According to experts who study wealthy people, as well as wealthy people themselves, getting rich starts with your mindset. Before you actually accumulate wealth, you have to believe that you can do it.
As self-made millionaire Steve Siebold writes in "How Rich People Think," which he wrote after studying millionaires for over 25 years, "It wasn't the lack of desire that held the masses back from getting wealthy, but the lack of belief in their own ability to make it happen."
If you want to think your way to success like the world's highest achievers have, start by ditching these limiting beliefs.
"Being rich is reserved for a lucky few"
The masses think being rich is a privilege, says Siebold, while the rich believe being rich is a right: "World-class thinkers know in a capitalist country they have the right to be rich if they're willing to create massive value for others."
He continues: "While the masses are waiting to pick the right numbers and praying for prosperity, the great ones are solving problems. They believe if they make life better or easier for others, it's their right to be rich."
"Making money is complicated"
"The masses believe making money is mysterious," says Siebold, and "have always thought that rich people are smarter, luckier or more educated. Of course, none of these things is true."
The rich know that money simply flows from ideas and problem solving. "The bigger the solution, the bigger the paycheck," he writes. "Making money may not be easy, but it is simple. There is no mystery to getting rich, but this limiting belief stops most people from ever trying."
"I have to be a genius to get rich"
The average person believes the wealthy are smarter, says Siebold, but "if the key to building wealth was excellent grades in school, every summa cum laude college graduate would be rich. Amassing money has more to do with street-smart savvy than your ability to memorize information and excel on exams."
"Hard work will make me rich"
The average person thinks hard work creates wealth, Siebold says. While the rich value hard work, they know that at the end of the day, the answer is actually leverage.
"If hard work was the secret to financial success, every construction worker and cocktail waitress would be rich," writes the self-made millionaire.
"World-class performers work hard, but not in the traditional sense. Hard work to the wealthy means outthinking their competitors and leveraging the collective brainpower of their advisors."
"I don't deserve to be rich"
The masses think they aren't worthy of great wealth, Siebold writes: "'Who am I,' they ask themselves, 'to become a millionaire?'"
Meanwhile, "The world class asks, 'Why not me? I'm as good as anyone else and I deserve to be rich. If I serve others by solving problems, why shouldn't I be rewarded with a fortune?' And since they have that belief, their behavior moves them toward the manifestation of their dreams.'"
"I have to have money to make money"
The masses think you have to have money in the first place to get rich. "The truth is you have to have great ideas that solve problems to make money," Siebold writes. "If you do, you will attract money like a magnet."
Rich people believe in using other people's money to finance a great idea. They "know not being solvent enough to personally afford something is not relevant," the author says. "The real question is, 'Is this worth buying, investing in or pursuing?' If so, the wealthy know money is always available because rich people are always looking for great investments and superior performers to make those investments profitable."
"The more money I make, the more problems I'll have"
A myth among the masses is "the idea that millionaires are workaholics overloaded with so many problems they don't have time to enjoy life," writes Siebold. "This is another excuse the masses use to justify being broke."
The rich aren't afraid to admit that money can solve most problems. "Money gives the rich control over every aspect of their business, and many areas of their lives," says Siebold. "The more money they have, the fewer problems they have to personally address."
"There's not enough money to go around"
"The average person believes there's a limited amount of money and that they need to struggle and fight for their share before someone else gets it," writes Siebold.
Rich people see money as "an infinite resource," he says. After all, they understand that "money flows from ideas, and since ideas are limitless, money is limitless."
"I just want enough money to retire"
"The masses' major goal with money is to retire at 65 and hopefully have enough money to survive until they die," Siebold says. "The world class, while often no more ambitious, set their sights on impacting the world with their wealth."
Don't be afraid to think big, Siebold says. Ultimately, the average person has "everything they need to make more money than they can spend, and, without the interference of a slew of middle-class beliefs, they would accomplish it."
"I can't have it all"
"Middle class believes they must choose between a great family life and being rich," Siebold writes. "World class knows you can have it all."
The masses think "either / or," but it's a "mistaken idea that you have to choose between world-class success and a happy family life," Siebold says.
Rather than saying "either / or," think about how you can have both.
"Getting rich isn't up to me"
While the masses think getting rich isn't in their control, the rich know it's an inside job.
"The secret has always been the same: thinking," Siebold writes.
"The only way to learn how to think like a rich person is to study them. Every action we take stems from the way we think and what we believe. While the masses believe becoming wealthy is out of their control, the world class knows earning money and amassing wealth is a cause and effect relationship."