If you’re like me, you’re wondering how to make your savings/investments grow. Where to allocate and how much. I’m not a financial advisor, I’m in this with all of you. I’m just sharing here some guidelines that work for me, starting with the realization that no one, not even my 401-K fund manager, is going to take care of this for me.
1. It’s up to you.
Even though you’re not a financial expert, your finances, your retirement, your wealth creation are all in your own hands. The stock market is soaring right now, but many analysts I’ve read think this is a short-term effect that will soon be replaced by a more sincere reaction to our high unemployment, growing debt, growing medical bills, higher social security outlays and higher tax burden on the shrinking middle class.
So where to you put your money to grow? My husband, Ruben, and I talk about this all the time. It’s kind of funny actually, an academic and classical musician discussing investment strategies, but so it is. The thing about talking to professional financial advisers is that you have to be careful in distinguishing between expertise and selling.
Use a financial adviser who is making money off his own investments, not from commissions.
2. Set your intention.
I’m still surprised to see how many people live almost permanently in reactive mode (even though I used to live that way myself.) You can tell you’re living this way if you are waiting for other things to happen in order to make a move, or take an action. For example, I know of some musicians in town who are waiting to hear if the local symphony orchestra is going be restructured or not, before they decide to stay here or not. That’s a totally rational way to think. But a more intentional, creative response is to decide where you want to live and live there. The rest you can take care of once you’re committed to a place to live.
3. Invest in yourself.
Ultimately, you will see the best opportunities to create value and reap financial rewards. But it takes training your eye to see the opportunities that you are uniquely positioned to take advantage of. Investing in yourself has got to be part of your portfolio.
This can be training yourself to invest in the stock market, real estate, starting a side business, commodity trading, or even increasing the value of your own home.
4. Take it one step at a time.
The best news is that you don’t have to know how you’re going to create your wealth, what exactly you’re going to do. That will come to you, probably one step at a time. Your job is to draw a clear picture of what you would like to happen.
You don’t have to decide right this minute, but start researching. See who lives the way you want to live. Write down what you really like about your life as it is presently constructed, and what you’d like to change.
5. Savor what you have right now.
You already know that people who live in mansions and have 6 to 7-figure bank accounts are not any happier than you are right this very moment. In fact a lot of them are miserable. I now live in a house much much smaller than the one I grew up in….I know a lot of you have lived through “nouveau pauvre” and know what I’m talking about. It’s important and fun to create your life, but the real trick is….be happy now!
Creating wealth is not an event, it’s a process. It’s even a way of living and I highly recommend you undertake this project as I am!