I have two primary and very specific goals with this book—and some specific goals this book is not aimed at.
First, I hope to help you stop thinking about investing in a spliced-up way—that you should invest for a number of years one way, then one day, a buzzer goes off signaling it’s time to think about retirement. No! Instead, from the first time you fund an IRA or otherwise set money aside, I hope to get you thinking not just about retirement, but about investing for your whole life. And if you haven’t been thinking that way all along, there’s no time like the present to change.
Sure, there can be nearer-term goals not about retirement and beyond. You’re young and newly married and want to save for a new home. Or you want to save to upgrade to a bigger home. Or you’re saving for your kid’s college or your college or a boat or whatever floats that boat. However, these should all be seen and felt as near-term sidesteps on what’s otherwise a lifelong pursuit.
So I want you, right now, to stop thinking about investing and retirement investing and start thinking about investing for the entirety of your life. I want you to think about making plans now that increase the odds you achieve your goals, whatever they may be. (Heck, at this point, you may not even be able to easily and clearly express what those goals are! Or know what’s feasible. This book will help there, too.)
By the same token, if you start thinking, now and always, about the long future ...