6 Profound Financial Concepts Middle-Class Americans Must Adopt Today

There’s a lot of financial advice in the blogosphere, but these are the six bits of wisdom that everyone should consider when prioritizing their financial well-being.

1. Buy Yourself Time, Not Just Things

They say time is money, so buying yourself more time is a good investment. Many people avoid spending money to increase their quality of life or productivity in hopes they can squeeze another penny or two into their savings. But considering how much spending on something would improve your life is much more convenient and beneficial. And if it’s enough for you, pull the trigger.

2. Financial Health Is More Important Than Wealth

Too often, people focus on numbers and metrics. But in the end, no amount of money can make you feel secure — that only comes when you work on your financial health. This might mean paying off debt, building an emergency fund, or saving for an upcoming vacation. Whatever your financial goals are, they should at least include feeling confident about where you’re at, regardless of the cash available in your bank account.

3. Wait Ten Seconds

You’ve heard of the ten-second rule, but this time, we’re not talking about that piece of cheese you dropped on the floor while meal-prepping (that ten-second rule is pretty frugal too, so we’ll turn a blind eye, real quick if you wanna grab it). This philosophy involves waiting and breathing for ten seconds before buying anything. It’s a short time that’s also long enough to help your brain recalibrate and consider whether or not you really need the thing you’re about to buy.

4. Practice Patience With Investments

Playing the long game is a must if you’re interested in investing. This is another example where time can be more valuable; investing even a tiny amount earlier and waiting it out means you’ll accrue more cash through compound interest. It’s also a good reminder not to panic when certain investments fluctuate. It’s common for these things to balance out, so don’t get ahead of yourself with investing, be it in buying, selling, or saving.

5. Save Cash for Emotional Purchases

If emotions are attached to something you’re planning on buying, take out some cash to buy it. This helps you be more mindful about what you’re spending and, much like the ten-second rule, allows your brain to consider alternatives or whether the purchase makes as much sense as you thought it did. Plus, it’ll automatically build a budget for what you’re about to buy, provided you decide to leave the plastic at home.

6. It’s Just a Phase

Just as the leaves on the trees wilt and grow every year, so too do our finances. Many people go through phases of spending a lot, like with the holidays, and it’s important to remember that this won’t be your financial situation forever.

Alternatively, this also means you want to prepare for these phases, just as you would pull the winter jackets and boots out of storage before the first snowfall. A spending or saving phase is always coming eventually, it’s just better to know when so you’re ready for it.

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