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Empire Building: Your Financial Conquests

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While I enjoy examining my finances and making adjustments as I go, I’ll be the first to admit that the world of personal finance is often…well not very exciting. I’m hesitant to say flat out boring, but I know plenty of people who start out with fancy spreadsheets and budgets only to abandon them and return to their normal spending habits a few month later. Building wealth can often be compared to watching paint dry, as for most of us the ascension to financial prosperity isn’t a spring but a marathon. In short: Brick by brick my citizens. Seemingly small amounts of money are socked away or thrown into the debt pile, seemingly never to be seen or heard from again. Over time, these amounts compound and grow, eventually flowering into a bed of warm fuzziness that helps you sleep comfortably at night.

I find that attributing my monthly financial routine to a larger goal is more gratifying. If you know, deep down, that every time you whisk that monthly deposit into your retirement account you’re solidifying your future and strengthening your own foundation, it can help get you through the doldrums and paperwork. An empire in the historical sense has a number of similarities to your financial portfolio, so let’s go with that theme.


Pushing your citizens too hard and too fast can lead to discontent, resentment, and eventually, revolution. In finance, if you try to get everything done at once and cut completely to the bone, your habits will be unsustainable. Eventually you’ll become unhappy and decide that it just isn’t worth it, and you’ll slip right back to where you started. To ensure that your empire grows steadily, you’ll need to make adjustments on a more rational basis. Little by little, your strength will grow, and when one goal is accomplished, you can move onto the next.


There’s a reason that many people will take on additional jobs when they first start cleaning up their finances: it works. To succeed, you’ll need to continue to expand on all fronts. If you make your money, you can save faster and pay off debts more quickly. If you cut down your budget, that expands your savings capability. Always looking to change and improve and innovate will ensure your long term success. Try and fail and then try again.

Maintenance and Oversight

Always examine your current finances at least once a month. Much like a good empire will need roads maintained and utilities functioning, you need to keep an eye on your spending and saving. Examine how much is going in and how much is going out. You’ll catch leaks quickly and cancel unnecessary services as soon as you see the monthly drain they’re putting on your accounts. A tight financial ship is something you can be proud of.

As for my own empire, my recent transition into self employment put a hurting on my ability to save for awhile. I consider it a quality of life adjustment, but I’m finally catching my stride again. My empire has been temporarily weakened by internal turmoil, but I’m confident that I’ll emerge stronger on the other side.


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