10 Unforgettable Quotes From “Rich Dad Poor Dad”, the Book That Kickstarted My Personal Finance Journey

“Most people fail to realize that in life, it’s not how much money you make, it’s how much money you keep.”

“Rich Dad Poor Dad” was the first book that opened up my eyes to how I approach money. It was some 16 years ago.

I clearly remember that while I was serving the mandatory National Service in 2007, I wanted to learn how to manage my limited income.

So, I went to the nearby Popular bookstore at Tiong Bahru Plaza to explore some books on budgeting.

As I walked in, I saw a book on the “Popular Bestsellers” rack to my left that caught my eye. It was Robert Kiyosaki’s “Rich Dad, Poor Dad”.

I picked the book up to read the summary on the back page and it sounded interesting. I bought the book thereafter.

A while later, I began reading the book proper and was immediately captivated by the incredible theories it talked about.

Here are 10 noteworthy quotes about personal finance and investing from Rich Dad Poor Dad that I think are worth highlighting.

1. One dad had a habit of saying, “I can’t afford it.” The other dad forbade those words to be used. He insisted I say, “How can I afford it?” One is a statement, and the other is a question. One lets you off the hook, and the other forces you to think.

2. Most people fail to realize that in life, it’s not how much money you make, it’s how much money you keep.

3. As your cash flow grows, you can buy some luxuries. An important distinction is that rich people buy luxuries last, while the poor and middle class tend to buy luxuries first.

4. Rule One. You must know the difference between an asset and a liability, and buy assets. If you want to be rich, this is all you need to know. It is Rule No. 1. It is the only rule. Rich people acquire assets. The poor and middle class acquire liabilities, but they think they are assets.

5. What is more powerful is financial education. Money comes and goes, but if you have the education about how money works, you gain power over it and can begin building wealth.

6. Wealth is a person’s ability to survive so many number of days forward… or if I stopped working today, how long could I survive?

7. Don’t get into large debt positions that you have to pay for. Keep your expenses low. Build up assets first. Then, buy the big house or nice car. Being stuck in the rat race is not intelligent.

8. Many great financial problems are caused by going along with the crowd and trying to keep up with the Joneses. Occasionally, we all need to look in the mirror and be true to our inner wisdom rather than our fears.

9. Money without financial intelligence is money soon gone.

10. In today’s fast-changing world, it’s not so much what you know anymore that counts, because often what you know is old. It is how fast you learn. That skill is priceless.

If learning how to manage money well is your new year resolution, I would highly recommend you to read this wonderful book.

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How 7 Leading Brands Won Consumer Hearts With Their Marketing Messages

Exploring how the likes of Apple and Nike are moving people with their messaging.

I have been experimenting with the AI-powered chatbot ChatGPT for a while now. And the more I use it, the more fun it gets.

Since its public release at the end of last year, ChatGPT has gained a lot of traction for its instant and detailed answers to questions.

I could get it to suggest to me birthday party ideas, and even tell me (dad) jokes.

chatgpt joke
A joke by ChatGPT

With the help of ChatGPT, I also wanted to learn how famous brands managed to steal consumers’ hearts with their copywriting.

Some of the brands I explored were Apple, Coca-Cola, Disney, Lego, McDonald’s, Nike, and Patek Philippe.

I asked ChatGPT to show me the best marketing messages from each of the seven brands. I then chose the one single copywriting that resonated with me the most for each of the brands.

Here’s a compilation of marketing messages that I love the most from those seven world-leading brands.

Apple — “Shot on iPhone”

Apple’s “Shot on iPhone” campaign is a worldwide advertising campaign that was started in 2015, with the launch of iPhone 6.

The campaign showcases photographs taken by everyday people using Apple’s iPhone.

The campaign’s main goal was to feature iPhone’s high-quality camera capabilities and how it can be used to capture stunning photographs, without needing any high-end standalone cameras.

Apple also encouraged people to upload their photos taken with an iPhone to Instagram, Twitter (both with the hashtag #ShotoniPhone), and Weibo.

As of 19 January 2023, Instagram’s #ShotoniPhone has got over 27 million posts.

The campaign resonated with a wide range of people, from professional photographers to everyday smartphone users.

Furthermore, the campaign was praised for its inclusivity and diversity, as it featured photographs taken by people from all walks of life, despite their race, gender, or age.

The “Shot on iPhone” campaign, overall, was a powerful and effective marketing campaign that helped to connect consumers with the Apple brand on an emotional level.

Although the Shot on iPhone campaign started as a “ridiculously simple idea,” according to Apple vice-president Tor Myhren, it has become one of Apple’s most recognizable and important campaigns.

It also helped to establish the iPhone as the go-to device for photography, and it showed the world that the iPhone camera is on par with professional cameras.

Coca-Cola “Open Happiness”

The Coca-Cola Company’s “Open Happiness” campaign, which was launched in 2009, was designed to communicate the idea that a can of Coke is not just a drink, but it’s a way to open happiness and share it with others.

In a press release when the campaign was launched, Joe Tripodi, chief marketing and commercial leadership officer at Coca-Cola, said:

“Open Happiness builds on that heritage, recognizing that even with the difficulties and stress of modern-day life there still are opportunities, every day, to find a moment to recognize life’s simple pleasures. This new campaign reminds people that Coke is always there to offer that small moment of fun and refreshment when you need it.”

The campaign featured a series of commercials that depicted people of all ages and backgrounds enjoying a can of Coke and merrymaking, such as playing games, dancing and singing.

The commercials were set to an upbeat and catchy song that included the “Open Happiness” tagline.

The campaign resonated with a wide range of people, from young adults to families, and it helped to create a strong emotional connection with the brand.

It was also praised for its ability to communicate the company’s values and mission in a simple and powerful way.

Disney — “The Happiest Place on Earth”

The official slogan for Disney’s Disneyland is “The Happiest Place on Earth”.

It was created by Walt Disney himself and was first used in 1955 when Disneyland first opened in California, United States.

Direct and simple, the slogan has been used ever since its creation, making it one of the most successful and iconic slogans in advertising history.

Consistent usage of the tagline by Disney has also allowed it to become a part of popular culture.

It also speaks directly to consumers’ desires to create special moments and emotions with their family and friends at Disneyland.

disneyland happiest place on earth

Lego — “The Universal Language of Play”

This campaign, launched in the late 2010s, emphasises the idea that Lego toys are enjoyed by people of all ages and cultures.

And that playing with Lego bricks is a universal language that brings people together, regardless of age (be it a child or an adult).

McDonald’s “A little taste of home”

McDonald’s “A Little Taste of Home” campaign was used by the company to promote the idea that the fast-food chain is a comforting and familiar place where customers can enjoy a meal that reminds them of home.

The campaign featured a series of commercials that depicted customers enjoying familiar and comforting meals at McDonald’s, such as burgers, fries, and milkshakes.

It also used nostalgia as an emotional appeal, by featuring the food that people used to eat at home and would like to have.

Nike — “Find Your Greatness”

Launched in 2012, Nike’s “Find Your Greatness” campaign was designed to inspire and motivate individuals to achieve their personal best, regardless of their level of athletic ability or experience.

The campaign’s message was centred on the idea that greatness is not limited to elite athletes or those who compete at the highest levels, but rather, it is something that can be achieved by anyone who is willing to push themselves and strive for their personal best.

The commercials featured everyday people, such as children, seniors, and amateurs, who were shown pushing themselves to achieve their personal best. They also featured the iconic “Just Do It” slogan and the Nike swoosh logo.

The campaign was highly successful and received a lot of positive feedback from consumers and critics.

Just like the Apple campaign, Nike’s “Find Your Greatness” campaign was praised for its inclusive and empowering message, which resonated with a wide range of consumers, regardless of their age, gender, or athletic ability.

Patek Philippe — “You never actually own a Patek Philippe. You merely look after it for the next generation.”

Patek Philippe’s iconic campaign, which was launched in 1996, emphasises the idea that Patek Philippe watches are not just luxury goods, but also heirlooms that are passed down from one generation to another.

In an article published by The Atlantic, which asked advertising professionals from around the world on what is the best advertising campaign of all time, the luxury watch seller’s timeless slogan came up.

In it, Tim Calkins, professor of marketing at Kellogg School of Management said:

“How do you sell a $25,000 watch when people can buy an accurate one for $10? Patek Philippe’s “Generations” ads, featuring fathers and sons and the line “You never actually own a Patek Philippe. You merely look after it for the next generation.” A Patek watch isn’t a device for telling time. It’s an heirloom that transfers values across generations.”

The concept has lasted so many years, with continued attention year after year for its statement that evokes emotions. According to the luxury watch brand’s website:

“Built from a universal and human truth, the campaign has evolved and grown to reflect the times and capture the emotion, personality and candid nature of a relationship between parent and child.”

Emotions Move People

From the above examples, we can see that the common theme among the messages is that the products being advertised have an emotional appeal.

Some of the emotional benefits explored include happiness, inspiration, motivation, enjoyment, and relaxation.

After all, we humans are emotional beings, and we long for happiness ultimately.

Investing in the Stock Market? Thinking in Generational Terms Will Do Wonders For Your Portfolio

Because successful investing takes time, discipline and patience.

Warren Buffett is arguably one of the best investors in the world.

From 1965 to 2021, he generated annual returns of 20.1% for his company’s shareholders.

If you had invested just $1,000 in his firm, Berkshire Hathaway, in 1965, you would be sitting on a cool $28.5 million by 2017.

Buffett’s patience in the stock market is one of the key reasons for his incredible return.

He is well-known for holding his stocks for the long run. In fact, he once famously remarked that his favourite holding period in stocks is “forever”.

Yes, Buffett has sold shares often, but it is the thinking behind his quote that matters.

If you have a long time horizon when investing, you will focus on the things that matter (hint: stock prices are not one of them) and will not bother with the things that don’t.

The following is one of Buffett’s well-known quotes:

“Successful investing takes time, discipline and patience. No matter how great the talent or effort, some things just take time: You can’t produce a baby in one month by getting nine women pregnant.”

It requires a considerable amount of time for any business to do well.

By focusing on the long term, we are forced to think about the quality and fundamentals of the company we are investing in.

If we have an “investing” time frame of just one month, we would only be looking at stock price fluctuations alone, and this will be to the detriment of our portfolio.

The daily fluctuation in stock prices will not do any good for our psychological health as well.

However, if our investing time frame is measured in decades or even generations, we will be forced to think about the things that matter: The long-term prospects of a business, the leaders behind a company, the value of a business, and so on.

As prudent investors, we want to invest in companies with products or services that will not become obsolete in the next few years – ideally, we want companies with businesses that can thrive.

Furthermore, when we invest with a long-term view, the probability of us suffering losses will be much lower, which can be seen from the following table:

As you can see, when you hold the S&P 500 index just for a day, it’s 50/50 when it comes to your chance of making money – that’s no better than a coin flip.

However, if your holding period is extended to two decades, the chances of losses go down to zero. Talk about long-term investing and its merits.

Even though the table above refers to the broader stock market, high-quality companies tend to do well over the long run as well.

So the next time you’re looking at a company to invest in, think in terms of years, decades, or generations, and not days, weeks, or months. It’s the mindset that makes a whole lot of difference.

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Investing Course Launch: The Ultimate Singaporean Guide To Stock Market Investing

Everything you need to know to get started investing in 30 minutes or less.

I’ve launched my first investing course 🚀

It’s something I’ve been thinking of doing for a long time.

In just 30 minutes, you will get all the essentials you need to know to start investing in a simple way.

I even touch on the current market condition and how to think about it.

Plain investing knowledge distilled just for you so that you can spend your precious time on things that matter.

Here’s what you will learn from the course: 

✅ Why you need to invest

✅ What investing is not about

✅ Why now is the best time to invest

✅ How to create your winning personal finance system

✅ How to set yourself up for success with your current salary

As a launch special for the first 3 days only…

Grab hold of the course at an insanely low price of just $19.99 with the discount code “Launch60off”.

Which is 60% off the $49.99 normal price.

Insightful Quotes From Howard Marks’ “What Really Matters?” Memo

Here are a couple of noteworthy quotes from Howard Marks’ latest memo entitled, “What Really Matters?”.

On 22 November 2022, famed investor Howard Marks released his latest memo entitled, “What Really Matters?”

As usual, it was an insightful read. Marks talked about what really matters in the stock market for investors (and vice versa, what doesn’t matter).

Here are a couple of quotes in the memo that I thought would be worth highlighting.

Short-Term Events Don’t Matter

“One of the critical mistakes people are guilty of – we see it all the time in the media – is believing that changes in security prices are the result of events: that favorable events lead to rising prices and negative events lead to falling prices. I think that’s what most people believe – especially first-level thinkers – but that’s not right. Security prices are determined by events and how investors react to those events, which is largely a function of how the events stack up against investors’ expectations. “

“Macro events and the ups and downs of companies’ near-term fortunes are unpredictable and not necessarily indicative of – or relevant to – companies’ long-term prospects.  So little attention should be paid to them.”  

“It’s clear from observation that security prices fluctuate much more than economic output or company profits. What accounts for this? It must be the fact that, in the short term, the ups and downs of prices are influenced far more by swings in investor psychology than by changes in companies’ long-term prospects. Because swings in psychology matter more in the near term than changes in fundamentals – and are so hard to predict – most short-term trading is a waste of time . . . or worse.”

Trading Mentality Doesn’t Matter

“If you ask Warren Buffett to describe the foundation of his approach to investing, he’ll probably start by insisting that stocks should be thought of as ownership interests in companies.”

“To me, buying for a short-term trade equates to forgetting about your sports team’s chances of winning the championship and instead betting on who’s going to succeed in the next play, period, or inning.”

“Wanting to own a business for its commercial merit and long-term earnings potential is a good reason to be a stockholder, and if these expectations are borne out, a good reason to believe the stock price will rise.”

Short-Term Performance Doesn’t Matter

“Obviously, no one should attach much significance to returns in one quarter or year. Investment performance is simply one result drawn from the full range of returns that could have materialized, and in the short term, it can be heavily influenced by random events. Thus, a single quarter’s return is likely to be a very weak indicator of an investor’s ability, if that.”

Volatility Doesn’t Matter

“I define risk as the probability of a bad outcome, and volatility is, at best, an indicator of the presence of risk.  But volatility is not risk.  That’s all I’m going to say on that subject.”

“Volatility should be less of a concern for investors:


– whose entities are long-lived, like life insurance companies, endowments, and pension funds;
– whose capital isn’t subject to lump-sum withdrawal;
– whose essential activities won’t be jeopardized by downward fluctuations;
– who don’t have to worry about being forced into mistakes by their constituents; and
– who haven’t levered up with debt that might have to be repaid in the short run.”

“[I]nvestors should take advantage of their ability to withstand volatility, since many investments with the potential for high returns might be susceptible to substantial fluctuations.” 

“In many cases, people accord volatility far more importance than they should.”

Hyper-Activity Doesn’t Matter

“”When I was a boy, there was a popular saying: Don’t just sit there; do something. But for investing, I’d invert it: Don’t just do something; sit there. Develop the mindset that you don’t make money on what you buy and sell; you make money (hopefully) on what you hold.”

What Matters In the End?

“What really matters is the performance of your holdings over the next five or ten years (or more) and how the value at the end of the period compares to the amount you invested and to your needs.”

I think most people would be more successful if they focused less on the short run or macro trends and instead worked hard to gain superior insight concerning the outlook for fundamentals over multi-year periods in the future.  They should:

– study companies and securities, assessing things such as their earnings potential;
– buy the ones that can be purchased at attractive prices relative to their potential;
– hold onto them as long as the company’s earnings outlook and the attractiveness of the price remain intact; and
– make changes only when those things can’t be reconfirmed, or when something better comes along.

“Of critical importance, equity investors should make their primary goals (a) participating in the secular growth of economies and companies and (b) benefiting from the wonder of compounding. Think about the 10.5% yearly return of the S&P 500 Index (or its predecessors) since 1926 and the fact that this would have turned $1 into over $13,000 by now, even though the period witnessed 16 recessions, one Great Depression, several wars, one World War, a global pandemic, and many instances of geopolitical turmoil.”

““Asymmetry” is a concept I’ve been conscious of for decades and consider more important with every passing year. It’s my word for the essence of investment excellence and a standard against which investors should be measured.”

For those who are interested, you can access the full memo here.

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