Who remembers the 90’s Disney movie Blank Check ? After being accidentally hit by a car, a boy is given a blank check to fill out with the amount he thinks is adequate compensation. He decides to go for $1 million, and to his surprise, the bank hands over the money with no questions asked. Then he sets out to live the good life.
Unfortunately, $1 million didn’t last forever, and at some point, the kid runs out of cash. This teaches us all a very important lesson that even the greatest fortune will wither if you don’t take care of it.
This story may not have anything to do with Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, or the world’s richest men, but its takeaway is one of the reasons they don’t splurge on a lot of things.
Sure, the world’s top billionaires and millionaires could easily spend money on expensive clothes, but they don’t. Because they recognize it as an unnecessary expense. After all, using designer tags won’t increase your success or improve your work.
Here’s why billionaires don’t spend money on expensive clothes
Gates spends so little on clothing or accessories that he is famous for wearing a Casio watch that costs less than $100. It is something that people like Zuckerberg and Warren Buffett also practice, as well as Steve Jobs, who for years wore the same New Balance sneakers.
Why don’t they spend more? There are a lot of things out there that billionaires don’t spend because they understand that money doesn’t last forever. They know that it takes a lot of work to earn their wealth and that there are some things that just aren’t that important.
This isn’t to say that you can’t afford luxuries, but maybe you can make better decisions about the things you buy. Gates told the Telegraph, for example, that he preferred to spend on travel.
So what should I do? Zuckerberg goes for the basics to create a seamless look that, according to the CNBC Make It website, simplifies your life by giving you one less decision to make in the morning and allowing you to focus on your work and the things that matter.
Gates goes for functionality and practicality, so he sticks with his Casio watches and looks simple with button-down shirts, sweaters and chinos. He learned from Buffet that you really don’t need much to dress well and be comfortable, or to stay productive.
The key is in the repetition. It’s about continuing to use what you already own in different ways to get more out of your wardrobe and not waste money. Many billionaires and millionaires stay on top in part because they lead simple, austere lives, and clothing is a good place to make it a practice (Joaquin Phoenix wore the same suit to every award show he was nominated for for Joker ) . .
Sure, an expensive shirt is a nice luxury and can lift your spirits, but you don’t really need one to advance your career or add to your personal life. And anyway you can find very good options at reasonable prices to better manage your money.
Also, since clothes don’t last forever, many billionaires consider expensive options an unnecessary expense, since you’ll probably have to replace them at some point.