Mentors Should Help You
The reason that personal finance is called “personal” finance is because your money is supposed to work for you. There is no large group of people who can 100% tell you the best way to forge your wealth, much less a single person. A large group of people can come really close to showing you the way you should take. That is why having a good group of mentors is key for helping you forge who you want to be.
My parents, grandparents, and relatives were excellent mentors. Some other mentors unrelated to me also gave me great advice, but still had strong roles in my life. They taught me the importance of determination, how to make better use of my money, and many other aspects of life. One of the best ways they did this is by encouraging me to read. Eventually I came around to love reading (or listening to audiobooks, but same thing).
I was 8 at the time I was really encouraged to read by my parents (at least more than child books like Dr. Seuss). I know, that sounds cruel. Do you know a single kid at 8 who loved to read? Guess what though, I owe them thanks. Many of the books I read have changed my life. The areas of my life in which my mentors could not cover were covered by multiple different authors who never had a direct link in my life. It is worth mentioning, some of my mentors recommended many of these books. But this book they recommended, changed my life. That is the power of mentorship, sometimes you do not even need a direct mentorship to teach people and change their lives. The book they encouraged me to read was The Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey.
This book changed my outlook on money and how to manage it, even some things my parents never brought up. I have provided a link in which provided by an affiliate.
Dave Ramsey is an American businessman who also frequently gives financial advice to everyone from people who are starting out in life to experienced entrepreneurs. He gives motivation and tactical advice in which I would guarantee, by following his advice, you will get yourself out of bad debt, maintain financial security, forge your own wealth, and avoid future bad debt. Every American needs to read this book. Most Americans need to learn of Dave Ramsey’s money strategies since only 28% of Americans are considered “financially healthy” and 57% are financially struggling.
The first thing to note about The Total Money Makeover is the words you read from Dave Ramsey is very similar to mine from previous posts. Who do you think I got much of my financial advice from? The government/school? One of the first things mentioned is that most of your success is from a decent part of knowledge, but mostly from attitude. This is very true, not only in securing your financial future, but literally any other venture you have in life.
Another thing you will notice is that Dave Ramsey has no tolerance to debt, and that credit cards are just a tool for banks and debt collection companies to take your money (and let’s face it, he is not inaccurate).
Prepare To Be Offended
Offended already, oh just you wait. Dave Ramsey not only does not care about touching people’s nerves, he will smile while doing so. He believes when people write him hate mail, that he has touched someone’s nerve, and that they will likely actually do something about it. Trust me, it touched my nerves (I did not send hate mail though). Believe it or not, I used to see money as something just to spend. Dave Ramsey made me realize that I was an idiot for believing that and that money is also a tool.
Paying Off Debt And Staying Out Of It
Dave Ramsey will also give advice on not only paying off your bad debt (which is very comparable to my previous advice), but also how to make sure no one you care about will even have any personal experience of debt.
This is where some controversy arises. Dave Ramsey probably has even less tolerance to debt than I do as hard as that is to believe. The only debt he even remotely tolerates are house mortgages assuming that you put down a down payment of at least 25%, the payments are easily affordable for your income (refer to my lifestyles post), and that the mortgage is a 15-year fixed rate.
Many people claim that you cannot start businesses without debt. This is of course not true and Dave Ramsey is not the only one who says that. Subway took the world by storm, and this storm was produced with no debt and only $1000 (although, yes that was more back in the 60s).
Whatever business you make should have your creative touch, but I will bring up some businesses that can be done with little or no money.
Dave Ramsey mentions that credit cards are most times unnecessary and even sometimes lethal to your financial security. While many argue about building credit score, Dave Ramsey brings up multiple methods to build your credit score without the need of credit cards. You can read another post on how to do that.
I’ll let you guess what car Dave Ramsey recommends getting. If you guessed a cheap used car, you are smart with your money. He likes to call these “beaters.” Hate to say this, but I have not heard of anyone who advises on money saying otherwise. This is the most solid money advice you can get from any mentor.
He will make you feel bad if you own a new car. If you have that car on loan, he will make you feel even worse.
Going To College
Dave Ramsey mentions the importance of education, and he recommends some higher education. However, if you want that dance major, do not expect encouragement from Dave Ramsey. He states that education is an investment, and you should try to go for one that will pay better (dance rarely pays better).
He also recommends not going into debt for college (surprise, surprise). Although that sounds too extreme, just think of the troubles people have with student loans in the US, then think of how helpful that advice would be. Don’t worry, Mr. Ramsey gives advice on how to pay for college, there are obvious ways including scholarships and ROTC. However, there are less obvious ways too. I took advantage of this knowledge, and college was considerably cheaper using this method.
Dave Ramsey Is Not The Only One To Learn About Money From
Dave Ramsey is a great financial adviser with a life and experience we can hardly imagine. I recommend not only reading his works, but watching his youtube channel: The Dave Ramsey Show.
He is not the only one I have listened to. I have listened to and read the works of many other people on how to obtain and maintain financial independence. This includes Jaspreet Singh of the Minority Mindset, and Philip Olson, Julia Lorenz-Olsen, Andrew Matthews, and Katie Graham of Two Cents. These are of course just to name a few, I will bring up more books to read in a later post. Plus, people should take on their own mentors and personal finance education. You can use a variety of angles and methods to forge your wealth.