I love reading newsletters. It feels more personal, it’s a great way to spend time on a bus ride, and the advice is very interesting and helpful. Even more when I read two newsletters which completely contradicts each other. Ahhhh who should I listen to? So in order to make a decision about my own opinion, I decided to follow my own advice: listen, analyse and experiment. After reading their separate methods, I decided to analyse through an article.
Blogger 1: Afford Anything (Paula)
Her philosophy: You can afford anything but NOT everything
What she says: When you buy something – a sweater, a smartphone, ice cream – you are actually doing a trade off: you are exchanging money for goods. You are actually saying you would rather have ice cream than money (agreed). When it’s something like electricity and water, there is no decision because you consider it a necessity. However for other types of spending, like clothes and luxuries, the choices can vary.
Paula then explains how she was earning 21,000$ with her first job and working a side hustle at the same time. She wore second hand clothing, had a tiny apartment, had no car, no television, home internet or washing machine. Wow! She did all this so that in three years she could quit her job and travel the world. She saved and saved until she could travel. She sacrificed her present for a better future. To her, the way you spend your money reflects your priorities. If you want to travel the world, you might need to make a few sacrifices and adjust your priorities.
‘Every $1 you spend at a restaurant is $1 you can no longer spend traveling around the world, building a real estate portfolio or investing in your business’
Kinda makes me feel guilty for all the money I spend on beer. I personally really like how down-to-earth Paula is and how hard work really got her where she wants.
Do we all have to do this? Do we all have to kill ourselves slowly for three years to be able to travel the world and try something else? Sacrifices are always necessary, but to which point? To answer this question, I shall be moving on to the next newsletter article, by the famous Robert Kiyosaki!
Second blogger: Robert Kiyosaki
His philosophy: Savers are losers!
What he says: A lot of people think it is smart to save money, but nowadays there is a little problem. ‘Money’ is no longer money, it’s a promise from the government. It’s no longer backed by silver and gold. This means that it is volatile, and that explains why the economy keeps bouncing up and down. In one word: inflation.
Since 1971, the US dollar has lost 95% of its value when compared to gold. When you save up money, the interest doesn’t take into account the inflation, which means overall you don’t actually save anything. In 50 years, your savings could be valued at a fraction of the cost, leaving you with little money and your retirement out the window.
So what is Robert’s solution? Make your savings work for you. Save for the short term, and then use that money to invest. How do you know where to invest? You educate yourself financially.
He also says something else: Live ABOVE your means
Where Paula spent 3 years living below her means saving up for travel, Robert looked for other ways to earn money so he could invest and travel. When he wants to buy something big, like a car, instead of saving up or being careful with his money, he invests in an asset which will give him enough cash flow to buy his car. He says living below your means is a poor man mindset. It sentences your life to mediocrity, to living for less. Increase your means, and you have anything you want.
I was left a little breathless after reading those two newsletters and seeing how different they were on the topic of saving. Robert makes some very good points about saving, and how it’s useless to save in the long term. Nowadays, Paula is into real estate investing and other types of asset owning, which demonstrates how saving at the beginning can work out. However, the mindset is still different.
At the moment there is only one thing I know for sure: financial education will definitely put you onto the right track.
Who do you agree with? Share and comment! Join my journey of financial education by subscribing, and we’ll find out what is the best mindset together!