it’s far from it.

Thomas Stanley was essentially a statistician.  Using huge amounts of research and data, he looked into the habit and mindsets of financially successful people.

He found out that far from the glittering, big-house, great-car lifestyles we think of, the majority of millionaires instead have behaviours that can be adopted by any of us.  They include:

  • Living beneath your means and watching your spending carefully
  • Living in a modest neighbourhood, and not aiming for a huge house
  • Driving a used car
  • Having a stable marriage
  • Being self-employed helps a lot (but isn’t necessary)
Thomas Stanley

He also notes the damage that is done when people try to live or emulate what they think is the lifestyle of someone who’s financially successful, and end up crippling themselves by chasing the wrong dream.

Stanley was an American author, and the examples and data are all from the US, but there’s much you can learn, wherever you’re living.  I’d seriously recommend getting hold of a copy of the book.