3 priceless lessons you should learn from the genius mind of Steve Jobs

In the pursuit of personal growth and financial success, it is easy to become laser-focused on traditional strategies and conventional wisdom.

While I’m committed to only recommending and implementing tried-and-trusted investment strategies to my clients, I do see the value in learning from great minds in other fields.

In a previous article, I shared some of the investment wisdom of the late Berkshire Hathaway vice chairman, Charlie Munger. One point I didn’t include in that piece was the fact that Munger always emphasised the importance of developing a “latticework of mental models” to improve your thinking, problem-solving abilities, and decision-making process.

In this spirit, I wanted to explore three valuable lessons you can learn from the life and words of Steve Jobs, the founder of Apple, as they apply to personal finance.

1. Connect the dots looking backwards

Steve Jobs famously said: ”You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards”.

While this statement applies to the winding paths our lives often take, you can also apply it to your personal finances.

Many investors believe they can predict the economy and investment markets. They often do this by extrapolating the present into the future.

Unfortunately, the truth is that the financial world only makes sense looking backwards. Only once the story is finished can you connect the dots and make sense of the market.

The best you can do is to learn from history and use that knowledge to make informed decisions based on your unique circumstances.

2. Live your life on your own terms

As Jobs put it most succinctly: ”Your time is limited, don’t waste it living someone else’s life”.

Perhaps prescient about his own future of dying at a young age, he understood that, to be most meaningful, life had to be lived on your own terms. This advice to not waste your days living someone else’s life is especially relevant in personal finance.

To achieve financial independence and long-term happiness, it is crucial to establish your own goals rather than letting society dictate your path.

Without this understanding, it is easy for you to fall prey to a desire to copy the lives and actions of others and, almost subconsciously, match the lifestyles and priorities of the people around you.

I looked at this in some detail in an article about the importance of your personal benchmarks that you might find a worthwhile read.

I’ll always encourage you to regularly evaluate your financial choices to ensure they align with your values, long­ term goals, and vision of success.

3. Make your own dent in the universe

Steve Jobs was famously obsessed with creating world-changing products at Apple. In one interview, he said: ”We’re here to put a dent in the universe. Otherwise, why else even be here?”

To my mind, this quote makes for a brilliant personal philosophy too.

Great financial planning goes well beyond trying to accumulate as much wealth as you can. It acknowledges that, in addition to your money, you also have your time, energy, and talent to deploy. It’s only when you do so in alignment with your values that a truly meaningful life is possible.

And, while even modest aspirations are acceptable, we can all make our own dent in the universe.

Financial planning can be a tool that enables you to make a lasting and positive difference in the world, ultimately giving your financial endeavours a deeper purpose and significance.

You can always learn lessons from high-performers

While Steve Jobs’ life may not perfectly mirror our aspirations, his wisdom teaches all investors crucial lessons about embracing uncertainty, defining goals, and making a difference.

Through this, you can see the benefit of approaching personal finance not just in the traditional sense but also by incorporating the wisdom of high performers in other fields.

I am committed to helping you on your own financial journey and will continue to bring you wisdom from all fields as I guide you towards success.

Get in touch

If you’d like to talk through your financial planning arrangements, then please get in touch.

You can call me on 07769 156 250.

Please note

This blog is for general information only and does not constitute advice. The information is aimed at retail clients only.

The value of your investment can go down as well as up and you may not get back the full amount you invested. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future performance.

Equity investments do not afford the same capital security as deposit accounts.