5 must-read-books for the woman in control of her finances
Updated: Jan 14
Words can make you or break you.
When I look back at my career and my financial journey, there are many instances when words have inspired me to be who I am today. Books have been my best friend and they have helped me during the worst times.
I have listed five of my favourite books here that inspire me every time I read them; I consider them my friends and my mentors. I am sharing this list with you hoping the books will guide you when you need it the most. Happy reading!
1. Warren Buffett Invests Like a Girl by LouAnn Lofton:
I remember being infuriated by the title of this book but after reading the first couple of pages I decided not to judge a book by its cover.
Using research findings, studies and surveys conducted on gender and investment, LouAnn Lofton highlights how the qualities generally attributed to women – patience, good decision making, long-term outlook, being steady under pressure and averting risks – can help in making sound investing decisions.
The book revealed to me that women, with all our “feminine” qualities, epitomise the investment temperament of the most successful investor in history: Warren Buffett. I know now that we, as women, are natural investors and our innate qualities help us gain the financial independence that we all yearn for.
This book encourages women to become the masters of their money, believe in themselves and grow their wealth like Buffett did, using their inherent talents. I became more confident about my financial decisions after reading this book!
2. Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman:
A cousin of mine used to swear by this book and bombard us with quotes and anecdotes from it. By the time I finished the book, believe it or not, I was not thinking about things the way I used to. Thinking, Fast and Slow, really transforms the way you think about, well, thinking itself.
Written by Nobel laureate (Economics) Daniel Kahneman, the book is about psychology and revolves around the dichotomy of two modes of thoughts (i) fast, instinctive and emotional, and (ii) slow, deliberate and logical. The book helped me improve my decision-making approach at work: I now make decisions less emotionally and more deliberately.
I would definitely recommend this book to every woman interested in managing her finances. It focuses on the benefits of slow thinking and offers practical and enlightening insights into how choices are made in both business and our personal lives. It also throws light on how we can use different techniques to guard against the mental glitches that often get us into trouble.
3. Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki:
Robert Kiyosaki’s book is a personal account of the advice he got from his dad (Poor dad) juxtaposed with the advice he got from his friend’s father (Rich dad). What I really like about the book is its unapologetic approach towards money and work and how we perceive them. The book is inspiring in more ways than one. To be honest, the day I finished reading this book, I was feeling restless and wanted to do the things that were explained in the book.
The book does an incredible job of teaching the reader how to think about work and money and believe me, it does challenge your thinking about the two most important things in your life. The book encourages you to focus on buying assets such as mutual funds, bonds, stocks and minimizing the liabilities. As an investor myself, I highly recommend this book.
One of my favourite lines in the book is: “Learn to use your emotions to think, not think with your emotions.” If I had to pick one thing to take away from this book, it would be: learn to make your money work for you.
4. Behaviour Gap by Carl Richards:
I often get to hear from women investors that they are trying really hard not to let emotions get in the way of smart financial decision-making. This, I feel is a great beginning as they are aware of the “behaviour gap”. That’s right! Thanks to Carl Richards’ bestselling book, I now know the term for the gap that exists between the potential for higher returns and the lower returns actually earned.
By using simple explanatory freehand drawings, Richards’ book teaches you to identify your real financial goals and simplify your financial life. The book helps you avoid becoming a victim of your own behaviours through Richards’ poignant illustrations about our financial choices. As Richard says, “The goal is not to make the ‘perfect’ decision about money every time, but to do the best we can, most of the time, and move forward.”
The one thing I learnt from the book is that it is never too late to make a fresh financial start.
5. A Wealth of Common Sense by Ben Carlson:
Women who are new to investing often tend to complicate their financial climate using complex strategies. This is also true for some of the seasoned investors. The financial market is a complex system and Ben Carlson’s A Wealth of Common Sense sheds new and refreshing light on investing by emphasising on simplicity that can lead to better decisions.
The book elucidates simple strategies that make investing more profitable, less confusing, and less time-consuming. It helps you cut through the confusion and focus on what actually matters. By the time you finish reading the book, you will understand why clearing the clutter is essential to becoming a successful investor.
If you believe that less is more, then this book is for you. It is filled with financial wisdom and actionable investment ideas to maximize long term returns. What is brilliant about the book is that it tells you what not to do. The book provides great insight into the importance of having a comprehensive investment plan and how to come up with one.
Love to read books to learn about money? Explore the learning modules on the Basis app for bite-sized lessons to learn everything you need to know to get started with investing.