The latest lifestyle movement FIRE stands for “Financial Independence, Retire Early,” a mantra younger investors are taking up earlier and earlier. Call To Leap Founder Steve Chen joins Yahoo Finance Live to discuss the behaviors and spending habits that enable one’s ability to build wealth beginning at an early age.

“Pretty much all wealthy people that I’ve met, that I’ve studied over online, they all have these positive wealth habits,” the wealth coach on TikTok explains. “They follow these three things: live frugally below their mean; two, increase their skills [and] increase their income; and, three, just steadily, slowly invest on a month-to-month basis. Really, these are the three pillars of wealth.”

Chen also details how he went about “living frugally” and avoided excess spending.

Video Transcript

SEANA SMITH: Steve, I think a lot of people look at an influencer like you, a content creator and think that, hey, I can do it, but they don’t really know where to start. So how did you one go about building your audience because you went about it in a little less traditional type of way?

And then the second thing is how do you get people to trust you? How do you earn that trust because I think also a lot of people will be asking themselves, why they should be listening to your advice maybe over a financial analyst or someone who has a little bit more background within the industry?

STEVE CHEN: Yeah, absolutely. It’s funny because sometimes when I make my videos, I’m like oh, my gosh, would I even trust myself? I’m like a random person on the internet, right? But my main core message is I don’t like this whole get rich quick scheme or like get rich quick route. I tell people, hey, if you want to build wealth, right, we want to do so in a responsible way.

We’re going to get rich slowly. OK. So it’s going to be a lot of the boring, unsexy stuff. We’re going to be saving, being more conscious with our money habits. We’re going to increase our skills. So this way we can increase our income. And, of course, we’re going to put away a little bit of money 50, 100, $200, whatever we comfortably can every month into something like a retirement fund. And just let it compound over time.

I think taking these small, little habits even though it might just only make a 1% change, it really does compound over the next several years. And really that’s how we become successful. All successful people are successful because of their positive wealth habits, right?

So I would say that before just listening to just one person even with me, right, I would say, yeah, see if these money tips work for you and also kind of cross reference it with other people too to see how other people, how other successful people are also building wealth. And I can tell you pretty much all the responsible people out there. I know not the super sexy like, oh my god, you’re going to make a million dollars this year just by doing this and investing in this NFT or anything like that.

But pretty much all wealthy people that I’ve met, that I’ve studied over online, they all have these positive wealth habits and really they follow these three things– live frugally below their mean, right, two, increase their skills, increase their income, and then three, just steadily, slowly invest on a month to month basis. And really these are the three pillars of wealth.

AKIKO FUJITA: So let’s kind of break that apart. I mean, you’ve already kind of given us a brief lesson. You said there’s three pointers there– live frugally, what does that mean?

STEVE CHEN: Sure. Yeah. So for me, when I was in college in my early 20s, I saw a couple of friends. They went out to eat every day. They went out to a whole bunch of bars and clubs, which is totally OK once in a while. And I saw a lot of people, like, buying flashy clothes, flashy cars. I had a friend who bought a BMW, which was I think $50,000 at the time. He used his financial aid money to purchase that, which I kind of like. Yeah, it’s pretty funny story.

But I think during our 20s, it’s a very important time to develop these habits of living below our means, right, by not going out so much, by making sure that the money coming in is way more than the money that’s leaving our bank accounts.

So some actionable things we can do is maybe meal prepping, right? That’s what I did. That’s what helped me throughout my 20s. I didn’t go out as much. Of course, once in a while, I would go out with my girlfriend who’s now my wife. We would go out for a nice dinner. But most of the time, I would cook at home or maybe instead of going out to party, going to these clubs, buying these $15 drinks, I would have board game nights or I would hike with my friends.

So I think building meaningful relationships, having these positive memories with my friends and family members, it doesn’t really need to cost a lot of money. It just really the perspective on how we go about it.