How to ride contrarian thinking to financial freedom without giving up the essentials

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Ever notice the contrast between average folks and people who’ve found the path to retirement success? The former buy into conventional thinking about spending and saving. The latter are more likely to take a contrary approach right down the line.

Contrarians don’t spend more than they make. They stick to budgets. They use credit sparingly. They avoid marketing come-ons. They stay married for the long haul. “There are many roads to financial freedom, but all of them require a mindset to think long term, forgo immediate gratification and maintain discipline,” says Mark Chandik, president and chief investment officer, FDP Wealth Management in Irvine, California, and author of “10 Financial Strategies for the Smart Investor.”

“These individuals tend to live contrarian lives, but also seem happy and content. Perhaps that’s because they know they are on the way to financial independence. And that knowledge provides an amazing sense of security and peace of mind.”

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