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The AIU blog shares ideas, information and tips aimed at helping you get ahead personally and professionally, with topics ranging from online learning success to career development.


Ben Stein's Little Book of Bulletproof Investing

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You’re probably familiar with his film and television career. And if you’re an AIU student, you know he delivered the keynote commencement address at graduation on Saturday, July 28th in Chicago. But did you know that Ben Stein has authored a lot of useful and humorous books?

Ben Stein shares his financial and economic expertise in The Little Book of Bulletproof Investing: The Dos and Don’ts to Protect Your Financial Life (2012), which he co-authored with investment advisor Phil DeMuth.

You’ve already made a number of significant financial decisions by balancing work with school. So why read The Little Book of Bulletproof Investing?

Well, if you’re at the stage when you’re finishing up school and preparing to advance your professional path, you might be wondering, for example, whether you should buy a house in this market. Stein and DeMuth cover this topic in depth, offering insight on what to try and what to avoid.

Although The Little Book of Bulletproof Investing covers the intricacies of investing, it also offers sound advice on a topic that is much more fundamental to your success – investing in yourself.

In “Chapter Eight: Become the CEO of You, Inc.,” Stein and DeMuth discuss the value of your education. “Much of your life will be devoted to transforming what economists call your human capital — your brains, your skills, your work habits, your winning personality and good looks — into financial capital. Our goal in this Little Book is to help you optimize this process,” the authors explain (108).

Stein and DeMuth also encourage readers to take advantage of all learning opportunities. But they’re quick to remind you that the sole act of getting an education is far from all it takes to pursue success. Instead of skating through your college or post-graduate years, be proactive and work hard. Think about what you want in life and what advantages school can offer you in helping to get there. Make smart choices in your personal life as well as in your professionalize to maximize your potential for success.

“Chapter Nine: Human Capital 411” explores how to make the most out of your education. Here are some of the Do’s and Don’ts that Stein and DeMuth list:

  • “Do be a person of good character and earn the trust that others place in you.”
  • “Do pay attention to appearances and mind your manners; first impressions count.”
  • “Do remember that an attitude of gratitude is the surest get-rich-quick scheme.”
  • “Do get over the fact that life isn’t fair and start living in the real world.”
  • “Don’t waste your—or other people’s—time.”
  • (133)

Perhaps the most important message that Stein and DeMuth offer in The Little Book of Bulletproof Investments is that YOU are your greatest asset, so invest in yourself. And investing in an education is a good way to celebrate your talents and pursue the life you’ve always wanted.

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