What Does It Take To Be In The Top 1%? Hint: It’s Not JUST Wealth

What Does It Take To Be In The Top 1%

This week, I was in South Florida this past week driving along A1A, which is a scenic highway that stretches along the east coast of Florida parallel to the Atlantic Ocean.

Depending upon where you are on A1A, you’ll drive past boutique hotels, condos, mini-mansions, and mega-mansions.

The mega-mansions stretch on for miles. It sure seems like there are a lot of really successful people in this area.

And that got me thinking about the top 1%.

What does it take to be in the top 1%?

Is it just about money? What about fame? What exactly is the bar for success?

After thinking about those questions for a while, it led me to another question:

If you’re in the 1% of wealthy people, are you actually in the top 1% of people?

Wealth is ONLY One Form of Success

Let’s say that you are a top 1% earner. You earn over $955,000 per year. That is incredible!

But just because you are a top 1% earner, does that alone make you a “success?”

If you ONLY have money.

Or you ONLY have fame.

Or you ONLY have book smarts.

Then what do you even have?

You can be wildly successful in one facet of life, but you might be a wreck in all the others.

Is that a success or a failure?

To me, that is a FAILURE!

Because there is way more to life than money and fame. It’s been proven time and time again.

It’s why lottery winners are no happier a year after they’ve won the lottery, and why quadriplegics aren’t less happy a year after their accident.

We all adapt. To money. To fame. To everything.

So the measure of success, so cannot be the amount of money you have in the bank.

The Measure of Success

The real measure of success is much, much, more than money:

  • Are you really happy?
  • Do you have loved ones who rally around you?
  • Are you giving back to the world?
  • Are you healthy and fit?
  • Financially free?
  • Do you enjoy your career?
  • Are you at peace with yourself?

Those are the real questions that matter.

Success is not about money.

Not about being famous.

Or freakishly healthy.

A successful person is someone who is well-rounded in ALL facets of their life.

But it’s clearly hard to be consistently successful everywhere!

Some people might be better at finances, but worse at being consistent with their health/fitness.

Others are better at staying in shape but might be a wreck in their relationships.

Some people are famous but might be extremely unhappy.

Finding the right balance to become the most successful version of you, is clearly the biggest challenge that we all face.

The Top 1% of All People

So this is all to say that just because you earn a top 1% salary doesn’t mean that you are in the top 1% of people!

You are not in the top 1% of people if you are ONLY rich.

You are not in the top 1% of people if you are ONLY fit.

You are not in the top 1% of people if you are ONLY smart.

You are NOT in the top 1% if you have it all, but are still a grouch.

A top 1% person will be:

  • financially free
  • healthy & fit
  • happy and enjoyable to be around
  • have good relationships and lift others up
  • someone who gives back to society in some way (even a small way)

THAT is the person that I admire.

They’re not famous.

They don’t own a mega-mansion and a yacht in South Florida.

They are consistently and quietly living the best life that they can possibly imagine.

And that is who I am striving to be! How about you?

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  1. I like that concept. And honestly, if not humbly, I think I’m in the top 1% using those metrics, even if I’m more of a 2 percenter based on net worth.

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