100 Words On: How to Determine If You’re a True Financial Success

How many times have you heard someone suggest that all their financial problems would magically disappear if they only made more money? But high incomes can’t guarantee financial freedom; there are countless examples of people who earned millions yet still ended up bankrupt. The common thread among folks who get into financial trouble — no matter how much money they make — is their inability to consistently spend less than they earn.

The bottom line: The ultimate measure of financial success is not the size of your paycheck. Rather, it’s the money left in your pocket after paying for all your obligations.

Photo Credit: Manuel Iglesias


  1. 4


    Success is the achievement of a goal. Being debt free (except for a small mortgage), I have much more disposable income than people who earn more. Aside from that I am financially secure because of money I saved over the years. The combination of both gives me a lot of financial freedom.

    • 5

      Len Penzo says

      Yep. I too have lots of disposal income and, you’re right — the key to financial freedom is how wisely it’s used.

  2. 6


    Success is not only monetary. Look at all the celebrities out there who have tons of money and are not content. I’d rather be broke, debt free and have the Lord than have all the money in the world without contentment. “Godliness with contentment is great gain.” — 1 Timothy 6:6

    • 9

      Len Penzo says

      Me too. It really boggles the mind how these folks have it in their power to be set for life based on a single year’s income if they’d only live within their means and make wise use of their disposable income — and then blow their chance only because they can’t seem to control themselves. Sad, isn’t it? (But interesting to read about, I agree.)

  3. 12

    BB says

    Perhaps Charles Dickens had it right in David Copperfield:

    “Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen pounds, nineteen shillings and six pence, result happiness.
    Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery.”

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