Hiding Success

Discreet Success

What I appreciate the most about investing is the option to be inconspicuous about it. ? If someone buys a detached house in an affluent neighborhood like Lawrence Park for $5 million, then people will know he’s rich. There is no way to hide his wealth from his close friends or his employer. If he drives to work in a comfortable Aston Martin One-77 then his coworkers will find out about his affluence. But when it comes to his financial holdings, nobody has to find out what, or how much he has. 🙂 This usage of stealth wealth is how most millionaires are able to blend into society.



Keeping our wealth a secret allows us to enjoy work, travel, play, and financial security without attracting unwanted attention to ourselves. We can’t hide our success if we’re famous, but we can hide our financial position if we’re rich. 😉 Driving an older model vehicle is an excellent way to disguise wealth. It allows us to spend like poor people while we continue to grow our income and wealth like rich people without any distractions. 

Live it. Don’t flaunt it.

Not everyone will be stealthy with their money. Many millennials these days would rather show off their swag than hide it from the world. Here’s something you will frequently see if you live in Vancouver. The “N” sticker suggests it’s a new driver.


There is nothing wrong with spending money on desirable goods and services. I have always been an advocate of spending money, even if it means going into debt, as long as it brings a net benefit to someone’s life. But we just have to make sure we’re buying things for the right reasons. 🙂 One question we should ask ourselves before making a big purchase or posting our financial situation on social media is “Do I really want the extra attention that this will get me?” If the answer is no, then it’s probably better to keep quiet about our personal finances and use our money to buy discreet assets like dividend paying stocks rather than a mansion that costs more money to maintain.

Some people prefer fame, while others prefer fortune. The difference is that wealth is personal and we have 100% control over what happens to our fortune. But being famous puts the power into the hands of the media, and everyone else. Celebrities are popular because their fans made them famous. Fame requires continuous effort, or else it fades. But when wealth is set up properly it will generate passive income and profits for generations. 😀

Random Useless Fact:

If doctors went on strike nobody would know what they are protesting about.


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11/26/2015 10:09 am

This is the world that is changing fast and today no one cares what other people are doing and it makes no sense in today’s life to flaunt your assets.. no one is going to envy us for that…

11/26/2015 10:17 am

Well said my friend. Sometimes I blab too much about my trades I feel.

11/26/2015 10:25 am

Well said Liquid. Some people want to show their successes by driving fancy cars. But is it really necessary? People like that are probably not too secure about where they are in life.

11/26/2015 1:59 pm

Why would someone put that new driver sticker on their car?

11/26/2015 6:15 pm

Utterly inane. This entire article (and commentation) is nothing more than judgement supported by host of illogical points. Personal biases are really revealing themselves these days on F35.

11/27/2015 7:36 am

Totally agree with you. I should keep my mouth shut 🙂 although I am not rich yet.

Paul N
Paul N
11/27/2015 9:39 am

@ Raj – I think just the opposite of your comment. Everyone is under a microscope. You can’t do anything in public that isn’t scrutinized or one phone camera snapshot away from you losing your job or worse, because some people have warped ideas of how the world should work.

@Anon, the article is for the most part “tongue in cheek” humor. Unfortunately in 2015 people have lost their ability to understand that. Kids are so badly brainwashed in school now to think everything is “inappropriate” it’s sad.

I feel the article is correct. There is an misdirected war on wealth and success going on. We are being slowly social engineered to feel guilty of our success. Again, many folks these days just don’t understand how ridiculous that is.

Paul N
Paul N
11/27/2015 3:37 pm

I however would also like to have the correct recipe for an environment here to also manufacture those ugly sweaters and create more jobs at home. Unfortunately creating manufacturing jobs here is also a losing battle. We are chasing them away. Its not even an issue of taxes, its the regulations and red tape created by layers of bureaucracy. You lose control of the business you created at some point, and it becomes something else. The owners just get tired of it, throw up their hands and say, “see ya”. Why bother? Then your forced to go offshore. (even though technically Mexico for example is not really across any water from here)…

Then everybody tries to blame those “greedy owners” because they are too shortsighted and don’t really want to hear the truth. (except for the “truth” they made up in their imaginations).

Weekly Personal Finance Roundup For November 27, 2015 | Life Insurance Canada
11/27/2015 11:41 am

[…] The Freedom Thirty-Five Blog wrote about hiding your success by using this simple advice: "Live it. Don’t flaunt it." […]

11/27/2015 5:59 pm

Being part of the generation that like to show off when they really have no right to do so, it means a lot to me to make sure that I have money, not things. This is a great article that all people my age should read

11/28/2015 8:17 am

This reminds me of the book I’m reading right now… It talks about different people’s relationship with wealth. Some want it for their family, for safety, for power, or to show off. I would guess the vast majority of people in the dividend community want safety and financial freedom rather than to show off.

11/28/2015 9:35 am

In no particular order: You keep posting your financial updates etc. (i.e. continuous effort), and thanks to your collaboration with the media, we now know who you are, so on some level you must desire to be famous or you’d be a lot more discrete about your success and wealth. In other words, you are doing the exact opposite of what you propose in your article (i.e. cognitive dissonance). You state buying a big house or fancy sports car alerts the world to your wealth, but the cartoon you posted states success isn’t always what you see. Which is it — is wealth what you see or is wealth what you don’t see? More dissonance. Besides, if your only metric for measuring success is financial wealth, you have an exceptionally limited definition. How do you know the person buying the big house is wealthy if wealth isn’t always what you see? Perhaps they are drowning in debt. Or that the sport car driver isn’t merely leasing the vehicle and is living paycheque to paycheque. You are making illogical judgements based on your creative assumptions of the unknown. The ‘N’ on the Lambo signifies ‘Novice’, not ‘New’, and there is no… Read more »

Paul N
Paul N
11/28/2015 6:25 pm
Reply to  Anon

I see Sheldon from the Big Bang theory must have become bored with Star Trek and decided to post on a financial website.

11/29/2015 7:01 am

Interesting post. Perhaps it is the repression of flaunting one’s wealth in material forms that drives so many online bloggers to publicly flaunt their unaudited net worth and income statements? I never did understand why the latter was so common amongst bloggers. At the very least, they risk drawing attention from tax authorities and spying governments, at worst, from criminals and hackers. It’s easy enough to find out their identities even if they blog anonymously.

11/30/2015 8:18 am

Keep doing what you are doing because you like doing what you are doing. I love reading the variety of comments you receive. Are you happy with life? I know you are… Are you on track for your personal financial goals? I’d say yes… Are others jealous of your success? I’d say based on the comments, yes. Does this matter? nope, and mainly because you are showing them, no better yet, empowering them over time to see financial success is more about doing as opposed to thinking and wishing. As i’ve said in the past my friend, you’ll go far! – Cheers

Financial Samurai
12/01/2015 9:37 pm

That’s hilarious you guys have an N sticker for new drivers! Is that supposed to make people avoid them or not honk at them more? 🙂

I’m a big proponent of stealth wealth. It’s the best way to live!


[…] wouldn’t buy these super posh apartments even if I had hundreds of millions of dollars. Being financially discreet is more rewarding to me. But just as a fun thought experiment, if you could live in any of these […]