At some point after becoming an adult, you wish there was an instruction booklet or something telling you exactly what you need to know. People will tell you, “It depends on the situation!” and you will say, “Yeah, yeah, I know, so what should I do for my situation?” Eventually, you go off and get a financial planner and say, “here’s everything, please just make it all work like it’s supposed to,” and you end up paying exorbitant fees.
People say, “you need to save for retirement” and you think, “yeah but that’s in like forty years so I have plenty of time.”
People say, “you need to invest in your 401k” but there are so many options and so you close your eyes and pick a couple that sound legitimate and hope that’s good enough until you grow up and become responsible and can spend the time to understand all of the options.
Finance is a DIY project, just like fixing up an old car or learning how to fix the plumbing. At first it’s overwhelming, there are so many parts! So many tools! What do I do and where do I do it and oh if I mess up I’ll have an even bigger mess on my hands so why don’t I call up my mechanic/plumber?
Luckily, these are all self-teachable skills, attainable, available on YouTube, and a bit of effort can bring you a long way.
However, I will admit that I breathed a sigh of relief when I found the following Flowchat. The Flowchart of all Flowcharts, that told me step-by-step what I should be focusing on next. Credit to /u/atlasvoid on reddit. Behold in all of its glory:
(click on link to view larger and zoom)