Good financial management is a part of good adulting. Whether you’re pushing papers in a cubicle or writing papers from home, you’ve got to take care of the bills. This holds true especially so for self-employed workers in the gig economy. The monetary hurdles are more numerous and steep than those who work under corporate structures.
Tight budgets must be organized, flexibility prioritized, and forward-planning deified. Not to mention the necessary wherewithal of how to file taxes as a self-employed worker! Independent contractors need to be managers, bookkeepers, and workers, all at once. And nothing gets done without funding.
Fortunately, there’s lots of help in the personal sector on how to budget finances as an independent contractor. Mobile apps for the self-employed ease the burden of money tracking. Informative websites (like ours) remain as a roadmap for the ever-evolving gig economy. Namely, successful testimonies lead the way for those looking to maximize the use of personal finances. We’ve dedicated a space to such resources as those.
Here are some of the best personal finance books and podcasts for 2021!
Our Top Personal Finance Books for 2021
We’ll start with the literature. These books were chosen for being easy to read and understand for any and all on the financial management journey. Many of these books and podcasts are in line with the FIRE movement.
The FIRE (Financial Independence, Retire, Early) Movement is a system of extreme investing and saving that allows for early retirement. Conventional retirement plans and saving techniques do not allow for the same conversion of income into savings. That being said, the focus is maximized toward hardworking individuals willing to take adequate measures to secure their financial future (like you!) Let’s get into it:
Retire Before Mom & Dad by Rob Berger
Here’s a great read for anyone serious about making strong habits out of saving money. It’s one of the best financial planning books because it focuses on the long game of financial upkeep. Financial freedom is probably the biggest incentive for those who choose to become self-employed. “Retire Before Mom & Dad” emphasizes how action can be taken toward more financial freedom regardless of one’s starting income. Rob Berger makes investing simple as he explains straightforward steps to take when securing one’s finances. The book is also good for beginners, as most of the weird business jargon gets thoroughly clarified. Plus, it’s chock full of resources for personal reference.
It’s particularly a good read for those well acquainted with the FIRE philosophy. That’s because it has a strong focus on saving and investing, and less on budgeting. Budgeting is obviously important since one needs money before one can move money. If you’re struggling with your budget, check out our tips on budgeting as a freelancer. Perhaps the greatest point yet is that Rob does not suggest a one-size-fits-all model in his book. Different approaches are offered for different folks in different situations. It’s one of the best personal finance books on the market.
The Millionaire Next Door by Thomas J Stanley & William Danko
Our second pick for great personal finance books shovels up a rather opposite approach to the former. It’s an old classic that has held strong throughout the years—that means good philosophy. “The Millionaire Next Door” contains first-hand testimonies from interviewed millionaires on their keys to success. One surprising thing about those who have more money is that they spend less money. Well, on certain things at least. The book reps the utter importance of financial independence but also defends the need for frugality. Several approaches to why and how to save money are offered. Before getting the book, check out our pro tips on how to be more frugal as an independent worker.
If nothing else, this book will imprint within you the successful mindset of those who have worked hard to acquire and maintain real wealth. Starting your own business is advised as one of the key points for real wealth in the literature, so you’re on the right track! It’s a quick read, and definitely worth the mental note-taking.
The Best Personal Finance Podcasts
Next up is audio. What better way to reeducate yourself in financial management than during the day’s downtime. Here are our top picks for best finance podcasts:
The first pick is an award-winning personal finance podcast hosted by a renowned female finance expert. Farnoosh Torabi holds discussions with financial gurus and entrepreneurs of all colors on the show. What’s best is that the jargon is pedestrian and the subjects are easily comprehensible. Real-life stories are used to the point of attaining financial insights. It all happens on a personal level, so it’s almost like having an experienced financial coach’s advice at your fingertips. In that vein, we recommend this money-saving podcast for beginners wanting to kickstart their financial management habits.
Here’s one of the best finance podcasts for the self-employed striving for financial independence. This podcast also uses an interview/dialogue-based conversation style. The hosts converse with some of the biggest names in the FIRE movement community to dive deep into how to achieve financial independence. It challenges the olden concepts behind how to save money for retirement, or what financial independence should look like. Everything from tax avoidance to investing to real estate comes to light. If you’re looking for a milieu of diverse perspectives on achieving financial independence now, this is your podcast.
Dave Ramsey a radio show host and author of the bestselling book, “The Total Money Makeover.” He’s a big name in the financial world, especially when it comes to getting out of debt. As it turns out, that’s what his show is all about. This is one of the best money podcasts for learning the ins and outs of mitigating and eliminating debt. That goes for loans of all sorts, personal debt from poor money management, mortgages, etc. Ramsey holds no punches and gives it straight, but thousands can and do attest to the efficacy of his teachings. Eliminating debt is an important part of true financial freedom—start here if you’re in the hole.
As a final thought, remember to exercise discretion when it comes to the vagaries of financial mastery. There are innumerous sources available for anyone who desires the implementation of better money habits into their lives. Take baby steps. Make small yet significant changes, little by little. Before you know it, your financial bubble will be growing exponentially!