Tag Archives: finance

Opportunity Cost and Your Career

“Opportunity cost” refers to what you can potentially lose by choosing one option over another – even when you aren’t thinking about it.

Nearly every choice you make precludes something else that might have been.

Opportunity cost exists in everything from relationships to finances to career choices, but here we’ll focus on that last one. Over a lifetime, the cost of career decisions can be massive.

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The math
For opportunity costs that can be measured, usually in dollars, there’s even a math equation. (FYI, Ms. ME spent a few years as a Mathematics instructor.)

What I sacrifice / What I gain = Opportunity cost[i]

Let’s say you have two career choices. One is to work as a mechanic at $50 per hour and the other is to work as a karate instructor at $20 per hour.

Opportunity A / Opportunity B = Opportunity cost

Here it is with numbers: $50 / $20 = $2.50

To translate that, for every $1 you earn as a karate instructor, you could have earned $2.50 as a mechanic. The ratio remains the same whether it’s for one hour worked or 1,000 hours worked because it’s based on earnings per hour.

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Adding a time element
We can only work a certain number of hours in a week and we can only work for a certain number of years in a lifetime. Adding time into the discussion doesn’t change the math relationship between the opportunities but it does recognize real-world constraints. Sometimes these limits are by choice. You could be both a full-time mechanic and a full-time karate instructor, but most people don’t want to work 80 hours per week. Something has to give, and that’s where considering opportunity cost comes in.

If you only want to work 40 hours in a week, you’ll have to choose one career over the other or split your time between the two. But even in splitting your time, there is an opportunity cost. Think about it like this: Every hour spent in a lower paying job costs money if you had an opportunity to earn more doing something else.

The bigger picture
In our example using the mechanic vs. the karate instructor, the difference in annual income is over $60,000 per year ($104,000 minus $41,600). Over a 40-year working career, the difference in earnings is nearly $2.5 million, and it all happened one hour at a time.

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Life balance
Your career choice shouldn’t just be about money – you should do something you enjoy and that gives you satisfaction. There may be several other considerations as well – like opportunity to travel, the kind of people you work with, and the greater contribution you can make to the world. However, if there are two choices that meet all your criteria but one pays a bit more, just do the math!

Strange as it may sound thanks to Covid-19 and everything else that happened in 2020 many people are doing the math and reevaluating what they want to do with their lives. For some, reconnecting with a long lost passion as a side gig or even a full leap into entrepreneurship is the direction that they are considering to achieve their desired level of wellness. If you’re in this category, tell us in the comments below. 🔻

[i] https://blog.udemy.com/opportunity-cost-formula/

SPLURGING RESPONSIBLY?

We have an odd relationship with splurging.

Many of us treat it like a guilty pleasure and almost take a little pride in our extravagant purchases, even seeing it as “self-care”. But there’s also a part of us that knows we’re not being wise when we senselessly spend money.

So how do we resolve that tension between having fun and making good decisions? Here are a few ideas to help you splurge responsibly (even during the “holiday” season)!

checklist1. Budget in advance
“Responsible splurging” might seem like a contradiction, but the key to enjoying yourself once in a while and staying on track with your financial strategy is budgeting. Maintaining a budget gives you the power to see where your money is going and if you can afford to make a big/last-minute/frivolous purchase. And when you decide that you’re going to take the plunge, a budget is your compass for how much you can spend now, or if you need to wait a little longer and save a little more.

2. Beware of impulse purchasing
The opposite of budgeting for a splurge is impulse buying. We’ve all been there; you’re scrolling through your favorite shopping site and you see it. That thing you didn’t know you always wanted—and it’s on sale. Just a few clicks and it could be yours!

Tempting as impulse buying might be, especially when there’s a good deal, it’s often better to pause and review your finances before adding those cute shoes to your cart. Check your budget, remember your goals, and then see if that purchase is something you can really afford!

3. Do your research
Have you ever spent your hard-earned money on a dream item, even if you budgeted for it, only to have it break or malfunction after a few weeks? Even worse, it might have been something as significant as a car that you wound up trying to keep alive with thousands of dollars in maintenance and repairs!

That’s why research is so important. It’s not a guarantee that your purchase will last longer, but it can help narrow your options and reduce the chance of wasting your money.

Responsible splurging is possible. Just make sure you’re financially prepared and well-researched before making those purchases!

What tips do you have for splurging responsibly or as we like to call it “ballin’ on a budget”? Share them below or on our social media:

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What Separates the Wealthy from the Majority – Education

Do the wealthy know ways to make money that are unknown to everyone else? You better believe it!

John D. Rockefeller, one of early America’s richest tycoons, once said, “I have ways of making money that you know nothing of.” How does that make you feel? Shouldn’t everyone know the best ways to make money and create a prosperous future?

But the fact remains that there are wealth-building principles that are common knowledge to the wealthy but are largely unknown by the majority of the population.

So why is the average citizen in the dark?

How money works is simply not taught in schools. I originally bookmarked this article about states lagging behind in teaching students about money in 2014. At the time, only 4 states required high school students to complete a personal finance class to earn their high school diploma. Has the situation improved in the past 6 years?

Well a little but not much. While 21  states in the U.S. include personal finance in at least one high school class, only 6 now require it for graduation.¹  And even if you’re fortunate enough to have enrolled in one of these classes, who’s to say whether or not you got a qualified educator. According to a study done by Fox News, teachers are often not trained in personal finance themselves so they’re “afraid that students will ask questions that they don’t have the answers to” and steer clear. ²

Interestingly, all 50 states teach a class on sex ed. So the one thing you can learn on your own, they teach. And the one thing you’ll never learn on your own, they don’t. Go figure.

Actually, it does figure.

Think about it. If the financial industry were to educate consumers about money savviness, people might stop socking away so much of it in low-interest savings accounts that earn less than a 1% rate of return. And before you leave the branch do they offer you a brochure on financial concepts to help you get out of debt, avoid money missteps, and start saving like the wealthy?

Pfff—yeah right!

No. It’s like, if you’re dumb enough to open a low-interest savings account and take the free lollipop (it’s like their sucker litmus test), then they’ll try to sell you a car loan at 6% interest³ . What a deal. You earn less than 1%—they earn 6%. It’s like a lose-lose for you, but you still thank them on the way out.

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Hard to fathom there are that many suckers? It’s true…

The financial industry thrives on customers who are stuck in the “Sucker Cycle” of foolish spending. While consumers are binging on Netflix, shipping on Amazon, and ordering from DoorDash, institutions are quietly leveraging the power of compound interest to make their customers’ money work for themselves. While consumers live paycheck-to-paycheck, financial institutions and shrewd businesses build profits sucker-to-sucker.

For most people, earning (and spending) a paycheck is the extent of their experience. But the wealthy know the real deal. To become financially independent, you must know the concepts and strategies to save, protect, and grow your money. You have to have a sound financial eduction.

Did this article make you mad? Hopefully, it did.

So what do you do about it? You stop taking the sucker and you stop being the sucker. You learn how to take control of spending, protecting, saving, and investing your money. How? step1 – You read the book, “HowMoneyWorks, Stop Being a Sucker.” It will only take about an hour.

Don’t have a copy? Contact me and I’ll help you get one.

Step 2 – Use that anger to fuel action.  Attend the next How Money Works master class, Part 1. Announcement coming soon!

Afterwards, reach out to me and say, “Now that I know the ways of making money Rockefeller spoke of, I’m ready to chart my own course to financial independence.” We have a clear action plan for you to follow called “The 7 Money Milestones.” I’ll help you check off each one.

Let’s do it together.

(1) https://www.councilforeconed.org/survey-of-the-states-2020/

(2) https://financialeducatorscouncil.org/financial-literacy-statistics/

(3) https://marketwatch.com/story/new-car-loans-hit-highest-interest-rates-in-a-decade-2019-04-02/

How to Divorce Your Job and Keep the House – #1

Let’s have a virtual show of hands, “Who hates their day job?”

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Click to take the poll. See the results in the next post.

Everyday at mine, I encourage youths to really think about what job they will have and make sure it’s something they enjoy while my distaste for my job slowly grows. Believe it or not, I actually was excited when I began about what I how it would help me reach my personal goals and enjoyed it up until bureaucratic changes sapped all the joy from it. It’s become an abusive relationship. So I think it’s time to divorce my job just like I did my cheating, abusive ex.

(Was that TMI?)

Of course you should never rush into a divorce with a spouse and the same thing goes for your job. I’ve been contemplating this change for about the past three years and researching how to do it successfully,  keep my house (the job can keep the kids and the pets), and progress towards full-time self-employment. My (Blogging 201) goal is for this to be a new biweekly post series, filled with tips, research, and my own personal experiences. So on to the first tip.

ECVtalkbubbleTip 1: Have a side-hustle, side-gig, or alternate income stream.

Most everyone is looking for ways to supplement their income these days. I’ve been doing it myself for about 10 years now. While there have been good and not-so-good years, I’ve persisted which is a key trait when your goal is to be self-employed.

Don’t know what you might be able to do?

Well if you’re reading this you might be a blogger. Fellow blogger Charlene Oldham talks about opportunities to get paid for your writing. She also suggested the site Elance.com. This site actually suggests work based on the skills you enter when you register. Check it out for ideas or do a web search for similar sites.

Check back in two weeks for a list of side-gig suggestions.

“I Want to Start My Own Business” Day

Today is “I Want to Start My Own Business” Day. If you’ve followed this blog, you’re familiar with our Divorce Your Job & Keep the House series. If not, don’t worry because we’ll be reposting them starting next week Friday. But to intro the reboot we want to recognize this special day and share this wonderful article written by Ben Guinter on figuring out what business to start.

While we recommend starting your own financial services business due to the incredible opportunity that exists because of the unique set of circumstances that exist, we know that
isn’t everyone’s dream. So see the full article below for tips on how to find your idea and move forward.

Watch the video to find out 7 things that make a financial services business a great idea.

Source: Chapter 12: The 7 Elements of an Ideal Wealth Building Opportunity — Wealth Wave


September 11th is “I Want to Start My Own Business” Day

– See more at: http://benguinter.com/iwanttostartmyownbusinessday.html#sthash.b0Et8kJ9.dpuf
If you’re looking for something to do today then stop procrastinating because it’s “I Want to Start My Own Business” Day! If you’ve ever said that statement before, today is the day to take your first step toward that goal! Let’s get right into celebrating “I Want to Start My Own Business” Day!

WHY IS THIS A HOLIDAY?

Well, think about how many times you’ve heard people say that phrase before… there’s a reason why it’s in quotation marks. 😉 People say it all the time and never act upon it, whether or not they have a strong desire to own a business or not. They mention it and forget about it before taking a step toward that goal. So sure, we could just spend today pointing our fingers at procrastinators or we could make it a day of action where you finally put into play a plan on how you’re going to reach your goal of running your own business. It can be a struggle to get started but if you don’t have a plan to achieve your goal then it’s just a passing dream. And if it’s really something that you want, you’ll just end up beating yourself up over not taking any action. But if you were to at least look into what it would take to get started, write out your definite goal and start mapping out your steps toward it then you’ll have a new purpose in life.

You won’t be a procrastinator, you’ll be doing what you want and before you know it you’ll have as much freedom as you desire. Can you imagine what it would be like to be your own boss? You set your hours, you decide what work you want to do and give the rest to your employees. Image what it will feel like to reach your goals! Just don’t abuse your power. 😉

HOW TO CELEBRATE

So, how can you celebrate today? Well, if you are one of those people who really do want to start their own business then your first step is to write down your goal. What is it you want to do with your business? What product or service are you going to offer? How are you going to make it unique? When you get it on paper you can start to mold it into exactly what you want your future business to become and it will be a constant reminder every time you see that paper. The next step would be to write out a plan of action. How are you going to reach that end goal? What are the steps you need to take to ensure your business succeeds? What kind of resources are you going to need and who can help you along the way? You can break these steps down to the simplest of tasks and put them in order so you know what you need to do from start to finish. And by the time you’re done you’ll know exactly what lies ahead of you. Can you guess what the next step is? DO IT! You have your goal mapped out, you know how you’re going to get there and now all you have to do is actually start doing what you planned to do. If you broke the steps down into individual tasks then just start trying to tackle a task a day or each week. Stick to it even when you are a little discouraged and you’ll have your business up and running before you know it! Have a great day and I can’t wait to see the grand opening of your business!

– See more at: http://benguinter.com/iwanttostartmyownbusinessday.html#sthash.1z1FR93G.dpuf