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Planning To Be Wealthy

by Steve of Brip Blap on 01/21/08

If you want to be wealthy, what’s the first step? Is it saving for an emergency fund, learning how to invest or embracing the frugal lifestyle? No – the first step is planning.

Many financial problems are caused by a lack of planning, and the reason why many people can’t bring wealth into their lives is a lack of planning, too. Someone who launches into investing without a plan may be excited at first by the idea of buying dividend producing stocks. After that idea loses its sparkle, that person might read a bit more and discover index funds. Future stops and starts continue to wreck any hope of getting ahead.

Knowing all your options is the most important part of planning. Before you start out building wealth, you need to come up with a plan (preferably written) for a number of areas:

  • Am I prepared to eliminate debt from my life? How will I do it?
  • Do I have adequate protection in place for myself and my family – wills, insurance, taxes and
    emergency funds?
  • Do I have an investment strategy? Am I going to invest in the market, in real estate or in other
    alternative investments? What are my options?
  • Is my current lifestyle reasonable, or can I save money without compromising my happiness?
  • Does my work complement my goals or hold me back?

And most importantly:

  • Why do I want to be wealthy? To give back? To have financial freedom? To support my business?

Often when people are young they don’t feel the need for planning. If you are young enough to feel that you have time to recover from your mistakes, you may think planning is a waste of time compared to “doing.” Yet at the same time making mistakes due to a lack of planning can come back to haunt you for years: failing to plan to manage your finances, your career or even your health or personal life can have long-lasting effects.

If there is any area of your financial life where you feel that things aren’t going well, take a step back and consider whether you have a plan. I recently started to wonder whether my investment strategy was well-thought out. I’ve been an investor in the stock market since high school, but I have never looked into or even seriously considered other avenues as they became available – real estate or alternative investments like Prosper or buying into businesses. Now that I’m interested in these areas, I am creating a plan; not because I’m tentative or have doubts about my ability to succeed, but because I know that with a plan I will succeed.

Steve S. is the author of Brip Blap, a blog about personal finance, health, career management, productivity and self-improvement. He lives and works as a contract governance and audit consultant in the New York City area, and has lived in Germany and Russia. He is an active lender at Prosper.


  • http://hometown.aol.com/mst7571593/mstcourtjesterindex.html Mark

    Hi
    You pretty much said it all! You gotta have a plan, focus and stick to it. I myself like to update my plans at the first of each year.
    It’s good to diversify! I like the R.I.G.S. strategy. Reccession, Inflation, Growth and Speculation! Keep 25% of your total portfolio in
    Reccession type vehicles. Mostly insurance, cash, CD’s, Bonds etc. Keep 25% in
    Inflation type investments, metals, real estate, oil, etc.. Then keep 25% in
    Growth type investments, stock funds, individual stocks, etc….And finally 25% in
    Speculative endeavors! Art work, a business, collectibles, etc…
    I even diversify among the 4 groups. I myself never like to have more than 10% of my total portfolio in anyone investment.
    Anywho, that’s my plan and I’m sticking to it! My goal is financial freedom by the year 2016!

  • PrivateLender

    What I’ve found is that to become wealthy, you have to take responsibility for the results you get in life.

    (1) Planning is the first step to taking this responsibility.

    (2) Executing your plan is the second step.

    (3) Learning from your mistakes and correcting your plan is the third step.

    Repeat these steps forever, even after you become wealthy if you want to stay wealthy.

  • Pingback: Prosperity and Planning


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Notice: Blogs and other materials posted on or linked from this page that use the name "Prosper" generally use that name to refer to Prosper Marketplace, Inc. if published before January 31, 2013 and to refer to Prosper Funding LLC if published on or after February 1, 2013.