Secure Your Wealth: 30 Essential Steps for People in Their 20s for Lifelong Financial Success.

By Heather Pulier
Founder of Outset Financial
Money and I? We've had a co-dependent, toxic, abusive relationship. For the longest time, fear of money was this looming cloud.  I used to screw up with money. It wasn’t just about making poor choices; I didn’t know what I was doing. At times, it felt like everyone had this secret financial handbook I wasn't privy to.I earned a degree from Vanderbilt, a Master’s in psychology, and even helped kick-start a public tech company. I was worth more than I could have ever envisioned. Yet, still money basics? Evaded me. Which cost me and drove me into millions in debt.  By 40, terms like 401k or IRA Roth were still foreign. I had achievements, but my understanding of money was shallow. I earned, I spent, I stressed.  I failed. I made mistakes born out of ignorance. Took advice from financial experts that cost me dearly (they do not live in the consequences of their bad advice you do). I trusted people with my finances when I shouldn’t have. Gave away my financial voice and power to people I believed had my best interest at heart, including family.  All the while thinking it'd all "just work out." One day, I would be a financial adult. It doesn’t. Not without effort.

Money isn't just numbers, we need it to survive.  It's feelings, memories, dreams, and regrets. It’s tied to our ego, how we express love, and our self-worth. And if we're not careful, it can control us.  If you remember one thing, it’s this; every financial decision you make is emotional.  Your financial success hinges on your money mindset, not your paycheck. Without financial health, physical, emotional, sexual, relational, and spiritual health is impossible. This guide? It’s all the stuff I wish I knew back then, practically and emotionally. It results from all my blunders, learnings, and inputs from industry experts.  It’s my way of ensuring you don’t take the detours I did. Through all this, I founded Outset Financial. Because I want better for you.  I want you not only to survive but thrive.

As you dive in:
Bite-Size Wisdom: Tackle one thing at a time.
Feel the Money: It’s personal. Let it be.
Stay Grounded: Don't assume you've got it all figured out. I sure didn't.
Step-by-Step Mastery: There's no finish line with finances. It’s a daily practice.

Remember, from your first paycheck to planning for the future, money is a constant companion. It is the longest relationship you will have in your life except with yourself.  Make it a good one! How you handle it defines a lot of your life's journey. Get it right.  And trust me, getting a grip on your finances? It changes everything.  

Table of Contents

Part 1: The Basics
1. Start Your Career, Understand Your Paycheck
2. Conquer Your Credit
3. Master Your Spending Plan
4. Invest in Relationships
5. Navigating the Tax Maze: Employees & Gig Workers
6. Lifestyle Choices & Financial Milestones
7. Dive Deep into Student Debt Management

Part 2: Financial Safety First
1. Build a WTF Fund
2. Health Insurance
3. Explore a Health Savings Account (HSA)
4. What's an FSA (Flexible Spending Account)? Another Healthcare Financial Tool to Consider
5. Diver into Life Insurance
6. Renters Insurance
7. Pet Insurance

Part 3: Long-term Wealth Creation
1. Harness the Power of the Roth IRA 
2. Maximize Your Employee Benefits/401k
3. Make Your Money Work: Saving vs Investing
4. Automate Your Savings
5. Master the Art of Diversification
6. Navigating Cryptocurrencies with Caution

Part 4: Critical Skills
1. Level Up with Negotiation Skills
2. Digital Financial Tools & The Human Touch
3. Learn to Meditate A Key To Success
4. Education is Key: Dive into Being a Lifelong Learner
5. Being a Money Journey
6. Cultivate Positive Self-Talk

Part 5: The Psychology of Money
1. Discover Your Money Feelings
2. Know Your Financial Identity
3. Evaluate Your Daily Financial Influencers
4. Embrace Charitable Giving
5. Practice Gratitude