We as a society are at a tremendous disadvantage to the few who are financially literate. Why is this in a highly educated society like Australia? (you could name virtual any western country instead of Australia)
We are taught in schools and university's to read, write and arithmetic, we are taught to study hard and get a good job. So we can work for someone else. We are never taught to create wealth and energy for ourselves.
But basic financial literacy isn't that hard, nor is it a highly complex thing (although financial people like to use weird words to describe things, I think to keep the masses in confusion)
So where to start??
I know where not to start, that's in any program or group that charges thousands of dollars for a weekend course in Property, options, foreign exchange, day trading any any other thing they can dream of. Just think if they are truly making the sort of money they claim, why are they wasting there time teaching you, not sun baking on a island somewhere??. Because they make there money from scamming average people out of there money, with get rich scheme's. Do these simple things and make thousands of dollars for little effort they say.
Here is one of my golden rules..
The more people between you and your asset/investment the less money you make!
Most knowledge can be found for free on the internet or my personal favorite your local library, which is a tremendous resource for free. There is very little that any thousand dollar course can teach you about, that is not in your local library. Just search for any subject go get a few books read them over some time, then go get some more. They can even order books in for you from other library's, just ask!! Start with basic books, then work your way up.
The most important things is to take responsibility for yourself!! Understanding the basics in the previous post is vital. If you can't save 10% on 30k a year you don't have the discipline to save 10% on 200k a year. In fact many high income earners are struggling under the weight of there debts and obligations. If you are struggling on 40k a year a 10k pay rise may seem the solution to all your problems, but in 12 months time 95% of people will be in the same struggling position. Which leads to another golden rule of mine...
If you can not make saving money a habit, you will never be rich!!
Make saving 10% of your income a habit that you do every time, this gives you the disciple to achieve many things. Trust me before you know it, you will not even notice the money gone!! Then when you have a reasonable amount of money in savings you can invest it, and save some more. There's nothing like the feeling of security in having income and assets the make money while you sleep.
This is why alot of Lotto winners end up broke? Because they know how to spend money but not make it (without working for it) and the sum total of there investment ideas is to put it in the bank and live off the interest.
Financial education is vital because we all live with money, use it daily, and require it to live. Just learning to manage your own money and personal situation will give you confidence in your own life and free you do do some things that you want to do. Whatever they are.
I personally don't have a much of a desire for wealth in itself, but a I have burning desire for choice in my life! I don't want to work for 45+ years and retire on less than my average wage. I want to have the ability to choose my own destiny. That's what drives me. I want to go to Uni and get a degree in History for no other reason than it interests me, I want to spend lots of time with my kids, I would like to learn to sail and travel the world, I want show my wife Europe and the wonders that the world has to offer. I would like to improve the life of people less fortunate than myself. This is what drives me! This is what motivates me, making money is a by-product.