I have always been interested in psychology. I was always told this field wouldn’t make me money, so I majored in Business – what irony. I work with people every day. I work to guide humans with different backgrounds, ideas, tolerance for risk, motivations and beliefs. The financial industry is realizing (finally) that we have to understand the human and often gray areas of behavioral finance. Choices influence financial outcomes. It is all interrelated.

Ever since I attended the Financial Therapy Association conference in Denver Colorado last fall, I have been reading/listening to everything I can about financial psychology and behavioral finance. Not only will this impact my practice and advice to clients, it will help me understand my own money story and behaviors, but more broadly it helps me formulate why and how we as humans make financial decisions. Honestly, I don’t always “get” investor’s behaviors when it comes to their money. What I realize more and more, is that we are all so unique and different. We have to figure out what works best for us. That takes some introspection and self-awareness. It also takes tremendous discipline.

I am very excited to hear Morgan Housel talk in person at this year’s conference, Future Proof in Huntington Beach California. Today, I want to break down the main points I took from his book, The Psychology of Money – Timeless Lessons on Wealth, Greed and Happiness. I will surely have more to share after the industry conference in September, but for now, here are some top insights:

  1. Money was created by humans as a means of exchange. It is often used as a weapon or tool to throw around when we feel erratic or “crazy”. Our crazy behaviors with money don’t mean we are actually crazy ourselves.
  2. Wealth is subjective. It isn’t tangible.
  3. Investing has a social component.
  4. You can become wealthy. How do you maintain your wealth?
  5. You do not have to take huge risks to get big results.
  6. Whatever works for you is what is best for you. You take guidance from others but you have to figure this out first.
  7. Freedom and control over your time and energy is the highest form of wealth.
  8. Everyone has a different definition of comfort or enough.
  9. Be flexible. The world is constantly changing, so are the markets, and so will you. 
  10. How do you plan for the unexpected? Save more.

You can be extremely smart and have a hard time learning new behaviors. In this book, Morgan Housel tells stories to help us rethink how we interact around finance, 19 of them. It is important to know our own money story as it heavily influences our behaviors around money.

Stay tuned as I dive a little deeper into some of the lessons mentioned in this book. In the meantime, Be Bold and Love your Life!


This material is provided as a courtesy and for educational purposes only.  Please consult your investment professional, legal or tax advisor for specific information pertaining to your situation

Brandon Cabaniss, CFP®