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Your Money or Your Life: Transforming Your Relationship with Money and Achieving Financial Independence Paperback – September 1, 1999
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Top Customer Reviews
* STEP 1: Look back on your life and add up all the money you have made, and how much do you have with you (in the form of assets of some type) to account for it.
* STEP 2: Since money is something we choose to trade our life energy for (central idea of the book), determine how much money you truly get for doing your job, including the fact that you have to spend money in commuting, clothing, meals at work, etc. and start to keep track of every penny that you earn and spend. Just to illustrate the power of this step, I found myself making 25% (hourly rate) less than I thought I was by doing this exercise, and that takes into account the fact that I live 20 minutes away from my work and I half the time I bring my food from home.
* STEP 3: Tabulate all your expenses into categories, add them up and convert them into hours of life energy.
* STEP 4: Determine to what extent all the expenses you found in your categorization provide you with fulfillment, how they are in alignment with your life's purpose, and how they would change should you not have to work for a living (I start to see some frowning faces now... hold on a bit more!) This chapter brought back memories of reading Stephen Covey and Viktor Frankl, in terms of coming up with your life's mission. A very nice quote by Buckminster Fuller mentioned in it says: "I learned very early and painfully that you have to decide at the outset whether you are trying to make money or make sense -I feel that they are mutually exclusive.Read more ›
With these things weighing on my mind, I purchased this book. Most of the steps I understood, and many of them made sense, but it was the 8th step that "hit me on the side of the head." What a revelation! I needed the previous 7 steps to fully appreciate it. I *can* change my life. This isn't some new-age feel good, think positive mumbo jumbo, but a solid plan for achieving financial independance.
I tell my friends about my plan to retire early, and they say "Oh, that's nice" and "You'll never do it" and "I could never cut back my spending enough to do that." The promise, though, of not having to work for a living is keeping me motivated, and I think of it every time I spend money.
Oddly enough, I recognize some of the principals as being similar to what financial guru types like Robert Kiyosaki and Robert G. Allen recommend - spend less, save more, invest what you save - yet this book, unlike those, provides a proven method for getting there.
Some books I read, such as Get Out of Debt, Stay Out of Debt and Live Prosperously by Gerrold Mundis prepared me for this book, and it agrees with my personal philsophies, even though I tend to spend more money than I should.
The 9th step details how to invest your money, but is now out of date because of changes instituted by the federal government. These issues are dealt with on by Vicki Robbins on a website based on this book.Read more ›
I do, however, have a few problems with the book. First, I wish they wouldn't advocate shopping at the Walmarts of the world. Second, I don't think most people (especially with kids) can live on the thread-bare shoestring budget the authors do (although I suppose its the spirit of what they say more than the exact numbers they suggest that matters most). Last, I wouldn't take the book's investment advice (which is buy long term government bonds). For a more balanced--or at least an excellent supplement--read The Mindful Money Guide. Its coming from a similar place (i.e. how to manage money so it doesn't manage you--for both a better quality of life and a better world), but The Mindful Money Guide gives the reader more options to choose from. I also found it more fun to read.
You should read the other reviews below with a bit of skepticism.
1) The investment advice in this book is not dated; it is conservative. Conservative is precisely what you need if you want to sleep well every night and live off of your money. Actually, many folks who are already financially well off follow this advice. The 15 year bull market seems to have turned everyone into an investment guru.
2) Someone way down the review list claims that saving $800 per month will not let you save $300,000 within 30 years. They asked for a hole in their logic, here's one: compound interest. Actually, at 5% and $800/month you will hit $300k in 19 years with virtually no risk. Low risk bonds should return 7% to 8% over this period and get you there in 17 or 16 years respectively. The recent bull market would have accomplished this in 10 years or less. There are a few other minor holes in the logic that would shorten the window another couple of years...
3) You have to have discipline to follow this plan. Otherwise, you will be working for a long time. If you are looking for a get-rich-quick book, look elsewhere. Like all important things in life, this also requires dedication and commitment. I am young, but I will be retiring to part time work in just under 10 years while my co-workers will be on the job an additional 25 years.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This book absolutely changed my life! I would buy the newer version because this book tells you that you can live off your investments which may not be possible in this day of low... Read morePublished 7 days ago by H82Diet
too old, not entirely relevant today. maybe good at the time of writingPublished 21 days ago by Bruce E Hall
This is not the usual "How to get rich" book. I highly suggest to ANYONE to buy it. You really can have an insight about what's going on today in our lives. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Amazon Customer
This book helps you understand how to reverse the corrosive effects of our consumer culture and it detrimental effects on our freedomPublished 4 months ago by Scott A. Nelson
This is my FAVORITE book on personal finances. I've read alot of other best sellers. This one changed my thinking and my life. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Brittany Bennett
I just didn't like it. They wanted you to trace back to ALL and I mean ALL the money you ever spent. Read morePublished 8 months ago by Pen Name