As a personal finance blogger since 2009, I’ve often been asked what is my best financial advice I can give someone at any stage in their financial independence journey. You’re in luck, because here are my top three pieces of financial advice everybody should follow.
The Best Financial Advice
Out of all the financial advice I’ve given over the years, here are my top three.
1) If the amount of money you are saving each month doesn’t hurt, you are NOT saving enough.
It’s the same thing with braces. The pain in your teeth and gums means that your braces are working. They are straightening your teeth out! Once the pain stops, you’ve got to go back to the orthodontist and get them tightened again.
Too many people wing their finances and then wake up at 50 years old and wonder where the hell all their money went. This is the best financial advice everybody should take heart.
2) Never fail due to a lack of effort, because effort requires no skill.
Stop making excuses for not trying because you have no talent or skill. Let’s say you want to be a “Most Viewed Writer” on Quora in whatever subject you care most about. The #1 spot has 100,000 views over the past 30 days. Even if your average answer only gets 100 views, you know that if you write 1,000 answers, you will get into the top 10 most viewed writers, and perhaps even #1!
This is the work effort mindset. Once you can develop this type of attitude, the money will start flowing into your coffers more than you can ever imagine. Or, you can just feel good knowing you went to the top. Don’t give up!
3) Track your finances like a hawk because nobody cares more about your money than you.
In the past, financial buffs who wanted to break free from the corporate grind sooner would track all our finances on an Excel spreadsheet. We’d then methodically update each line item every single month. Now, you can use a free financial tool from Personal Capital to automatically track your net worth, analyze your investments for excessive fees, and plan for your retirement using your real income and expenses. Once you link up all your accounts, a new world will appear before your eyes.
Most people have no idea what kind of financial shape they are in until they have lots of responsibility and think, “OH CRAP! Where the hell did all my money go? Oh please, let there be Social Security and an inheritance to hold me through. I don’t want to work forever!”
Don’t be like most people. Leverage free technology to see whether you’re on track to financial freedom, or on track to financial destitution. Catch your destitution early and you can change your future. The best financial advice keeps you financially focused.
Sam, Financial Samurai
About the Author:
Sam began investing his own money ever since he opened an online brokerage account in 1995. Sam loved investing so much that he decided to make a career out of investing by spending the next 13 years after college working at two of the leading financial service firms in the world. During this time, Sam received his MBA from UC Berkeley with a focus on finance and real estate.
In 2012, Sam was able to retire at the age of 34 largely due to his investments that now generate roughly $200,000 a year in passive income. He spends time playing tennis, hanging out with family, consulting for leading fintech companies and writing online to help others achieve financial freedom.
FinancialSamurai.com was started in 2009 and is one of the most trusted personal finance sites today with over 1.5 million organic pageviews a month. Financial Samurai has been featured in top publications such as the LA Times, The Chicago Tribune, Bloomberg and The Wall Street Journal. The Best Financial Advice is a FS original.