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Do you feel sleepy from your job? Read “Your money or your life”

Authors Vicki Robin and Joe Dominguez claim that many people make more than just making a living by dying – making money by trading their remaining time on earth for something that can suck joy and happiness away. wonder, and even empty relationships. In a first chapter, you will see a table that lists the ages and the average remaining life expectancy in years and hours.

Yes, we need paychecks to pay our bills. But the authors argue that we may have gotten a bad deal – we’re not earning as much as we think per hour. You know, once we subtract the cost of the clothes we buy to impress our colleagues, the price we pay for commuting, and the expenses associated with unwinding, like going to the movies or taking expensive trips.

They write: “At the end of the day, we think we work to pay the bills – but we spend more than we earn on more than we need, which sends us back to work to get the money to spend on get more stuff – that sends us back to work!

Then things start to get carried away.

Arguing that our financial habits are part of the reason we’re trapped, Robin and Dominguez invite readers to dream of another reality more to our liking. Altogether, the 1992 classic, which was updated in 2018, offers readers a nine-step program designed to transform our relationship with money so that we can work our own agenda as much as possible. You won’t read this book to learn how to get rich – it’s not that kind of guide. But it will get you thinking about how to live with enough. For writers, the stages caused them to abandon traditional work early.

[This is the Bankrate Book Club’s second book. The book club reads a personal finance book together every month and discusses it in the Money Masters group on Facebook. You can also follow along on Instagram for more announcements and group discussion.]

A personal finance bestseller is born

Parts of “Your Money” are from Dominguez’s audiotaped course and manual on how to achieve financial independence (as he did when he was 31). Dominguez first teamed up with Robin in the 1970s and they worked together producing financial education seminars and more. Twenty-seven years ago they released “Your Money”. Dominguez passed away in 1997 and Robin recently updated “Your Money” in 2018 – with an introduction from Pete Adeney, the famous financial freelance blogger better known as Mr. Money Moustache. Now, the co-authors are considered by many to be pioneers of the Financial independence Take early retirement (or FIRE).

This latest edition includes updates to accommodate the modern world (such as the existence of smartphones) and preserves fundamental principles that have for the most part stood the test of time. This book may be for you if you want to find the motivation to worry about money, purge your money-wasting habits, resist dead-end routines, and reconnect with old dreams. “Your money” may well be accompanied by a career counseling session or two.

The chapters are long but quick in the 306-page book. There are anecdotes from people who have successfully completed the program, quotes from philosophers and money-related prompts that will make you examine yourself, such as “talk about an early memory of money and how it affects you now” and “what have you always wanted to do that you haven’t done yet.

Don’t be put off by the big demands outlined at the beginning of the book. Yes, the authors invite you to find out how much money you have earned all your life – money included since childhood (you can visit Social Security website to get an approximate figure, although the authors recommend getting a more exact answer). Without doing these kinds of calculations, you can still get a lot out of reading “Your Money” as a personal finance novice.

The reward for reading this book

Beyond these kinds of tasks, the uninitiated should find this book quite accessible. It’s philosophical as much as it describes this kind of money advice. You’ll receive reminders about living below your means, long-term investment strategies, and avoiding spending money on things you won’t actually use. More interestingly, you will get prompts that will make you dream. For example, “Your Money” invites readers to: “Ask yourself how you would spend your time if you could take a paid gap year.”

Readers will also get more fun savings ideas, like considering volunteering at World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms in exchange for a getaway where you don’t have to pay for food or accommodation, or plant a garden to reduce the amount you spend on produce.

Too often, out-of-the-box lifestyles are ignored by mainstream budgeting advice, but not by this tome. Heck, “Your Money” even points out in its pages that “not everyone can fit their winding lives into the straight lines of a spreadsheet,” like Justin, who trades housework for a room in the house. of an elderly woman. It’s very easy to imagine a hipster reading this book.

“Your Money” also makes the case for overspending to limit mindless buying (or as the authors call it “gazingus pins”) for an interesting reason – by asking us to remember how many hours we had to work to buy. something we don’t have. t actually use. “Over time, you feel better about not spending; not buying a gazingus pin now becomes a source of fulfillment because you yourself have determined that gazingus pins do not bring you fulfillment,” they write.

Sometimes the text comes across as a bit too preachy and could easily offend the hand-to-mouth reader. Yet “Your Money” repeatedly tells readers “no shame, no blame” throughout its pages — including if the exercises make you realize you’re spending more than you earn.

Although the book mentions that technology can help readers manage their money these days in passing, it doesn’t go into great detail. There are all kinds of apps these days that can automate areas of your finances or put a number on your gazingus pin – Allied bank, for example, allows customers to ask Amazon Alexa how many labor hours the item they want to buy is equivalent to. If you want an app to help you save money or pay off debt, you’ll have to look elsewhere for that kind of information.

Last Takeaways: Rating 4 out of 5

After reading “Your Money,” you may feel like you need a job that doesn’t take you that many hours. It’s an existential doosie. You may also never consider buying indulgences in the same way – those gazingus pins may start to look more like cabin farm traps.

The theme of the book that is closest to my heart is the reminder that life is short and that our time is precious. “You are a business,” the authors write in the quick reference. “You are in the business of maximizing the return you get in happiness for every hour of life energy expended.”

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