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Do You Need to be a Money Nerd?

A few weeks ago Berkshire Hathaway had their big annual meeting via video conference.   I made a point of setting aside my Saturday afternoon to watch.  This post is not about that meeting.  Instead I want to talk to you about being a money nerd.  Specifically how being a money nerd is not a prerequisite to manage your finances, but it can help.

Saturday Afternoon with Warren

The Berkshire video conference was scheduled for a Saturday afternoon.  Given we are all stuck in the house I gave my wife a warning on Thursday that I would be setting aside some time to listen in.  Shutdown with 3 kids requires such pre-warning.

My Wife Calls Me a Money Nerd

Anyway, after hearing about my intentions my wife immediately called me a money nerd.  The concept of spending a Saturday afternoon listening to a 90 some year old Warren Buffet talk about economics and finance is totally foreign to my wife.  So foreign in fact that it plays partially into why this blog exists.  

My wife hates talking about finance and economics.  I, meanwhile, can’t get enough of it.  I am a money nerd to the core.  So this blog has always been a sort of compromise to allow me to have an outlet and my wife to keep her sanity.

Nothing Wrong with Being a Money Nerd

There is nothing wrong with being a money nerd.  I love to conjecture on things like what Covid-19 means to the economy, working methods, or even investments going forward. You see it in my writing. 

 I could spend hours conjecturing whether work from home will become the new normal.  Even more money nerdish, I love thinking about whether commercial real estate will suffer or gain as a result.    My wife meanwhile could care less.

Neither of us is wrong.  Everyone has to have a hobby or interest.  One of mine just happens to be economics and finance.  The reality, my wife has her own interests.  Many of which I’d argue approach the nerd level.  Money nerd just is not one of them.  

So right off the bat let us be clear there is nothing wrong with being a money nerd.  In fact odds are high if you read finance blogs or media regularly you either are a money nerd or are in financial distress.  People don’t read or write finance blogs when they don’t have an interest (either a real focused goal or for personal enjoyment).  

Finance as a Means to an End

So unless you wondered in via google for this one and only article about half of you are going to be money nerds.  But what about those who are hear more to turn their financial situation around?  These people exists as well.  The folks that read about finance merely as a means to the end of improving their life.

Money, So Easy a Caveman Could Do It. Or Yours Truly For that Matter

Well, you can be successful in finance without being a money nerd.  The key is to absorb enough financial knowledge to develop systems and automation to manage your finances.   The simple reality is financial success is not rocket science.   The basics are:

Define your goals

Spend less then you make

Diversify

Maintain liquidity

And set it and forget it.

You can hate finances and be successful following the basics in the above topics and never read another bit of financial literature again.  You won’t be quite as optimized as the money nerd, who can take advantage of every new twist, law change, tax change, or investment opportunity.  But you don’t have to be.

Money Needs To Be On Everyone’s Goal List

You do however need to do those 5 things, whether you don’t care for money or not.   Getting rich is not for everyone.  Focusing on financial success is not for everyone.  And yes, financial optimization is not for everyone.  But ensuring your financial position does not become a barrier to enjoyment for the other parts of your life is for everyone.  A very basic minimal amount of activity can help you to achieve that desired position.

Catering to the Different Reasons for Learning and Reading About Money

For the rest of us, we will continue to optimize, strategize, theorize, and even just wonder.   I enjoy being a money nerd and for example learning about the lastest credit card churning trick.  This site will continue to write about such things for the Money Nerd 50 percent.  

For the 50 percent that are not money nerds I will also continue to do my best to guide you to the articles that you will actually care about.  I love helping either group.  But I also recognize there are different reasons for wanting to learn about money.

Are you a money nerd or just someone looking to avoid finances ruling your life?

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