I’ve always been a saver.
As a child, my parents instilled the importance of setting goals and working toward them, both financial and otherwise. Even before having big, long-term financial goals, I remember as a kid diligently stashing away my allowance and babysitting money for months to buy a new Gameboy TM (the height of technology!) – then $100.
Having a target in mind is something that helps keep me motivated and on track to this day.
That said, when I got my first job after college, I remember confidently assuring my father that I’d start saving in my 401(k) once I hit 40. That job was as a financial advisor – adding significantly to the irony. My father simply shook his head and reminded me gently of the power of compound interest.
While this story is fairly embarrassing it’s a snapshot of how differently people think about money at different ages and how much your experiences change the way you will view saving.