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I suppose everyone has one-that friend or relative who becomes a millionaire. For me, it is the best friend from college who amassed a fortune as an Internet marketer in his 30s.
It can be challenging to have friends with money.
Some people may fear they can't keep up with their rich friend's shopping sprees, fancy dinners or expensive vacations. In my experience, wealthy people are conservative with their spending. In fact, they often live like they are broke.
I feel less spending peer pressure with my rich friend than I do with my broke friends . While having an open and honest relationship is important, there are a few things I don't say to my friend with money.
I'm glad he can slum it
Although I've never told him, I'm relieved my millionair e friend is completely comfortable "slumming it." He saves the fine dining and five-star hotels for business trips. Since part of his job is to sell an extravagant lifestyle , he has to maintain a certain image by driving a luxury automobile. Reality is, he can afford the best but appreciates humble accommodations as well.
I'm not as ambitious
My rich friend is extremely ambitious. When we used to live in the same state, we would go for walks. He would practice sales pitches, speeches and rehearse his sound bites for radio interviews. Although I always appreciate his astute advice when it comes to the financial markets, I am just not as ambitious as he is. And, it confuses me that my friend seems to want me to be more successful than I am.
I'm fine with less money
I strive to be financially independent, but I don't need or desire millions or billions of dollars to be happy with my life. I don't view money as evil, but am realistic about what I have to offer the "marketplace," and how much I will make.
I'd like him rich or broke
I liked my friend the same before he had money as I do now that he is a millionaire. He may have changed in subtle ways, but I still see him as the smart, driven college freshman who didn't fit in with the college jocks that mocked him when we had lunch in the Student Union. I love my snapshot memory of those days because I imagine those popular college kids didn't grow up to be even half as successful.
I don't expect a gift
I don't exchange gifts with my millionaire friend. I've read that the holidays are more stressful for millionaires because friends and relatives expect them to bestow extravagant gifts on them. I don't need a present to feel valued.
I respect his time
For the most part my attitude toward my friend hasn't changed. But I will admit that I value his time more now than I did before he made his fortune. When we were in college, we would hang out with our friends or talk on the phone for hours on end. Now that he is a successful entrepreneur, I know his time is valuable. I wouldn't interrupt him when he is meeting with his clients that include well-known authors and executives with major corporations.
While there is an income gap between my rich friend and me, that doesn't come in between us. In fact, I have a greater challenge being friends with broke people. It's usually my friends or relatives in debt that encourage me to spend more money than I have. Ultimately, a friendship isn't defined by money.