An email from my friend Samira

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She wrote me this today:

Why is “to be” rich not “to become” rich?

-samira

I was in a hurry, so I just jotted this down quickly. But I think this covers all the bases about the name, right?

because it’s already long enough

and “become” is less catchy, don’t you think?

and there I will teach you not only how to become rich, but how to BE rich

-Ramit

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  1. I realize this an old article and doesn’t really have the content of some others, and also that I might be reading too much into it, but it made me think of something.

    When I think of “become rich”, I think of some kind of crackpot formula: “do x, y, z, and you will have 1 million dollars”. “Become” also implies that being rich is a one-time thing, and that it exists objectively for everyone to achieve.

    When I think of “be rich”, I think of the behaviors that rich people already have, like being conscious of spending and measuring their performances. Under this view I also think it’s possible for the person who earns 10k/year who has a solid savings plan, who thinks about where his/her money is going, and who sometimes forgoes instant gratification in favor of future security, as “richer” than the person who earns 300k/year, doesn’t touch his/her money after receiving a check, who doesn’t track anything, etc.