When it comes to financial advice, nothing is quite as helpful as advice that comes from those who have achieved the goals that we are reaching for. After all, experience and insight are the greatest teachers.

Here are five money lessons we can learn from multi-millionaires.

1.  “Someone’s sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago.” – Warren Buffett

In this age of social media, we only see the highlights and successes of people’s lives and it may seem like wealth and riches can come overnight. While there are some people who made the lucky moves at the right time, they should be considered the exception and not the norm.

The truth is that building wealth and assets takes time and effort. So, it’s important to have a long-term mindset when it comes to growing your wealth.

Instead of trying to find the next easy way to get rich quick, opt for the time-tested techniques that provide slow and steady growth.

When it comes to savings and investments, do not underestimate the power of compounding interest.

Time is one of your greatest assets when it comes to growing wealth. That’s why starting a savings habit when you’re young and planning early for retirement are two pieces of financial advice that are often repeated.

Warren Buffett himself took a long time to accumulate his wealth. Here’s an interesting chart that shows how Buffett grew his wealth over his lifetime.

Putting it into practice:

Financial and wealth planning are two important processes that you should undergo in order to figure out what it is you hope to achieve in terms of lifestyle, providing and protecting assets for the next generation, and more.

It’s never too late or too early to make smart financial moves!

On a basic level, this could simply mean setting aside some time to think about life goals, both short and long term. And then consider what financial resources you would need to achieve those goals.

On a more complex scale, this could be seeking professional advice from a financial advisor or personal banker who can provide guidance and recommendations on financial instruments you can use to reach your goals and better manage your assets.

2. “Financial peace isn’t the acquisition of stuff. It’s learning to live on less than you make, so you can give money back and have money to invest. You can’t win until you do this.” – Dave Ramsey

When thinking of wealth and assets, we often only think of one part of the equation: earning more money.

Certainly, moving up in your career or scaling your business can lead to a higher income and more wealth. But if you spend what you earn, without a care of how you’re spending the money, having more money will not lead to being wealthy.

And there lies the other side of the equation: how and what we spend our money on. Growing our wealth and assets begins from ensuring that there’s a gap between what we earn and what we spend.

Putting it into practice:

Having a personalised budget is the foundation to building wealth. It’s absolutely crucial to know how much money you earn, and how much of it you’re spending it. Without this basic knowledge and awareness of where your money is going, you can never be rich.

So, if you don’t already have a budget in place, now is the time to create one that works just for you.

3. “It doesn’t matter where you live… It doesn’t matter how you live. It doesn’t matter what car you drive. It doesn’t matter what kind of clothes you wear.” – Mark Cuban

As you can surmise from the previous lesson, being able to control your spending is a valuable skill to have. Too often, we can get caught up in material consumption and the quest to own items that signal our social status.

Cuban, like Ramsey, holds the view that material possessions and outward displays of wealth shouldn’t matter.

And indeed, according to Thomas Stanley in his book “The Millionaire Next Door”, he found that most millionaires did not live the lifestyles we think they do.

As Stanley put it, “Many people who live in expensive homes and drive luxury cars do not actually have much wealth. Then, we discovered something even odder: many people who have a great deal of wealth do not even live in upscale neighborhoods.”

Putting it into practice:

The idea of the “5 Cs” may not be as prevalent in Singapore today as it was in the 1990s, but we can’t deny that some of us do get caught up in wanting to upgrade our homes, buy a fancier car, or take a holiday to that trendy destination.

Growing your wealth means living well below your means so that you can use your excess funds to make your money work harder for you. This could mean putting your extra money into investments, buying another piece of property, or starting a new venture.

Instead of spending your discretionary funds on material items or upgrading your lifestyle, consider how you can grow that money instead.

4. “The best investment you will ever make is in yourself.” – Grant Cardone

You are an important catalyst when it comes to building your own personal wealth.

Your decisions and actions related to financial issues matter a great deal. No one ever built wealth solely through luck, chance, or making uninformed decisions.

Growing your wealth requires a depth of knowledge on financial and business topics. If business and numbers come naturally to you, then that’s an asset. If not, then you’ll have to make the effort to develop your own financial literacy.

If you learn how money works, then you can learn how to grow your wealth.

In his iconic book “Rich Dad, Poor Dad” Robert Kiyosaki stated, “Rich people are rich because they are simply more literate in more financial areas than others.”

Putting it into practice:

Building wealth requires a dedication to learning.

If you’re not well-versed in financial matters, then it’s time to get started. There are numerous resources you can look to such as personal finance books, online courses or in-person events. Start with the basics and slowly work your way up.

And if you already have a grasp of personal finance basics, then expand your knowledge base. You could learn about different types of investments, skills such as how to trade stocks, or find out how to build a stream of passive income.

When it comes to building wealth, the possibilities are endless and it’s up to you to get access to the knowledge you need to be more financially successful.

5. “Be thankful for what you have; you’ll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never, ever have enough.” – Oprah Winfrey

For most of us, we want to grow our wealth because we want a better life for us and our loved ones.

There is no doubt that having money can bring some measure of happiness. Money does provide access to things that can make you happier, be it good food, new experiences, a bigger home, or access to high-end services.

However, studies have revealed that the rich are not necessary happier. You can have all the money in the world, yet be the most unhappy person.

Acquiring more money for the sake of it will likely not bring you more satisfaction in life. Having a negative mindset and always yearning to have more wealth is the recipe for a miserable life.

So even while you’re putting in the time and effort to grow your wealth, remember that money is not everything.

Putting it into practice:

Focusing on what you lack blinds you to the abundance that already exists in your life. Take Ms. Winfrey’s advice and practise gratitude.

A simple way to cultivate gratitude is to end your day by listing out three things you’re grateful for that day. It could be something as small as your child smiling at you or something big like receiving news that you’ve been promoted.

Having a gratitude practice can keep you centered and remind you about what’s really important in your life, even as you’re trying to build a better life for your loved ones. This positive reinforcement can also act as further motivation to work towards your goals.

Plus, reflecting on the good things in your life can have a rollover effect on your overall well-being and happiness.