With all of the books, tapes, seminars, and lectures regarding money and finances, how does one decide what is best? First and foremost, it is important to formulate some goals regarding your money. These goals should encompass the long-term as well as the short-term. Are there kids to put through college? Is there mortgage to pay off? Is the Caribbean calling, or is it simply time to increase the amount put into retirement or savings? Yes, all of the books and tapes, etc. available might seem enticing, but if it is not in line with goals you have created then it will just be a waste of money.
Time and time again it has been stated that goals should be many things. Among these they should have the ability to be measured, be able to be achieved, and most importantly, the goals should be realistic. Another important fact regarding goals is that they should be written down somewhere. Writing them down, or just saving them somewhere, makes goals more concrete and allows the ability to review and update as needed.
After goals are established and a path is created then, if further research is desired, books, tapes, seminars, and lectures can be scrutinized. Any information that can be obtained with little or no money is good as long as the information is coming from a reputable source. It would be wise to shy away from deals that promise any type of get rich quick scenario. Furthermore, some seminars might be free on the outset, but once there it is found that money must be spent to find out the rest of the story. All of this will just come down to understanding the motives behind the products. Is it really to help you out or is it more to help their wallet?
Knowing the right thing to do comes down to knowing yourself and understanding your abilities and limitations. Limitations can be changed through educating oneself in the importance and power that money holds. Additionally there are many competent professionals available to answer questions and offer guidance.
By Catherine Monreal
Catherine received her B.S. in Finance in 2006 and is currently pursuing her M.B.A. in Finance.