Fellow blogger and $$$ personality, Ramit Sethi, tweeted out a request a few weeks ago, and now that my tiny brain has had time to think about it I’m ready to contribute to the conversation :)
He challenged us to come up with some money lies we tell ourselves (or worse – others!), and today we debunk some of them and add in a few of our own.
Here was his post:
YES YES YES!!! All nasty little lies there! Especially those first two, which I’m sure doesn’t come as much of a surprise to you ;)
- I love renting, and it really is the best!!!! (For me)
- I love buying expensive coffee because it also is the best!!! (For my tummy)
So either I’m a big fat idiot, or you can still thrive financially by doing things in your own way :) Namely, by prioritizing what’s truly important to YOU and then letting everyone else mind their own dang business… (Who usually don’t even know you well anyways)
I may spend $40.00 on coffee every month, but it’s the stuff that people *don’t* see that more than make up for it. Like the $20,000 invested every year, or the fact I eat out once every 4 months instead of every single day, or that I hustle on the side to make extra money to “blow” and therefore it’s all “free” money I’m spending on my coffee et al anyways!
And then there are my clothes.
(Safety pins for the win! Haha… Somehow left out of last week’s frugality tips from the 1950’s?)
So perhaps spending your money on XYZ can sound bad on its own, but it’s really the *whole picture* we’re concerned about here that makes or breaks a wallet.
If I were spending money on coffee and clothes and electronics and ALL THE CATEGORIES in the world – then yes, there is a problem. But when you selectively send your money to only the most important areas that you enjoy, your finances become nice and balanced! And you’re not any worse off for it!
As Paula Pant likes to say, you can afford anything, just not everything.
But back to the money lies…
Here are Ramit’s last two, along with a handful I’ve thought up too… Let me know if you agree, and then add your own down in the comments!
“Our fund can beat the market”
Nope. It may beat the market *sometimes*, but not *all the time*. So unless you’re perfect at timing the market and knowing when to get in and out, then don’t trust the hype around funds who boast. (And also play the lottery if you’re that lucky!!)
“Avoid credit cards”
ONLY IF YOU SUCK WITH MONEY AND DON’T TRUST YOURSELF WITH THEM!!! Which is totally fine – the world has gone hundreds of thousands of years without credit cards, haha…. But similar to The Internet or any other tools that can be both good and bad, it’s all a matter of how you use it. Credit cards can do wonders for your budgeting and peace of mind and just overall ease, not to mention the rewards you can reap from them if you’re a fancy travel hacker. All goes back to what’s best for YOU.
“You need a lot of money to start investing”
Another lie!! Fintech has made it so easy these days, that you can literally just start with $5.00 if you wanted! Not to mention participate in any of your employer’s retirement plans like 401(k)s, TSPs, etc. This ain’t your pappy’s world anymore – the barriers are long gone!
“You need to spend money to make money”
Another big nope. There are times where it can help, but the simplest way to save it is to literally just do that – SAVE IT! It really isn’t that complicated!
“You need business cards before starting a business”
Nope again. What you need are clients to have a business – not more excuses to procrastinate. Save the money on cards and focus that energy on getting your very first client instead. Then do it again and again and again until you know you’re on to something, and *then* feel free to buy all the fancy cards and stationary you’d like.
“The cheapest option is always the best option”
Yes, of course it’s great anytime you can get something cheaper where it makes sense, but just make sure it indeed *makes sense* and saves you in the long run than just temporarily! Whether it’s with your finances or your health, career, relationships, whatever… There’s usually a reason something is so cheap, so just be sure to take in *all* the variables, rather than singling it out based on price alone.
“Wanting more money is bad.”
Ugh, this is one of the worst… Obsessing about money and being consumed by greed is bad, but wanting a better future for you and your loved ones is anything but. Money opens up an incredible amount of options for you and everyone around you – something that strenghtens society! – so please don’t let others bring you down if you’ve found yourself eager and excited about this stuff… Money is not the devil. It’s how you *treat* the money that’s the differentiator.
“Being good with money means you’re a better person”
Another commonly misunderstood one ;) Being good with your money just means you’re good with your money – it has no relevance on what type of person you are! Just as the opposite is also true. You have poor folks who are angels, and millionaires who are assholes! I know all we talk about is $$$$ and #’s and goals up in here, but it’s important to remember that this is just a small sliver in life. There are greater importances out there, and being a decent human being to others is surely one of them :)
(Thanks for turning me into a pic, No Sidebar!)
And finally…. “I deserve it”
You deserve happiness, but there’s a big difference between getting something you’ve earned, and getting something you “deserve.” Ain’t nothing in this life is free, so if you don’t make it a point to hustle and GO AFTER what you want, you’re likely to be disappointed over the years… And that’s not good for anyone…
So that’s what I got today! What I miss? What are some of *your* hated money lies?
Share below, and as always we’ll discuss throughout the day…
But if any of you dare say, “Budgets aren’t sexy,” you can go ahead and unsubscribe right now ;)
[Liar, liar pic by Tristan Schmurr]
Jay loves talking about money, collecting coins, blasting hip-hop, and hanging out with his three beautiful boys. You can check out all of his online projects at jmoney.biz. Thanks for reading the blog!