A little background about my personal finance journey and the goal of this blog.
It’s March 25, COVID-19 has left us all with plenty of free time. After my first long weekend spent in nature, on the phone, drinking beer, and watching tv - I was left depleted, sad, and alone. It was a good weekend in many ways - I have great people in my life who I was able to connect with, and I have two adorable animals, and I live in a place where I am able to exercise and keep my body strong. But still I was left longing. For purpose, for higher meaning, for impact. I think I’ve been desiring this for a while. But it’s scary to admit, and it’s easy to ignore when your days are full. I have an incredible life. I work full time at my favorite brewery. Everyday I spend time in nature with my dog, eat good food, and juggle my free time between seeing friends, woodworking, snowboarding/hiking, drinking beer, and managing my small business. You see I own a small business. I am a landlord in a small condo complex in Burlington, VT. It’s something I don't talk about often, because I run in a liberal circle in a liberal place. My Facebook feed is full of anti-establishment posts, and I see fliers around town about how capitalism is the root of all of our society's problems. So for years my passion for personal finance and investing has been mostly private, shared with my friends and family, but mostly something not discussed. It was easier. But as time has passed, it has become clearer and clearer to me that economic freedom for the masses is how we can enact massive social reform and how we can live the lives we imagine in a society we are proud of. So when I felt this emptiness, this desire for contribution, I was reminded of an idea that has been brewing in the back of my mind for years. A financial blog with easy to understand articles about very basic financial concepts that are critical to financial freedom but not discussed in our education system. I have become really interested in the concept of holding two truths constant in the past few years. It started when I was going through a break up. I quickly noticed my mood ebbed and flowed between my ex being the greatest thing to ever happen to me and the worst. I didn’t find peace until I figured out that both could be true. She could be my best friend and the person that taught me to love; while also being the person that broke me, and damaged me beyond belief. We live in a very polarized world and this ability to hold two truths constant is something I don’t see very often. Things are either all good or all bad, people are heroes or villains. We allow very little room for individuals, events, and things to be complex and multifaceted. I believe life is a little more complicated and understanding that you can believe two truths is key to happiness, peace, and change. I bring it up because as we go on this journey together, you’re going to need to hold two truths constant. Capitalism can prioritize money over all else, it can perpetuate racism, sexism, and homophobia, it can encourages greed, and it is destroying the environment. It is also the way we can take control of our lives, combat racism, sexism, and homophobia, create a society that truly works for everyone. It is how we can create innovation needed to save the planet, end world hunger, and improve the lives of everyone. I believe that the only way we can change our current capitalist system is through educating the masses, and leveraging our financial assets to enact the change we want to see. This first post is just going to be about me. So we can start with a mutual understanding of who I am, and where I am coming from. But after this I am going to be defining and explaining various economic principles and how they can be harnessed for our collective well being and constructive societal change. My interest in investing began years ago, when I was in highschool. When people ask me how I became interested, I usually lie and say I don’t remember and that it just happened. That’s not true, it’s just that the truth is embarrassing. I was sixteen, and reading 50 Shades of Grey. People have gotten many things from this book, when I read it Christian Grey taught me about compound interest. I can’t find the exact quote because my copy of the book has long been returned to the library, but essentially in plain words he explained that compound interest is when your money creates more money without you having to do anything (more on this later!). I was captivated and a fire was started inside of me, I needed to learn more. I went to the bookstore the next day to buy ‘Investing Online for Dummies’, took out every book on investing the library had, researched online and picked my dad’s brain for hours. I am beyond privileged, I am white and my parents are wealthy. Even more lucky is the fact that my dad has never withheld information from me, or encouraged me to pursue other passions because I am a woman. Instead he immediately delighted in my interest and helped to support me every step of the way. I know that not everyone is as privileged as I am, this blog is to help distribute financial knowledge so that others who are not so privileged and who haven’t been able to learn about financial principles can access important information. Now its been nine years of saving, investing, losing money, making money, and envisioning a future where I am able to experience true economic freedom. This blog is my attempt to leverage my privilege to empower others with financial knowledge and the ability to take control of their lives, and act from a place of power in demanding changes to our current society. So lets get started. Next check out Part 1 of Why to Start Saving Now