There are literally hundreds of impediments that prevent people from building wealth. Whether they are particularly complex (misreading the stock market) or extremely simple (miscalculating your budget), these impediments can literally keep you and your family from financial stability. Various people face various hurdles, but one thing is for sure: Every living person will face obstacles along their wealth-building path.

After careful examination, I have found that most impediments fit into four basic realms. The four realms of impediments are family, education, social and personal. Within each of these realms, most people encounter at least one obstacle that they need to overcome to reach their potential wealth. By analyzing each realm, you will better understand what impediments to be aware of and how to overcome them.


If you want to build wealth, you must take care of your family life. First, make sure you only marry and begin having children when you are ready. Marrying too early or having unplanned children can greatly impede your chances for financial stability. Those who rush into marriage or parenthood often are forced to take dead-end jobs or sacrifice their education to make money.

Because they become forced to support their family, they lose the opportunity to train for bigger and better jobs that would allow them to reach financial stability. In general, if your family life is stable, your financial life will be a lot easier to improve.


If you expect to build wealth, you must put a premium importance on your education. Although we occasionally hear about self-made millionaires who never graduated high school, the simple fact is that education is the gateway to wealth.

Graduating high school is a must. Earning a college degree is a must. If you have not graduated high school or attended college, it is imperative that you immediately create a plan of action to achieve these goals. There are programs that can help you earn a high school equivalent degree and many organizations that will help you get into college using student loans and government support.

Another aspect of education that will allow you to achieve greater wealth is unofficial schooling. This is the act of gaining knowledge outside of the classroom. If you have graduated college and entered the workforce, you still need to expand your mind and improve your knowledge. You continually need to train your mind by reading, writing, doing thought puzzles and attending seminars or workshops.

By maintaining your schooling outside of the classroom, you will become more apt at making money and achieving the wealth you desire.


The fastest way to build wealth is to associate with the right people. Likewise, the fastest way to the poorhouse is to associate with the wrong people or try to achieve wealth independently. You cannot get rich on your own. If you develop relationships with successful individuals, you will greatly enhance your opportunities for financial stability.

Finding a mentor who can advise and counsel you about your personal situation is a great way to learn the ins and outs of the financial world. Mentors not only provide positive reinforcement and a vast amount of real life knowledge, but they help provide connections, business opportunities and potential partnerships. Even if these relationships don’t prove to be financial booms, they allow you to expand your network and improve your business and communications skills.

Finally, examine your social scene and beware of those who are bringing you down or hurting your chances to succeed.


Like anything else, building wealth takes a lot of hard work, dedication and focus. If you truly want to experience financial stability, then you absolutely must be willing to sacrifice and spend the necessary time to achieve your goals. Besides creating a strong work ethic, you must cultivate your creative side and continually challenge yourself to be innovative and think outside the box. Leaving your comfort zone is a key aspect of improving innovation.

You must be willing to try new things, experience different customs and participate in unusual situations so that your breadth of knowledge grows wider. The more creative you become, the more your hard work will pay off.

Recently, I read about a Stanford professor who gave his business students a project to test their creativeness and innovation. He gave each of them $5 and informed them that the student who made the most profit within 24 hours using the $5 would earn an A grade in the class. He also told them within the next 24 hours, each student would give a five-minute presentation as to how the money was earned so that other students may benefit from their experience.

What would you do? How would you spend your $5 if you were in the class?

The Stanford business student who made the most profit from his $5 was the most innovative. The student approached major corporations in the Silicon Valley and offered his five-minute presentation at the end of the semester as advertising time for the corporations. He told them that if they bought his presentation time, then they could speak to his peers about why they should work for the corporation. Not only did several corporations jump at the idea, but one paid over $650 for the five-minute presentation.

The lesson from this story is simple: Expand your mind. Get creative. Be bold. Take action. Most of all, work harder than the next guy.

Each realm that I have discussed affects different people to different degrees. Some people who have a positive family life may only encounter a family obstacle once a year, yet they may face social impediments everyday. And this person’s next door neighbor could be experiencing the exact opposite while on his wealth-building journey. Each of us needs to examine the four realms-family, education, social and personal-and understand what obstacles may arise. We then need to prepare a plan of action to overcome these obstacles and turn the impediments into growing experiences that will help our wealth, not hinder it.

Armstrong Williams content can be found on He is also the author of the new book “Reawakening Virtues.” Listen to him daily on Sirius Power 128, 7-8 p.m. and 4-5 a.m., Monday through Friday. Become a fan on Facebook at and follow him on Twitter at