The New York Times recently ran an article entitled, "Why Men Want to Marry Melanies and Raise Ivankas." Though I take issue with the fact that the Times identified this as a peculiar phenomenon in the Republican party, I believe the primary points of the article reflect an important reality. Wealth-minded individuals will tend to raise their daughters to over-index on marketplace value. They will tend to raise daughters who are willing to take on greater risk via entrepreneurial activity. At the same time, those daughters will struggle to find spouses who want to support their entrepreneurial activities by staying home with children.
Because of this, I believe it's important to emphasize several lessons for my daughter that I won't emphasize in the same way to my son. (I should say, I want to teach my son these things too so that he has a greater respect for women generally and a future wife in particular).
This is a letter that I've written to her. Lest you accuse me of having favorites, I'll write one for my son too. And other children in the future.
If you read the stats, you will learn that the average American has poor money management skills. In fact, even high income earners have poor money management skills.
The now famous Federal Reserve Report on Economic Well Being, nearly half of all households couldn't cover a $400 by the end of the month. Only two out of five household reported saving money last year, and most of those were high earners ($100K+). However, one in three households earning at least $75K reported living check to check.
If you're average, then you're living paycheck to paycheck. I don't say this to cause you to feel shame. Shame will only drive you away from inaction. On the other hand, a healthy dose of reality, hope and how to might help you turn away from the hand to mouth behavior.
This is a specific guide on how to stop living paycheck to paycheck. I've seen this method work on incomes below $20K all the way up the income scale. This is not a substitute for advice like "earn more", "spend less", etc. Rather this should be seen as a triage guide. A guide to get you from insolvent (or functionally insolvent) to solvent.
It's also a useful guide if you have a high networth, but you're facing a period of limited liquidity.
"Too much money? There ain't no such thing;" claims Trace Adkins (in what remains one of my favorite country songs).
But is there such a thing as too much money? If you never divorce money from consumption, you'll never have too much money. It's possible to spend past the point of hedonic reason (just watch Broke on Netflix for proof).
However, among those who plan to build their wealth (regardless of how many advantages they receive along the way), too much money should be a particular concern. In particular, those with time, character, and connections on their side, should plan what they will do if they run into too much money before they die.
Grit: It's the character trait that has everyone buzzing. It's the grown up equivalent to learning to walk. You stand up, only to fall down immediately. Over and over again. Until one day, you're finally walking. Like a boss. Like Elena Lashmanova (only slower).
Freelancers need grit to succeed.
But freelancers also need financial cushions. They need money for the hard seasons. Money can take freelancers through tough economic times.
When it comes to getting through hard times, what is better grit or a financial cushion? In today's installment of freelancer throwdown, I'll explore which one a freelancer needs more.
I'm a wife, a mom, an employee, and a personal finance nerd who is devoted to spreadsheeting my way through life.