At the beginning of this year, when I really started to get more interested in finance, I also started to read more as well. As a 2017 resolution, I decided that I wanted to read 6 non-fiction books this year. This may not seem like a lot, but previously I typically read magazines, news articles and blog posts online. I never really would dive into a book except on occasion.
Here we are, mid May and I have completed three books so far. To some of you, this may not seem like much, but given that Americans, on average, read only one book a year, I am already defeating normal. I am certainly not trying to rub it in the face of those individuals who do not read regularly. I am simply just trying to point out that as a society, we are moving more and more away from digging our noses into the pages of a great book.
So what in the world does reading have to do with finances? Well, there are many things. First, when you are enjoying a nice evening at home reading a good book, guess what you are not doing? Spending money! Yes, I know, the book you hold in your hand costs money, but books can be purchased cheaply, especially second-hand. Or better yet, get a book from your local library (does our society know what those are anymore?!) Many people spend money out of habit. They may browse the racks at their favorite department store on Saturday afternoons, not because they need new clothes, but because it’s fun and exciting to see what treasures they can find.
I personally like to browse my local Goodwill store for books. There can be some great finds there, many for $3 or less. One book that I found recently at Goodwill was “You Have More Than You Think” by David & Tom Gardner. It was a finance book from the early 2000s and talked about some interesting finance theories. Best part was, it was $1.99 and occupied me for multiple evenings. Is it something that I NEED? Not at all. But let’s compare the habits. On that Saturday afternoon, you may spend $100 on the new clothes you found, but also don’t need. The book (in theory) saved you $98!
Is it a little far-fetched? Maybe. But there is another benefit. When you are reading, you are learning. You are letting your mind run wild and escape your everyday life. The more you learn, the more potential you have to make more money. I prefer to read non-fiction, especially books on finance. Maybe you are interested in web design. Start reading books and educating yourself. Perhaps this can even lead to a side-hustle so that you can get extra income to improve your financial situation. I am not saying that if you read books, your income will skyrocket. All I am saying is that by reading books, especially non-fiction, you open your mind to a new realm of information and possibilities.
As I continue the read, I will also be posting reviews and ideas from the books I complete. Be sure to come back and check out this info as I post it. If there are some great books that you have read (any topic), please post them in the comments. I would love to hear your suggestions. And if there are some not so great books that you have read, not to worry, please let me know about those too. The simple fact that you read it put you one step closer to defeating normal.
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