The challenge for this weekend is to get serious about a long-term wealth-building plan. If you do not take the time to create a financial plan and to build wealth, then you are unlikely to build real wealth. The people who end up wealthy do so by carefully planning and using their resources wisely. This weekend the assignment is designed to help you start thinking purposefully about how you want to use your money and your long-term goals. You may not have a goal to become truly wealthy, but rather just want to live comfortably, that is fine, but you will need to still plan and set goals to do it.
The first step this weekend is to determine just how much wealth you want to accumulate before you retire. You may want to leave a legacy for your family. This means that your children will receive a large inheritance when you pass away. You may just want to retire comfortably without needing to rely on help from your kids or other relatives to make ends meet. It helps to have a specific number in mind, because it gives you a solid goal to work towards. This means you can break down the number and run projections to figure out how much you need to save and how aggressively you need to invest.
The next step is set up a plan that will help you to build wealth. If you are still in debt, you need to begin to get out of debt right now. Take the first steps to paying off your debt today. If you want to build lasting wealth, you cannot keep paying interest to other people. The sooner you can get out of debt, the sooner you will be able to begin building real wealth.
Your third step in the challenge is to take the time to read The Millionaire Next Door. This is a book that can help you understand the difference between truly building wealth and looking or acting like you are rich. This book also breaks down the behaviors you will need to adopt to begin building wealth. It interviews a large cross section of millionaires and shows the financial decisions they made that helped them build real wealth. It can help you change the way you think about your money and the way you use it. Another interesting book you may want to read is Your Money or Your Life: Transforming Your Relationship with Money.
After you have done that, you can begin putting together an investing and savings plan. You may want to talk to a financial planner, who can help you to determine which types of stocks and mutual funds you should invest in. The key is to live on a budget where you are saving enough that you need to watch your money carefully each month. If you consistently put money into safe investments, you will be able to amass true wealth.
It will take time. You will need to commit to putting money away and watching your budget each month, if this is a goal you want to work towards. These principles will help you whether you want to save up a large fortune, or if you just want enough that you will be able to retire comfortably at some point. The sooner you begin working towards these goals, the easier it will be to reach them. Interest accrues over time, which means you will get to a point where your money starts earning more each month then you do. Once this happens, you will begin to build wealth more quickly.