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 What Should I do with my Money? The 3-S System
By Owen Phelps, Ph.D.

There are basically three things you can do with your money:
  • Spend it.
  • Save it.
  • Share it.
Which should you do? Forget either-or questions. You should do all three!

Many people manage their money in the order listed above.
  • They spend what they have to get what they want.
  • If they have any left over, they save what they can or think that they should.
  • If they have any left over after that, they share it with others in need.

Get alphabetical
But it’s best for you in the long run if you prioritize them in alphabetical order:
  • Save it.
  • Share it.
  • Spend it.
That’s the “3-S System.”

We suggest this order of priority because it’s a matter of doing the most difficult thing first — and because only when you do all three do you make the most effective use of your resources. Neglect any one of them and you cheat yourself.

Here are the benefits of each strategy — and why you should pursue all three all the time.
  • Saved money brings you riches.
  • Shared money brings you wealth.
  • Spent money pays the bills.
Unfortunately too many Americans rely on just one strategy — spending. The problem with that strategy is that it will never bring you either riches or wealth. In fact, it may actually end up impoverishing you. And if so, you would not be the first.

Millions of Americans make good incomes but remain just one or two paychecks ahead of financial disaster. When they stop to think about it, they worry about it. They wonder why, after all the hard work they do and the stress they endure, that they have almost nothing to show for their efforts. And they’re incredibly vulnerable to even a little bad luck — the kind of bad luck that strikes thousands of Americans each year when they lose their jobs.

Like the person adrift in the ocean without a life raft, they frantically wonder: How long can I tread water?

It doesn’t have to be that way — not if you focus on the 3S System of Money Management:
  • Save
  • Share
  • Spend
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