287 – October 14
“Yesterday is a canceled check; tomorrow is a promissory note; today is ready cash—use it.”—Kay Lyons
I had just received a large cash settlement from an auto accident I had been involved in. Gleefully, I held the $12,000 check in my hand. I thought about what I should do with all this money. At the time, I had debts, so I considered using it all to pay down my debt. That felt good, but not great—I wouldn’t have anything fun to show for my good fortune. Then I thought, I could save all the money, but here again, I wouldn’t have any enjoyment of the money right now. What I really wanted to do was spend all the money on fun and extravagance. But that didn’t feel very responsible. I wrestled with the problem a while, then called a friend of mine, Gale Johnston, a certified financial planner.
When I confessed my dilemma, Gale laughed and told me about the “Rule of Three.” This is what she told me to do:
- Take a third of the money and put it towards the past—pay off debt.
- Take another third of the money and put it towards the future—invest it.
- Take the last third of the money and have a good time in the present—spend it.
I did as she suggested, and felt responsible and had fun at the same time.
I’m praying you receive a large windfall soon, so you can try this out for yourself!
“I am successful, generous, and happy!”
I love feeling responsible. Makes me feel like I am a good citizen, a proper role-model, smart, savvy, and together. I’m taking care of the future, storing my nuts for the winter like the squirrel in my backyard.
But then I love throwing caution to the winds, escaping the bonds of frugality, and splurging on fun, excitement, travel, poker, and fine dining! I don’t see any critters in my backyard doing that, though…they are all devoted to searching for food, building a nest, attracting a mate.
Except sometimes, it seems the birds just sit in the trees and sing, apparently for no reason except to revel in the sound of their song.