Hawaii 5-0: A Clarification


I received a number of inquiries regarding my comment highlighted below in green.  

  • The reason I said, “…I am working on ALL of them except #3 & #4…” is because I was able to achieve #3 — maxing out on retirement contributions to a 401k and IRA — long ago in my late 20’s.  Being able to achieve this goal was often at great sacrifice involving less leisure travel, not owning car for the first 10 years after college, and choosing small (VERY small – and cheaper) apartments in New York City.  I have remained committed to maxing out my retirement contributions over the years into the present and I pass along this advice to “max out” at every appropriate opportunity.


Here are a few of the items at the top of my list so far:

  1. SAVE, SAVE, SAVE…and then SAVE MORE.
    • This means saving for fun AND emergencies; saving for retirement AND vacations way before we retire.
  2. Know how much you SPEND.  Not necessarily to the penny but definitely know the categories and fairly accurately what is spent in each category.
    •  I am happy to supply a spreadsheet of categories to get you started.
  3. Max out your retirement contributions to 401k and IRA as early as you possibly can– and definitely by age 30.
    • There may be years when you need to save less due to “life happening” but in those times, try to find some kind of balance between spending less on discretionary items in order to pay for big events AND be able to make even small retirement contributions along the way.
  4. If you are NOT maxing out your retirement contributions, then consult with a professional on how to get from “Point A to Point B”.
    • Financial realities can be harsh but with a PLAN and a few years, real progress can be made toward even partial retirement someday.
  5. Take care of your health along the way.  Both in terms of longevity and future cost of healthcare, a healthy lifestyle earlier in life can ease all sorts of burdens in the future.

ALL of these items are easier said than done.  I am working to improve on all of them (except #3 & #4).  The perspective from which I come is gained from the privilege of working with successful people from all walks of life.  I get to see how successful individuals handle ALL the categories above and how they face challenges, celebrate, reflect and even relish achieving each of these things…and more.

Finally, after reflection comes action.  The constant cycle of celebration – reflection – action can lead to great things.  For the successful people reading this edition, you know who you are and I hope you keep enjoying the journey!  For ALL of us, keep the cycle going.

Please see my new Blog at https://kerriewagnerdebbs.wordpress.com for archives of former issues and more.


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