Seventeen years ago, I began writing a weekly financial column for a local paper. The editor at the time cautioned me that few appreciated the challenge of producing a weekly column and predicted that I would tire out after about three months. Since then that editor has been replaced three times, the paper sold twice and my now over 800 columns have long been published by a national news network. Though I have enjoyed the journey, in January of this year I decided I wanted to return to writing for a more local market and so I am pleased to announce the moving of my long running “Common Sense Investing” column to the St. George News.
As always, my focus will be on using real life stories to teach principles of money management and investing in a way all can understand and benefit from. I am a huge proponent of increasing financial education, especially among young people who have the time for their investing decisions to really make a difference. I often say that money may not be able to buy happiness, but the mismanagement of it has likely ruined more lives than just about anything else.
Though financial mismanagement can ruin marriages, destroy businesses and enslave individuals, the wise use of money can lead to personal freedom and great opportunity. There is a tendency for some who struggle financially to point to those with wealth and assume they just got a lucky break. My experience has been just the opposite. I have spent my career intimately involved in the details of thousands of peoples’ financial lives and I have learned that the vast majority of those who we look to as being financially successful, lived their lives as just normal people. The grew up in normal families, focused on purposeful education, found a job and spent their lives saving and investing in small ways over many years until they had built a substantial nest egg. They used the basic principles of money management that are available to all to build a solid financial future for themselves. I have likewise watched as many who inherited large sums, won lotteries, or obtained huge insurance settlements, squandered their opportunity through mismanagement and waste. Through it all I have learned that the secret to real wealth is not what you earn or are given, but what you do with it that makes all the difference.
I was raised in a family of 12 kids. I understood the concept that if I wanted something I needed to figure out largely on my own how to obtain it. I loved mini-bikes, go-carts and remote-control airplanes and created many small businesses in my young life to obtain those things. I never earned a lot, but I learned how to manage what I earned until I could afford what I wanted. My purpose in these columns will be to teach others the principles that lead to financial success. I have the benefit of not only learning from my own life experiences, but from the experiences of the thousands of clients with whom I’ve had the privilege to work.
I look forward to sharing many years with my new and old readers here at the St. George News, and hearing from you as well about your successes, and failures, and about areas you would like me to address in your own financial and investing journeys as we all learn together. The world is always changing, yet in many ways it remains the same. I look forward to moving forward together in this very worthwhile activity of learning how to manage money wisely to obtain the freedom to do the things that really matter most to each of us.
Dan Wyson, CFP®is a long running national financial columnist, author of several books and CEO of Wyson Financial/Wealth Management 375 E. Riverside Dr. St. George, UT 84790 – 435-986-9525 Securities and Advisory services offered through Commonwealth Financial Network(R), member FINRA/SIPC, a registered investment advisor.