Saturday, March 22, 2014

Investment advice

This cannot be considered solid advice in investment or savings. Just what I wish was told to me when I was 22 and out of college. I could be very wrong on a lot of stuff but I am still learning. 

1. Spend less on stuff
For first time in your life, you might be getting a good sum of money(read: more than what you may need) every month. This gives a sense of freedom and an intent to buy a lot of stuff - Read Stuff by Paul Graham. 

You don't need lot of those stuff. Don't buy stuff because you can afford them or need just once. Buy because it might significantly improve your quality of life on a regular basis. Rent/share/borrow everything else. 

2. Spend more on experiences
Try taking a music lesson. Go to an exotic location with your friend(s). Maybe try flying abroad like south east asia, europe etc. Do a backpacking trip. Attend a yoga class. Collect comic books. May be spend on a spa and give yourself a good massage. 

These are just some of the things. But you get the picture. Spend on experiences. They last forever and you are better for gaining them.

3. Spend better for services
Lets say you usually eat at a restaurant. When you have more money don't go for a costlier joint, Instead try the same place but start tipping the waiters well. Build a relationship with them. If you are regular and tip better than other customers, the service you are gonna get is going to be much better.

Similarly for saloon, grocery shopping etc. 

Don't be just another customer. Be a privileged customer to someone. The service providers love a returning customer. You are giving them reason to do their service better. 

4. Spend on people
Your parents, your siblings, your friends. Pay for a lunch, a movie, a trip for your parents that they would never do, anything. Let them know that they are important in your life than your money. Of course, only on people, to whom you want to mean that!  

5. Make mistakes: 
Don't worry about losing money when you are learning. It is OK to make mistakes. The inability to learn and the cost of making mistakes seem to grow up exponentially with age and commitments. 

If you are in India, like me, chances are the amount of learning you had in your engineering course is going to be low. That doesn't mean you can't learn them. Don't think much for spending on courses/lessons that could help you get better at what you do.

6. Shit happens.
Inflation isn't going away anytime soon. There are going to be market crashes and bad times for jobs. The single best thing you could do to equip yourself is not by saving a lot of money in your bank account but give yourself skills and experiences to flourish in any situation. 

I am not saying don't do savings/investments. Those are important to you on a rainy day. But the confidence and ability to back yourself to enjoy/manage yourself in any kind of situation could be the best thing you give yourself.

Courtesy: Reposting from Suren at Quora. He wouldn't mind as long as audience get the message. Also because he's #Nanbaenda

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