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Money Game #2 What Does it Mean to be Rich?
Imagine that you have 24 hours to spend $1,000 on yourself in a joyous way, not as a down payment for a large item but for something you purchase in cash. Specifically, what would you spend it on?
Write down your answer.
How do you feel about your purchases? Now it’s the next day, another 24 hours another $1,000, go spend it. Was it a little harder? How do you feel now? Play again for five more days, a $1,000 each day spending it all every day.
Now that you’ve played for a week examine your thoughts. What are the changes you feel? Will people relate to you differently? Will you have more or fewer friends? Imagine playing for a month or a year. How long could you play until you didn’t want to go on?
It would take 2 years and 9 months of spending a $1,000 a day to spend a million dollars. It would take 2,739 years to spend a billion dollars.
When we talk about money in these numbers it really gets beyond our ability to think in terms of money, it becomes finances. Finances are defined as large amounts of money that are moved around by banks, brokers, or financial dealers. We will enter into the world of finance in this course. Don’t be alarmed or overwhelmed. You won’t have to master every aspect of finance, but you will need to begin to feel more comfortable with the idea of becoming financially literate.
Lesson #1 Exercises
1) Go to the store and buy a financial magazine or newspaper. You have a lot of good choices, there’s Money, Smart Money, Worth, The Wall Street Journal, Barron’s, Forbes and many others. Go to a store that you regularly shop at and if possible pay for it with a clerk that you’re familiar with. Notice how you feel buying a financial magazine. What do you think the clerk is thinking about you when you buy a magazine about money? Does he think you are wealthy? Did she make any comment?
2) Read your magazine. You may not understand a lot of it but that’s all right. We learn about new subjects a little at a time. Read your magazine in public. Put yourself right out there; let people see you as a person that’s reading a money management magazine. What are they thinking about you as you read it?
3) Pick out at least two or three ads for investment companies, ones that sell mutual funds would be a good choice. Call their toll-free number and get them to send you a prospectus on an investment or two. Make sure at least one investment is an index fund. Do not worry if you don’t know exactly what you’re talking about because the people who take these calls are very nice and helpful.
4) Soon you’ll go to the mailbox and instead of just finding bills you’ll find mail about investments. On a regular basis go back to the same store, to the same clerk and buy another magazine and then be seen in public reading it. Plan to call for information about different types of investments and receiving more mail.
The point is this, you’ll be learning about finances, you’ll start to think of yourself as someone who knows about money and other people will begin to think of you as someone who’s money savvy. Who knows maybe sometime soon your favorite clerk will say, “You’re always buying those money magazines, what do you know about index funds?” And you may just have the answer! You will have changed what you think, say, and do in regards to investing; this is a very powerful step in the right direction.
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