Financial! Finances! Finance! Sounds boring already right? ? stick around it gets better. For many of us we are in a transition stage, transitioning to a new job, a new course of study, a new relationship, etc.While for some of us we feel stagnant, stuck in a job we don’t feel fulfilled at; a course we did not choose voluntarily, etc. however, one thing that remains constant is money matters. Things are not exactly as I imagined growing up, it seems the jobs are getting fewer, pay is getting smaller and worst of all inflation is getting higher! It’s easy to lose hope on developing financial muscle at a young age.
I realized over time that my economics teacher got it right the first class; humans are insatiable, no matter the job you get, the salary you earn, the inheritance you benefited from, the bets that crystallized; until you figure out certain financial secrets you will never be satisfied. You might truly believe that if you get that new job, get that raise, close the deal with that investor you will feel financially secure but the truth is you will feel great at first but unless your financial consciousness is in tune with reality , you will find yourself in the same financial decadence as where you were before reading this post.
So the question remains; what do i need to do?
As long as you have a stream of income ( whether it’s from a job, allowance, entrepreneurship, return on investment) then you qualify for this advice. Now it won’t be easy, especially when you feel like you deserve that paycheck or that job; but UNTIL you learn to appreciate where you are! Learn to optimize what you have then you are not ready for that upgrade. Now don’t get me wrong; there is nothing wrong with having desires for a better life, a higher standard of living but make sure you do not cross the line from desire to covetousness. Once you do you lose the power ; you feel yourself up with rage, bitterness, self pity and you fail to appreciate and be sensitive to good deals around you. You start to make mistakes; poor decisions based on desperation and end up in financial potholes you never could have imagined.
SAVINGS AND INVESTMENT CULTURE
Twitter activists have fought about this for the longest time. I remember when someone said “you cannot save yourself out of poverty” honestly that hit home; and it’s probably true. But the question remains why do you save? You don’t need to answer straight away but once you understand why you save; you will understand that a savings culture is a NECESSITY, it is not a CONVENIENT Excercise. For me I save for various reasons; in case of emergencies, for a new gadget, a trip, sense of financial responsibility, etc. I believe savings are for when life’s unexpected blows hit us hard. Sometimes we never expect our phones to get stolen, The tyre of our car to give up, to have to go to the hospital, etc. I hear people say “ an emergency came up this month and now I’m broke” this is where your savings will come in useful.
Investments on the other hand are long term financial securities. You are not too young to do both. Out of what you think is small you can do both. The sooner you start doing this the stronger your financial skeleton will be.
FIND JOY IN THE SIMPLE THINGS.
Sometimes we are so obsessed with what we don’t have that we fail to appreciate what we have. Sometimes we are so obsessed with what we cannot afford that we don’t take note of the beauty of what we can. For some of us we may wonder what are the simple things? Good health, free accommodation, financial standing parents, dual citizenship to mention a few. You can’t afford to travel to Europe? Look for beautiful places in Africa to travel to. Happiness is a state of mind; it’s a choice and money will not change this; money can help you feel better for a short while but the fact remains; you are as happy as you choose to be. Happiness is a choice! If you’re not happy now, you’re not going to be happy later.
STOP THE WHEN AND THEN SYNDROME.
We are fond of saying “when I get a new job I will be able to rent a new house then I’ll be happy”, “ when I get a raise then I will be able to afford a better standard of living “ the when and then syndrome makes you feel trapped in your current financial situation instead of opening your mind to the opportunities your current finances gift you.
TAKE RESPONSIBILITY; KEEP YOUR BOOKS
Have you ever wondered how fast your money went? It’s almost like someone stole it ?. This is probably because you failed to keep your books. For your finances to be well utilized you need to keep proper books. Have a budget on how you spend your finances. Have an expense account, set out an amount for TGIF, lunch, emergencies, beauty & hair, etc. this way you will be able to manage your funds better and know what is eating your money unexpectedly. Until you learn to budget and stick to it, no amount will be enough to fulfill your desires. Write down what you own, what you owe, what you earn, and where it’s going. This is the basic principle to financial management
STOP WORRYING; START ACTING
We spend so much time worrying we have no time to act. You are not earning enough money? Start applying for new jobs, you are not getting promoted at work? Add a qualification, start a side hustle! Do something else! Worrying is a waste of time.
To end this I have one question for you. Is this the first time you have been financially down? Did you survive? What does this mean? No matter how broke I become I have realized that not worrying about it is the best way to live. Instead I channel that energy into more productive things. I used to be so scared to check my account balance; once I get a debit alert I just clear it from my notifications; but since I realized that facing it headlong, holding myself accountable, having saving stashed somewhere (no matter how small) I’m currently on a healthier! Happier! Content! Financial journey.
I’m inviting you to join me on this journey! Don’t forget to leave your comments and share!