Money can’t buy happiness, but a lack of money certainly presents obstacles to living a happy life.
The purpose of Money Tofu is to help us (you and me!) achieve financial understanding of the many aspects of money so we can reach our goals, be they financial independence, early retirement, or just enjoying life to the fullest!
I started this site as a way to archive the knowledge and experience I’ve gained in understanding and optimizing my own finances (perhaps even passing it on to offspring in the future). As I read about the financial problems that many people face today, I hope that the knowledge contained here can help others as well.
From Money to Financial Understanding
When we think about money, many different possibilities come to mind. You may think about the impact of money in your life along these lines:
- Not having enough money to pay all the bills
- Not having enough money to pursue your passions
- The stress from going to work everyday at a job that you hate
Or you may think about all the various money-related matters you have to deal with:
- The complex tax system and how to pay the right amount
- Bank accounts and stock markets and what is the best way to invest
- Retirement accounts, Investments, 401(k)’s, IRAs, HSAs, and many other acronyms
The fact is that money matters are complex and take time to learn and understand. Unfortunately, these things are rarely taught well in formal education, so it’s something that we all have to learn ourselves (and if we’re lucky, from others who have already mastered it).
Ultimately, if you want to make it so money doesn’t pose as a thorn in your side, you need to achieve some level of financial understanding.
Going even further, financial understanding is essential if you want to realize a world where you can become financially independent in order to achieve your dreams, whether they be to work on your passions, make the world a better place, or retire early to enjoy life.
The GIST of Money
The dictionary definition of money is as follows: “something generally accepted as a medium of exchange, a measure of value, or a means of payment.” (Merriam-Webster)
This, however, is not the type of financial understanding I’m talking about. The keys to financial understanding lie in the flow of money: how it enters your life > what it can do for you > how it departs.
These 3 keys of the financial puzzle to understand the ins and outs of how to get, invest, and spend money together forms the GIST (Get-Invest-Spend Theory) of money.
Get: You must first acquire money to invest or spend it. We investigate various income related ideas and ways to generate and increase earnings.
Invest: The key to becoming and staying wealthy is to save money once you have it. Saving smartly will cause your money to earn more money for you, creating a virtuous cycle. We analyze the various ways that you can make your money work for you.
Spend: You can’t live without exchanging money for goods or services at least occasionally. We explore a variety of ways to keep expenditures low while still maintaining quality of life.
Understanding how to make the flow of money work for you is essential to achieving your goals. Read more or watch a video about the Get-Invest-Spend Theory of money here
Introduction to Financial Independence and Understanding
To start your journey, I recommend reading this 5-part introduction to financial independence and understanding to really get a good sense of what Money Tofu is all about.
- What is Financial Independence?
- 3 Reasons to Achieve Financial Independence
- How Do I Become Financially Independent?
- Why Trying to Achieve Financial Independence is Not Worth It
- Why Financial Understanding is Important Regardless of Financial Independence
Next Up: What is Financial Independence?