If you want to have healthy personal finances, you need to quickly incorporate a key rule. This rule will also be useful over time if you want to prepare effectively for retirement or if you are aiming for financial independence.
This article introduces the Commandments of Your Personal Finances series.
When it comes to personal finances and financial independence, there is one key point you need to be aware of and persuaded of.
It is the following point:
No one cares as much about your money as you do.
The classic pattern is to ask for advice from those around you and/or your banker, and then entrust your money and important decisions to your banker or even a fund manager.
Let’s take a look at these 2 interlocutors: your entourage and your banker.
Beware of your entourage
Your entourage most certainly wants you well. I have absolutely no doubt about that.
But do they have the skills to advise you or the financial success to back up their advice? Moreover, does he do himself with his own money what he advises you to do?… Very often, the answer to these 2 questions is the same: no.
It’s a bit like when my mother-in-law asks me for advice on buying a car when I know absolutely nothing about it.
Moreover, even if he has some experience to back up what he says, his experience remains a particular case that should not be generalized.
If I had to listen to my neighbour who has gone into rental real estate, all tenants are thieves and one should never go into real estate.
Of course, if a member of your entourage, family or friend, works in the financial field, you would be wrong to deprive yourself of it. But even in this case …
Even if those around you want to do you good, their advice is not the first thing you should listen to.
Beware of your banker
As for your banker…
You can probably imagine that having more training and information, experience and tools at his disposal, he will be a good advisor.
This is not entirely false. But it still needs to be taken with care. However, there is one essential aspect to consider …
What you’re forgetting is that your banker has a double hat. The first one is the advisor’s. It’s because of this hat that you come to see him. But you’re forgetting his second one, as a salesman for his employer, your bank. The relevance of his advice is therefore suspect, because he will change at least as much in defending his employer’s interests as your own.
The truth is, even if he doesn’t hold a personal grudge against you, he doesn’t really care about your money in particular …
The only person who really cares about your money
In fact, there’s only one person who really cares about your money. And only one person you can really trust.
That person is you. Because, at the risk of repeating myself, you are the only person who really cares about your money.
This is more than just advice, this is the most important thing to keep in mind at all times. Understanding this and then doing what you need to do is probably the most important decision you can make for the health of your finances. It will have a direct impact on every decision and action you take next.
I’m sure your pessimism is getting out of hand and the objections are getting out of hand:
- I don’t know anything about it;
- it’s risky;
- it will take me some time;
The purpose of this article is not to respond to each of these objections. I will do so in dedicated articles. But if I did, there’s no reason why you couldn’t.
From the moment you decide to be the master of your finances, there are 3 essential activities you must always carry out:
Train yourself. Understanding money and its mechanisms, learning how to manage your money, today, is not complicated. There is no shortage of quality books and blogs.
Start quickly with the basics: draw up a budget, control your spending and set up a precautionary fund. Then invest moderately, slowly increase the amounts involved and vary the supports to increase your assets.
Regularly monitor the state of your finances and then take the necessary decisions to correct the situation.
You can’t do without a bank altogether. But giving it complete control over your personal finances is not a good thing.
Being able to make informed decisions is one of the best things you can do for your financial future and financial independence.
That’s what this blog and many others are here for.