Updated December 6, 2016…because a lot has changed in financial education resources and updates since I first posted this in 2010…
My very favorite investing story is that of my dad buying municipal bonds yielding 15 to 25% at 50 cents on the dollar back in the early 1980’s. Can you even imagine earning that kind of interest tax free? Especially from bonds that you bought at bargain prices? (I love bargain investments!) Those bonds provided a steady tax free income stream during retirement for years for my parents. This dynamic led me to know for certain that being the family investing leader is an important and a worthy role for any woman. It fueled my passion. This lead to decades of research and investing, and later to the launch of Financial Woman.
Spiritual AND Fact Based Investing
My dad was a wise man, and a disciplined and empowered investor. He incorporated the spiritual elements of investing with factual information and research. One of his favorite books was The Richest Man in Babylon by George S. Clason. This book focuses on the spiritual aspect of money as well as sound financial principles. My book shelf also contains several of his information based books, such as Benjamin Graham’s early edition of The Intelligent Investor.
Once in a Lifetime Investment
Dad was able to spot a once in a lifetime opportunity simply by paying attention to what was going on in the economy and the financial markets. He read Barron’s® weekly at the library during his lunch break, scanned the Wall Street Journal® , and watched Louis Rukeyser on Wall Street Week® every Friday evening. This consistent routine required little time. Especially considering the life changing rewards that came about as a result of this habit. He was able to recognize a life changing investment opportunity.
Financial Education Can Happen on the Run
Look how much easier it is today to stay informed! We have podcasts that we can listen to with our phones while working out, thousands of websites, financial publications both online and home delivered, along with the more traditional ways to access information. But is just too much information? Is it now easier from those taunting unreliable information and financial services to get in front of you? Yes!
How do you know who to trust with reliable financial education and news? Here are a few tips to incorporate financial awareness into your life:
- Choose two or three good sources for reliable investing information and read them consistently
- Look for unbiased writers, financial bloggers and first hand real investors (Like yours truly:)
- Find one or two financial services that offer great financial education. Their huge promotion dollars allow them to share highly valuable data in easy to understand visuals.
- Schedule fifteen minutes a week to stay current on the financial markets
- Notice current trends when you’re living life; simply pay attention to price increases when shopping, neighborhood real estate when driving, and employment signs when you’re out and about. Develop financial awareness
- Grasp a few investing basics concepts so you feel good about what you’re reading or hearing, and can discern good financial education and market news from biased sources (Get my free eBook here with the investing basics!)
By simply shifting your mindset from one of lack of confidence to one of determination, you lay the foundation for wealth creation and accumulation. This step is crucial. Anything in life worth doing requires some sort of commitment. Having enough money to pay the light bills, take family trips, or fund your retirement account so your money will outlive you warrants your attention and time.