By Liam Butler-Lawrence
Don’t budget. Choose your future.
Don’t budget. Choose your future.
Mint. EveryDollar. Personal Capital. There are a lot of budgeting apps out there. But what if you could change your future without wasting time making budgets and counting every penny?
We all care about different things. Maybe sports, or music, or traveling, or having the newest technology, or spending time with family… or a thousand other things.
But what’s the one thing we all want?
The ability to do stuff.
Which stuff? Depends on you.
- Maybe it’s the ability to lean back on the sofa with your buddies and some cold beers and watch the latest NFL game.
- Maybe it’s the ability to treat someone you care about to a nice dinner and a movie.
- Maybe it’s the ability to travel around the world and have daredevil adventures, without worrying about “what happens if…”.
To have the abilities that you care about, you have to build up your assets ahead of time.
To lean back on that sofa, you had to have already bought the beers — and the sofa — had an active ESPN subscription, and (let’s not forget) made some friends!
Every financial decision. Every budget. Every investment. They all boil down to one goal: To have the ability to do the stuff that matters to you, when it matters to you.
Unless you’re Marty McFly, you can’t go back and change your past.
But you can change your future.
So why don’t we? Why do we keep making choices for immediate gratification instead of our long-term happiness?
Our brains evolved to run on stories. And not just any stories: the simpler the better.
And the story of buying that nice pair of pants is simpler than the story of compound interest.
We know what wearing nice clothes feel like. Showing off. Being comfortable. Sometimes both.
With investing, on the other hand, we feel the uncertainty more than the reward. What if the market crashes? What if I’m rich in 40 years, but I wish I’d spent my money when I was young? What if…?
You’re not weak. You’re not lacking in willpower. You just haven’t seen the big picture: the story of you.
The story of you is simple… as simple as that nice pair of pants. And when you see how your everyday choices fit into your story, it won’t be a struggle against yourself to build the future you want.
So how do you see your story? Just follow these 4 steps:
- Write down every ability you’ve had in your life up till now.
- Figure out exactly which choices led to those abilities.
- Predict what abilities you’ll have for the rest of your life — if you keep making the same choices.
- Calculate what changes you need to make to have more of the abilities you care about, when you care about them.
But… who could possibly do all that!?
Candle can. Get the app, link your accounts, and see your story. But first, let me tell you ours.
It’s March 1. I have a sneaking suspicion that I spend more than I make, but it’s hard to be sure: I have 3 credit cards and 2 checking accounts, plus some money in Bitcoin. I open Candle.
At a glance, I see that if I keep making the same choices, I’m going to run out of money on May 18.
With a quick tap, I see the consequences. That I’ll be evicted from my apartment on August 30. That I could max out my credit card and keep spending, but I’d still run out of money on September 1, with $20,000 in debt.
With a swipe, I see exactly why Candle made this prediction. How much I spend per night to have a roof over my head, compared to people around me in similar apartments. How much food do I throw away? How much time do I waste using a slow 2012 laptop?
With another swipe, I check out some alternative stories. I find some surprises:
- If I break my lease and move to the building down the street, I won’t be broke until November.
- If I go to the grocery store more frequently, I won’t waste 60% of the food I buy, and I’ll be able to stay afloat indefinitely with my current pay.
- If I buy a decent laptop and start putting in 5 hours per week learning how to write code, I’ll have tripled my salary in 2 years, letting me take that trip to Hawaii I’ve always dreamed of — and more.
Three weeks have passed. It’s Saturday. My car just broke down, and I can’t get to my job any other way. I open Craigslist and start browsing.
Candle’s Chrome extension is right there by my side.
At a glance, I see what different options would do to my story. How much I’ll end up paying over my new car’s lifetime, including insurance, gas, and repairs. How this cost—averaged out per month—doesn’t have to be that different than my old car.
With a click, Candle automatically highlights the Craigslist options with the best combination of features, condition, and price. I see the worst case, the best case, and the most likely case for each one.
With total confidence and zero stress, I buy my car and I’m back to work on Monday.
Without wasting any time creating budgets or counting every penny, I’ve chosen a new future.
Sign up for Candle today and choose your future.