5 must-read books for financial freedom

One of the best things you can do is invest in yourself. Whilst investing in yourself comes in many different ways, to quote Benjamin Franklin, “investment in your knowledge pays the best interest”, and I couldn’t agree more!

Learning the fundamentals of personal finance and building your financial literacy is truly an asset that can’t be taken from you, and, when applied, can help you on your journey to financial freedom. 

Here are my top 5 reads which have helped me gain a better understanding of all things personal finance and the most valuable lessons I learned from each one:

  1. Rich Dad Poor Dad 

By Robert Kiyosaki

When you think of personal finance books, one of the first to come to mind is probably Rich Dad Poor Dad, and it’s no surprise - it’s a classic! In fact, this was the first-ever personal finance book I read.

This book is great for anyone starting out their journey to financial independence, like me, as it shows you don’t need to earn a high income to be wealthy. It advocates for learning to be financially literate so you can spot opportunities to invest to build your wealth, and Robert shares what he has learned from both his “rich dad” and “poor dad”.

Biggest lesson learned: Buy assets that generate you income, not liabilities that appear to be assets.

  1. The Richest Man in Babylon 

By George S. Clason

This is a short and sweet book that teaches you the rules of building wealth, especially the importance of financial security and paying yourself first.

In this book, the fundamentals of acquiring wealth are broken down into digestible ways, and though it was written over a century ago the timeless money rules still apply, such as investing in skills that can earn you money, thinking for the future, and making your money work for you. 

Biggest lesson learned: Always pay yourself first.

  1. Think and Grow Rich 

By Napoleon Hill 

Napoleon Hill spent his years interviewing those who have amassed great fortunes, and compiled what he learned into this book.

This book shows that in order to acquire wealth, it all starts with your mind. Think about it - everything around you started as an idea, even the screen you’re reading this on right now started out as just an idea! You must be able to know what you want and attach your thought with a burning desire to accomplish it and you’ll be unstoppable!

Biggest lesson learned: Be persistent to reach your financial goals (or any goals, really).

  1. The Millionaire Next Door 

By Thomas J. Stanley

In this book I learned that the rich were not those who had the flashiest things, luxury cars, or are fine dining every evening, in fact, they typically look like the average person and live well below their means. 

This book is a must-read considering that we’re constantly pressured to prove our success or impress others by showing off high-status items such as designer clothes and fancy cars, when really those who are truly wealthy are able to maintain their wealth by managing their money well, investing and living frugally.

Biggest lesson learned: Live below your means.

  1. The Intelligent Investor

By Benjamin Graham 

This book is about all things mindset and strategies when it comes to investing. It talks about the importance of being disciplined, being able to control your emotions when investing and to not look for crazy returns, but rather steady returns to be a good investor.

Nowadays, we’re constantly surrounded by news and are often swayed in our decision making as a result. This book teaches you to think for yourself and not follow the masses about your investment decisions.

Biggest lesson learned: Think long term and think for yourself!