Anyone who has worked within the financial industry has an inside view of how people view their financial status, and plan for the future. Simply, some do, and some do not. However, it is possible to have your personal finance intact and have financial freedom.
It does not matter how much your salary is, or how little, it all depends upon you and your decision to be financially free.
When there is a mind set to do anything, young or old; one can make it happen. Having been in mortgage lending for years, several titles; I have reviewed thousands of credit reports, financial statements, assets and liabilities. I have analyzed financials of people who have paid attention to saving and those who could use guidance from a financial expert.
Some people start from childhood. They save their toys, they save the five and ten dollars plus that they are given on their birthday and holiday. When high school is finished, they have some reserves for college.
I know of a young man who did this and had accumulated around 20 grand when he finished high school. Yes, his mom was in banking, but it was the child’s mind-set. He would take his lunch to school, and save his lunch money, and his allowance, his mom did not suggest he do that. Today, his savings portfolio is much higher than average, and he still does not overspend. He has a successful business and with the knowledge of his CPA wife, they live well.
We all want financial freedom. Nonetheless, often we live in the moment and forget about the tomorrow. We can look around and see those who have achieved this great stance and know that it must be joyous.
Where Do We Start?
One must be willing to get started, deny themselves some luxuries; except for now and then, and put some money back. If necessary, get a second job, clean the house instead of hiring it done, iron a few shirts or plain and simply; stop spending on anything that you can do yourself.
Quite simply; it takes work, planning and saving instead of spending, borrowing and living high. Well no, it is not that simple. When odd everyday expenditures pop up that are needed to sustain our life we jump off the wagon immediately and start complaining. The first step is setting our goals and sticking with them.
Most of us have been through our time of spending and wishing we had not. Most of us wish we had more financial stability and/or freedom. Truth is most of us could absolutely do better at getting success of financial freedom than we do.
Here are a few ways to get started on your financial freedom.
- First and foremost, watch your habits!
- Start early in life, if you haven’t there is still time, proceed.
- Start a budget.
- Start being conservative/frugal.
- Stop impulsive spending.
- Do not spend when you do not have it.
- Think about what you are spending.
- Do not try to live like the next door neighbor or best friend. This is your game; wanting to appear as if your ‘balance sheet’ bottom line is more than it is, will lead to deception for yourself and others. Look out for yourself and then you can feel important for being wise enough to accomplish your financial goals.
- Make sure you have a sufficient emergency fund. Set a goal that is reasonable. If you set it too high; you are bound to backslide. Starting small is better than going wild with it; initially.
- Do not borrow to get out of debt, you cannot borrow your way out of debt.
- Pay any credit cards balanced off monthly. One credit card at a time. Start with the smallest and work backward. Put extra money to the principle and you will be surprised how quickly the balance disappears.
- Do not charge unless absolutely necessary.
- Pay cash.
- When you shop; watch for sales.
- Use coupons. If you find something on sale and have a coupon, you have really hit the jackpot. Do not go overboard with coupons though.
- Learn the basics of saving.
- Pay yourself something. *Twenty dollars a week, month adds up.
- Stop buying things you do not need, but think you want.
- Open up a saving account if you do not have one.
- Contribute to 401K at work, this is the best way to make money on your saving as the company will share in your savings.
- Remind yourself to not spend too much at the grocery store.
- Remind yourself that you can save by cooking at home more often.
- Set a mind goal for each month, three months, and six months. The more you save, the more you are going to get excited and want to save more.
- Take baby steps and do not expect miracles if you have not saved before.
- Help another soul occasionally, give to your Church, and be thankful.
These are only a few compared to the many ways to jump start getting financial freedom. It is never too late to start saving and even minimal saving will grow more than you think.
It is important to realize that we are not all financial experts and that sometimes we should get advice from someone who knows more than we do about larger investing.
Never invest with anyone when you begin your road to financial freedom that you have not checked out. Bad investments can happen even for those who have been investing for years. If it all sounds too good to good to be true, it probably is. Remember to check with the Better Business Bureau. Look them up on the web, read the good and the bad reviews. Never assume!
Success to financial freedom does not and will not happen to anyone overnight. But, if you are conscious and willing to give up some things; you will see results before you know it. There are very young people who are very capable of taking every advantage of every promotion or incentive to earn. Those promotions which are legit can help you save even more.
The best place to start is where you are. The best time to start is now. If you begin to save now, before you know it, you will have formed a habit to enrich your life as you go forward. This will be a good habit that you will never regret, and then before you know it, you will be accumulating, and setting yourself up for financial freedom.
Note: Read this blog about a young mother who brags about living and budgeting on $17,000 annually here. If you think you will never have to do this, remember we never know!