My Money Manifesto

What follows is my personal philosophy on money and materiality. Really, it’s about way more than money.

This piece is something I wrote for myself a while back in a moment of clarity, and I’m so thankful that I had the opportunity to document some of the thoughts that were flying through my head that day.

It has provided me with critical perspectives on life, money, and achievement. I hope some part of it helps you as well.

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Best Personal Finance and Investing Books

As we approach a new year, I wanted to share a few of the books which shaped my perspective on money and inspired me to turn my life around after going broke in Las Vegas. Maybe you or someone you know could benefit from a fresh view on money or personal finance, or maybe a refresher for a new start in 2018. Regardless, here I’ve compiled some of my favorites.

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Daycare is Expensive

I am a proud parent of a 2 year-old boy. My life completely changed whenever my wife and I had our son, and now I can’t imagine coming home from work and not see him running to give me a hug and hollering for daddy. It’s truly a highlight of my day.

As much as I love being a parent, I acknowledge how crossing that milestone in your life can put a whole new bind on your finances.

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The Millennial Startup Controller

“Controller” is a weird word. If you are familiar with the finance and accounting industry, you know it generally refers to a high-level accounting position, often the head accounting person reporting directly to a company’s CFO. I always thought that somebody unfamiliar with the job title might find it odd. What exactly are you controlling? Everything? 

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Credit Score – Big Brother’s New Favorite Tool?

I used to be obsessed with conspiracy theories. Some personal favorites of mine are anything about the Denver International Airport, the Bermuda Triangle, or Area 51. If you’ve ever started down the path of reading or discussing a conspiracy theory, you probably know how easy it is to begin believing and finding evidence everywhere to support it. This is why conspiracy theories can go viral, along with the fact that they are spectacular or outrageous to the point of commanding attention.

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What’s Your Real Interest Rate?

As an accountant, I work with financial statements every day.

I spend a lot of time reviewing P&L’s and balance sheets. And when I signed up for Mint and connected all my accounts, I was pleased (nerdy, I know) to find a sort of “personal balance sheet” which is really the software showing your Net Worth figure.

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Savings vs. ROI

One of my favorite feelings in the world is an epiphany. I’m talking about an “aha!” moment, or a “paradigm shift” if you’re into Stephen Covey.

For me, these moments usually involve some small change in perspective, or a slightly different way of explaining something, which drastically changes the way I view the subject.

It’s like discovering some great secret, except the secret has been right in front of you all along. In that sense it’s like buried treasure: you were probably all over it, you just needed to dig down and find it.

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The Simplest Frugality Hack

The other day, I wrote about my daily budgeting strategy, which is what finally got me serious about budgeting and being mindful of my spending.
The process is straightforward, but I wouldn’t call it simple. It forces you to categorize your regular expenses and identify which of them are more variable or voluntary in nature. What’s more, if done properly, the process never ends. For instance, each new month means a new evaluation of my baseline expenses, a new assessment of financial goals, and often a new daily spending target. To get the most out of it, you need a certain level of discipline and enthusiasm for your goals.
The concept I want to talk about today isn’t like that at all.

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