BY JON T. HOOIMAN, RICP®, FINANCIAL ADVISOR
2020 has been a year to remember. In our small community alone, we have gone through: a global pandemic with COVID, an earthquake, hurricane-like winds, school closures, job losses, social distancing, toilet paper and hand sanitizer shortages, and much emotional distress due to hardship.
What can be done to predictably bring about happiness and minimize stress during these crazy times? There is a financial formula that can bring about good financial health, regardless if the world is going through good or bad periods. The formula is K-I-S-S, representing the order that we should use money: be Kind, Invest, Save, and then finally Spend.
Kind – Studies have shown that people feel up to three times happier when they give $20 to someone in need than when they receive $20. Support those who are experiencing financial hardships. You may find that this simple gesture will do much more for you than you could have expected. I have seen this in my own life when a vehicle in front of me at a drive thru has paid for my food. I have greatly appreciated this, and I also look for unique ways to pay it forward.
Invest – Investing is when you have your money work for you, with hopes to earn even more money down the road. If you don’t know how to invest, see an advisor to create a financial plan and begin doing so if you have not already.
Save – A general rule of thumb is to maintain 3-6 months of living expenses in savings. COVID-19 has proven that the world can change very rapidly. People quickly lost jobs they previously thought were secure. Having a savings account can help to alleviate the stress and burden that may be felt after unexpectedly losing a job.
Spend – After you have been kind, invested, and saved money, then you should spend only what is leftover.
Following these financial principles can help facilitate a well-rounded life, regardless of the current economic or financial situation we are in.
Any opinions are those of Jon T. Hooiman, and not necessarily those of Raymond James.