January 11th, 2011

A Baby Boomer Reveals: The Best Financial Advice I Ever Got

During this recession a lot of people are trying to make money from us by giving us Baby Boomers financial advice that may or may not actually be in our best interests.  I know you’re too smart to trust the financial services industry after it caused the worst economic crisis in our country since the Great Depression.

But if you can’t trust the so-called experts, whom can you turn to for sound financial advice?  Well, I’ll tell you the best financial advice anyone has ever given me, and I’ll tell you for free:

Our finances aren’t an end in themselves.  They’re simply the means we use to give ourselves the experiences and the things that we want and need.

Just think about this for a minute.  Have you ever bought the “Next Big Thing” just because all your friends had one?  Well, I have to ask you—how many of your friends probably did the same thing?

Likewise, are you living in more house than you need right now?  I understand wanting to have the big house and the yard when you’re raising our children.  But if your kids are grown and gone, wouldn’t you like to keep the money you’re spending on financing your housing and use it for other things?

In other words, for the most part, buying things doesn’t make people happy.  Having a huge bottom line in our bank accounts is wonderful—in fact, I’m working on that myself.  But how are you going to enjoy that money?  That’s what counts.

In other words, the best financial advice I’ve ever gotten is about how to view my money.  Today I spend when I want—but only on what I really want or need.  If I want a killer summer dress, I buy it—but I’d better be convinced that I will get a lot of wear out of that dress and that I’ll love how I feel when wearing it.

Likewise, I’m far more inclined to invest my finances in experiences rather than in a lot of things.  Experiences grow my heart and mind; things gather dust.

If you had to come up with the best financial advice that you can give, what would you say to the person asking you?

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