Each week, we ask a personal finance or business expert for their money pro tips. This week we talked to Bishoy Tadros, author of "Break Barriers: How Setbacks Can Dare You Rather than Define You."
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Last thing you resisted buying: Additional dog training packages for my puppy, Jovie.
How did you resist it? Although my trainer was phenomenal and great with Jovie, I forced myself to watch YouTube videos and reminded myself that when I bought the puppy that included a commitment to training it, no excuses.
Last thing you splurged on: I hired a public relations firm for "Break Barriers."
Why’d you OK the splurge? I ran a cost-benefit analysis and determined that I was willing to incur the short-term risk for the potential long-term gain. I generally splurge on investments as opposed to tangible products and this in my mind was a personal investment in myself. (The best kind, if you ask me!)
What’s your current money goal? A stable retirement. After several years of working in the financial industry, I’ve learned that people are not only living longer, but they are also not preparing for that additional lifespan. I want to get ahead of that now!
How you’re working toward it: I’ve upped my 401(k) and savings contributions substantially in the past year. and I plan to continue doing so as I grow professionally.
Money thing you’re most proud of: I moved into New York City at the age of 24 on a salary of $35,000, as tough as it was, I budgeted accordingly and made it work. I’m proud of it but it surely wasn’t easy.
A money regret: I made things hard on myself when I didn’t have to. I probably could have waited at least one more year when I was younger before I made the move to the big city.
Best financial advice your ever got: When it comes to investing, volatility is normal, so the task isn’t to avoid volatility — it’s to make sure you are diversified in the face of a storm. One thing I learned from my time working at JPMorgan is that in spite of volatility, more often than not the market generally ends the year on a high note. Resist the temptation to sell in the midst of a downturn. It’s a long-term game.
Worst financial advice you ever got: To keep your money in cash and on the sidelines. Post 2008, cash has had trouble keeping up with inflation, and there might be a generational gap in understanding that cash is no longer the safe haven it once was.
What would you do with a $1 million windfall? I would immediately set aside $500,000 for investing. Of the remainder, I would donate a portion to charity, look at potential properties for purchase, and of course do anything necessary to help my parents as they head into their retirement phase.
What do you recommend to help people be better with money? Education is key. I don’t use one resource in particular, but I try to read as many books as possible to educate myself on different perspectives. There are so many schools of thought out there. and it’s important to broaden your horizons as you determine your personal best course of action.
Hardest part of starting a business: For me, my business is my book. The hardest part to starting was to look myself in the mirror and make the time commitment, understanding that a lot of sacrifice was in order for me to get to a final product. I told myself that it would take an abundance of resources to produce my best outcome, and I had to commit to it.
Most rewarding part of starting a business: The affirmation that it is OK to believe in and financially invest in yourself, your product, your idea. There is nothing more rewarding than looking back at all the time, energy and money spent to make a dream become reality and think to yourself, “I would do it all over again in a heartbeat.”
Image: Nastia Kobzarenko