Tuesday, January 29, 2008

More Than Enough

More Than Enough by Dave Ramsey

This book by Dave Ramsey has much of the same basic principles contained in his books Financial Peace and The Total Money Makeover. The main difference comes in that More Than Enough is oriented towards his philosophy on life. The state of arriving at "More Than Enough" is the end goal for the path Ramsey encourages the reader to follow. This place does not necessarily mean material wealth but is more a state of consciousness and arrival at contentment. The way one arrives at "More Than Enough" is by taking ownership of contentment.

Ramsey says: "When you have contentment you can easily get out of debt. When you have contentment you can easily save and invest. When you are content it changes your giving habits and your relationships. When you are content it brings an inner strength that will push you into another zone. You are able to move fast or slow, and you are able to have patience or intensity when you are content. "

He further discusses this concept by talking about happiness and what it is and what it's not. He says, "Happiness that is dependent on someone else's actions or on the purchase of stuff is not real happiness, and chasing happiness there shows you haven't reached true contentment." This can be so difficult to remember as we go through life and are constantly bombarded with advertising and media trying to convince us we need something bigger or better. Our own human nature also gets in the way of this and can prevent true happiness and contentment by a “gotta have a little bit more or a little bit better” mentality.

The main sections focus on topics such as goal setting, having patience, being accountable to others, discipline, and being generous with one's time and resources.

A feature of the book that is also present in Financial Peace is the "Thoughts from Sharon" section in which Dave's wife Sharon provides some of her insights on the preceding topic. This helps to add color and a slightly different feel to the book than if it were absent. Another component included from the other books is the financial planning forms. These allow the reader to walk through his or her current financial situation and determine net worth, budgeting, paying off debt, planning ahead for big purchases, and generally arriving at a state of financial peace. Another similar component to Financial Peace is the inclusion of steps at the end of each chapter which summarize the key concepts. In More Than Enough , Dave terms them “Keys to the More Than Enough mansion.”

Much of the material is repeated from the other books but it does move beyond the strict focus on money and financial decisions. The order of Ramsey’s books that I recommend is first Financial Peace followed by The Total Money Makeover and then More Than Enough.

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