What is this luxury lifestyle we speak of? Is it really that different from being poor? In reality no, and I say this as a coach who has helped many wealthy clients become wealthy over the years. The only real difference is they had one extra set of eyes seeing their business, financial, emotional, and personal lives through a different lens. Here’s why the term Luxury Lifestyle is so broad and vague.
When the topic of CO VID-19 and its effects on how wealthy and affluent folks perceive their lifestyle comes up, people’s perceptions about wealth and luxury change significantly. That applies just as much to wealthy folks themselves, who sometimes feel they’ve “earned” the money and haven’t “gotten” the simple things in life. If they did earn it, what did they do with it? Did they buy nice things, enjoy life more or less the way it’s shown on TV, spend it in excess with unnecessary trips and flops, or do the nice things with their money and invest the rest in something, be it a business, a family, or meaningful activities?
One of the most amazing insights I’ve had as a coach relates to the difference between what’s considered “luxury” and what’s not. It’s related to the” Crabbe Test.” Most wealthy people, as you’ll notice if you’ve read Ayn Rand or taken her lessons, don’t really eat crabs (Crabbe’s test is how they eat it). But most people who live a luxurious lifestyle, by which I mean, lots of cruises, private planes, five star hotels, custom suits, custom cars, top designer labels, etc., don’t really eat crabs.
Why is that? Because the people who live the “Crabbe Test” don’t really need it. They have enough. Whereas the people who embrace the “Crabbe Code” are looking for more luxury, rather than happiness.
The second thing the” Crabbe Test” tells us is that people who own the luxury items and treat themselves to more are feeling wealthy even as they’re buying more. Take for example this quote by Jack Canfield, author of the “Rich Dad Poor Dad” series of books: “What wealthy people believe is important is [the] desire to maintain a certain standard of living above which everyone else in the world, and I include you, must strive.” Notice that Mr. Canfield does not mention happiness or any other emotion.
Why do wealthy people believe that they deserve more? The answer is that they don’t. They know that they are wealthy by virtue of their success in the market place. They are not wealthy people because of the extra wealth they’ve built up. Indeed, many wealthy people brag about the state of their finances. Yet they don’t brag about the fact that they don’t spend more than they earn or that they have never had to live below their means.
Does having a luxury lifestyle mean you have to go broke to achieve it? Absolutely not. Many successful people are very wealthy today because they were blessed with unearned assets – such as their own businesses or the value of their investments. These assets cannot be taken from them without causing serious financial harm.
Just remember, if you are thinking of taking an expensive holiday, buying a private jet charter is a bad idea. Why? Because when people jet ski off to exotic places, they do so at their own risk. The risks are high for everyone who’s going to be on that charter. If you’re concerned about being seen as a reckless capitalist, then why not just charter a private jet for yourself?