In Die Broke Stephen Pollan introduced a new radical new strategy for spending, saving, and investing money in today's financial market.In Live Rich, he now concentrates on the earning side--with the compelling observation that living rich has less to do with net worth and everything to do with freedom. You can live the life you want by adhering to the four tenets of the Live Rich philosophy:
- Make Money
Too many of us have been fed the line that "work isn't necessarily about making money." Tell that to Visa next time they send you a bill.
- Don't Grow, Change
Be ready to change your work paradigm on a moment's notice, to morph from career to career several times as conditions--and you--change.
- Take Charge
In the twenty-first century, you must become proactive and start taking measured risks.
- Become a Mercenary
Think for yourself as a free agent, responsible for your own security and always on the lookout for the next great job.
- Live Rich
With Stephen Pollan's revolutionary workplace ideals, as well as a detailed action plan, you can apply this philosophy to every facet of your life and truly Live Rich.
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About the Author
Stephen M. Pollan, one of America's most trusted and admired financial advisors, is the author of more than a dozen books, including the national bestseller Die Broke. He presently lives in New York City and Litchfield County, Connecticut, with his wife, Corky, and in close proximity to his four children and nine grandchildren.
Mark Levine has been Stephen Pollan's collaborator for sixteen years. He lives in Ithaca, New York, with his wife, Deirdre, and his Newfoundland, Molly.
Mark Levine has been Stephen Pollan's collaborator for more than eighteen years. Together they have authored numerous books, including the national bestsellers Lifescripts, Live Rich, and Die Broke, and most recently, Second Acts. They have been nominated for three National Magazine Awards.
Read an Excerpt
Buying Your Own FreedomLive rich. When you come down to it, isn't that what we all want? To live the life of our dreams?
For some living rich means owning a magnificent, well-appointed home, perhaps on the beach. For others it's being able to buy whatever they want, for themselves or others, without worrying about the price tag. Still others, myself included, think it means traveling the world, first class (at least business class), and staying in four-star hotels. Creative individuals dream of being able to write, or sing, or paint, or sculpt without worrying about paying their rent. The spiritually motivated want to be able to spend time getting closer to God, whether it takes the form of meditative prayer or feeding the hungry. Everyone has a personal vision of what goes into a rich life.
There's one common element, however: freedom. Look at all the different dreams of a rich life, and you'll see every single one is based on having the freedom to do whatever you want to do. Living rich is having the freedom to live on the beach, to buy whatever you want, to travel the world, to create art for art's sake, or to spend your life in service to God. Living rich is also having the freedom to set aside your fears and seize the reins of your life. To live rich is to be free, and to be free is to live rich.
Living rich isn't the same as being rich. No one whose mind is healthy really equates a rich life with being wealthy. Money, in and of itself, isn't what we want. But what we do want may be able to be purchased with money.
Obviously it takes money to buy that house on the beach, to purchase all those lovely things, andto afford first-class travel. But it also takes money to be able to do nonmaterial things, like create art or lead a life of prayer. All of us, even artists and contemplatives, live in a capitalist world. It takes money to obtain the necessities of life--food, clothing, and shelter. That money comes from either our own work or the work of others.
Someone, somewhere--perhaps a spouse or a parent--is working so the idealistic artist can spend time painting. And someone, somewhere--perhaps some wealthy materialist paying $10 for a jar of preserves--is working so the devoted Trappist monk can spend all his waking hours at prayer.
You might not be comfortable acknowledging it, but money plays a big part in whether you're able to live rich, to be free.
So far, it seems that living rich would be pretty simple. Since you're the one who decides exactly what living rich means, and since money--in one way or another--is what enables you to pursue that dream, all you need to do is get enough money to fulfill that dream. But if that's the case, if it's really that simple, how come so few of us actually live rich?
From Die Broke to Live Rich
Two years ago I wrote a book called Die Broke. It advocated treating assets as resources to be used, in whatever way you choose, during your lifetime, rather than as treasures to be hoarded and passed on after your death. I wrote it in response to what I saw in my own consulting practice. I'm an lawyer and financial adviser on Manhattan's Upper East Side. My practice is small, but offers a wide range of services: I help my clients with everything from their personal finances to their careers and businesses. I offer very personalized service. That's why I was deeply affected by what I saw happening just a few short years ago.
I saw my clients diligently follow all the rules of personal finance they'd been taught (by me as well as by other authors and advisers), yet still find themselves falling short of their goals and dreams. In my search to help them I discovered it wasn't my clients who were failing, it was the system. They were simply following a misguided philosophy and outdated rules designed for an economic environment that had disappeared.
After a great deal of thought and research, I came up with what I thought was a new, more workable, more effective philosophy of personal finance, along with a set of simple, pragmatic rules: Quit today, pay cash, don't retire, and die broke.
The response to Die Broke exceeded my wildest dreams. With all due modesty, I knew my philosophy and advice on personal finance worked. After all, I see the positive results every day in my office. However, I didn't realize the extent to which my clients' financial fears and frustrations were echoed in the general public.
Admittedly, my client base isn't a cross-section of the American population. While my clients come from a variety of ethnic, social, cultural, and religious backgrounds, most are middle- and upper-income New Yorkers between the ages of twenty-five and fifty. I didn't know so many people of other ages and from other places would find the Die Broke philosophy helpful in eliminating the frustrations they felt with their personal finances. I suppose, whatever else you can say, positive or negative, about New York baby boomers, one thing is clear: They are on the cutting edge of social and financial trends. The success of Die Broke and the realization that my clients' fears and hopes were no different from those of the rest of the population has led me to offer the advice from the other part of my consulting practice.
I take, for lack of a better word, a comprehensive approach to my clients' financial lives. As I mentioned, I get very involved in their world. Rather than working with them on just one element, say their investments, I treat their money and their circumstances as a mosaic of various pieces that make up what I call the business of living. Die Broke dealt with one half of the business of living: spending money. This book, Live Rich, deals with the other half of the business of living: earning money.
Live Rich. Copyright © by Stephen Pollan. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
What People are Saying About This
If you don't read this book, you're going to DIE STUPID!
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This book is controversial, but it is actually pretty good. If you can get beyond some of the surface-level disagreements you might have with Mr. Pollan, you will find his work insightful and that you agree with him more than you disagree with him.I enjoyed the read. I liked the "theory" part of the book better than the "pratical" part. I wish he had made the "theory" part a bit longer.I don't agree with everything that the author says, but I can't discount the value of the book. It is worth a read and will give you some real good advice without sentimental fluff.Of course, this book is a career-oriented book, so if you are looking how to "live rich" religiously, philosophically, metaphysically, or whatever, look elsewhere. Most criticisms of Mr. Pollan's viewpoint on money is because the people criticizing his work are coming from a metaphysical or spiritual angle, while this book merely instructs on how to live richly in sense of a career. And he does that make it clear throughout the book (in telling people to use their career to get money and their other aspects of life to get other things).I guess someone may accuse Mr. Pollan of advocating overly strict compartmentalisation of life. I can understand that point of view. Even if you are against Mr. Pollan's ideas in this sense, I suggest you still read this book. It will challenge you and is especially good for entreprenuers, who often get too involved in making their business big and "successful" without remembering about the bottom line--for them. This book is worthwhile on that account alone!
I agree with the general tenets: make money; don't grow, change; take charge; and become a mercenary or create Yourself.com. However, the rules for doing so come across as being far too New Yorker, far too lawyer, and far too baby boomer. Furthermore, there are blatant contradictions (don't have meetings in restaurants; work out of restaurants if possible), and I couldn't accept the reliance on canned scripting.