We all need it.
Some say it's the root of all evil.
Others, that it ruins lives
Only if you believe a few lies about it:
- That it should only be spent, not invested.
- That you should use it to impress people.
- That it defines your worth as a person.
These are horribly misguided and dangerous ways of thinking. They also stop you from learning to be SMART with your finances.
Want to live a good life, without constantly worrying about money?
Take control of your spending habits…
And avoid the 3 worst money mistakes that men make.
Mistake #1 – Not Investing In Productive Things
You'll find this interesting. According to a 2016 poll reported by Business Wire, nearly 80% of millennials don't invest. More specifically, they don't put any money in the stock market.
Why not? It varies. Although only 13% of those surveyed said student debt was stopping them, nearly a third said they trusted “tech over ties”, preferring investment apps to traditional wealth management firms. Over 40% simply believe they don't have enough money to start investing.
Maybe your knowledge of the stock market is zilch. Maybe you're intimidated by the risks and unknowns that come with it. Maybe you've got some more studying to do.
Fair enough. But you know what? Not investing means you're depriving yourself of making more money. Sure, it's good to leave a healthy chunk of cash in your savings account every month. But the stock market is not the only way to make money by putting in money. Far from it. There are plenty of other investments worth making for your personal development.
There's no better guy to explain all this than Jeff Rose, a Certified Financial Planner and someone I've known for many years. It wasn't too long ago that he was training as a soldier with the U.S. Army. Now he runs his own blog and manages other people's wealth. And he's darn good at it!
Jeff names 5 types of investments you should consider right now:
A. Attending Conferences: Jeff made it a point to attend conferences like FinCon when he started his online business. He saw the value in them since he knew they'd help him build connections early on. It was during one of those conferences where the two of us first met.
B. Personal Coaching: There are many forms of coaching to help you achieve your long-term goals. Find someone who's got the experience to guide you in becoming the man you know yourself to be.
C. Taking A Mentor To Lunch: This may sound like a small matter, but forget about the cost just this once. The real thing you're spending is time – time getting to know a great mentor and, hopefully, building a relationship with them that will serve you well for years to come.
D. Online Courses: This one's going to take a bit of legwork. Finding quality content online is like navigating a minefield. Many courses out there are nonsense or fraud. But you'll eventually come across the right resources with the relevant knowledge for your personal and professional goals.
E. Good Books: Mark Zuckerberg reads one or two books every single month. Bill Gates averages 50 a year. We all know who those guys are, and it's no coincidence how often successful people commit to reading and learning on a regular basis. I've read a ton of books on money since getting my MBA. It's that constant education that helps me continue to grow as an entrepreneur and a person.
Speaking of books, check out Jeff Rose's Soldier of Finance. Jeff combines the discipline from his military background with the rigors of his CPF experience to teach systematic budgeting, investing, and buying life insurance. I highly recommend it. There's always something more you can learn about handling money, and this book is a great place to start.
Mistake #2 – Relying On Money To Impress Others
Do you believe men aren't guilty of this? Come on! Some guys spend as much as $100 per week on alcohol!
Why? Well, it makes sense when you consider what they're after. Say they're out with friends and they meet a couple of women they want to impress. Five minutes later: “Next round's on me!”
The reality? It's a myth that women are impressed by men who act like they've got lots of money. Obviously they appreciate dinner at a fancy restaurant every now and then, but an article published in Men's Health cites a study proving that the majority of women find savers more attractive than spenders.
From a woman's perspective, this makes sense. She's thinking about the future and whether you're a guy who'll manage his finances responsibly, not only for himself but also for his family. So don't try wooing your date with designer clothes that burn your budget. Wear a blazer that you bought secondhand for peanuts and had tailored – and let her know. That will impress her.
Mistake #3 – Letting Money Define Who You Are
Don't fall into the trap of basing your self-worth on where others live, what cars they drive or which clothing brands they wear.
Nowadays, sellers of luxury goods make their money by convincing us to obsess over competition. Ads tell us that we're not good enough unless we own this and that.
Celebrities compel us to attempt to be like them, except we don't have the large and well-paid entourage of personal stylists, chefs and trainers constantly keeping them pretty. We get brainwashed into thinking money will ease our insecurities, except there's actually no need to feel insecure.
Take Jeff's advice: if you want to feel rich, make a list of everything you have that money can't buy. Those things are what define your value. You'll be remembered for those when you meet your maker – not your net worth. If you can't name those things, reflect on what you've accomplished in life that hasn't been a transaction.
Possessions are just possessions. Nothing more. Your peers who live in mansions or own yachts aren't necessarily more accomplished than you. They simply have the means to buy more stuff that isn't friendship, love or happiness. Who knows? Their gilded lives may be unbearable for reasons unrelated to money.
Bottom line? It's useless comparing your wealth to anyone else's.
Want To Be Better With Your Money? Start With One Change
Finally, Jeff wants you to ask yourself: “Am I where I want to be with my money?” If the answer is no, the next step is identifying just one change – something you can start today – to get closer to your end goal. Is it a certain amount of savings in 5-10 years' time? Paying off your college or credit card debt? A down payment on a house or car?
Write it down.
Share your answer with those closest to you, and then build a support system to cheer you on and keep you in check during the process. Accomplishing that one change will instill in you the discipline required to use your money wisely from here on out.