Posted by Tim Stobbs on March 22, 2010
The other day I was doing an interview and discussing a few items in regards to personal finance and during the wrap up where the reporter was getting all my details: name, location and age. She paused slightly when I mentioned my age, turning 32 in a couple of months. At first I couldn’t figure out why the pause then I wondered if personal finance suppose to make you old? Hence my age would be slightly surprising.
Typically youth is associated with a lack of responsibility while older people are suppose to be more responsible. This of course is a gross over simplification of the situation. I’ve met exceptions to both ends of the spectrum. Yet I do think there is a bit of truth about my question. Personal finance (PF) does tend to result in people acting a bit more responsible hence the expectation of people that you are older.
By learning about PF you tend to start to think about the longer term issues such as paying off your mortgage earlier, saving for retirement or putting something away for your kids education. You also learn about delayed gratification and not spending more than you earn. In some regards learning about the PF essentials is a bit boring, but very valuable information to have.
The result of all this is I tend to have conversations with anyone and everyone on money. I can discuss pension concerns with the nearly retired and equally feel comfortable talking to younger people who are still looking for the get rich quick program (which does exist, but no one wants to admit it typically takes decades so ‘quick’ is misleading). So the end result is I think some people who never see me face to face expect me to be a bit older than I am.
This odd expectation is completely fine with me. Financially speaking I likely have more in common with the average 42 year old than my actual age (house will be paid off in the next two years and I have a comfortable $100,000 nest egg started). So the mistake is actually somewhat true on a purely numbers game. Yet really that is the point of this blog. I want to be financially old and trapped in a young person’s body when I retire at around 45.
If people want to think I’m older, the go right ahead. I’ll take it as a compliment.