Book Review “It’s Not About the Money” by Brent Kessel

The author characterized that there are 8 distinctive “archetypes” of people with respect how to treat money:
1. The Guardian: always alert and careful.
2. The Pleasure Seeker: prioritizes pleasure and enjoyment in the here and now.
3. The Idealist: places the greatest value on creativity, compassion, social justice, or spiritual growth.
4. The Saver: seeks security and abundance by accumulating more financial assets.
5. The Star: spends, invests, or gives money away to be recognized, feel hip or classy, and increase self-esteem.
6. The Innocent: avoids putting significant attention on money and believes or hopes that life will work out for the best.
7. The Caretaker: gives and lends money to express compassion and generosity.
8. The Empire Builder: thrives on power and innovation to create something of enduring value.

The “Wanting Mind” is the force that compels us to squander our capital, be it financial or spiritual. It is always craving an experience different from the one it currently has. Wanting Minds insists that things need to change in order for us to be happy. The more we want, the more we want. The happiness we feel when we get what we want comes from the absence of wanting.

The 4-year-old in all of us establishes our relationship with money. Answer the following questions: 1. I will feel safe if ___________, 2. If only I could have _____, then I’d be happy, 3. What I want more than anything is ___________.

Author’s recommended diversified portfolio (no bond): US Large – 21%, US Large Value – 21%, US Small – 9%, US Small Value 9%, International Large Value 8%, International Small – 4%, International Small Value – 4%, Emerging Markets Portfolio 3%, Emerging Markets Small 3%, Emerging Markets Value 3%, Real Estate – 10%, Commodities – 5%.

On giving, the author recommends giving 1% of your net worth every year or 10% of your income.

Lots of good tips on investing – the author’s strength. The author appears to have studies various religions and seems to lean toward Buddhism. For example, he advocated Middle Way. He also emphasizes Yoga, meditation, and other new wave things to get people more aligned and balanced.