The Financial Diet: A Total Beginner's Guide to Getting Good with Money by Chelsea Fagan
In THE FINANCIAL DIET, author Chelsea Fagan provides a ton of practical ways to manage your money, as well as ideas on furthering your career. In the beginning pages, the author admits to her many foolish decisions as a kid. In particular, she laments this big mistake:
“The day I turned eighteen, I acquired my little card full of free money, and maxed it out within a month and a half of delirious spending.”
I bet a lot of readers can identify with the foolhardy decisions we all made when young.
The book especially focuses on suggestions for readers who are just beginning the journey on sound money management. Thus, Chelsea includes valuable tips such as, “#4. Automate What You Can Card payments, bill payments, and savings transfers should all be automatically made from your checking account. This way, you won’t tempt yourself to not save.”
Here is a tip that I especially liked:
“Even if you just dedicate a few hours a month to a side job, even one additional stream of income has a huge impact.”
I’ve never really thought seriously about doing that—now I will!
Here’s another gem: Don’t slide into a “CEO lifestyle” where you tell yourself how much you deserve all the money-wasting things you buy.
There is one feature of this book that is especially commendable: Chelsea doesn’t just rely on her OWN ideas—she consults experts whom she respects for their business wisdom. So instead of just getting the perspective from the author, the reader gets advice from lots of different folks. I don’t think I’ve seen that particular format in any other personal finance book.
For example, the author consults with Bridget Casey, Award-Winning Entrepreneur, and asks her, “What are the three most important financial strategies you live by?” The author repeats this “Q&A” approach many times throughout the book. I thought this was a really wise idea.
So all I all, I found THE FINANCIAL DIET to be a surprisingly fun read—as well as a practical book. The author is a witty and funny writer. She turns a pretty dull subject into something a lot more interesting. The illustrations by Eve Mobley also add a nice touch. There is a glossary of business terms appendix.
The end of the book has a few closing exhortations to the reader. She wants the reader to figure out “What you really want out of your life— not just the “big” things, but how you want your average day to look and what you want to be doing with it. “