In today’s BenchTalk, we’ll be talking about value and investments. In order to understand the link between value and investments, it’s important to understand the difference between an investment and an expense. In the financial world, an investment is something you spend money on that you believe will go up in value over the long term…things like the stocks and bonds in your retirement account or your home. On the other hand, expenses are really everything else…things that might be important like groceries, but don’t increase in value. Ultimately, even your car is an expense. The key to accumulating financial wealth over the long term is to increase the amount of resources that you spend on investments and decrease the amount that you spend on expenses. As a financial planner, I spend time helping my clients find that balance between their investments and the expenses that are necessary for their daily lives, and help them increase their long-term financial value.
However, you and I both know that the value of our lives is not based on our financial position. Perhaps we can take the principles that apply to our finances and apply them to our lives.
The two primary resources that we all have are time and money. We all have the same 24 hours in a day. No matter how much money we have, those finances are limited. Every time we spend our resources we have a choice: do we spend our limited resources on things that increase the value of our lives or do we spend our resources on things that don’t. So what does a life investment look like? That answer is different for everyone. Maybe it’s a vacation with family – investing in memories. Maybe it’s getting that degree – investing in your future potential. Maybe it’s a night out with friends – investing in relationships. Maybe it’s a simple as taking the time to read a good book – investing in yourself. Whatever investment looks like for you, be intentional about those choices and increase the value of your life.