My #1 Money Tip

This post’s title is a proven attention getter. We just can’t resist checking out a hot tip because you can never tell if its going to be a game changer. I’d love to know how many tips actually turn out that way. I’d say close to zero.

I digress. You came here for my #1 tip, so here it is: Money tips don’t work.

This tip earned its way into my #1 spot because so many of the people who have sought out my coaching will say things like, “I get these on-line money tips all the time, but they just confuse me.”

People come to me because they want an effective way to manage money. It would be much easier if they only wanted money tips because I could fire those off in endless volleys. What they are asking for (usually) is a method to get a handle on spending, pay down debt and define a path to financial independence (and ideally get that all done ASAP). Doing that requires more than a few money tips.

To demonstrate the difference between method and tips I’ll use the analogy of car buying. Buying a car implies we are looking for a method of transporting ourselves. Let’s say we settle on model X. In its base form, model X does everything we need to satisfy our need. Buying the base car isn’t usually where things end. Car manufactures graciously offer a menu of options to enhance the enjoyment of our vehicle.

If the car represents method, think of options as tips. In theory, it would be possible to purchase car options as stand alone items. Imagine the interesting collection of goodies we could accumulate: leather wrapped steering wheel, seat warmers, 17′ aluminum wheels, park assist, vanity mirrors, etc., etc. The point is, the car (method) is what gives the options (tips) context. Without the car, the options are useless.

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Back to money. To take control, pay down debt and achieve financial independence we need a method. Some people figure this out for themselves while others need a little help. People in the latter group sometimes reach out to me. When they do, acquiring method is the primary goal. Getting that nailed down is a game changer. Still, if they insist, I’ll happily throw in a few tips.