Many Roads, One View

Many Paths, One View

There are many paths to the top of the mountain, but only one view.

This was my fortune cookie from a catered work lunch a couple weeks ago. This one simple idea has so many facets. Here are a few things I’ve realized:

Everyone’s Path is Different

We continue to harp on how personal finance is personal, but it’s true. There is relativity in finances as well. You and I may have the same numbers, but that does not mean we are the same. You will go your path and I will go mine. Some of us are starting on opposite sides of the mountain. Are some paths easier? Yes. Are any of the paths wrong? No! If your path is going up, you’re heading in the right direction!

This also means your story is important. And my story is important. Every story has a place. And maybe ONE person out there will be changed by my blog and my story. To you, dear reader, you are important and I am here to cheer you on!

Watching the FinCon Twitter coverage made me realize that every voice counts… even if we’re all talking about money. Money is big, but money is also personal.

Stop comparing your path to someone else’s.

Your Path Up Will Impact Your View

The view from the top may be the same, but the way you got there will matter. The process is part of the product. If you’re proud of your accomplishments on the way up, you’ll enjoy the view even more.

On the flip side, if you’ve gotten up the mountain by pushing people down on the way up, you’ll get to the top and ignore the view. You’ll be too busy looking over your shoulder to see who or what is coming up behind you. Remembering ethics on the way up is also important.

If the journey is hard, the reward feels greater. A friend of mine told me about a hike she took her younger siblings on. Somehow, they turned off the well-marked trail and were bush-whacking up the mountain. They finally arrived at the top to find a broad, easy gravel trail everyone else had taken. Maybe there was an easier way, but if you spend too much time looking back down the mountain, you’ll miss the view entirely. 

You Can’t Take Every Path

It is possible to switch paths, but if you’re going up one path, you’re inevitably missing out on another one. You sacrifice some paths for others. What’s most important to you? If the answer is “being rich” or “money” (have a better dream), you’ll certainly make it to the top of your mountain, but, like Scrooge McDuck, you’ll be alone swimming in money!

I’ve chosen to be a stay at home mom. That means I’ve given up the main career path. I do work part time, but I will never be important at work. Luckily, I don’t want to be. Every mountain comes with sacrifices. And there isn’t a “right” path. Remember how personal finance is personal? You and I are not the same person. Some paths include more things than others. And some paths are just downright hard.

Climbing a Mountain is Hard

When you forget what’s at the top of the mountain, it’s really easy to talk yourself out of going up. If you don’t have a clear idea of where you want to end up, you may find yourself drifting off the trail. Pick a path and keep moving forward. Remember what’s at the top!

In the end, we’re all blazing our own trails. But the view from the top will be grand!

fincon-16 conference recap

#FinCon16: What Really Happened!

In case you missed my first coverage of #FinCon16, I’m not actually in San Diego. Like any good reporter, I stayed in my bathrobe in Anchorage and devoured all Twitter coverage. So I can confidently say my coverage is very thorough.

As a follow up on the banking baked goods, Ally bank diversified into fortune cookies:

FinCon16

There was plenty of wisdom gained (inside and outside of fortune cookies). Here is a sampling… granted, some lessons learned are better than others:

FinCon16 FinCon16 FinCon16 FinCon16 FinCon16 FinCon16 FinCon16 FinCon16 FinCon16 FinCon16 FinCon16 FinCon16

Also at FinCon, personal finance got personal – maybe TOO personal:

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And as the conference progressed, things started to derail. It all started with chess:

FinCon16

And a boozy night by the fire with some FIRE bloggers (can you spot Mr. 1500’s dinosaurs?).

FinCon16

But the constant party atmosphere started to have an impact…

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And, with a few final declarations, #FinCon16 came to an end:

FinCon16

FinCon16

You can take the people out of FinCon, but you can’t take the FinCon out of the people. The money nerds were unleashed on the world and began recruiting!

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And next year’s location was announced with tickets now on sale:

FinCon17 ad

I just bought my tickets and I really am excited to experience FinCon outside of Twitter next year. Will I see you there?

fincon-16 the real story

#FinCon16: The Real Story

FinCon is happening right now in San Diego. I’m not there, but don’t you worry. I have access to Twitter and I can tell you what’s REALLY happening!

When people arrived, they were in for a few surprises. Rain? And very strange beaches….

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Week Without A Phone

A week Without a Phone

Last week, I went on a week-long business trip. And I forgot my phone. Packing up 3 kids for a long vacation: no problem, but put me on my own and I’ll forget something obvious! I decided to survive the week without it. Here’s what I learned:

People are Addicted to Phones:

When I told people I had forgotten my phone, most of the responses were:

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retire now

The State of Retirement in the U.S. in 2016

It’s sad.

<End of post.>

Alright, alright. I’ll get into details if I must. First, the good news:

According to the 2016 Retirement Confidence Survey published by the Employee Benefit Research Institute, people are starting to move out of their recession fears. The percentage of workers “very confident” in having enough to retire, went up from 13% in 2013 to 22% in 2015. This year it went down slightly to 21%, but overall, people are feeling a bit more confident in these insane market days.

The question is: Should they feel this confident?

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Shared Inspiration

Shared Inspiration

Last week, I asked readers to share their favorite links. I said I’d share them on the original post, but they were too good not to share on their own. So… Today’s inspiration is from YOU!

  • Harmony from Creating My Kaleidoscope shared a post on 5 Myths About Success from the blog Marc and Angel Hack Life. You guys, I NEEDED this post (thank you, Harmony!). You are trying too hard. Give yourself grace and focus on consistency first. Baby steps. I need to focus on the baby steps.
  • Claudia over at Two Cup House shared The Frugal Vagabond‘s new AWESOME tool called The Earth Awaits. This site is so amazing. You can plug in your priorities in a place to live and your monthly budget and it will pop up the perfect place just for you!
  • Tawcan shared his post on becoming extraordinary and, more specifically, a video of Dr. Wayne Dyer on literally making your dreams reality. This takes the “affirmations” step of the Miracle Morning to the next level.
  • Mustard Seed Money shared an awesome interview they did with former NFL player Gabe Manns. My favorite quote: “The only financial activity going on in the locker room were guys saying bet me $100 if I can make this tape in the waste basket.”

That was fun! Thanks for sharing, friends!

Love, Maggie

People who became millionaires faster

People Who Became Millionaires Faster

On Monday, we went over how easy it is to become a millionaire. Today, we’re going to look at a few people that have done it and have done it quickly!

1500 Days:

We’ll start with Mr. 1500 Days (he’s one of my favorites!). Now he started 2013 with over $585,000. He managed to hit $1,000,000 for the first time less than two years later!

double comma

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Saving a Million Dollars is Easy!

Saving a Million Dollars is Easy!

Do you know what my favorite posts to read are? The ones about how saving a million dollars is totally easy! And guess what? There are THOUSANDS! I decided to aggregate a few of my favorites to drive the point home. Saving a million dollars over a long period of time is actually very simple!

Young Adult Money provided a simple calculation for only $500/month: With a “beginning balance of $5,000. If you contribute $500 [a month] over 40 years with a 6% return, you’ll end up with $1,055,511.36.”

Interest rates matter quite a bit when it comes to saving money. This Business Insider chart gives you a daily savings need based on 3 different return rates to save $1,000,000 by 65!

Saving $1000000

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Friday Inspiration: Share with Us

Friday Inspiration: Share With Us

Hello Friends. As you know, on Fridays, I usually share an inspirational quote or a Roth IRA Challenge. Today, I’d like to hear from YOU!

If you are on the list for my weekly emails (if not, sign up on the sidebar!), you’ll know that I share interesting links every single week. The problem with being such a big reader is that I want to read ALL THE THINGS. I want you to share interesting or inspirational links (no, they don’t have to be PF related… some of my favorites involve British Museums planting fake art or the implications of talking products.

In the comments, share links to anything that answers this question: What is the most interesting/enlightening article you’ve read lately?

I’ll share all the links here, so you can all come back later and learn like I do! I’m excited!

Problems with Pareto Principle and Outsourcing

Problems with the Pareto Principle and Outsourcing

If you’ve read enough about how to become rich, you’ve probably encountered two concepts:

  1. Pareto Principle – 20% of the input is responsible for 80% of the output. In personal finance, people tout focusing on only doing that 20% responsible for the most return. That leads to principle number 2:
  2. Outsourcing – For the parts of the 80% of the job that are still necessary, you outsource them.

Let me start by stating that I agree that the Pareto Principle is real and outsourcing can be useful in some regards. Let me also state that I agree that while frugality has limits, income potential does not. I agree that everyone is capable of earning more and the amount is potentially limitless.

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