The worst, and best, investment you can make

Have you ever wondered what is the best investment to make the most money?

Well, there is a simple answer to this question, and it’s not what think!
In this blog we are going to take a look at:

  • What is a commodity? and what commodity is worth more than money?
  • How have we all been lied to?
  • What is the worst investment you can make?
  • What is the best investment you can make?

What is a commodity? and what commodity is worth more than money? 

We need to start with a basic understanding of the word commodity. I define commodity as something of value that can be traded.

If I were to tell you that we all have what is the most important commodity in the world. Even better yet, we all have same amount of it (in an ideal world).

You are probably reading this thinking, ok, what the heck is he on about?

Well, I’m going to tell you that…Time is the most important commodity on the planet, and all the money in the world cannot replace that fact.

How we have all been lied to…

As children, we were told that we need to spend a lot of time, money, and effort preparing us for when we grow up and enter the world with a predictable and safe career path that involves working as many hours each week as possible in return for a pay cheque.

We were told that we need to be at work early, and work late, put in the time and effort, in the hope we will get recognised, and maybe we will get regular promotions for all our hard work. We do all this for 5 plus days a week, until we turn 65, and hopefully we will have enough money to retire.

Yet, statistics show many Australians can’t afford to retire, and 1 in 4 Australians retire in poverty! That’s below $457 a week to pay your rent, bills, phone, put petrol in your car, and food on your table. This likelihood increases if you are a woman.

Ouch!

But it’s not our parent’s faults that they sold us this lie, they themselves were told this as well.

I think we can all agree that we all are more than aware there simply aren’t enough hours in the day. When you trade your time for money, your income will always be limited. If we go through life trading time for money, we can only work so many hours a week, as we need to do things like sleep, eat, take care of ourselves, commute and even take some time to have fun.

The worst investment you can make is exchanging your time for money

Not only is time limited, but the value of our time is also limited by our skillset, e.g, a site labourer will never earn $100 per hour.

Then, we also need to consider that the more we earn, the more we lose. Employee tax is the most heavily taxed income there is, and the more income we earn, the more tax we face. Which means that when someone goes from making $75,000 to $100,000 per annum due to a promotion, they’re not actually $25,000 better off in take home pay.

Ok, our investment of time for money is certainly not the answer to our life goals. If we are lucky it may help us survive but we certainly won’t be thriving.

Historically, exchanging time for money feels safe and can provide a level of certainty. But if you’re looking for true financial freedom (and you can find out more about financial freedom in this recent blog Achieving Financial Freedom), the solution for most is to add additional income streams to our lives.

Ok, so how do we do that? Let’s start sharing some wisdom from the Oracle of Omaha.

What is the best investment you can make?

When talking investments, its only a matter time before Warren Buffett’s name comes up. Warren Buffett is dubbed the Oracle of Omaha. A man whose name is synonymous with wealth and investing, a true modern icon of success. He is one of the most idolised, revered and imitated investors in the world.

He has a simple answer to this question, and it’s not what you think.

Billionaire investor Warren Buffet says this one investment “supersedes all others”.

The very best investment you can make is one that “you can’t beat, can’t be taxed and not even inflation can take away from you.”

Insert drum roll now…

“INVEST IN YOURSELF”

Buffett said in a recent interview with Forbes.

“Nobody can take away what you’ve got in yourself, and everybody has potential they haven’t used yet.”

One of Buffett’s investments in himself came in early adulthood, when he signed up for a $100 Dale Carnegie public speaking course that he says changed his life.

“I was terrified of public speaking when I was young. I couldn’t do it,” Buffett said. In fact, he admits he would become physically ill when the time came to take the podium.

The course was taught at Dale Carnegie, the Institute named for the influential speaker and author of “How to Win Friends and Influence People.”

“You can’t believe what I was like if I had to give a talk,” Buffett recalls in the biography “The Snowball: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life.” “I would throw up.”

Even so, the young investor was determined to get over his crippling fear of public speaking and to woo Susan Thompson, who he would later marry.

“I proposed to my wife actually during the middle of the course, I got so confident about my abilities,” Buffett told Forbes. “It also helped me sell stocks in Omaha, despite being 21 and looking even younger.”

Buffett told Forbes that you can exponentially increase your potential “by simply being able to communicate better” and “enhancing your talents.”

Your potential is something that will help you have a more interesting life, Buffett added, but there is no better time to work on that than today.

“Address whatever you feel your weaknesses are, and do it now. Whatever you want to learn more, start doing it today. Don’t put if off to your old age,” Buffett said.

“You’ll have a more rewarding life not only in terms of how much money you make, but how much fun you have out of life; you’ll make more friends the more interesting person you are,” Buffett said. “So go to it, invest in yourself.”

Ok, so let’s summarise so far. We have learnt that our everyday jobs will probably not be enough to allow us to live the life of freedom we deserve. But, the more you learn, the more you earn. When you invest in yourself, you make an investment that will pay off today and tomorrow. Take the time and spend the money to do things that will make you a better, or more highly skilled or smarter or more knowlegeable person. Use these new skills and knowledge to generate new streams of income

The Oracle of Omaha tells us we need to invest in ourselves, to learn more, and in this case, we need to learn about other streams of income.

Keep an eye out for the next blog to read all about passive incomes. You will learn:

  • What is passive income?
  • Why you need a passive income
  • How to build a passive income, and
  • Five popular ways to generate passive incomes.

Other recent blogs you might be interested in:

How have you invested in yourself lately?

Note: The information in this article is general in nature as it has been prepared without taking account of your objectives, financial situation or needs

B M Peachey

B M Peachey, has over 15 years of experience investing in property and the stock market, in both New Zealand and Australia. She has a post-graduate degree, with qualifications in Finance and Mortgage Broking and in Accounting and Bookkeeping. She is passionate about ensuring people have access to credible, reliable, and easy to understand information to help them get in control of the life they REALLY want to live.

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    Disclaimer: The information in this article is general in nature as it has been prepared without taking account of your specific objectives, financial situation or needs. Therefore, you should consider whether the information is appropriate to your circumstance before acting on it, and where appropriate, seek professional advice from a finance professional such as an adviser.