As someone who writes a great deal about personal finance, I’ve noticed I’ve started dividing my life into two periods: before I started thinking seriously about money, and after. I can’t pinpoint what the exact catalyst was — reading TFD was certainly an eye-opener! — but eventually, I realized I wanted to care more. I wanted to save for emergencies and retirement, but also for fun things, like taking myself on big trips and investing in nicer furniture for my apartment.
I was lucky to grow up with parents who always preached the importance of having a 401k or other retirement account, even if I never really knew what that meant. My mom started pushing me to open a retirement account as soon as I graduated college, and eventually, I opened up an IRA. And though it’s certainly not where I’d like it to be, I’m really glad I started setting money aside for it early on — before I even had enough to viably invest it, and certainly before I figured out how much more I should be saving. It’s still not an impressive amount, but it would be much less if I hadn’t had that extra push.
I loved reading J. Money‘s second pick this week from Finance Yo Self, because I think it has some of the best investment advice for people who aren’t interested in investing (like me): focus on saving first. Don’t fret over whether or not you’re picking the right funds or investing in the right places — if you get in the habit of setting aside a certain percentage, you’re setting yourself up well for the future. You can always learn more about investing later on, but you can’t retroactively save money you should have in the first place.
Be sure to check that out, as well as the rest of this week’s great articles!
1. Adults Can Do Whatever They Want – Budgets Are Sexy
“Our lives are riddled with rules, and for good measure. But that’s another benefit of being an adult — WE GET TO MAKE THE RULES NOW!! How sweet is that??”
2. Save First, Ask Questions Later – Finance Yo Self
“The thing is, when you’re young and just starting out, picking the right funds really isn’t that important… Picking the right funds isn’t going to make you rich quick, and picking the wrong funds won’t make you lose all your money.”
3. The Problem With Saying “I’m Broke” – Man Repeller
“Thank yourself every time you complete a financial transaction. Try it for a week. Honor the work you did that allowed you to make this purchase. This is some high-level Priestess Oprah work, but paying bills should honestly be a moment of triumph, not panic.”
4. 79 Alternative Investment Platforms – Side Hustle Nation
“If you’re bored/scared/disillusioned with the ‘traditional’ stock market and mutual fund asset classes, or if you just are curious what else is out there, this post is for you.”
5. The Stupid Mistakes Fund – Financial Panther
“You’re going to make stupid mistakes — that’s a guarantee. You might as well pay yourself a little money each month so that you can cover those stupid mistakes when they happen.”
6. Understanding Your Circle of Competence – Farnam Street Blog
“If you want to improve your odds of success in life and business then define the perimeter of your circle of competence, and operate inside. Over time, work to expand that circle, but never fool yourself about where it stands today…”
7. You Deserve Cheap, Fake Jewelry, Just Like Coco Chanel – Bitches Get Riches
“It’s disgusting to walk around with millions of dollars around the neck because one happens to be rich. I only like fake jewelry…because it’s provocative.”
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