When you read this headline you might be wondering what the heck that I am talking about. For finances I think the best story out there is the tortoise and the hare. Everyone wants a get rich quick scheme. Everyone wants to obtain their financial goals fast. Me included. I want this debt gone. I want financial independence now. LIke right now. But realistically I know that isn’t going to occur. My time horizon is more like 10 years and I am ok with it. That doesn’t stop me from trying to think of other ways to accelerate the process, but ultimately, the way that most people build wealth, save money, is to become the tortoise. Slow and steady. Inch by inch.
For most people there is no get rich quick scheme. There is no buying a bunch of gold or real estate and getting rich instantly. There is no hitting the lottery. The best way for people to obtain wealth is the tried and true method of slow and steady. Save every week, two weeks, month, whatever, and watch it grow. Slowly, but surely, it will.
I am not one of those people who believes the sky is falling or that we are going to become Greece or whatever. I believe that things will be ok. I know past isn’t prologue, but the stock market, for over 140 years, has gained an average of 10%. If I keep investing, putting money into specific retirement vehicles I will get to my horizon. The more I save the faster I get there. The point is, however, I have to be slow and steady. It will take years.
I know that I have harped on this a lot in these financial tips about saving and the like, but I personally think that is the best biggest financial problem people have today. Getting started for some is hard. Many, including my newly graduated students, don’t think it is that important. They have all the time in the world. However, beginning the ethic and habit of saving is a necessary start. Saving is like a muscle. You have to build it in order for it to get stronger. If you don’t build that saving muscle then you can’t maximize your financial future. The longer people wait the harder it is and the more you have to save.
Bottom Line: Begin the race. Become the tortoise. And keep on going inch by inch. Others may make fun of you, others may even lap you, but the tortoise always win. Slow and steady that is the name of the game.