Pay Yourself First

“That is truth, Kobbi, unpleasant thought though it be. We do not wish to go on year after year living slavish lives. Working, working, working! Getting nowhere.”

George S Clason Richest Man in Babylon

One of the first important principles in the classic, Richest Man in Babylon, is to pay yourself first. When I first read this passage as a young adult, I had zero debt and zero obligations. I decided to give this a try and put away 10% of everything that I earned.

At the time, I mowed lawns, so not lucrative, but I paid myself 10% – really more, because savings is contagious. I also made sure to give 10% to my church, and in reality I believe this should be the first principle, to give 10% and save 10%.

Within a couple of months I had $500 saved, but that was too much temptation for my young self and I went a bought the newest PlayStation and games to play. That would have been OK had I started to save again, but I did not. It became too easy to borrow money on credit and for school to get the things I wanted at that time and I developed some awful money habits. Habits I am still paying for today.

I decided to put my faith in the pay myself first category and I have now checked the box to put 6% of my salary into my 401K that is matched for a total of 10%. I really do not feel I can afford it and it is going to be tight, but based on the first rules it has to be done and I have to have the faith that it will work out.

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