If you want to become a millionaire in terms of net worth then the answer is no.
However, if you want to become a millionaire in terms of annual income then
I’ll go ahead and say YES, you do need to have a ‘life shock’ as you put it. In fact, I think it helps to have a lot of ‘aha’ or ‘oh sh1t’ moments quite frequently because those things should help to drive you forward.
Seeing how bad things will be for people who don’t have a plan.
Knowing that while things may be good now, they won’t always be good.
Imagine how your life will be if you work at a job for 40 hours a week for 40 years and then retire on 40% of what you could barely get by on before. If a person is comfortable making just enough to make ends meet then they probably won’t be motivated to make a change. If on the other hand someone is sick and tired of not being able to provide for their family the way they want to then they will probably start making some drastic changes. Those are turning points that can change a persons life. Something happens on the inside (not from the outside) that compells a person to start doing things differently and seeking answers.
Life shocks can be something as simple as seeing a friend get laid off from a job or being told that you can’t do something at work and making a promise to yourself that you will do things differently.
For someone to go from rags to riches without ‘life shock’ events seems pretty unrealistic. An entrepreneurs journey to becoming a millionaire is NEVER easy even if it may look that way. Sometimes people get lucky but there are also some that appear to be lucky but you don’t see all the hard work they put in before to be in a position to be ‘lucky’ in the first place.
If you give someone with a ‘poor persons’ mentality 1 million dollars they will likely lose it all in a short span of time or at least not grow it. On a smaller scale you can hand someone $10 and tell them if they can double it they can keep it but if they don’t double it they have to give it back. Most people won’t even know how to double it let alone do what is required to double it. Moreover, most people are taught from a young age by society that rich people became rich by ripping other people off.
A lot of millionaires have a different mindset and think differently than most people. Either they taught themselves or were mentored. Without having something happen in their life it is not likely they would have the burning desire to want to improve their knowledge to better their circumstances.
There are people who become millionaires working at a job and reinvesting their money for many years (compound interest) and becoming millionaires in terms of net worth. Do you want to be a millionaire sooner or later? You don’t need to put it off. Start the process of self-education earlier on. You cannot condense a lot of knowledge and experience into too short of a time. People don’t learn through reverse osmosis.
You will lose money and make mistakes on the path to becoming a millionaire and learn from those mistakes (life shocks). Failure is just an opportunity to learn. People who are not afraid to fail and just ‘do’ often become more successful than those who have to make sure all conditions are perfect before jumping in. See the gap in the market, go all in. When you are early, you don’t have to deal with the competition as much as those who get in later – but don’t take this to mean you shouldn’t go in if you are later either.
Anything that doesn’t look like a straight line is the universe testing you to see if you have what it takes to be a millionaire. Success is often advertised as the first when it is more like the latter. Most people would not go for it or would quit very early but ‘millionaires’ will continue to make more because what got them to 1 million is going to get them to 1 billion if they don’t get complacent.
Don’t wait for the outcome to enjoy life. Enjoy the journey.
Earl Shoaff advised one of my favorite philosophers Jim Rohn, to: “set a goal to become a millionaire for what it makes of you to achieve it. Do it for the skills you have to learn and the person you have to become.
Two recommended books.