In a recent trip to the grocery store, the tide display was front and center. I found myself laboring over the simple decision of whether to get energy efficient vs extra strength, non-scented or scented, bleach alternative or color-safe, liquid or the new little pods. I actually stood their weighing the pros and cons of each choice way longer than any sane person would. This is laundry detergent for goodness sakes, to clean the clothes. Any of these choices would do the trick. The question becomes, do I bring this same level of discernment to choices I have that really will impact my bottom line. And by bottom line, I mean decisions such as how, when or if I will retire. You know the decisions I’m talking about… whether to put that newest gadget on a credit card or put the money in savings, whether to opt for the newest model car loaded with goodies or opt for a more modest ride, or take the vacation (because I deserve it) even though I’m travelling on plastic.
Let’s face it, in order for us to retire, we have to create a lake of money to support our raft when the spigot is turned off. Maybe I would be better off creating a method to increase the water supply, like upping my savings account, increasing my contribution to the 401K, investing in assets that pay to own them or consider starting a side business. If only we spent as much time and energy solving our financial issues as we do on silly decisions like which laundry detergent, maybe 1 out of 3 Americans wouldn’t be broke.