Personal finance can seem intimidating, but the reality is it’s pretty basic — save more than you spend, find ways to earn more, invest for the long-term, and protect your assets. But if personal finance is so easy, why do so many people screw it up?
My guest today has spent his career exploring this topic. His name is Jonathan Clements and he’s been The Wall Street Journal’s personal finance columnist for years. During his writing career, he’s also published several popular personal finance books including The Little Book of Main Street Money. In his latest book, How to Think About Money, Jonathan distills decades of personal finance experience into punchy, insightful, and action-oriented advice.
Today on the show, Jonathan and I discuss the most common money mistakes people make and the psychological biases that cause us to make them. Jonathan then shares research-backed advice on how money can buy you happiness…and also misery. Just depends on how you use it. He then delves into brass tacks tips on how to save for retirement no matter how old you are, how to overcome your psychological biases so you don’t make stupid money mistakes, and why focusing on not losing money will help you have more money in the long run. Lots of actionable advice to enhance your finances in this episode.
- Why do people get so confused when it comes to personal finance?
- How our brain hurts us in the realm of money
- The 3 instincts we have that hurt our finances
- How to rewire our brains and overcome those instincts
- Investment strategies for those who don’t have much time or know-how
- How your investing strategy should change as you age
- What are annuities? How they can help as you get closer to retirement?
- How the fact of people living longer changes investments and retirement
- How money actually can buy happiness
- The value of experiences over stuff
- How small purchases can you make you happier over time
- The financial importance of enjoying your life and what you do
- Winning in investments by not losing
- What you need to know about insurance
Resources/People/Articles Mentioned in Podcast
- A Primer on Stocks
- No-Nothing Investing: Index Funds for Beginners
- Personal Finance Goals for Your 20s
- Personal Finance Goals for Your 30s
- Build Your Wealth With a Net Worth Mentality
- Target Date Funds
- Immediate Fixed Annuities
- My podcast with Chris Guillebeau on finding work you love
- How to Hack Your Flow
- My podcast with Steven Kotler about flow
- A Man’s Guide to Insurance
If you’re looking for a no-nonsense guide to personal finances, How to Think About Money is the book for you. My favorite chapter was the one on how to use your money so that it actually makes you happy rather than miserable.
Connect With Jonathan
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Last updated: July 14, 2017