Affluent: Income Rich vs. Balance Sheet Rich

I just finished reading Millionaire Women Next Door by Thomas J. Stanley, Ph.D. and became intrigued with Stanley’s references to income statement and balance sheet affluence. As a business major who has worked in financial analysis and accounting (and someone who is more balance sheet than income statement oriented!), I bonded to these terms immediately.

Learn more about these two types of affluence and why they can matter.

6 Practical Ways to Keep Your Emotions in Check When Investing

According to The Motley Fool, financial data firm Dalbar has found that “Investors tend to sell after experiencing a paper loss and start investing only after the markets have recovered their value. The devastating result of this behavior is participation in the downside while being out of the market during the rise.”

In the past, particularly as a younger investor, I noticed that I may feel inspired to invest in fast-growing, popular businesses when shares are in high demand; at other times, I may feel compelled to get rid of faltering, downward-trending companies with depressed stock prices. And, even though my feelings didn’t typically drive me to act on these feelings, I often felt anxious during times of market turbulence.

Over the years, I have become more adept at making intentional investment decisions, driven by long-term goals not short-term angst or excitement. Plus, I have learned not to let day-to-day market moves dictate my mood. Here are practical ways I have learned to keep emotions in check when investing:

4 Easy Steps to Overcoming Your Fear of Investing

One of the topics I find fascinating (and important) to explore is the idea of overcoming fear or other emotion that prevents people from investing in the stock market. Though some cynically view investing as a system gamed against the average investor, I believe it can provide opportunity for regular people to build wealth, gain greater freedom over their lives by becoming less dependent on employment, and improve financial security.

3 Steps to Avoiding Fear in Personal Finance

Are you afraid of revealing your personal financial situation and being judged harshly by financial professionals, your parents, or other people in your social circle? If yes, then you are not alone.

According to a 2014 survey of 2,000+ U.S. adults commissioned by TradeKing Advisors, 57% of would-be investors say that the thought of speaking with a financial adviser in person (either in a face-to-face meeting or on the telephone) has stopped them from investing. Seventy-four percent of Millennials (ages 18-34) and 66% of Gen X (ages 35-44) have allowed fear to paralyze them.

Whether you are part of these generations or not, you don’t have to be afraid.

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