Last week I shared to you my goal of becoming a financially independent Pinay. How I want to live a life where I am entitled to more than I can actually afford. That I want to live a life where I can pursue a career of my choice and still get a grip on my finances. And that I want to live a life where I can easily give and share my blessings to others without worrying what will happen next to my funds.
My post opened a number of questions from curious readers whether financial freedom is really possible. Today I’d like to give you a clear road map on how early financial independence can be a doable goal and why you owe it to yourself to be one day financially free.
The Journey to Financial Independence
Financial Independence is defined as a state of having sufficient personal wealth to live, without having to work actively for basic necessities. It means you accumulate greater passive income that can cover your expenses even without you working for it. Personal financial independence is a life long process. And it’s something you can only achieve if you start now.
If you read my About Page you’ll know that my magic number in terms of retirement and achieving total financial independence has been 30 years old. I know it sounds too ambitious and I am still currently far from that state to be honest. But I am working on it every day. And nothings gonna stop me from my quest to financial freedom. Even if I don’t hit my target retired at 30 know that everything I do today will help me be still in a way better financial life by that age rather than doing nothing at all.
Is Financial Independence possible?
I’ve read countless of blogs and articles of people who have achieved financial freedom in life. They were able to create the life they want without stopping. How? Below are the main factors that play a lot of role to make the impossible possible and one day be financially free.
You Need to Really Want It
Your desire to be financially free is important to help you go from zero to hero in less time. You can only do something you really want, right? Spend a day to really sort things out in your financial life and set your heart, mind and soul to the idea of becoming financially independent.
Create a personal definition of “financial independence” for you.
Find out your current financial status through calculating your net worth.
List your goals that will help you achieve total financial independence.
We often take budget for granted. We only create one once we are already running out of money to spend. Budgets comes as an option rather than a necessity. This mindset should be changed. A good budget can make you rich in the long run. It could give you a blueprint for a stronger financial foundation.
Let’s face it, more income means more money you can save, invest or use to sustain your living expenses. Do not be satisfied with a single source of money try your very hard to open other income streams that will help you get to closer to your dream.
Debt will be a big hindrance for you to achieve financial independence. As much as possible try to avoid debt or pay it off as early as possible. When paying off debt it’s better to do the snowball method or focusing on those that have higher interest rate then moving on the low-interest rate debt. Below is a before, during and after debt tip you can use:
Before making a debt
Assess whether it’s a need or a want.
Find possible alternative that can cost you less.
Find possible creditor/loan solution have no/less interest rate.
Create an agreement (possibly written) on the payment method as well asthe deadline.
During the debt
Avoid making additional debt.
Create a good creditor-debtor relationship.
Have an open communication with your creditor.
Pay on time the whole amount with interest(if any).
If you can’t pay the debt on time, let the creditor know as soon as possible. Let him/her know the honest reason why and ask for an allowance.
If it’s a credit card delay then talk to your bank and ask for possible solution that you can pay. I know one who wrote a letter to the leading bank and was given a payment method that is so much easier to do thought takes longer time. Still he is responsible enough to pay.
After the debt
Appreciate your creditor by thanking him/her for the financial help.
Don’t make another debt just when your current debt ended.
Still have an open communication to your creditor.
The earlier you save money the better it would be for your finances. Make sure that you automatically save a portion of your income as cash reserve for future or emergency use. How do you save? Start small. Do not over commit on the percentage of your income that goes to saving. If you still can’t do the 50% of your salary on savings then don’t. It is way better to start with 10% to 20% of your income then go higher as your source increases. What matters most is you save consistently.
Saving won’t make your money work for you. That’s why as early as today you need to learn how to invest. There are a number of investment vehicles available for you to choose. Be wise on what vehicle will satisfy you as an investor. Why Should You Invest Your Money?
– If you care about your future then you should invest.
– If you want financial peace…invest.
– If you want your money to generate income to earn interest…invest.
– If you want your money to work for you aka passive income…invest.
– If you have long term goals that will need a higher amount of money…invest.
– If you want to amplify your current life…invest.
– If you want to learn more about how money how money works…invest.
It is important to remember that only you can define whether the financial independence is really a realistic goal you can achieve in 10-20 years from now. You need to establish the system that will get you there. From what budget will enable you to so to what investment will give you the right number to retire at peace.
Everything starts with you and ends with you so only YOU have the power to change your current state. Recognize the need to implement change in your habits and routines so you can start working on your financial freedom system. I think what I notice the most is that people who want to retire young and achieve financial independence are reading and learning a lot but do not act.
You have to build you own system to success. No self-help books can build the road for you. If you don’t act on it then everything will be put to waste. So try to start and learn how… NOW.
Final Notes from SavingsPinay
So if you ask me if Financial Independence a Realistic Goal for Pinoys, my answer is short and simple — YES!!! As long as you want it, work for it and build a system that will work for you. Again as I’ve always mentioned it is indeed a life-long journey and everything you do today matter. Every decision you make can contribute to your financial success.
PS. I created today’s post as a primer on the eBook that I’ll be releasing before 2016 ends. One of my to do list before 2017 is provide a quality reading guide for every SavingsPinay reader. It would be FREE and will include far more pages and learning from last year’s Making Your 2015 The Best Year Ever eBook.
“How to Be A Financially Independent Pinay : A Step by Step Guide for Every Juana”. Release date will be posted soon.
Is Financial Independence Your Goal Too? What Age Do You Want to Achieve It?
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Izza of SavingsPinay helps Filipinos bridge the financial literacy gap one content at a time by providing insights and tips on budgeting, saving, investing, side hustle and growing your net worth. Aside from this blog she also writes at www.izzaglinofull.com, a beauty and lifestyle blog for frugal Pinays and manages, www.izzagevents.com, a wedding and event business since 2011. For inquiries, topic suggestions or future collaborations email her firstname.lastname@example.org