The Big Short: Books for Winning Money Mindset

The Big Short

What is Financial Mindset

Financial mindset refers to a person’s attitude, beliefs, and perspectives about money and finances. It reflects their approach to managing money, making financial decisions, and planning for the future. A strong financial mindset is characterized by qualities such as financial responsibility, discipline, goal-setting, and a willingness to learn and adapt to changing economic conditions. It involves having a proactive and positive approach to money management, seeking opportunities for growth and wealth creation, and being mindful of spending habits and financial habits. A person with a healthy financial mindset is likely to prioritize saving and investing, budgeting effectively, and making informed financial decisions to achieve their long-term financial goals.

What Can We Get From Financial Mindset

Having a financial mindset can benefit us in various ways. Here are some things we can gain from adopting a financial mindset:

1. Clarity and focus: A financial mindset helps us gain a clear understanding of our financial situation and goals. It allows us to prioritize our financial decisions and align our actions with our objectives.

2. Improved financial habits: Adopting a financial mindset encourages us to develop healthy financial habits such as budgeting, saving, and investing. It promotes responsible spending and helps us avoid impulsive or unnecessary expenses.

3. Reduced stress: When we have a financial mindset, we have a better handle on our finances, which can significantly reduce financial stress. We can feel more confident about our financial future and have a sense of control over our money.

4. Long-term planning: A financial mindset prompts us to think about the long term. We become more proactive in planning for our financial future, setting goals, and creating strategies to achieve them. This can include saving for retirement, creating an emergency fund, or investing in assets.

5. Increased financial literacy: Developing a financial mindset encourages us to educate ourselves about personal finance. We become more knowledgeable about topics such as budgeting, investments, taxes, and debt management. This knowledge empowers us to make better financial decisions.

6. Financial independence: A financial mindset helps us become self-reliant and less dependent on others for our financial well-being. It enables us to make informed decisions that contribute to our financial independence and stability.

7. Opportunity for wealth creation: By adopting a financial mindset, we become more open to exploring opportunities for wealth creation and growth. We may seek out investments, develop entrepreneurial ventures, or engage in other financial activities that can enhance our financial situation.

8. Increased confidence: A financial mindset can boost our confidence in managing our money. As we gain knowledge and improve our financial habits, we feel more empowered and capable of making informed financial choices.

Overall, a financial mindset provides us with the tools, knowledge, and mindset necessary to make prudent financial decisions, achieve our goals, and create a secure financial future.

Strategies in Learning Financial Mindset

1. Educate yourself: Begin by reading books, articles, or taking courses on personal finance, investment, and money management. Understanding key concepts such as budgeting, saving, debt management, and investing will help you develop a solid financial mindset.

2. Set clear financial goals: Define your short-term and long-term financial goals. These could include saving a certain amount of money, paying off debts, or investing in a specific financial instrument. Having clear goals will help you stay focused and motivated.

3. Create a budget and stick to it: Develop a budget by tracking your income and expenses. This will give you a clear picture of your financial situation and help you identify areas where you can cut back on unnecessary expenses. Following a budget will ensure that you are spending money wisely and saving for your goals.

4. Save and build an emergency fund: Set aside a portion of your income for saving. Aim to have at least three to six months’ worth of living expenses in an emergency fund. This will provide you with financial security and peace of mind in case of unexpected events or emergencies.

5. Learn to differentiate between needs and wants: Develop a habit of differentiating between essential expenses and discretionary expenses. Prioritize spending on needs such as food, housing, and healthcare, and cut back on unnecessary wants that can derail your financial goals.

6. Avoid unnecessary debt: Use credit responsibly and only for essential purchases that you can afford to pay off. Avoid accumulating high-interest debt and focus on paying off any existing debts as quickly as possible.

7. Invest for the future: Begin investing your money to grow your wealth over time. Research different investment options such as stocks, bonds, mutual funds, or real estate and learn about their potential risks and returns. Start with small amounts and gradually increase your investments as you become more comfortable.

8. Practice delayed gratification: Develop the habit of delaying immediate gratification for long-term financial gain. Avoid impulse buying and take time to evaluate the true value of a purchase before making it.

9. Surround yourself with the right influences: Engage with like-minded individuals who are also focused on building a strong financial mindset. Attend workshops, seminars, or join financial communities to learn from others and stay motivated.

10. Regularly reassess and adjust your financial plan: Finally, regularly review your financial situation and adjust your goals and strategies as needed. Life circumstances change, and so do your financial priorities. It is essential to adapt your mindset and plan accordingly to stay on track.

The Big Short

The Big Short by Michael Lewis


The Big Short” by Michael Lewis is a non-fiction book that offers a captivating and insightful account of the 2008 global financial crisis. Through a series of interconnected stories, the book delves into the lives of a group of individuals who correctly predicted the collapse of the housing market and made substantial profits by betting against the financial system.

Lewis introduces readers to four groups of people who were instrumental in foreseeing the impending crisis: Michael Burry, a socially awkward but brilliant hedge fund manager; Steve Eisman, a foul-mouthed yet astute money manager; Greg Lippmann, a Deutsche Bank trader who saw the housing market’s flaws; and Charlie Ledley and Jamie Mai, two young investors who spotted the vulnerabilities in the system.

The book explores the complex financial instruments that fueled the crisis, such as collateralized debt obligations (CDOs) and credit default swaps (CDS), and explains how the housing bubble inflated due to fraudulent lending practices and excessive greed within the banking industry. Lewis demystifies the complexities of the financial world by employing clear and accessible language, allowing readers to grasp the intricate web of events that led to the crisis.

“The Big Short” reveals the prevailing ignorance and denial within both the financial and regulatory sectors, as well as the pervasive conflicts of interest and lack of accountability that contributed to the crisis. It highlights the immense risks taken by these few individuals who bucked the industry consensus, and ultimately exposes the shaky foundation upon which the global economy was built.

More than just a financial exposé, the book delves into the personal lives and motivations of the key players, providing a human touch to the complex web of financial machinations. It examines the moral dilemmas faced by those who profited from the crisis while the general public suffered, bringing a sense of empathy and understanding to an otherwise impersonal narrative.

In summary, “The Big Short” serves as a captivating and eye-opening account of the 2008 financial crisis, shedding light on the individuals who foresaw its coming and profited from it. Lewis effectively breaks down the complex financial concepts for a wide audience, delivering a thought-provoking and cautionary tale about the dangers that lies within the global financial system.

Reasons for Recommendation

1. Insight into the 2008 financial crisis: “The Big Short” provides a thorough understanding of the complexities surrounding the 2008 financial crisis. By delving into the causes, events, and aftermath of the crisis, the book offers valuable insights into the workings of the financial world and its implications.

2. Critical analysis of Wall Street practices: The book sheds light on the flawed practices prevalent in the financial industry that eventually led to the crisis. It exposes the greed, ignorance, and complacency within the system, helping readers understand the consequences of unchecked financial practices.

3. Demonstration of the power of critical thinking: “The Big Short” presents various characters who, despite being outsiders to the financial world, were able to see through the intricate web of faulty mortgage-backed securities. Their critical thinking abilities and skepticism provide a powerful lesson in questioning conventional wisdom and challenging established norms.

4. Exploration of contrarian investing: The book showcases how a few individuals were able to identify the housing bubble and make substantial profits by betting against the market. It highlights the importance of being contrarian, making informed investment decisions, and maintaining a strong financial mindset even in the face of consensus.

5. Emphasis on understanding complex financial concepts: While exploring the crisis, the book delves into intricate financial concepts such as credit default swaps, collateralized debt obligations, and subprime mortgages. It breaks down these complex topics into easy-to-understand explanations, making it accessible even to readers with limited financial knowledge.

6. Lessons on risk management: “The Big Short” emphasizes the significance of risk management and the consequences of disregarding it. The book demonstrates how understanding risk, carrying out due diligence, and being proactive in mitigating risks can prevent catastrophic events in both personal and professional financial endeavors.

7. Encouragement to question the status quo: By presenting the individuals who discovered the impending crisis despite widespread ignorance or dismissal, the book inspires readers to question the status quo and not simply accept prevailing narratives. It encourages critical thinking and a healthy skepticism towards mainstream financial practices.

8. Stimulates curiosity about the financial industry: “The Big Short” paints a captivating picture of the financial world, its intricacies, and the individuals who operate within it. By diving into this gripping narrative, readers with an interest in finance can gain a deeper understanding of the industry and potentially be motivated to learn more or pursue related careers.

9. Reminder of the importance of staying informed: The book highlights how lack of knowledge and information played a significant role in the 2008 crisis. It serves as a reminder for readers to stay informed about financial matters, develop their financial literacy, and remain vigilant about potential economic risks.

10. Inspiration for personal financial growth: Alongside the examination of the financial crisis, “The Big Short” can inspire readers to adopt a more mindful and responsible approach to personal finance. It encourages learning from past mistakes, being prepared for unexpected economic events, and striving for sustainable financial growth.

The Big Short

The Wolf of Wall Street by Jordan Belfort


The Wolf of Wall Street” is a memoir written by Jordan Belfort, a former stockbroker who founded the brokerage firm Stratton Oakmont in the 1990s. The book chronicles Belfort’s rise to success as well as his eventual downfall and legal troubles.

Belfort starts by describing his early life and how he entered the world of finance. He becomes deeply involved in the excessive and cutthroat culture of Wall Street, where he and his colleagues engage in various illegal activities to make huge profits. These activities include penny stock fraud, market manipulation, and money laundering.

Belfort becomes immensely wealthy and indulges in a lavish lifestyle filled with drugs, alcohol, and wild parties. He details his extravagant spending habits and the outrageous behavior of both himself and his staff. The book captures the excess and unrestrained nature of his life during this time, as well as his insatiable appetite for more.

As Stratton Oakmont gains notoriety, Belfort’s actions come under scrutiny by law enforcement agencies. The book explores the legal investigations, including encounters with the FBI and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Eventually, Belfort is arrested and charged with securities fraud and money laundering. He decides to cooperate with the authorities and provides vital evidence against his colleagues in exchange for a reduced sentence.

In addition to recounting his own story, Belfort offers insights into the corrupt nature of the financial industry and the manipulation that takes place behind closed doors. He reflects on the detrimental effects of his actions and expresses remorse for the harm he caused to investors and others involved.

Overall, “The Wolf of Wall Street” is a gripping and entertaining memoir that provides an unvarnished look into the illicit world of finance and the consequences of unchecked greed and indulgence.

Reasons for Recommendation

1. Insight into the world of high finance: “The Wolf of Wall Street” provides an insider’s perspective on the fast-paced and high-stakes environment of Wall Street. It offers a detailed account of Jordan Belfort’s rise to wealth and success, showcasing the strategies, tactics, and mindset required to navigate the financial industry.

2. Lessons in risk and reward: The book explores the concept of risk-taking and the potential rewards associated with it. Belfort’s story highlights how calculated risks can lead to tremendous financial gains, while also showcasing the potential consequences of excessive risk-taking.

3. Understanding the psychology of investment: The book delves into the psychology behind making investment decisions and manipulating markets. By examining the mindset of a successful stockbroker, readers can gain valuable insights into the factors and emotions that drive financial decision-making.

4. Exposing ethical dilemmas: “The Wolf of Wall Street” raises important ethical questions about the financial industry as a whole. It shines a light on questionable practices, such as market manipulation and fraud, providing readers with an opportunity to evaluate what is morally acceptable in the pursuit of financial success.

5. Motivation and inspiration: Belfort’s story is one of resilience and ambition. Despite facing numerous challenges and setbacks, he managed to achieve significant success in his career. For individuals aspiring to succeed in the financial world, “The Wolf of Wall Street” can serve as a motivational tool, showcasing the determination and tenacity required to overcome obstacles.

6. Understand the dark side of finance: The book doesn’t shy away from the darker aspects of the financial industry. It reveals the excesses, greed, and degenerate behavior that can sometimes accompany success in this field. Through a cautionary tale, readers can gain a deeper understanding of the potential pitfalls and dangers of pursuing wealth without ethical boundaries.

7. Financial literacy: “The Wolf of Wall Street” provides readers with financial knowledge through the lens of real-life experiences. By immersing themselves in Belfort’s journey, readers can learn about various financial concepts, such as trading strategies, investment techniques, and salesmanship skills.

Overall, “The Wolf of Wall Street” offers a unique perspective on the financial mindset, providing readers with valuable insights, cautionary tales, and the opportunity to reflect on the ethical considerations within the financial industry.

The Great Game by John Steele Gordon


The Great Game” by John Steele Gordon provides a comprehensive account of the history of Wall Street, spanning from its founding in the late 18th century to the 21st century turmoil. The book delves into the various events and characters that shaped the world of finance, including stock market crashes, economic crises, and the rise and fall of influential Wall Street figures.

Gordon explores the formation and evolution of the brokerage houses on Wall Street, highlighting their role in fueling economic growth through investment and speculation. He exposes the inner workings of these institutions, their triumphs, and failures, shedding light on the ebbs and flows of the market throughout history. The author also examines the impact of government policies, such as regulations and the formation of the Federal Reserve, on Wall Street’s trajectory.

Moreover, “The Great Game” delves into the speculative fever that gripped Wall Street in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, leading to excessive risk-taking and economic instability. Gordon recounts several memorable periods, including the roaring twenties and the subsequent crash of 1929. He delves into the consequences of these events and how they shaped the future course of Wall Street.

Furthermore, the book explores the rise of modern banking and the emergence of powerful investment banks during the 20th century. It highlights the role of iconic figures like J.P. Morgan, who played a crucial role in reshaping the financial landscape, as well as the regulatory responses triggered by the Great Depression.

Throughout the book, Gordon analyzes the complex interplay between Wall Street and the broader American economy. He discusses the impact of financial institutions on the country’s growth and prosperity, as well as the implications of their actions on ordinary citizens. The author also examines the recurrent patterns of boom and bust, providing insights into the cyclical nature of the financial world.

“The Great Game” offers an engaging and thought-provoking exploration of the history of Wall Street. Through its vivid storytelling and detailed analysis, it provides readers with an understanding of the forces that have shaped the financial industry, allowing them to draw connections between past events and contemporary financial issues.

Reasons for Recommendation

1. Gain insights into the historical context: The Great Game provides a comprehensive understanding of the financial landscape during the rise of America as a world power in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. By exploring the financial strategies and decisions made during this critical period, readers can gain valuable historical context that can inform their own financial mindset today.

2. Learn from the successes and failures of financial giants: The book delves into the lives and careers of influential figures in finance, such as J.P. Morgan and John D. Rockefeller. Through their stories, readers can learn valuable lessons about strategy, risk management, and wealth creation. Understanding the decisions and actions of these financial titans can help individuals develop a more informed and well-rounded financial mindset.

3. Analyze economic and political dynamics: The Great Game explores the interplay between economic factors and political power. By examining the economic landscape during different periods of American history, readers can gain a deeper understanding of how political events impacted financial markets and individual wealth. This perspective can help readers make more informed decisions, considering the influence of broader economic and political forces on their personal finances.

4. Spark entrepreneurial thinking: The book showcases the entrepreneurial spirit and vision of individuals during a time of significant economic growth and innovation. By analyzing the business strategies and visionary thinking of the past, readers may be inspired to develop their own entrepreneurial ideas and solutions. This can help foster a more proactive mindset towards personal financial growth and wealth creation.

5. Understand the importance of adaptability: The Great Game highlights the importance of adaptability in the face of changing financial landscapes and market conditions. By studying the financial history depicted in the book, readers can learn to recognize and capitalize on opportunities while navigating economic uncertainties. This ability to adapt and seize opportunities is crucial to maintaining a resilient and growth-oriented financial mindset.

6. Cultivate a long-term perspective: The book emphasizes the long-term outlook required for successfully navigating the financial world. By examining the historical events and financial decisions that shaped America’s rise to power, readers can gain perspective on the importance of patience, perseverance, and strategic thinking. This long-term mindset is essential for building sustainable wealth and financial stability.

Overall, The Great Game provides a wealth of insights and lessons that can shape a more informed and effective financial mindset. By delving into the historical context, learning from financial giants, analyzing economic dynamics, fostering entrepreneurial thinking, embracing adaptability, and cultivating a long-term perspective, readers can gain invaluable knowledge to guide their financial decisions and pursuits.

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