When I first began learning about my finances, I was excited. I felt a sense of empowerment as I explored the many debt repayment and saving strategies out there. I thought if I could find a way to earn thousands of dollars, I would be debt free in no time. Then, the feedback that I received -- take my time, paying off debt is a process, and to set financial goals-- made this once exciting process a little frustrating. I did not want to hear about baby steps or a snowball. I wanted to get rid of all of my debt now.
That mindset quickly became a humbling experience. One day, I took about $3,500 from my savings and paid off a student loan. It felt really good until I realized that it was a subsidized loan that did not collect interest. Instead, I could have used some of that money and paid off another student loan with a 6.8% interest rate.
I don’t want you to make the same mistakes that I did. I want to encourage you to educate yourself and learn about all of your options. Here are some books I would encourage you to read.
“Rich Dad, Poor Dad”
In this book, Robert Kiyosaki will show you the difference between a wealthy man and a poor man and the decisions that define each one of them.
“The Richest Man in Babylon”
This book teaches personal finance lessons through stories. It shows that becoming financially independent is not based on stock picking or market timing.
“The Opposite of Spoiled: Raising Kids Who Are Grounded, Generous and Smart About Money”
The book offers practical advice on the right ways to handle everything from cell phone to college expenses to avoid spoiling your children.