4 Most Impactful Money Lessons From 'I Will Teach You To Be Rich'

If you haven't read I Will Teach You To Be Rich, I don't blame you.

The title sounds a little 'click-baity'.

But there's no question that it's one of the best modern personal finance books out there.

It's been translated to several different languages and he's also released a second edition of the book since the first one released in 2009.

The goal of this book isn't really to teach you to be "rich" in the traditional sense of the term.

It focuses more on how to build your personal finance system so you can spend more time and money on the things you love, and less on the things you don't.

It's my favorite personal finance book and these are 4 of my biggest takeaways:

“Stop asking $3 questions and start asking $30,000 questions”

How many times have you heard 'skip the $5 coffee' get passed off as legitimate financial advice.

It's gotta stop..

Before deciding that you should cut out the one thing you look forward to every morning to save $25/week, take a look at everywhere else your money is going first.

And more importantly, where a majority of your money is going.

Are you spending too much on your housing costs?

Could you refinance your mortgage and save hundreds every month?

(Hint: You'll save way more by doing this than you'll ever save by cutting out coffee)

$30,000 questions are questions that actually have an impact on your overall financial future.

A few examples of these $30k questions are:

  • How can I increase my income?

An example of how this can be done is by asking for and earning a raise or learning a skill that allows you to switch careers or move up in your profession.

Read Ramit's guide on how to negotiate a raise

  • Am I spending too much on housing?

It's generally recommended to spend 20-30% of your take-home income on housing. You can potentially lower your housing costs by refinancing your mortgage to a lower interest rate or by downsizing to a more cost-friendly home.

  • How do I save/invest more?

It's hard to save your way to financial freedom but by investing along the way, you can let your money work for you and let compound interest do its thing over time.

Automate Your Money

Adding to the last point of saving and investing more, one of the best ways to build this habit is by automating your money.

By putting your savings and investments on autopilot, you can pay yourself first and guarantee that money is being saved. It helps remove the human error from trying to consistently save and takes away the stress of trying to remember every transfer to make each month.

Read: Last week's guide on how to put your money on autopilot

Spend Based on Values

In the book, Ramit walks through how to be conscious of your spending so that you're spending more money on what you enjoy and what's important to you - and $0 on the things that aren't.

Don't be afraid to be different. Figuring out what matters to you, however that looks, is the most important thing.

A very basic example of this principle - If you love travel but hate cars and new clothes, it would make sense to not buy new clothes or a new car and instead, spend more money on travel.

Read: Conscious Spending - How My Friend Spends $21,000/year on Going Out by Ramit Sethi

Don't Live in the Spreadsheets

If you find yourself getting caught up in the numbers, it's important to remember that money is only a tool to get you where you want to be. Once you've built your automated money system and you have a good understanding of your current financial picture, stop spending time on it.

It may sound counterintuitive to say that you should spend less time on your money, but that's the point of money right? To have the time to spend on the things you love?

Pay attention to your money when getting started, but don't live in the spreadsheets. Go out and live your life.

Related: Watch Ramit Sethi's Personal Finance Talk at Google

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