If you were to trust the average financial talking head in America, you would think that the best way to use your money was to save for a cushy retirement. This financial planning model appeals to a certain type of personality, and in reality, a certain part of each us. After all, nobody wants to be poor, especially when you get old and are less able to take care of yourself. I would argue, however, that this is the most fearful way to save and grow your money. Because money takes a long time to grow in traditional investment, time is your best friend. It’s why this retirement-focused investment model is the most natural. It’s also the lowest risk, and fits with the general disposition of us fearful monkey people.
But there is another way. It is possible to invest in such a way that you enjoy wealth of at least some scale in the short term. I’m not going to sell you a get rich quick scheme. There’s no reliable way to do that. What I am going to sell you is an alternative philosophy. Wealth is pretty pointless if you’re unable to enjoy your life. That’s the rough side of poverty, not have options, not being able to choose what you do with your time and energy. By some definitions, freedom is the ability to choose what you do with these precious resources. This is something you want to cultivate now, in the present day. You can do this a number of ways.
- Live Beneath Your Means. Money worries are a drain on your mind and your relationships. By getting your budget under control, you’ll be able to eliminate debt and begin saving for the future. You’ll also be able to cultivate personal habits and hobbies that give you enjoyment but do not cost a lot of money. These are satisfying activities that will last a lifetime and can provide the same kind of fulfillment you are starting to enjoy now. By living this way, you’ll be growing your wealth at a faster pace, enjoying a potentially better standard of living, getting more opportunities, and living on less. It’s a win-win.
- Leveraging the Money Your DO You may have only a little bit of savings or credit available to you. But you may have some resources, often in the form of an inheritance, a family heirloom, or a structured settlement. These items may be sold and the money reinvested into something that increases your earning potential NOW, like higher education or starting a business. Structured Settlement loans are a great way to get a lump sum based on a payment system that would only give you a little money at a time. You can leverage this cash to absolutely change your life, in weeks not decades.
By learning to live within your means and increase your immediate earning potential, you can enjoy a better standard of living now, not just when you’re 65. And after all, this plan makes sense. Not everyone has their health when they are old. Life is best enjoyed when you’re young, so find a way to maximize your opportunities now.